A Breif Roller Coaster History

15th/16th Centuries Russian ice slides, built in St Petersburg, Russia.
1784 First wheeled "coaster carts" used in Russia to extend the riding season.
1816 "Russian Mountain dry slides with wheeled carts are erected in Paris.
1848 Wooden Loop the Loop wheeled track ride introduced in Paris, but was not successful.
1873 Mauch Chuck gravity ride becomes America’s first gravity ride.
1884 La Marcus Adna Tompson builds the first true "Roller coaster" – the switch back at Coney Island.
1884 Charles Allcoke builds the first continuous-circuit roller coaster at Coney Island.
1885 Philip Hinkle builds a roller coaster where the cars are mechanically pulled up the lift hill.
1887 Tompsons introduces the first Scenic Railway at Atlantic City.
1887 First Figure-Eight roller coaster built at Haverhill, Massachusetts.
1891 Switchback Railway built at Blackpool, England.
1891 Lina Beecher markets the vertical looping Centrivical Cycle Railway.
1895 Paul Boyton’s Sea Lion Park opens at Coney Island. Considered to be the first enclosed amusement park with a gate admission.
1897 Steeplechase park opens at Coney Island.
1901 First elliptical vertical-looping ride is built by Edmund Prescott.
1901 December 5: Walter Elias ("Walt Disney") is born at 1249 Tripp Avenue, in Chicago, Illinois, to parents Elias and Flora Disney. Walter is named after Reverend Walter Parr.
1903 Luna Park opens at Coney Island.
1907 Christian Feuchs designs the first high-speed roller coaster, Drop the Dips, and introduces the lap bar to secure riders in their seats.
1922 John Miller patents the "uplift" and "guide wheel" safety systems for coaster cars.
1920’s The first "golden age" of the roller coaster.
1930’s The Great Depression in the US causes many parks to close.
1952 Cinerama film revives interest in roller coasters.
1955 Disneyland opens in Anaheim, Los Angeles, California July 17.
1959 Karl Bacon builds the first steel track roller coaster, Matterhorn Bobsleds, opens on June 14. (The addition of the double bobsleds, snowmen, and ice caverns in 1978)
1966 Walt Disney Dies on December 15 at 65 years of age. Dies of acute circulatory collapse caused be lung cancer.
1970’s The second "golden age" of the roller coaster
1971 Disney World's Magic Kingdom opens October 1 in Florida.
1972 The Racer, a twin-track wooden roller coaster, kick starts a great revival in classic wooden coaster construction.
1975 Ron Toommer designs the first Corkscrew coaster.
1977 Anton Schwarzkoph designs the first "vertical-loop" steel coaster at Six Flags Magic Mountain called "Revolution".
1978 National Amusement Park Historical Association (N.A.P.H.A.) is founded.
1979 The Beast, the longest wooden-track roller coaster in the world is built at King Island.
1981 Arrow design the first suspended roller coaster for Kings Island.
1984 Togo build the first "stand-up" coaster at Kings Island.
1986 Anton Schwarzkoph designs the multi-inversion Thriller portable roller coaster.
1989 Arrow build the first hypercoaster, Magnum XL 200, at Cedar Point. It has the highest lift hill and longest first drop n the world.
1992 Bolliger & Mabillard build the first "inverted-swing" suspended roller coaster, Batman The Ride, at Six Flags Great America.
1992 The world’s longest roller coaster, Ultimate is built at Lightwater Valley Theme Park, England.
1994 Desperado, built by arrow at Buffalo Bill’s Resort Casino, becomes the worlds tallest roller coaster at 209 feet. It is also the fastest conventional gravity ride at 80mph and has the longest first drop or 225 feet- equal to Steel Phantom at Kennywood Park.
1995 Dragon Khan designed by Bolliger & Mabillard at Port Aventura, Salou, Spain, has the most inversions – eight - for a completes circuit roller coaster
1996 Fujiyama, built by Togo at Fujikyp Highlands Park, Japan, becomes the worlds tallest roller coaster at 259 feet above ground and had the highest lift hill off 234 feet 7 inches.
1997 "Superman: The Escape", designed by Intamin AG, opens at Six Flags Magic Mountain, and is the first roller coaster powered by a linear induction motor to launch the coaster 400 feet up a vertical track at a design speed off 100 mph.
1998 Oblivion, Designed by Bolliger & Mabillard at Alton Towers, England, is the first "vertical drop Roller Coaster".