George Washington Carver, agri-science legend
This date marks the birth of George Washington Carver in 1864. He was a Black educator and an outstanding innovator in the agricultural sciences.
Carver was born near Diamond, Missouri. He left home when he was about ten and eventually settled in Minneapolis and Kansas, where he worked his way through high school. Following his graduation from Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts (now Iowa State University), Carver joined the college faculty and continued his studies, specializing in bacteriological laboratory work in systematic botany.
In 1896, he became director of the Department of Agricultural Research at Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute (now Tuskegee University). Carver began an exhaustive series of experiments with peanuts, developing several hundred industrial uses for them as well as for sweet potatoes and soybeans. His discoveries convinced southern farmers to raise other crops in addition to cotton. He also taught methods of soil improvement.
In 1935, he was appointed collaborator in the Division of Plant Mycology and Disease Survey of the Bureau of Plant Industry of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Carver died at Tuskegee on January 5, 1943.
Lives of Poor Boys Who Became Famous.
Sarah Knowles Bolton
Copyright 1925, 1962
New York: Thomas Y. Crowell
The Story of George Washington Carver
Arna Wendell Bontemps
New York: Grosset and Dunlap,
Carver, George Washington
Today in American History