Joseph Buford Cox

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Joseph Buford Cox (1905 – August 10, 2002),[1] was an American inventor and businessman. He invented what is now known as the chipper type chain for chain saws. He based his design on the C-shaped jaws of the larva of the timber beetle.[2]

Joseph and his wife, Alice, founded "The Oregon Saw Chain Co." in 1947. Cox later started a small casting company called OMARK, now known as "Omark Industries". In time, Oregon Saw Chain became a subsidiary of Omark Industries which was in turn acquired in 1985 by Blount, Inc., of Montgomery, Alabama. Blount merged in 1999 with Lehman Brothers Merchant Banking Partners. The company is known today as Blount International, Inc. Most chainsaws, with the exception of some Stihl saws, use an Oregon chain based on the invention of Joseph Buford Cox.[3]

Joseph Buford Cox only reached the fifth grade in his formal education.

They had no children. Mrs. Alice Erikson Cox left her fortune to be used by the Willmar Community Area Foundation on behalf of the people of Kandyohi County and Lake Lillian in central Minnesota.[4]


  1. ^ "Im Memorium" (PDF). Annual Report 2002. Blount International, Inc. Archived from the original (pdf) on 2006-03-12. Retrieved 2007-12-04.
  2. ^ A brief history of the chainsaw - Popular Mechanics
  3. ^ OREGON History
  4. ^ How much? Chainsaw millionaire leaves $6million fortune to residents of her home county - which is $142 each | Daily Mail Online

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