On this day, January 20th, 1885, L.A. Thompson patents the roller coaster. Thompson was an inventor and businessman, however he is most well known for developing many roller coaster rides. His first design, the Switchback Railway was the first roller coaster created as an amusement park ride in America and opened in Coney Island in 1884. The Switchback Railwaystood on the present day site of the Cyclone. The ride went 6 mph and costs 5 cents. Thompson would opened many more roller coasters in the US and Europe.