6 Household Inventions Created by Black Inventors

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As we continue to celebrate Black History Month, we recognize and honor the accomplishments black people have made in all industries—science, technology, healthcare, education, etc. Their contributions are notable, especially when it comes to products we use almost each and every day inside our own homes.

Here are 6 household products created by black inventors that have forever changed the way we live.

More Efficient Light Bulb

Yes, Thomas Edison was the inventor of the light bulb, but it was an assistant manager and draftsman for U.S. Electric Lighting Company that brought the invention into homes and neighborhoods. Lewis Latimer is credited for creating a longer lasting, more efficient and less expensive light bulb and was instrumental in creating the electrical industry.

Ironing Board

Thanks to Sarah Boone’s invention, people no longer had to use a table or floor to iron their clothes. Boone’s patent for a wooden board, with collapsible legs and a padded cover, was designed for the clothing worn during the late 1800’s and has continued to be modified throughout the years.

Metal Oven Racks

In 1845, inventor Joseph Hawkins made some improvements upon the gridiron, a metal rack attached to a wooden handle that was usually placed on a campfire or fireplace. His improvements are what we call today “oven racks” and allows us to heat different kinds of food at different levels of heat intensity.

Dust Pan

Lloyd Ray created a device with a metal plate attached to a short wooden handle in which dirt, dust, and debris could be swept up without getting your hands dirty. Patented in 1897, dustpans continue to be a staple of most households.


Mixing ingredients became an easier task when Willis Johnson created a handle attached to a “series of spring-like whisk wires.” Some believe that this was more than just an egg beater, it was actually a model of an early mixing machine.

The Mop

Inventor Thomas Stewart felt there must have been an easier way to get floors clean without scrubbing them on your hands and knees. Attaching a cloth to a stick handle, Stewart made one of the hardest household chores less labor intensive.

Talk to us: What household invention could you not live without?


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