The Black Inventors Who Revolutionized Home Electricity

Meet Three Black Inventors Who Changed the Modern Home

Black inventors created many electrical services and tools. This black history month, homeowners should highlight, read, learn, and reflect on their courageous and spectacular lives.

Without all of these black inventors, homeowners would not have everyday things at home like the light bulb, microphones, and home security systems.

Lewis Latimer and his Carbon Light Bulb Filament

Lewis Latimer was a black inventor and an essential part of the history of electricity. Although everyone likes to credit Thomas Edison for creating the first light bulb, this is only partially true.

While Thomas Edison did create the first version of a light bulb to have a patent, it was not feasible and could not be used by everyone. Lewis Latimer, at the time, a brilliant man with an engineering degree, was working at the U.S. Electric Lighting Company when he got the inspiration for his carbon light bulb filament.

He worked hard on his idea, to the point where his dream of transporting electricity to all households was met! The material in his version of a light bulb was easier to find and create than the past version.

james e west


James E. West and the Electret Condenser Microphone

James E West shares credit for this invention with Gerhard Sessler. Although this is true, he did the bulb of the work when creating an electret condenser microphone. This black inventor created the small microphone in hopes that everyone could use it.

For once, a microphone was small enough to implant into objects. Not only was it small enough to be impressive, but the electret condenser microphone did not need an ample power supply to run.

Where are these microphones used now? Everywhere! Homeowners should applaud these two inventors as their version of a microphone is now seen on home security systems, phones, tablets, and more!


Mary Van Brittan Brown and the Home Security System

maryMary Van Brittan Brown is an attractive woman. Unlike the men in this list, this black woman inventor first started her career as a nurse. Her husband worked with electricity, creating a small rudimentary security system.

Her version of the home security system was miniature, but it worked rather well! The reason she created it was because she felt unsafe. She and her husband came home, left for work at odd hours, and did not live in a safe neighborhood.

The home security system she invented had a two-way communication device. Meaning when someone tripped the alarm, it would call another person, and they could communicate and help with the situation. Home security systems are more advanced but use the same primary invention.

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