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Pearsall Family Papers

Identifier: M419


This collection contains information related to Duane Pearsall (1922-2011), a Navy pilot in WWII and famous for inventing the home smoke detector.


  • 1922-2011


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Biographical / Historical

Duane Pearsall was born in 1922 in Pontiac Michegan. In 1942, he enlisted in the United States Navy as a pilot, and was posted to several bases overseas. He married Marjorie Fewel in 1944 and moved to Denver. He is famous for inventing the home smoke detector, and was a valued member of Denver society and Denver business for many years. Pearsall helped found the Small Business Council of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in 1976, and was chairman of the Colorado Small Business Council in 1979. From 1975 to 1978, he served as a director of the Denver Chamber of Commerce, and from 1982 to 1989, he was a director of the Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry, serving as its chairman from 1985 to 1986. In 1983, Pearsall co-founded Columbine Venture Funds, an organisation specializing in new technology located in Denver. Pearsall died in Denver in 2011.


.5 Linear Feet (1 letter document box)

Related Materials

The Archives at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, MA, holds Duane Pearsall's research, design work, prototypes, etc. Pearsall founded a program in Fire Protection Engineering at this Institute.



Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and Archives Repository

2150 East Evans Avenue
Denver CO 80208
(303) 871-3428