Today in History – Garrett Morgan Patents the Three-Position Traffic Signal!

So on this day in 1923 African-American inventor Garrett Morgan patented the three-poistion traffic signal. From

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

Patent drawing of Morgan's signal

Patent drawing of Morgan’s signal (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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!!

Garrett Morgan Bio Example from Douglas Wilson on Vimeo.

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