Edward Teller once said, “The science of today is the technology of tomorrow.” There are many scientists that changed way people live today. Three of the greatest inventors and researchers who have affected America in a great way are Thomas Edison, George Washington Carver, and Rachel Carson.
Thomas Edison was a famous scientist and inventor. He was born in Milan, Ohio on February 11, 1847. Even though Edison only had twelve weeks of formal schooling, he created and patented many inventions through trial and error. Edison’s first major breakthrough was a phonograph, a device that could play back what Edison recorded. People loved this mesmerizing device and they used it for entertainment. Undeniably, though, one of the most useful creations of Edison’s was an improved incandescent light bulb. It lasted longer than most other light bulbs. Eventually, Edison found out a way to have one major power station supply electricity through power lines to the homes and buildings around it, changing the way people received their electricity. Edison’s innovations were a great step forward in the world of science.
Another great scientist was George Washington Carver. Carver was an African-American botanist, born around 1862. He helped farmers significantly with their crops all around the United States. When Carver was young, he wasn’t allowed to go to school, but after the Civil War, when he was older, he was the first African-American student at the Iowa State Agricultural College and got his master’s degree. At that time, cotton was the main crop grown by farmers in the United States. However, cotton needs a lot of nitrogen. Consequently, year after year, the nitrogen in the soil was being depleted, until no more cotton could grow. Carver realized the problem and through various experiments, he noticed peanuts, soybeans and sweet potatoes restored the most nitrogen into the soil. Subsequently, Carver suggested crop rotation; farmers should grow cotton one year, peanuts the next, then cotton again, and so on and so forth. This creates more diversity in food and restores nitrogen.
However, another problem arose thereafter. What would the farmers do with all their peanuts? There wasn’t a big demand of peanuts at the time. Here, again, George Washington Carver came to the rescue. Carver started to create hundreds of products involving peanuts. For example, soap, paper, shaving cream, lotion, flour, and insulation just to name a few. For sweet potatoes, carver invented things like shoe polish and rope. By suggesting a way to restore nitrogen in the soil, and coming up with new peanut based products, Carver is considered one of the most admired and resourceful scientist.