• Wallace "Wally" Amos Jr.
    Born:July 1, 1936 -
    Invention: Famous Amos Chocolate Chip Cookie

    Wally Amos lived in Tallahassee, Florida until he was twelve. When his parents divorced, he then moved to Manhattan, New York with his aunt, where he enrolled at the Food Trades Vocational High School. He showed interest in cooking from a very young age, and it was from his aunt, who would bake cookies for him, that Amos would develop his chocolate chip cookies recipe. Amos would improve on his aunt's recipe, which was already common because it included several ingredients not generally associated with chocolate chip cookies. Shortly before graduation, Amos dropped out of high school to join the United ... » read more

  • Jan E. Matzeliger
    Born: Sept 15, 1882 - 1889
    Invention: Shoe Making Machine

    He invented the first ever shoe making machine. It could make up to 700 hundred pairs of shoes in a ten hour work day. Humans could only make 50. He first used cigar boxes and metal scraps to create his machine, but everyone always laughed at his idea. When it did work everyone wanted to buy the machine from him, but he said no. Finally in 1883 he got a patent to build his machine. He needed money to build the machine so he didn't live healthily in order to save up money and because of that he died in 1889 .. more

  • Madam C.J. Walker
    Born: Dec 23, 1867 -
    Invention: Hair-Growing Lotion

    Sarah Breedlove, who later became known as Madam C. J. Walker, was born into a former-slave family to parents Owen and Minerva Breedlove. She had one older sister, Louvenia and brothers Alexander, James, Solomon and Owen, Jr. Her parents had been slaves on Robert W. Burney's Madison Parish farm which was a battle-staging area during the Civil War for General Ulysses S. Grant and his Union troops. She became an orphan at age 7 when her parents died during an epidemic of yellow fever. To escape the epidemic and failing cotton crops, the ten year old Sarah and her sister ... more

  • Fredrick Jones
    Born: 1893-1961
    Invention: Automatic Refrigeration System

    Frederick Jones was born in in Covington, Kentucky near Cincinnati, Ohio on on May 17, 1893. He was a trained mechanic, a skill he learned doing military service in France during World War. His mastery of electronic devices was largely self-taught, through work experience and the inventing process.
    Frederick McKinley Jones was granted more than 40 patents in the field of refrigeration. Frederick Jones' inspiration for the refrigeration unit was a conversation with a truck driver who had lost a shipment of chickens because the trip took too long and the truck's storage compartment overheated. Frederick Jones also developed an air-conditioning ... more

  • Willis Johnson
    Born: Unknown
    Invention: Improved Mechanical Egg Beater

    African American, Willis Johnson of Cincinnati, Ohio, patented an improved mechanical egg beater (U.S. pat# 292,821) on February 5, 1884. In fact, what Willis Johnson had really invented was an early mixing machine and not just an egg beater. Willis Johnson's device was not intended for eggs alone. Willis Johnson had designed his egg beater and mixer for eggs, batter, and other baker's ingredients. It was a double acting machine with two chambers. Batter could be beaten in one section and eggs could be beaten in another section, or one section could be cleaned while the other section could continue ... more