Did you know that in 1926 “Negro History Week” was founded by Carter G Woodson, an African American publisher, historian, educator, and scholar? The month of February was selected to coincide with the birth date of Frederick Douglas and Abraham Lincoln. It was extended to a month-long in 1976 when President Gerald Ford officially recognized February as Black History Month, calling upon the public to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”
Black History takes place every day, just as all history does. I decided to compile a list to celebrate Black Excellence in America.
Did you know that Jack Johnson became the 1st African American to hold the World Heavyweight Boxing Title in 1908 and that he held that title until 1915?
Did you know that John Mercer Langston was the first black man to become a lawyer when he passed the bar in Ohio in 1854 and that when he was elected to the post of Town Clerk for Brownhelm, Ohio, in 1855, he became one of the first African Americans ever elected to public office in America and he was also the great-uncle of Langston Hughes, famed poet of the Harlem Renaissance?
Did you know that in 1955 Claudette Colvin was arrested nine months before Rosa Parks being arrested for not giving up her bus seat to white passengers….which inspired the Montgomery Bus Boycott?
Did you know that George Washington Carver developed 300 derivative products from peanuts? Among these products are cheese, milk, coffee, flour, ink, dyes, plastics, wood stains, soap, linoleum, medicinal oils, and cosmetics.
Did you know that the following were all invented by African Americans?
Automatic Gear Shift – Richard Spikes
America’s first clock- Benjamin Banneker
Automatic Elevator Door – Alexander Miles
Blimp – John Pickering
Blood Bank – Dr. Charles Drew
Cloth Dryer -George T. Sampson
Dustpan – Lloyd P. Ray
Electric Lamp – Lewis Latimer
Folding Chair – John Purdy
Gas heating Furnace – Alice H. Parker
Golf Tee – Dr. George Grant
Home Security System – Marie Van Brittan Brown
Ice Cream Scooper – Alfred L. Cralle
Ironing Board – Sarah Boone
Lawnmower – John Albert Burr
Lawn Sprinkler – Joseph A. Smith
Mailbox – Phillip Downing
Modern Lock – Washington Martin
Modern Toilet – Thomas Elkins
Mop – Thomas W. Stewart
Pacemaker – Otis Boykin
Portable Pencil Sharpener – John Lee Love
Potato Chips – George Crum
Reversible Baby Stroller – William Richardson
Super Soaker – Lonnie G. Johnson
Touch Tone Telephone – Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson
Traffic Light – Garrett Morgan
And the list goes on. If you are interested in learning more about African American facts, the information is out there.
Until Next time,
Have an Absolutely Lovely Day!