EP# 031: Willis Carrier and Modern AC

For ages man has tried to control the weather, be it to keep cool or warm. Most early ways to cool was open windows and mechanical systems. And to deal with summer heat before air conditioning, most people would sit on their stoops or fire escapes, eat or drink cold foods and beverages or even sleep in parks, or other places outside.

The early applications of air conditioning were for consistency in manufacturing, not for the comfort of people. Factories were brutal “sweatshops” – built for profit not for comfort or employee well-being.

Air conditioning was the hybrid of two technologies – electricity and refrigeration. It did not immediately take-off with the public due to its costs and space needed for the large amount of equipment. Also, most people thought AC was a dream, not a possible reality. Pioneers like Willis Carrier envisioned a world of manufactured weather to allow people to escape the challenges of heat and cold and poor internal environments.

Show notes (with time stamps)

Introduction: 00:00 - 01:59

Early Years of AC: 02:04 - 07:42

Carrier Bio: 07:46 - 09:39

Buffalo Forge: 09:44 - 21:57

Carrier AC: 22:01 - 27:27

Carrier Corp.: 27:31 - 49:04

Conclusion: 49:10 -


Artist: Scott Holmes

Album: Road Trip

Track: Indie Rock


Willis Haviland Carrier: Father of Air Conditioning by Margaret Ingels

Cool: How Air Conditioning Changed Everything by Salvatore Basile

Cool Comfort: America’s Romance with Air Conditioning by Marsha E. Ackermann

Air-Conditioning America: Engineers and the Controlled Environment by Gail Cooper