John P. Parker, a black man invented a screw for tobacco presses!


How many black inventors are there? How many inventions are there?

I’d love to know the numbers. Well, John P. Parker was a black man

who invented a screw for tobacco presses. His mother was black. His

father was white. He was working as a house servant and learned to read

and write that way. IN 1843, John was sent North with the owners as they

went to college. JOhn was soon brought  back to Mobile when the physician

feared he might flee to the Northern territories.

              In Mobile this grand man was a craftsman’s apprentice for an iron manufacturer anda learned to be a plasterer. John escaped to New Orleans but was captured trying to

flee by a riverboat and was returned to his owner. He became a molder and  was

transferred to a New Orleans foundry where he could do extra work to earn money.

            This enabled him to purchase his freedomin845 for the amount of $1,800.00

He was secretly a conductor on the Underground Railroad, eventually helping to

smuggle over 1,000 slaves to escape into free states like Indiana and Ohio. In

1848, Parker moved to Beachwood Factory, Ohio where he opened a general

store. 6 years later he opened a small foundry near Ripley, Ohio which

produced special and general castings. The Foundry eventually employed

over 25 workers and manufactured slide valve engines and reapers. In 1863, Parker

took on the role of recruiter for the 27th Regiment, US. Colored troop during the 

United States Civil War and furnished castings to the war effort.

JOhn P. Parker has an impressive list of accomplishments. Don’t 

forget his invention, Don’t forget he was also the conductor of the

Underground Railroad.


2 thoughts on “John P. Parker, a black man invented a screw for tobacco presses!

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