Fire destroyed the Patent Office in 1836 and records of 10,000 patents, including the 14 found at the Dartmouth College Library by Asmus and Cernota, were lost. Under Secretary Dudas presented the pair with a framed copy of a 19th century patent drawing and praised the attorneys for helping the USPTO reclaim part of its history. To date, only about 2,800 of the lost patent records have been recovered.
As these lost patents were recovered, each was assigned sequential numbers starting with 1, and an "X" was added to distinguish them from the post-1836 patents. Because they were often recovered out of issuance order, many were given a fractional number, such Patent 127.5X, in order to keep the patents in the proper sequence.