More from and about
George Washington Carver
(biographical info at bottom of page)

  

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.

   

Anything will give up its secrets if you love it enough. Not only have I found that when I talk to the little flower or to the little peanut they will give up their secrets, but I have found that when I silently commune with people they give up their secrets also if you love them enough.

      
God is going to reveal to us things He never revealed before if we put our hands in His. No books ever go into my laboratory. The thing I am to do and the way of doing it are revealed to me. I never have to grope for methods. The method is revealed to me the moment I am inspired to create something new. Without God to draw aside the curtain I would be helpless.
  
We have become ninety-nine 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.
  
  
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.
  
  

Look about you. Take hold of the things that are here. Let them talk to you. You learn to talk to them.
   

Fear of something is at the root of hate for others, and hate within will eventually destroy the hater. Keep your thoughts free from hate, and you need have no fear from those who hate you.

     

When you do the common things in life in an uncommon
way, you will command the attention of the world.

   

welcome page - contents - gallery - obstacles - quotations - the people behind the words
our current e-zine - articles and excerpts - Daily Meditations, Year Two - Year Three
     

Sign up for your free daily spiritual or general quotation
~ ~ Sign up for your free daily meditation

  

It is simply service that measures success.

   

Learn to do common things uncommonly well; we must always
keep in mind that anything that helps fill the dinner pail is valuable.

   

Ninety-nine percent of all failures come from
people who have a habit of making excuses.

   

    
It is rare to find a man of the caliber of George Washington Carver, a man who would decline an invitation to work for a salary of more than $100,000 a year (almost a million today) to continue his research on behalf of his countrymen.

Agricultural chemist, Carver discovered three hundred uses for peanuts and hundreds more uses for soybeans, pecans and sweet potatoes. Among the listed items that he suggested to southern farmers to help them economically were his recipes and improvements to/for:  adhesives, axle grease, bleach, buttermilk, chili sauce, fuel briquettes, ink, instant coffee, linoleum, mayonnaise, meat tenderizer, metal polish, paper, plastic, pavement, shaving cream, shoe polish, synthetic rubber, talcum powder and wood stain.  Only three patents were every issued to Carver.

George Washington Carver was born in 1864 near Diamond Grove, Missouri, on the farm of Moses Carver.  He was born into difficult and changing times near the end of the Civil War.  The infant George and his mother kidnapped by Confederate night-raiders and possibly sent away to Arkansas.  Moses Carver found and reclaimed George after the war but his mother had disappeared forever.  The identity of Carver's father remains unknown, although he believed his father was a slave from a neighboring farm.  Moses and Susan Carver reared George and his brother as their own children.  It was on the Moses' farm where George first fell in love with nature, where he earned the nickname 'The Plant Doctor' and collected in earnest all manner of rocks and plants.

He began his formal education at the age of twelve, which required him to leave the home of his adopted parents.  Schools were segregated by race at that time with no school available for black students near Carver's home.  He moved to Newton County in southwest Missouri, where he worked as a farm hand and studied in a one-room schoolhouse. He went on to attend Minneapolis High School in Kansas.  College entrance was a struggle, again because of racial barriers.  At the age of thirty, Carver gained acceptance to Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa, where he was the first black student.  Carver had to study piano and art and the college did not offer science classes.  Intent on a science career, he later transferred to Iowa Agricultural College (now Iowa State University) in 1891, where he gained a Bachelor of Science degree in 1894 and a Master of Science degree in bacterial botany and agriculture in 1897.  Carver became a member of the faculty of the Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanics (the first black faculty member for Iowa College), teaching classes about soil conservation and chemurgy.

In 1897, Booker T. Washington, founder of the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute for Negroes, convinced Carver to come south and serve as the school's Director of Agriculture.  Carver remained on the faculty until his death in 1943.  (Read the pamphlet - "Help For Hard Times" - written by Carver and forwarded by Booker T. Washington as an example of the educational material provided to farmers by Carver.)

At Tuskegee Carver developed his crop rotation method, which revolutionized southern agriculture.  He educated the farmers to alternate the soil-depleting cotton crops with soil-enriching crops such as peanuts, peas, soybeans, sweet potato, and pecans.  America's economy was heavily dependent upon agriculture during this era, making Carver's achievements very significant.  Decades of growing only cotton and tobacco had depleted the soils of the southern area of the United States.  The economy of the farming south had been devastated by
years of civil war and the fact that the cotton and tobacco plantations could no longer use slave labor.  Carver convinced the southern farmers to follow his suggestions and helped the region to recover.

Carver also worked at developing industrial applications from agricultural crops.  During World War I, he found a way to replace the textile dyes formerly imported from Europe.  He produced dyes of 500 different shades and he was responsible for the invention in 1927 of a process for producing paints and stains from soybeans.  For that he received three separate patents.

