Way back when (pre US Patent #1,000,000) there was a patent, entitled simply “Ball”. A gyroscope inside a ball that also had a second layer within it – you know, for jugglers and magicians! This was an early version of a gimbal mounted gyroscope.
Another patent, shortly thereafter, was an aeroplane stabiliser – with an electrical control to guide the torque of a spinning wheel.
I hazard a guess that these two critical patents influenced control moment gyros without even thinking of it.
- “Ball” – Wrather, 1909 – http://www.google.com/patents/US942952
- “Automatic stabilizer for aeroplanes and the like” – Regnard, 1910 – http://www.google.com/patents/US1015837