Who was George Washington Carver?
George Washington Carver was one of the eminent agricultural scientist in America. His parents were the black slaves of Moses Carver of Missouri. At the time when George was born, his father died. After a couple of months, the body along with his mother were kidnapped by bandits. Moses Carver was able to buy George back but unfortunately his mother could never be found and hence George was grown up by carvers themselves.
When George was a child he showed a love for growing things. He was habitual to take care of and to cure sick plants. He was usually called by neighbourers by his nickname as a ‘plant doctor’. From the childhood it was his burning desire to seek education from United States. For this he made concerted, constant and all-out efforts to pay for his schooling. At last, he was able to get admission in Iowa State College. He was the first black person who did graduation from that college and became their first black teacher.
He joined the staff of Tuskegee Institute a new black college in Alabama in 1896. He was designated as the head of the Agricultural Department of the institute. With the assistance and aid of his colleagues, Carver built a home-made laboratory in order to use equipment pots, kettles and other useful things for testing purposes.
Carver taught at Tuskegee till the age of fifty. He used to work in his laboratory for hours together in order to help the poor southern farmers. He introduced peanut, pecan and sweet potato to the farmers and told them as to how these crops would enrich soil worn out by years of cotton planting.
He discovered how these plants can be used in different ways. After making the tests in the laboratory, he was able to extract ink, soap, butter and coffee from peanuts. As far as sweet potatoes are concerned, he extracted from them glue, cereals, rubber dyes and flour. Moreover, he developed the technology to make rope from cornstalk fibers, paint from Alabama clay and above all synthetic marble from wood shavings.
George made valuable discoveries for no consideration whatsoever. He used to give advice free of cost to those who consulted him for his expert guidance in any field over which he had the mastery. He preferred teaching at Tuskegee rather than rendering his service in highly paid jobs. Out of his savings he set up an institute known as “George Washington Carver Foundation” through which his great work is being carried on till date. This institute also provides scholarships to those black students who can do fairly and extremely well for the purpose of agricultural research.