From Carver's George to George Washington Carver--The Man Behind The Legend
Imagine Yourself in 'Pandora,' but being alien to these blue humanoids from James Cameron's script Avatar 2. If you want to make a simple move or go to School there, you will have to face bullying and most likely you will be singled out by your looks and your different attitude toward life and the world beyond your eyes.
Just imagine Charlton Heston in a new planet being held hostage by an advanced race, that considered him below rational levels. Or make it even funnier: The blonde Niece from the Munsters, Marilyn. If you don't belong to a society or a clan or a race, then you will have to work harder to be accepted or... just survive among them.
Now let's go back to 1864. Civil war is at full throttle; slavery is as common as buying a car on a Saturday morning at your local dealer, after getting your income tax return. George Washington Carver was born into slavery...so sad that he even didn't have a name....let's hear from him in a informal interview and find the man behind the Legend.
TUSKEGEE COLLEGE LIBRARY
We are seated there and we hear George entering the Library. He is helped by friends that fix his attire... and shake his hands. We recognize Booker T. Washington and Frederick Douglass peeking from the Lobby. They wave and leave George with us.
LORD: Good Morning George, sorry for having you in here so early
GEORGE: Good Morning sir, is fine. I'm used to be up this early
LORD: There are so many questions in my head Sir, but let's go to the very beginning and we will take it from there... We heard that you were kidnapped at 10 days old of age and these Slave raiders from Arkansas never returned your mother to you.
GEORGE: My life was a struggle from the very first day of my life. From that loss I became to be self-sufficient and began admiring nature. My mother...I never heard of her ever, but I knew she was there for me until the last minute. My former Master Moses Carver hired John Bentley to find my whereabouts. I cannot be so thankful for my rescue. The void was instilled but I felt the need to prove myself a better man. Deep inside I wanted to be someone, just in case my momma would ever come back, but she didn't.
LORD: Time magazine dubbed you the 'Black Leonardo' back in 1941. Do you consider yourself a prodigy?
GEORGE: Not at all. My beginnings branded my life. I have lived frugally ever since I had notion of the value of money; I wanted to confront my religious beliefs with the Science of nature... that was and still is, like a big broadcaster; the problem is, when or how can we tune in with it. Everyday was a learning experience for me. My Creator was out there waiting for me to open this book of life, literally.
LORD: Do you regret the fact that you were born in tumultuous times?
GEORGE: I was born at the right moment to greet my mother who still was there for me. You wonder why I always preached compassion and understanding toward the youth and the elder. My mind was set to have patience and inquisitive. While others were picking up the Cotton, I was washing dishes and learning to find the names of every shrub felt into my hands, and that was the happiest moment for me.
LORD: Why Peanuts? and not potatoes?
The South, back in the early 1900's was invaded by the boll weevil that devastated the Cotton industry. I came up with this alternative cropping. Monogamous Cotton had depleted the soil and it was time to create other means of income with this alternative crop. Sweet potatoes were more resistant to different plagues and made good recipes. You still can hear around Christmas, "Where is my sweet potato pie?"
LORD: I'm in awe. Interesting Sir. From poverty to the highest awards and achievements. I heard you donated 60,000 dollars for scholarships back in 1940. I guess it was already in your mind ti do it.
GEORGE: You receive in life and generously you give back. My former master gave me my life back. Mrs. Maria Watkins gave me a new name: "Young man you are not Carver's George anymore, just start telling people that your name is George Carver, and be proud" That changed my life too...I was this tiny skinny thirteen year old kid... and I was ready for the world.
LORD: This is amazing, hearing from your own mouth and touching my heart. You really did Sir!
GEORGE: Been told that all my life. Since I joined Tuskegee in 1896 until my departure in 1943, I was learning as much as I could in order to give back to people as Mrs. Watkins told me, and she was right! Like it was written in the Bible, my returns were tenfold!
LORD: You never got married. Could you come up with an honest answer?
GEORGE: My whole life was dedicated to my love for science and my time at the agricultural department. There was no chance to settle down and I think I was not made to be tied to a family life.
LORD: Henry Ford, what comes to your mind about this entrepreneur?
Passion for what you do. Believing in yourself and also like me, giving back. He was generous enough to build an elevator for me right in these location, so I wouldn't have to use the steps, when I was already old. You see how you receive without even thinking in returns?
LORD: Right! If it was in the scriptures for thousand of years, then it was a blessing! Now tell us about Crop rotation, in simple words...for our readers, if you could Sir?
GEORGE: In simple words: When you have cotton cropping all your life, the soil gets depleted. Nitrogen is restored when you alternate with other cropping like sweet potato or peanuts. Besides you get variety for the season and you cover all year round.
LORD: Excellent, Bravo! Who would play yourself in any movie about your life: Denzel? Louis Cosset Jr? Maybe Larry Fishburne?
GEORGE: Good question! I leave it to the filmmakers. Actors can play anyone if they are good. I was good for research. We all are born for something.
LORD: Any regrets?
GEORGE: Not now. I met my kidnappers and forgave them...and of course I met my mother....after meeting her, I found the reason of why I was the way I was.
LORD: I cannot thank you enough Sir! You are an inspiration for all of us and our Nation. Thank you so much!
GEORGE: Thanks to you too Lord.
Have you learned a lot about George?
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