Q: How do I search for a patent granted to a young William Gates III between the years 1967-71 for a silicon chip or proces
I believe it to be a patent I sent him to the patent office with.
This is not easy as the USPTO tools for searching fields such as name do not apply to patents from that time frame.
The assignment database goes back to 1980. The full text search tool on USPTO goes back to 1976. While the images of the earlier patents can be retrieved by patent number, that won't help you.
You could try looking at Microsoft patents from 1976 to 1980 as it is common for a company to list their earlier patents when filing a new patent application and those lists may reach back to the 1967-1971 time frame.
You can also use Google Patents as they seemed to have OCR'd a number of older patents so you can do field based searches.
Here is a start -- https://patents.google.com/?inventor=William+Gates&before=priority:19801231&after=priority:19670101
Finally, you can contact a research librarian at a major engineering school near you. They may have knowledge of old directories of inventors or other tools that can help you.
I hope this helps.
Kevin E Flynn
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