Great African Americans in the Sciences


African Americans have contributed greatly to not only the world of science, but some of their inventions are so much a part of our everyday lives that we may take them for granted. Here are African American scientists that have made some of the most significant contributions to modern science.

Herman Branson - was the co-inventor of the alpha helix.

George Washington Carver - is well known for his research with peanuts, soybeans and the sweet potato.

Emmett Chappelle - invented and developed ways to detect bacteria in fluid samples.

Marie Daly - is well known for her studies on aging and the heart.

Lloyd Hall - work improved the meat packing industry in revolutionary ways.

Ernest Everett Just - is known for his work in the world of the cell.

Samuel Lee Kountz Jr. - was a pioneer in the field of organ transplant.

Dorothy McClendon - (PDF Document) is a microbiologist and fungicide developer.

Kenneth Olden - is a renowned cancer researcher.

Ida Owens - research centers on how the body defends itself against poisons.

Maurice Rabb - was a specialist in corneal and eye research.

Jewel Plummer Cobb - is a melanin specialist and advocate for female scientists.

Dale Emeagwali - is a well known microbiologist.

Mary Styles Harris - is renown in many areas of genetics.

Jehu Hunter - was a biologist specializing in cancer.

Roger Arliner Young - was a zoologist.

Albert Antoine - was a chemist and studied rocket propulsion.

St. Elmo Brady - was the first American African American to earn a PhD in Chemistry.

Henry Aaron Hill - is a chemist specializing in polymers.

John Edward Hodge - studied the oxidation of carbohydrates.

John McNeile Hunter - was a physicist who studied the electrical workings of a power plant.

Elmer Samuel Imes - pioneered infra-red spectroscopy.

Lovell A Jones - studies the connection between hormones and cancer.

Percey Lavon Julian - discovered a drug that treats glaucoma and Alzheimer's disease.

James LuValle - was a renowned chemist and also an Olympic athlete.

Samuel Proctor Massie Jr - is well known for his work with Phenothiazine.

Henry Cecil Ransom McBay - researched new types of plastic and worked with hydrogen peroxide.

Norbert Rilleux - revolutionized the sugar cane industry with his evaporation techniques.

Charles Turner - was an animal behaviorist.

Isiah M Warner - created improved ways to study complex chemical reactions.

George E Alcorn - studied nuclear, atomic and molecular physics and was an inventor.

Edward Bouchet - was the first known African American to graduate with a Physics PhD.

George R Carruthers - helped invent the camera used on the Apollo 11 mission.

John William Coleman - was a radiologist who helped transform the hospitals in Chicago.

Stanley Peter Davis - is an astrophysicist still discovering things today.

Meredith C. Gourdine - worked in electrogasdynamics including ways of removing fog from a runway.

Shirley Ann Jackson - is a theoretical high energy physicist and theoretical condensed matter physicist.

Katherine G Johnson - is a physicist who studied the orbits of spacecraft.

Roscoe L Koontz - created many of today’s standards for the field of health physics.

Earl Shaw - creates new laser technology.

John B Slaughter - pioneered computer technology for marine applications.

David Crosthwait, Jr - was a scientist, engineer and inventor specializing in ventilation.

Lewis Howard Latimer - invented a process allowing carbon filaments to be easier to make.

Caldwell McCoy - studied the structure of protein.

Garrett A Morgan - invented a gas mask that became popular with firemen and miners.

Charles Turner - is the first entomologist to prove that insects have hearing.

Otis Boykin - most famous invention was a resistor for the heart pacemaker.

Frederick M Jones - inventions enabled refrigerated trucking and sound for movies.

Madame CJ Walker - invented hair care products for African American women.

Sarah E Goode - is the first African American woman granted a patent.

Annie Easley - created computer programs for alternative energy.