Bissell Carpet Sweeper
In 1876 Melville Bissell patented the spinning wonder. He created it at the behest of his wife, Anna, who was frustrated with the existing rug-cleaning technology. After Melville’s untimely death in 1889, Anna became America’s first female corporate CEO and helped the company grow into a powerhouse. Today the Bissell Swift Sweep remains a go-to gadget for quick (and quiet) cleanups.
To buy: $20, bissell.com.