McCoy, the son of former slaves, may be Eloises most famous resident.
Born in Colchester, Ontario, Canada on May 2nd, 1844, McCoy fled Kentucky before
the Civil War. He ended up in Scotland, where he was educated as a mechanical
engineer. He settled in Detroit after returning to
the United States and began his contributions to the industrial machine industry.
His first invention in 1872 was a lubricator for steam engines U.S. 129,843, which issued on July 12, 1872. It allowed machines to remain in motion while being oiled. McCoy was responsible for 57 patents. The term real McCoy refers to the oiling device used for industrial machinery. Equipment inspectors came to ask if a machine contained the real McCoy. Gradually, it became an American expression meaning the real thing.
McCoy also invented an ironing board and lawn sprinkler. He died in the Eloise Infirmary Oct. 10, 1929, a year after he was admitted suffering from senile dementia caused by hypertension. He was buried in Detroit, Michigan.