So on this day in 1923 African-American inventor Garrett Morgan patented the three-poistion traffic signal. From History.com:
On this day in 1923, the U.S. Patent Office grants Patent No. 1,475,074 to 46-year-old inventor and newspaperman Garrett Morgan for his three-position traffic signal. Though Morgan’s was not the first traffic signal (that one had been installed in London in 1868), it was an important innovation nonetheless: By having a third position besides just “Stop” and “Go,” it regulated crossing vehicles more safely than earlier signals had. conitnue reading
But the three-position traffic signal wasn’t Garrett Morgan’s only invention. He also invented the gas mask!! From Wikipedia:
Garrett Augustus Morgan, Sr. (March 4, 1877 – August 27, 1963) was an African-American inventor. His most notable creations were a type of respiratory protective hood, a traffic signal, and a hair-straightening preparation. He is renowned for a heroic rescue in 1917 at Lake Erie in whi1ch he used his hood to save workers trapped in a tunnel system filled with fumes, after other rescue attempts had failed. He is credited as the first African American in Cleveland, Ohio, to own an automobile.
Here’s another link to a Black Inventors website with more about Morgan Garrett, along with a Vimeo video about Morgan and his life-saving inventions!!