Vladimir Pecha‘s Today’s Memory
Benjamin Banneker’s birthday
Originally shared by Vladimir Pecha
Benjamin Banneker’s 285th Birthday.
(9 Nov 1731; 9 Oct 1806) Black-American astronomer, inventor and mathematician, compiler of almanacs and one of the first important black American intellectuals who was the self-educated son of a freed slave. He was the first to record the arrival of the „seventeen-year locusts” or periodical cicadas. In 1753, Banneker built a wooden clock that kept accurate time even though he had only previously seen a sundial and a pocket watch. He calculated the clock’s gear ratios and carved them with a pocket knife. In 1789, he successfully predicted an eclipse. He helped survey the site of Washington D.C. (1791-3). Banneker was also an early antislavery publicist who worked to improve the lot of black people in the U.S.