Leonard C. Bailey (1825-1918)

Leonard Bailey was an African American inventor and businessman in Washington, D.C., in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Born in 1825 to an impoverished free black family, Bailey rose in status by becoming a journeyman barber. Through this success, he eventually came to operate and own many of the … Read MoreLeonard C. Bailey (1825-1918)

Thomas Mensah (1950- )

Dr. Thomas Mensah is a world-renowned Ghanaian-American inventor and chemical engineer. Mensah is most well-known for his pioneering innovations in fiber optics and nanotechnology, though he has found success in other fields of science and throughout his career. Though he frequently travels, Mensah lives in Atlanta, Georgia with his wife and two children, Kimberly and Michelle. … Read MoreThomas Mensah (1950- )

Marjorie Stewart Joyner (1896-1994)

Marjorie Stewart Joyner was the inventor of the Permanent Wave Machine thus ensuring her a prominent place in cosmetology history. She helped write the first cosmetology laws for Illinois and founded the United Beauty School Owners and Teachers Association with Mary Bethune McLeod in 1945. Joyner was also active in the African American … Read MoreMarjorie Stewart Joyner (1896-1994)

John P. Parker (1827-1900)

John Parker, inventor and businessman, was also a prominent Underground Railroad conductor before the Civil War.  He was reputedly responsible for the rescue of nearly 1,000 enslaved people between 1845 and 1865.  Parker repeatedly crossed the Ohio River from his home in Ripley, Ohio, often going as far as 20 miles on foot into Kentucky to … Read MoreJohn P. Parker (1827-1900)