A Christian Encounters series biography from Thomas Nelson
By John Perry
Thomas Nelson Publishers
ISBN 978-1-59555-026-2 1
During the US Civil War, a childless, Missouri farm couple
Moses Carver and his wife Susan, former slave owners, took two orphaned boys to
raise when their mother has kidnapped and disappeared. The boys grew up as if
blood sons, taking the Carver name. The older boy, Jim, was strong and a hard
worker, but George, born premature and never in good health, turned to less
physical pursuits, including developing a passion for gardening, education, and
the Christian faith.
After finishing grammar school, George moved to Kansas and
took work as a housekeeper to save for higher education. He continued
to move around Kansas and eventually developed
a laundry business, then a stenography business. With a desire to establish a
home, he attempted homesteading, but didn’t stick out the harsh weather.
In 1887 he came to Iowa and was accepted in a small college,
eventually settling on agricultural sciences and received his degree in 1894.
While considering graduate degrees and missionary work, he received more than
one offer to teach. He chose to work at Tuskegee University in Alabama, and met
Booker T. Washington, whose story is also briefly told here. Although the
experience Carver had initially at the college wasn’t what he hoped, he did
find success in research and the respected bulletins he prepared on the results
were sent to farmers to offer advice for better and economical practices.
Perry’s account of Carver continuess to detail his rise in respected
research circles. Meticulous detail, dates, places, census records and purchase
prices, subsequent letters, known speeches and interaction with other famous
people such as Thomas Edison, enrich this account of one of America’s most
important and influential personages. Told in a matter of fact report-style,
readers of biographies will learn all pertinent facts about George Washington