African American inventors from Michigan
Robert Pelham: Born in January 1859 in Petersburg, Virginia, but raised in Detroit, Robert Pelham invented and patented two devices that made the Census collection process easier and quicker – the tabulation device (1905) and tallying machine (1903).
Elijah McCoy: Elijah McCoy was born in May 1844 to fugitive slaves who escaped to Ontario, Canada via the Underground Railroad. Reared in Ypsilanti, McCoy worked as a fireman and oiler for the Michigan Central Railroad and, after observing the inefficiencies in the way train axles were oiled, he created a lubricating cup that helped trains continue to run without having to stop for overheating or lubrication issues. He also created his own manufacturing company and acquired 57 patents.
Allen H. Turner: Born in 1923 in Detroit, Allen Turner played an integral part in the creation of electrocoating and electrocuring, two industrial processes used to this day. In fact, he received 19 patents for the electrocoating apparatus system