“When you can do the common things of life uncommonly, you will command the attention of the world.” - George Washington Carver
Born into slavery in 1864 in Newtown County, Missouri. Dr. George Washington Carver was an American agricultural scientist, Botanist professor, and inventor who created many common things uniquely commanding the attention of the world to this day.
Known as the “Silent Genius”, Carver created alternative crops to cotton and methods to prevent soil depletion. He was one of the most prominent black scientists of the early 20th century, (Madehow.com).
Carver developed 300 products from peanuts and 118 from sweet potatoes. His industrial and commercial products from peanuts, included milk flakes, chili sauce, flour, instant coffee, meat tenderizer, Worcestershire sauce, punches, cooking and salad oils, laxatives, and goiter medications.
Additionally, he developed products from cosmetics, paper soaps, waste materials including stains and fillers, insulating board, linoleum, recycled oil, paints, adhesives, axle grease, bleach, creosote, dyes, and wood stains from clay, shoe polish, shaving cream, vanishing cream, wood, metal polish, soil conditioner.
Carver never received an official doctorate, he was given the word Dr. by others due to his abilities and their assumptions about his education. With that said, both Simpson College and Selma University awarded him an honorary Doctor of Sciencedoctorates of science in his lifetime. Iowa State later awarded him a doctorate of humane letters posthumously in 1994.
In 1896, Brooker T. Washington, then the first President of Tuskegee Institute now Tuskegee University invited Carver to head the Agriculture Department teaching for 47 years. He was a scholar developing the department to be a strong research center teaching superior methods of farming including crop rotation, alternatives for cash crops for farmers, and teaching generations of Black students farming techniques for self-sufficiency. He even designed a mobile classroom to take education to the farmers – the “Jessup Wagon” after New York financier Morris Ketchum Jessup who funded the program (Wikipedia)
Photos from Biography.com
"George Washington Carver advised Indian leader Mahatma Gandhi on matters of agriculture and nutrition. George Washington Carver was the first African American to have a national park named after him," (National Peanut Board).