In a time where African-Americans were treated like dirt, Benjamin Banneker broke barriers in the field of science. He had an eighth grade education and he self taught himself mathematics and astronomy. Using education as the great equalizer, he achieved many great things. Benjamin Banneker's achievements have benefited the African-American community of today.
Predicting the solar and lunar eclipse is one of Banneker's most important accomplishments. He had survived food to the workers of a mill. The owner of the mill lent Banneker a few books on astronomy and he taught himself the subject. He used astrological patterns to make predictions. He successfully predicted the solar eclipse that occurred on April 14, 1789. His prediction contradicted the predictions of extremely well-known scientists of that day.
Benjamin Banneker achieved a lot in his lifetime. His greatest achievement outside of surveying Washington D.C., is getting Thomas Jefferson (a White Supremacist) to admit that Blacks were not inferior to Whites in mathematics. He sent his almanac, in which he predicted the previously mentioned eclipses to Thomas Jefferson. By being able break the barrier of education, Banneker set the foundation for every Black intellectuals that followed him. He gained recognition for being an educated person of color in a time when barely anyone but the wealthy Caucasian man was educated. Thomas Jefferson even apologized for his words and said he was Banneker's "most obedient, humble servant."
Surveying Washington D.C is regarded as Banneker's greatest accomplishment. At age 60, he was chosen by President George Washington, along with a few other men to survey the land that would become our nation's capital. Banneker worked closely with an architect who had a short temper. When that man was fired, he took the blueprints with him. As a result, Banneker had to recreate the plans from memory. He gained recognition for his surveying and he paved the way for Black...
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