George Washington Carver

Carver was born a slave in Missouri. Although is exact birthdate
is unknown it has been narrowed down to July 12, 1861. Carver
was only an infant when his dad was killed an he, his brother and
mother were kidnapped. He was then orphaned and Moses Carver,
his owner, bought George back in exchange for a horse. The
horses value was estimated at 300 dollars.

Carvers first schooling took place in a single room school house
for black children. After regular schooling, he enrolled at
Highland University. He had the grade but due to the fact that
he was black he was denied. He then enrolled at Simpson College
in Iowa where he worked as a cook to pay of his tuition. Carver
wander to be an artist and he also showed promise as a painter.
His art teacher steered him away from art and encouraged him to
enroll at State Agricultural College in Ames. There he earned
his bachelors degree. He then went to the Ames Experiment
Station where he was employed by Louis Pammel.

In 1896, Carver went to Tuskegee Institute to lead the newly
established department of agriculture.

For the rest of his life, Carver put together a laboratory, made
useless and over-farmed land farmable, and continued research.
Much of the land in the South had been over-farmed. All of the
soil\'s nutrients had been depleted by the cotton and tobacco
plant. Carver improved soil with his own blend of fertilizers.
He also advised farmers to plant peanuts and sweet potatoes, he
told them this would help the soil. So many farmers did this and
were stuck with peanuts and sweet potatoes. So he made over 300
bi-products from plants such as cereal, oils, dyes, and soaps.
In addition, Carver developed a "school on wheels" to teach
farmers from Alabama the essentials for soil enrichment.
Carver had experimented with various types of fertilizers. He
grew huge vegetables with these fertilizers. He also crossed a
long stalk and a short stalk of cotton to produce a new plant
known as Carvers Hybrid.

Carvers many achievements made him easily promotable to high
salary jobs but he refused a raise and he stayed with the 1500
dollar annual salary he started with during his first year of

Carver publicated a total of 44 books and received countless
numbers of awards, metals, and honors.
In 1940, the Carver Research Foundation was formed at Tuskegee.
He volunteered almost all of his life savings to this institute.
George Washington Carver died in 1943 at the age of 82. Congress
made January 5th of each year as a day to honor Carver and his

1991 Encyclopedia Americana
1995 Microsoft Bookshelf
1994 Academic American Encyclopedia