1939: Like a human

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The first robot ever made was a steam powered pigeon created by Greek mathematician Archytas around 400 to 350 BCE. And then there was Lilliput, a 15-cm tall tin wind-up toy in Japan in 1932.

But by 1939, the robot was no longer a toy.

"I am a smart fellow as I have a very fine brain of 48 electrical relays," the 7-foot tall tin robot said, while introducing himself at the 1939 World's Fair in New York.

Elektro walked around stage, heard voice commands through a telephone, and smoked a cigarette on stage. Complete with the vices and sarcastic wit, he was as close to a human as could be at the time.

Today, you can see the oldest surviving American robot in the world on display at the Mansfield Memorial Museum.

First published July 28, 2015: 7:29 AM ET

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