On This Day

George Washington Carver

Agricultural Scientist and Inventor George Washington Carver

Profession: Agricultural Scientist and Inventor

United States of America

Biography: Carver was the most famous black scientist and agriculturalist in America during his lifetime. Born into slavery he was freed after the Civil War.

He became the first African American student at the Iowa State Agricultural College before accepting a job from Booker T. Washington to teach at the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama.

Arriving in the South, Carver was appalled at the damage growing just cotton was doing to the land and the precarious existence of its farmers, especially those who were black. Carver began touring, giving lectures on soil deletion, and encouraging farmers to diversify and plant other crops. Carver became particularly famous for promoting peanut crops and products made out of them.

Carver's fame grew, he met with and was praised for his work by three American presidents. After his death in 1943 President Franklin D. Roosevelt dedicated money for a national monument to commemorate his life, the first national monument to an African American.

Born: January 10, 1864
Birthplace: Diamond, Missouri, USA
Star Sign: Capricorn

Died: January 5, 1943 (aged 78)
Cause of Death: Complications (anemia) from a fall down a flight of stairs

Historical Events

  • 1943-05-07 Liberty Ship George Washington Carver, named after scientist, launched
  • 1953-07-14 First US national monument dedicated to a black American, to preserve the boyhood home of agricultural scientist and inventor George Washington Carver in Newton County, Missouri

Biographies and Sources