Levitt Ellsworth Custer

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Levitt Ellsworth Custer circa 1912

Levitt Ellsworth Custer (June 18, 1863 - January 3, 1924) was an Ohio dentist and balloonist.[1][2]


He was born on June 18, 1863 in Perrysville, Ohio. His son was Levitt Luzern Custer.[3]


  1. ^ "Dr. L. E. Custer: Dedicated to His Profession". Dayton History Books. Retrieved 2009-08-03. Dr. Custer was born June 18, 1863, at Perrysville, Ohio. His father, Isaac Newton Custer, was a dentist. He attended public schools in New Philadelphia and Westerville before entering Otterbein University, from which he was graduated in 1884. As a youngster, he worked for a jeweler and in his father’s dental office. His savings for his college training came from a year (1878-79) he spent playing cornet with a river circus band traveling from Cincinnati to New Orleans. Before entering the Ohio College of Dental Surgery in 1885, he taught music and school at the Boys’ Industrial Farm at Lancaster. ... 
  2. ^ "Baloonists" (PDF). New York Times. July 30, 1912. Retrieved 2009-08-03. John Watt and George Quissenberry, pilot and aid, respectively, of the balloon Kansas City II., which ran second in the international elimination trials, arrived here from Belleville, Mich., to-day. ...Dr. L. E. Custer ... 
  3. ^ "Dayton - Miami Valley Inventors and Inventions". Wright State University. Retrieved 2009-08-03. Levitt Luzern Custer was born in Dayton, Ohio. He graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1913. His first patented invention was a device that showed whether a balloon or dirigible was ascending or descending in flight. Custer produced his statoscope for the U.S. Navy at his factory, Custer Specialty Company, on North Ludlow Street in Dayton. After World War I, Custer saw a need for a device to help injured and disabled soldiers to get around. Luzern Custer invented the "Custer Invalid Chair" or "Custer Car" in 1919, which was battery powered. The apparatus was a three-wheeled vehicle and was operated entirely by hand. He invented a gasoline version of the car in 1939. Dr. Levitt Ellsworth Custer, a prominent local dentist and Luzern's father, invented an aerial torpedo, pat. no. 913,814, in 1909 for dirigibles.