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George Grant | African American Inventors and their Inventions

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George Grant


George Grant is arguably one of the most mechanically gifted African American inventors of his generation. His work influenced fields as diverse as dentistry and sport, and the wealth of knowledge that burst forth from his impressive mind saw him become the first African American professor at the world’s most famous university, Harvard. Despite the fact that he lives some 150 years ago the accolades are still rolling in, and if you do not know who he is, then you are about to come into contact with the legacy of a true legend. George Franklin Grant, one of the most important African American figures in human history, awaits you.

Grant started his academic career at Harvard, where he soon earned a degree in dental medicine, but it was clear that his true talent lay in the field of mechanical dentistry, which involves the design of apparatus to correct dental flaws. He was so good in this unique field that he was offered, and accepted, a position in the department of mechanical dentistry directly after graduation, which made him the famous school’s first African American faculty member. He worked tirelessly here, honing his skills and growing his knowledge to the point that he could found the Harvard Odontological Society.

 

 

Grant thrived in this setting for some twenty years, but the urge to improve inadequate designs hounded him constantly. Thus, in 1899, he submitted an improved design for the wooden gold tee, which is the template for modern golf tees used today. The design has been officially recognized as the first of its kind (wooden tee), and is another feather in the prodigious Grant’s cap.

For men of talent, life is about making the best contribution to society, and Grant’s is unrivalled in terms of diversity, application, and importance. He is an icon worthy of praise to this day, and we salute him.

 
 
 
 

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