Buell, Abel (byōˈəl) [key], 1742–1822, American silversmith, engraver, and type founder, b. Killingworth, Conn. He engraved a number of maps, including maps of the Florida coast and a large wall map of the United States, the first produced in America after the Treaty of Paris in 1783. He experimented in type founding, cast the first font of native-made American type (1769), and later supplied type to Connecticut printers. He invented machinery for cutting and polishing precious stones, for coining money, and for a period produced copper coins for the state. He also established in 1795, at New Haven, one of the first cotton mills in the country (which soon failed), and was involved in many other projects.
See biography by L. C. Wroth (rev. ed. 1958).