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Garrett A. Morgan (for those of you who enjoy that traffic light, a fresh perm, or getting your hair fried, died, and laid down to the side….say thank you to Garrett).

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Garrett A. Morgan(for those of you who enjoy that traffic light, a fresh perm, or getting your hair fried, died, and laid down to the side….say thank you to Garrett)

  • Garrett A. Morgan was born on March 4, 1877 in Paris, Kentucky to former slaves Sydney Morgan and Elizabeth (Reed) Morgan.[2] The seventh of eleven children, he spent his childhood attending school and working with his brothers and sisters on the family farm. When he was fourteen, he moved north to Cincinnati, Ohio, in search of employment.[2] Morgan spent most of his teenage years working as a handyman for a wealthy Cincinnati landowner. Like many African-Americans of his day, Morgan had to quit school at a young age, in order to work. However, the teen-aged Morgan hired his own tutor, and continued his studies while living in Cincinnati. In 1895, Morgan moved to Cleveland, Ohio, where he worked as a sewing machine repairman for a clothing manufacturer. He married Madge Nelson in 1896, but the marriage ended in divorce. News of his skill at fixing things and experimenting spread quickly throughout Cleveland. In 1907, Morgan opened his own sewing machine and repair shop. It was the first of several businesses he would own. In 1909, he expanded his business to include a tailoring shop. The company made coats, suits, dresses, etc. - all sewn with equipment that Morgan himself had made. Morgan experimented with a liquid that gave sewing machine needles a high polish and prevented the needle from scorching fabric, as it sewed. Accidentally, Morgan discovered that this liquid not only straightened fabric but also hair. He made the liquid into a cream and began the G.A. Morgan Hair Refining Company. Morgan also made a black hair oil dye and a curved-tooth Iron comb in 1910, to straighten hair.
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jack johnson one of our area s very own in the history books
Jack Johnson – One of our Area’s very own…in the History books
  • Jack Johnson was born John Arthur Johnson on March 31, 1878, in Galveston, Texas. Johnson boxed professionally from 1897 to 1928, and boxed in exhibition matches until 1945. During his boxing career, Jack Johnson fought 114 fights, winning 80 matches, 45 by knockouts. He first won the heavyweight title by knocking out champion Tommy Burns in 1908, and held on that title until April 5, 1915. Johnson was knocked out by Jess Willard in the 26th round during the World Championship fight in Havana. Jack Johnson received bad publicity by the press for his two marriages, both to Caucasian women. Due to the racist attitudes of the times, interracial marriages were prohibited in most of America. Johnson was convicted in 1912 of violating the Mann Act by transporting his wife across state lines before their marriage and was sentenced to a year in prison. While out on appeal Jack Johnson escaped fearing for his safety. Posing as a member of a black baseball team, he fled to Canada and later Europe. Jack Johnson remained a fugitive for seven years. Johnson defended his heavyweight championship three times in Paris before his fight to Jess Willard. In 1920, Jack Johnson decided to return to the United States to serve his sentence. After his release from prison, Jack Johnson's boxing career declined. To make ends meet, Johnson worked in vaudeville even appearing with a trained flea act.


Dr. Daniel H. Williams – We thank you, because without your success many with heart issues couldn’t have made it.
  • Dr. Daniel Hale Williams was an African American physician who made history by performing the first successful open heart surgery operation. Daniel Hale Williams was born in 1856 in Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania, the fifth of eight children. His father was a barber who died when Daniel was only nine. His mother was unable to provide for all the children on her own, so she moved the family to Baltimore, Maryland to stay with relatives. An apprenticeship with a shoemaker was found for Daniel; he remained there as a shoemaker's apprentice for three years while he was still a young child. As a teenager, he learned to cut hair and became a barber, living and working with a family who owned a barber shop in Janesville, Wisconsin. In Janesville Daniel began to attend high school. He graduated from Hare's Classical Academy in 1877. While working as a barber, he met Dr. Henry Palmer, a leading surgeon, who became the Surgeon General of Wisconsin. Dr. Palmer took Daniel on as a medical apprentice; he had two other apprentices at the time. Dr. Palmer helped the three apprentices apply for admission to a top medical school, the Chicago Medical School, which was affiliated with Northwestern University. All three were accepted and began their studies in 1880. Dr. Daniel Hale Williams graduated with his medical degree in 1883.
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