Helge Palmcrantz bigraphy, stories - Inventors

Helge Palmcrantz : biography

1842 - 1880

Helge Palmcrantz (1842 – 1880), Swedish inventor and industrialist, was born in Hammerdal, in the province of Jämtland, the son of a captain in the Jämtlands fältjägarregemente. He was enlisted as a cadet in his father's regiment, where he worked on land survey. After a couple of years he left the regiment to study at the Technological Institute of Stockholm (later known as KTH).

In partnership with his brother-in-law, Theodor Winborg, Palmcrantz founded a small but growing factory on Kungsholmen, Stockholm, where they manufactured reaping machines, mowers and other agricultural equipment of their own design.

In 1873 Palmcrantz patented the multi-barrel, lever-actuated, machine gun that would later be known as the Nordenfelt machine-gun after his financial backer, Thorsten Nordenfelt. Palmcrantz met Nordenfelt in 1875 and the latter's company became his British agent. They agreed to market the machine-gun under the then well known Nordenfelt brand. It was Nordenfelt who convinced Palmcrantz to increase the caliber of his gun to one inch, making it a suitable weapon for use against the growing threat of torpedo boats.{{cite book|title= Machine Gun: The Story of the Men and the Weapon That Changed the Face of War |first=Anthony |last=Smith| publisher= Macmillan}year= 2004 |page=69|ISBN = 978-0-312-93477-4 }}

After Palmcrantz succumbed to an early death from a bleeding ulcer, Winborg and Nordenfelt continued to develop and manufacture his guns in Sweden, England and Spain.

Helge Palmcrantz has a school named after him; Palmcrantzskolan in Östersund.

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