Carver did not patent or profit from most of his products.  He freely gave his discoveries to humankind.  Most important was the fact that he changed the South from being a one-crop land of cotton, to being multi-crop farmlands, with farmers having hundreds of profitable uses for their new crops.  "God gave them to me," he would say about his ideas, "How can I sell them to someone else?"  In 1940, Carver donated his life savings to the establishment of the Carver Research Foundation at Tuskegee, for continuing research in agriculture.  George Washington Carver was bestowed an honorary doctorate from Simpson College in 1928.  He was an honorary member of the Royal Society of Arts in London, England.  In 1923, he received the Spingarn Medal given every year by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. In 1939, he received the Roosevelt medal for restoring southern agriculture.  On July 14, 1943, U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt honored Carver with a national monument dedicated to his accomplishments.  The area of Carver's childhood near Diamond Grove, Missouri preserved as a park, this park was the first designated national monument to an African American in the United States.

"He could have added fortune to fame, but caring for neither, he found happiness and honor in being helpful to the world." - Epitaph on the grave of George Washington Carver.
  

    

We have some inspiring and motivational books that may interest you.  Our main way of supporting this site is through the sale of books, either physical copies or digital copies for your Amazon Kindle (including the online reader).  All of the money that we earn through them comes back to the site in one way or another.  Just click on the picture to the left to visit our page of books, both fiction and non-fiction!

  

       

Yes, life can be mysterious and confusing--but there's much of life that's actually rather dependable and reliable.  Some principles apply to life in so many different contexts that they can truly be called universal--and learning what they are and how to approach them and use them can teach us some of the most important lessons that we've ever learned.
My doctorate is in Teaching and Learning.  I use it a lot when I teach at school, but I also do my best to apply what I've learned to the life I'm living, and to observe how others live their lives.  What makes them happy or unhappy, stressed or peaceful, selfish or generous, compassionate or arrogant?  In this book, I've done my best to pass on to you what I've learned from people in my life, writers whose works I've read, and stories that I've heard.  Perhaps these principles can be a positive part of your life, too!
Universal Principles of Living Life Fully.  Awareness of these principles can explain a lot and take much of the frustration out of the lives we lead.

        

Other people: 

Alan Watts
- Albert Einstein - Albert Schweitzer - Andy Rooney - Anne Frank
Anne Morrow Lindbergh - Anne Wilson Schaef - Annie Dillard - Anthony Robbins
Ari Kiev - Artur Rubenstein - Barbara Johnson - Benjamin Disraeli - Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Hoff - Bernie Siegel - Bertrand Russell - Betty Eadie - Booker T. Washington
Charlotte Davis Kasl
- Cheryl Richardson - Cristina Feldman - C.S. Lewis - the Dalai Lama
Dale Carnegie - Dawna MarkovaDeepak Chopra - Don Miguel Ruiz - Earl Nightingale
Elaine St. James - Eleanor Roosevelt - Elisabeth Kuebler-Ross - Ralph Waldo Emerson Emmet Fox - Frederick Buechner - George Bernard Shaw - George Santayana
George Washington Carver - Gerald Jampolsky - Harold Kushner
Harry Emerson Fosdick - Helen Keller - Henry David Thoreau - Henry James
Henry Van Dyke - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow - Henry Ward Beecher - Hugh Prather
Immanuel Kant
- Iyanla Vanzant - Jack Canfield - James Allen - Jennifer James - Jim Rohn
Joan Borysenko
- Joan Chittister - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe - John Izzo John Ruskin
Joni Eareckson Tada
- Joseph M. Marshall III - Julia Cameron - Kent Nerburn
Khalil Gibran Leo Buscaglia - Leonard Jacobson - Leslie Levine - Lucinda Bassett
Lydia Maria Child - Lynn Grabhorn - Marcus Aurelius - Marianne Williamson
Martin Luther King, Jr. - Maya Angelou - Melody Beattie - Michael Goddart - Mitch Albom
Mohandas Gandhi
- Morrie Schwartz - Mother Teresa - M. Scott Peck - Nathaniel Branden
Nikos Kazantzakis
- Norman Cousins - Norman Vincent Peale - Og Mandino - Oprah Winfrey
Oriah
- Orison Swett Marden - Pau Casals - Peace Pilgrim - Phillips Brooks
Rabindranath Tagore
- Rachel Carson - Rachel Naomi Remen - Rainer Maria Rilke
Ralph Waldo Trine - Richard Bach - Richard Carlson - Robert Frost - Robert Fulghum
Robert Louis Stevenson
- Russell Baker - Sarah Ban Breathnach - Shakti Gawain
Soren Kierkegaard - Stephen Covey - Stephen C. Paul - Sue Patton Thoele - Susan L. Taylor
Sylvia Boorstein - Thich Nhat Hanh - Thomas Carlyle - Thomas Kinkade - Thomas Merton
Tom Walsh
- Victor Cherbuliez - Wayne Dyer - Wilferd A. Peterson - Willa Cather
William James - William Wordsworth - Zig Ziglar - Rhonda Byrne - Neale Donald Walsch
Carl Jung
- Desmond Tutu - Paulo Coelho - Jon Kabat-Zinn - Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Walt Whitman