George Washington Carver was born in the 1860s and died in 1943, in his 80s. Carver was a United States inventor and scientist of agriculture who promoted new farming methods and alternative crops. He is widely regarded as the most prominent African-American scientist of the early half of the 20th Century.
Carver was a professor at the Tuskegee Institute, developing farming techniques aimed at reducing soil depletion, campaigning for farmers from poorer backgrounds to grow alternative crops such as sweet potatoes and peanuts, primarily as a way to improve their situation but also as a source of food. He released many guides for farmers including one that contained a hundred recipes that use peanuts.
Away from his agricultural efforts, he was a keen campaigner on the environment, receiving awards for his work including the Spingarn Medal of the NAACP and importantly, at a time of racial segregation, he managed to get the attention and support from many within the white community.
Such was the inspiration he generated and his ability to use science to connect with others, means he is an enduring figure in science today and much celebrated for his work. We hope his quotes provide a small insight into this great man of science and the environment.
1. Where there is no vision, there is no hope.
2. Fear of something is at the root of hate for others, and hate within will eventually destroy the hater.
3. There is no short cut to achievement. Life requires thorough preparation – veneer isn’t worth anything.
4. I wanted to know the name of every stone and flower and insect and bird and beast. I wanted to know where it got its color, where it got its life – but there was no one to tell me.
5. How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in your life you will have been all of these.
6. Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom
7. Since new developments are the products of a creative mind, we must therefore stimulate and encourage that type of mind in every way possible.
8. Our creator is the same and never changes despite the names given Him by people here and in all parts of the world. Even if we gave Him no name at all, He would still be there, within us, waiting to give us good on this earth.
9. Ninety-nine percent of the failures come from people who have the habit of making excuses.
10. Years ago I went into my laboratory and said, ‘Dear Mr. Creator, please tell me what the universe was made for?’ The Great Creator answered, ‘You want to know too much for that little mind of yours. Ask for something more your size, little man.’
11. No books ever go into my laboratory. The thing I am to do and the way are revealed to me the moment I am inspired to create something new. Without God to draw aside the curtain, I would be helpless. Only alone can I draw close enough to God to discover His secrets.
12. It is not the style of clothes one wears, neither the kind of automobile one drives, nor the amount of money one has in the bank, that counts. These mean nothing. It is simply service that measures success.
13. I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in.
14. When our thoughts – which bring actions – are filled with hate against anyone, Negro or white, we are in a living hell. That is as real as hell will ever be.
15. Human need is really a great spiritual vacuum which God seeks to fill… With one hand in the hand of a fellow man in need and the other in the hand of Christ, He could get across the vacuum.
16. God cannot use you as He wishes until you come into the fullness of His Glory. Do not get alarmed, my friend, when doubts creep in. That is old Satan. Pray, pray, pray.
17. We have become 99 percent money mad. The method of living at home modestly and within our income, laying a little by systematically for the proverbial rainy day which is due to come, can almost be listed among the lost arts.