André Rebouças (1838-1898)

Image Ownership: Public domain André Pinto Rebouças was a Brazilian engineer and abolitionist, best known for creating one of the world’s first self-propelled torpedoes during the Paraguayan War. Rebouças was born on January 13, 1838 in Cachoeira, Brazil. The son of Antônio Pereira Rebouças, a prominent lawyer and politician … Read MoreAndré Rebouças (1838-1898)

Charles Chappelle (1872-1941)

Charles Ward Chappelle was an American engineer and businessman best known for his award-winning long-distance airplane in 1911 and his tenure as president of the African Union Company from 1913 to 1930. In January of 1911, Chappelle presented at the First Industrial Aero Show, a showcase of aircraft and … Read MoreCharles Chappelle (1872-1941)

Cecil Eugene Diggs Haney (1955- )

Navy Admiral Cecil Haney was born into a struggling family in “humble surroundings” in Washington, D.C., on December 1, 1955. After graduating from the city’s Eastern High School he left for Annapolis, Maryland, where he was a distinguished midshipman at the United States Naval Academy, … Read MoreCecil Eugene Diggs Haney (1955- )

Joseph Charles Jenkins (1914-1959)

Image Ownership: Public domain Joseph Charles Jenkins, the first African American naval officer, paved the way for the beginning of desegregation in the United States Coast Guard. Jenkins was born in Detroit, Michigan, in 1914. Unfortunately, there is little information regarding his childhood. He began … Read MoreJoseph Charles Jenkins (1914-1959)

Charles A. “Chuck” Harrison (1931–2018)

Charles Harrison was one of the most prolific industrial designers of the twentieth century. One of only a handful of early African American industrial designers, he specialized in creating a variety of practical household goods emphasizing form and function. Harrison’s output of innovative consumer products … Read MoreCharles A. “Chuck” Harrison (1931–2018)

Frederick McDonald Massiah (1886–1975)

“Image Ownership: Public Domain” Frederick McDonald Massiah was one of the first African Americans to receive a civil engineering degree from Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and was also one of the first successful African American contracting engineers in the country. Massiah was born in … Read MoreFrederick McDonald Massiah (1886–1975)