African American Inventors

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  • African American Inventors

  • Alcorn, George Edward, Jr., 1940–, Physicist
    Inventor, Invented a method of fabricating an imaging X-ray spectrometer,

  • Bailey, L.C., 1890–1976, Inventor, Wind Powered Clothes Dryer.,

  • Ball, Alice Augusta, 1892–1916, Chemist, Extracted chaulmoogra oil for the treatment of Hansen's disease (leprosy).,

  • Banneker, Benjamin, 1731–1806, Mathematician
    Farmer, Wooden clock (1753). Assisted in survey of the original boundaries of the District of Columbia (1791). Authored almanac and ephemeris (1792–1797),

  • Bath, Patricia, 1942–, Ophthalmologist, First African-American female physician to receive a patent for a medical invention. Inventions relate to cataract surgery and include the Laserphaco Probe, which revolutionized the industry in the 1980s, and an ultrasound technique for treatment.,

  • Benjamin, Miriam, 1861–1947, Inventor
    Educator, Invented "Gong and Signal Chair for Hotels". Second African-American woman to receive a patent.,

  • Bessie Coleman

  • Black, Keith, 1957–, Neurosurgeon, Brain tumor surgery and research,

  • Blair, Henry, 1807–1860, Inventor, Second black inventor to issue a patent
    Invented early spark plug,

  • Boahen, Kwabena, 19xx–, Bioengineer, Silicon retina able to process images in the same manner as a living retina,

  • Boone, Sarah, 1832–1905, Inventor, Ironing board allowing sleeves of women's garments to be ironed more easily,

  • Boykin, Otis, 1920–1982, Inventor
    Engineer, Artificial heart pacemaker control unit.,

  • Brooks, Charles, 1865– ?, Inventor[citation needed], Street sweeper truck and a type of paper punch[citation needed],

  • Brooks, Phil, 19xx–, Inventor[citation needed], First U.S. Patent for a disposable syringe[citation needed],

  • Burr, John Albert, 18xx– ?, Inventor, Rotary-blade lawn mower patent,

  • Carson, Ben, 1951–, Pediatric Neurosurgeon, Pediatric Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins University
    First surgeon to successfully separate craniopagus twins,

  • Carver, George Washington, 1865–1943, Botanical researcher, Discovered hundreds of uses for previously useless vegetables and fruits, principally the peanut,

  • Clark, Mamie, 1914–2005, Psychologist, Conducted 1940s experiments using dolls to study children's attitudes about race.,

  • Drew, Charles, 1904–1950, Medical researcher, Developed improved techniques for blood storage,

  • Du Chaillu, Paul, 1831–1903, Zoologist
    Anthropologist, Explorer who was the first modern European outsider to confirm the existence of gorillas, and later the Pygmy people of central Africa. Identified as white throughout life, but his mother was a Réunionnais mulatto. Settled in America and considered it his country by adoption. The full aspects of his ancestry were not uncovered until 1979, and are still little known today.,

  • Eric Williams (designed stent technology: helping save lives of those suffering from heart disease)

  • Ezerioha, Bisi, 1972–, Automotive engineer, Drag racing engineer and driver,

  • Frederick M. Jones (mobile refrigeration for trucks, ships and airplanes)

  • Garrett Morgan (traffic signal, safety hood, smoke protector)

  • George E. Alcorn (imaging x-ray spectrometer)

  • George R. Carruthers (on team that invented ultraviolet camera spectrograph [space camera for NASA])

  • Gerald A. Lawson

  • Granville T. Woods (50 patents: egg incubator, steam boiler furnace)

  • Henry Brown, 1832– ?, Inventor, Invented fire safe,

  • Iman, supermodell

  • James C. Letton: (biodegradable soap

  • James E. West (microphone)

  • Janet Bashen, 1957–, Inventor
    Consultant, First African-American woman to receive a patent for a web-based software invention. The invention, LinkLine, is an Equal Employment Opportunity case management and tracking software.,

  • Johnson, Lonnie, 1949–, Mechanical engineerNuclear engineer
    Inventor, Invented Super Soaker while researching thermal energy transfer engines; worked with NASA. Holder of over 80 patents,

  • Jones, Frederick McKinley, 1893–1961, Inventor, Invented refrigerated truck systems,

  • Julian, Percy, 1899–1975, Chemist, First to synthesize the natural product physostigmine; earned 130 chemical patents; lauded for humanitarian achievements.,

  • Latimer, Lewis, 1848–1928, Inventor
    Expert witness, Worked as a draftsman for both Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Edison. He became a member of Edison's Pioneers and served as an expert witness in many light bulb litigation lawsuits.,

  • Lewis Latimer (electric lightbulb)

  • Lonnie Johnson (rocket scientist: Super Soaker water gun)

  • Marc Hannah (movie special effects [Jurassic Park, Terminator 2] and Nintendo 64)

  • Mark Dean (PC hardware)

  • Mary Mcleod Bethune

  • Matzeliger, Jan, 1852–1889, Inventor, Shoe assembly Machine,

  • McCoy, Elijah, 1844–1929, Inventor, Invented a version of the automatic lubricator for steam engines.,

  • McWhorter, John, 1965–, Linguist, Specializes in formation of creole languages,

  • Morgan, Garrett, 1877–1963, Inventor, Invented the gas mask,

  • Name, Life, Occupation, Inventions/Accomplishments,

  • Otis F. Boykin (resistor for radios, televisions and computers)

  • Patricia Bath (cataract laserphaco probe…saved eyesight)

  • Percy L. Julian (synthesis: scientist create chemicals rarely found in nature)

  • Renfroe, Earl, 1907–2000, Orthodontist, ,

  • Rillieux, Norbert, 1806–1894, Engineer
    Inventor, Inventor of the multiple-effect evaporator,

  • Roy L. Clay (developed/recruited black technology innovators)

  • Russell, Jesse, 1948–, Engineer
    Inventor, Wireless communications engineer,

  • Sammons, Walter, 1890–1973, Inventor, Patent for hot comb,

  • Shirley A. Jackson (physicist and semiconductor theory)

  • Thomas Jennings (dry-scouring/dry cleaning process)

  • Turner, Charles Henry, 1867–1923, Zoologist, First person to prove that insects can hear and can distinguish pitch, that cockroaches can learn by trial and error, and that honeybees can see color. First African-American to receive a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.,

  • Valerie Thomas (illusion transmitter: early 3-D technology)

  • Walker, C. J., 1867–1919, Inventor[citation needed], Created black cosmetic products.,

  • Williams, Daniel, 1856–1931, Surgerian, Performed the first successful open-heart surgery in the United States,

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