Friday, September 19, 2008

George Washington Carver

Dr George Washington Carver : Tuskegee Institute, Alabama. Rothstein, Arthur, 1915- photographer.George Washington Carver (July 12, 1864 – January 5, 1943) was an American botanical researcher and agronomy educator who worked in agricultural extension at the Tuskegee Institute in Tuskegee, Alabama, teaching former slaves farming techniques for self-sufficiency.

To bring education to farmers, Carver designed a mobile school. It was called a Jesup Wagon after the New York financier, Morris Ketchum Jesup, who provided funding. In 1921, Carver spoke in favor of a peanut tariff before the House Ways and Means Committee. Given racial discrimination of the time, it was unusual for an African-American to be called as an expert. Carver's well-received testimony earned him national attention, and he became an unofficial spokesman for the peanut industry. Carver wrote 44 practical agricultural bulletins for farmers.

While George Washington Carver is most widely recognized for his scientific contributions regarding the peanut, he is also often recognized as devoted Christian. God and science were both areas of intrigue, not warring ideas in the mind of George Washington Carver. While contemporary scientific endeavors may practice methodological naturalism, an approach which believes the universe to be unguided or chaotic, Carver reasoned that the God who created the universe also created the rules by which it was governed, Biblical creationism. He was opposed to the scientific theory of evolution and believed the creation of the world to be the Biblical creation account from the book of Genesis verbatim. He would testify on many occasions that his faith in Jesus was the only mechanism by which he could effectively pursue and perform the art of science.

"When you do the common things in life in an uncommon way, you will command the attention of the world."

"In an interview, Carver said he prayed to God and first asked God why He created the universe. God told him it was too big a question for him to ask. Carver then asked why God created man and received the same response. Finally, Carver asked why God created the peanut; he later discovered over 300 uses for the adaptable legume."


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