Week 7: George Washington Carver
Monday, July 18, 2011
Full name: George Washington Carver. Born George Washington, he took the surname of Moses and Susan Carver, who raised him after his mother was kidnapped.
Born: January, 1864 (Approximately)
Died: January 5, 1943
Importance: Groundbreaking scientist and botanist who developed 266 uses from the peanut and 88 uses from the sweet potato that are still used today.
As an infant, he and his mother were kidnapped by a group known as Quantrill’s Raiders. George was recovered by Moses Carver, who raised him as his own son with his wife, Susan.
Carver was the head of the Agriculture Department at Booker T. Washington’s Tuskegee Institute for 47 years.
People from all over the world sought Carver’s advice on a variety of subjects, from business to race relations to agriculture. During his lifetime, he met with three U.S. presidents—Theodore Roosevelt, Calvin Coolidge, and Franklin Roosevelt.
Quotes from George Washington Carver
Learn to do common things uncommonly well; we must always keep in mind that anything that helps fill the dinner pail is valuable.
Ninety-nine percent of the failures come from people who have the habit of making excuses.
Fear of something is at the root of hate for others, and hate within will eventually destroy the hater.
Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom.
Excerpt from Andy Andrews
Excerpt #1 from The Final Summit:
Winston looked to Carver. “Sir,” he said, “I have seen the statue and plaque that exists of you in London.” To the others, he remarked, “Dr. Carver is an elected member of the Royal Society for Encouragement of Arts—the world’s oldest scientific organization.” Back to Carver, he went on. “There are statues of you in Russia, India, and all over the African continent.”
Remembering more he wanted to say, Winston addressed those at the table again. “This man lived in a tiny apartment on the campus of Tuskegee Institute. Franklin and Eleanor told me this next bit, by the way. In that tiny apartment, the crown prince of Sweden came to stay. Not to visit for an afternoon, but to stay for a week! Mahatma Gandhi came all the way from India; bypassed Washington, D.C.; and went directly to Tuskegee. Henry Ford, Thomas Edison—these men and many more made their way to that apartment. There they spent the night, they ate their meals…all to be in the presence of this man.”
“Dr. Carver, sir,” Winston said shifting in his chair again, “I don’t know if you are even aware of this, but there exists in Missouri, the state of your birth, a national monument in your honor. This, sir, was the first national monument in the history of the United States established for a person of your color. But color has never been relevant. The race you represent is the human race. And we are the greater for having you a part of it.”
Churchill’s oration was typical of him. The words were formed beautifully and enunciated with passion. The subject of the discourse—George Washington Carver—was as awed as everyone else in the room. The prime minister’s ability to communicate was beyond extraordinary. Which was why they all laughed when Winston looked around and added at the end, “He did a lot of things with plants!”
When the laughter died down, Joan asked, “What did you do with plants, Dr. Carver? I’m sorry I don’t know, but I am curious.”
“Oh, dear child,” he said kindly, “there wasn’t much to it, really. I was just trying to help some farmers and ended up figuring a few extra ways to use what was already there.”
George Washington Carver on the web
One book about George Washington Carver you must read
The Butterfly Effect by Andy Andrews