Oliver Evans — American Inventor born on September 13, 1755, died on April 15, 1819

Oliver Evans was an American inventor, engineer and businessman. A pioneer in the fields of automation, materials handling and steam power, Evans was one of the most prolific and influential inventors in the early years of the United States. He left behind a long series of accomplishments, most notably designing and building the first fully automated industrial process; America's first high-pressure steam engine; and the first amphibious vehicle and American automobile... (wikipedia)

It frequently happens that two persons, reasoning right on a mechanical subject, think alike and invent the same thing without any communication with each other.
People did not even then like to eat dirt, if they could see it.