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This Day in History

On April 26, 1954, the Salk polio vaccine field trials, which were to involve 1.8 million children, began in McLean, Virginia.  This was the first time a double-blind study method had been used (neither doctor nor patient knew who was receiving the vaccine and who was receiving a placebo.

On April 29, 1974, President Richard Nixon announces to the public that he will release transcripts of 46 taped White House conversations in response to a Watergate trial subpoena issued in July 1973. The House Judiciary committee accepted 1,200 pages of transcripts the next day, but insisted that the tapes themselves be turned over as well.

 

 

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Sarah E. Goode, (ca.1850-1909), Inventor

  • First African-American woman to get a patent

Sarah Jacob was born into slavery in about 1850; she gained her freedom at the end of the Civil War and moved to Chicago shortly after.  In Chicago she met and married Archibald Goode, a carpenter.

The idea of being married to a carpenter and starting a furniture store must have seemed natural, there would have been nothing natural about a woman, a former slave, running the shop.  Despite this, Sarah built a thriving and well-known business.

In working with her customers, she heard their needs and that led to her invention: a cabinet bed or a fold-a-way bed.  Her customers lived in small apartments and needed to maximize their space.  Sarah worked out a design for a bed that could be used for sleeping during the night but converted into a rolltop desk during the day. The bed, complete with mattress and spring support, was attached by hinges and could be raised or lowered as needed. Because it was a rolltop it also provided storage.

On July 14, 1885, Sarah E. Goode, became the first African-American woman to be granted a patent by the U.S. Patent And Trademark Office (Patent #322,17), for her invention, the cabinet bed. Today we have the Murphy bed and the hide-away bed/couch as a result.

Sarah Goode Died January 25, 1909.

Not much else is known about Sarah Goode’s life or her store, but as I kept looking I did find an interesting footnote of sorts…  While there have been many African-American inventors of both genders since Sarah’ s time, I thought I would mention just one other woman I found: The first African-American woman doctor to patent a medical device was Patricia Bath (1942-  ).  She grew up in Harlem; her father was the first African-American subway motorman. She overcame color and gender barriers to becoming a doctor, and in 1988 she received a patent for a device she had been working on for 8 years., a Laserphaco Probe.  This is a laser device that removes cataracts easily and makes it easy for the ophthalmologist to insert a new lens.  Bath is still alive and continues to work on improvements.  She holds three patents on the laser device and in 2000 she was granted a patent for a device to remove cataracts using ultrasound.

Another great accomplishment for which we can be grateful.

To read about another important African-American woman who was an inventor, read about Marjorie Stewart Joyner, who invented a hair-waving machine.

 


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29 Responses to Sarah E. Goode, (ca.1850-1909), Inventor

    I hope they both made loads of money!

    Jan Whitaker
    August 10, 2012
  1. Pingback: Women Inventors | | America Comes AliveAmerica Comes Alive

  2. this has been a great help for me as a sophomore its easy for everyone to understand and its so true and it has taught me a lot about sarah e goode i didnt even know she existed until i read all of this thank you soooo much for creating this website.

    scharmaine
    November 2, 2012

    im doing a project on her

    sarah
    February 10, 2013

    im doin a project on her life

    jeremy tygret
    February 19, 2013

    im doing a project on her life

    Leeah
    February 25, 2013

    Im doing my project on her life & mostly all of the websites have the exact same stuff. but thanks it really helped :)

    Christina A.Williams
    March 5, 2013

    i am doing a project on her and this is som much help

    dylan craparo
    March 26, 2013

    how did she die and how old was she?

    jazmine
    December 10, 2013

    i am doing a project on her its awsome!

    jazmine
    December 10, 2013

    Wow, Thank you. This is great information. I have a cabinet bed for sale now and did not know the history. All I knew is that the bed was very cool. I am excited that the inventor was an African American women. February is Black History Awareness month. I will be sure to share this story. Thanks again.

    G Smith
    January 27, 2014

    See Pics Of Cabinet Bed very cool piece of furniture.

    G Smith
    January 27, 2014

    I am no longer certain where you are getting your information, however good topic. I needs to spend some time studying more or understanding more. Thanks for magnificent information I was looking for this info for my mission.

    im doing a good beautifuil project on her.

    asia johbson
    February 13, 2014

    how did she have an impact on society

    emily
    February 24, 2014

    i am doing a project on her and need help.

    robert
    April 9, 2014

    Good luck with your project Robert! The illustration of her invention helps you understand what she had in mind. Sadly there are no photographs of her because this would have been very early in the days of photography. Sarah was smart!

    Kate Kelly
    April 9, 2014

    Thank you for your help it was great.:)

    robert
    April 9, 2014

    Thank you for your help kate it was great and it helped alot.:)

    robert
    April 9, 2014

    Your project will be great, too, Robert. There are so many interesting stories about inventors. If you scroll down this page, you’ll find some other ones I’ve written about:
    http://americacomesalive.com/category/who-thought-of-that/

    Kate Kelly
    April 9, 2014

    all of this stuff is help thank you i wish you would tipe to us more because you type good stuff to us when were sad.

    robert
    April 9, 2014

    all of this stuff is help thank you i wish you would tipe to us more because you type good stuff to us when were sad and you make us happ again with what you type thank you. :)

    robert
    April 9, 2014

    Oh, I hope you’re not sad! You’re working hard in school and that’s what is important! We all get sad some times but it helps to think about things you like to do or people you like to be with… I have to go to the dentist now or I would type more but I am thinking of you! My daughters’ friends were sometimes mean to them but then 2 hours later, everything would be OK. I hope that happens for you.

    Kate Kelly
    April 9, 2014

    thank you kate you are the best and everyday I think of you thankyou.:) sincerely Robert romero.

    robert
    April 10, 2014

    thank you kate you are the best and everyday I think of you thankyou.:) sincerely Robert romero.one more thing your the best person ever!

    robert
    April 10, 2014

    kate when I go on that website what would I click on. Please type back as soon as you can. Thank you!

    robert
    April 10, 2014

    kate will you please aswer me. And if youcan’t just let me know I will understand. Ok? Robert.

    robert
    April 10, 2014

    Hi Robert I am out of my office today but leave me any questions you have and I will answer you tomorrow.

    Kate
    April 10, 2014

    I am busy on Friday but wanted to leave you a message. Click on this link http://americacomesalive.com/category/who-thought-of-that/
    Read about another inventor and leave me a message as to which one you read about!

    Kate Kelly
    April 10, 2014
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