Science & Tech, World

History: Great Personalities Forgotten in Time

I bet we all know of Mark Zuckerberg or Bill Gates. Their innovations in technology have had a huge impact on the world. Others like Albert Einstein and Henry Ford have left a lasting legacy with their contributions to the world. There are many other great personalities throughout history whom we know and celebrate for their great innovations or contributions to the world. That said, there remain others whom, even after making great contributions, have become forgotten and we hardly know about them. In this article, I will introduce to you ten great personalities I bet you didn’t know about.

Philo Farnsworth

He is the inventor of the all-electronic television. While the world may give more credit to John Logie Baird as the TV inventor, his invention was partly mechanical, partly electronic. Philo made it all electric, the kind of TV the whole world now uses. He is, however, barely remembered since he disliked being on TV and kept a low profile throughout his life.

Joseph Bazalgette

He was the builder of the modern sewerage system and had it installed in London. His invention averted many would be disease outbreaks such as cholera and typhoid. He, therefore, helped in saving thousands of lives. Sadly though, his name and legacy has remained unrecognized throughout history.

Eadweard Muybridge

Now and then, I know you will invite your friends over to watch a movie. Or you may take a trip to the theatre with your girlfriend to catch the latest flicks. Thanks to Eadweard, you have thousands of hours of entertainment in the form of films, a technology he helped to advance. Unfortunately, this generation knows nothing about him.

Matthew Evans and Henry Woodward

I know you know of the light bulb. I know you have also heard of how Thomas Edison, its inventor, failed a thousand times and discovered a thousand ways of how not to make the light bulb. This is what you don’t know: Matthew and Henry, two Canadians, were the actual inventors of the light bulb but being broke, they approached Edison for financial support. That was the last of them.

Peter Cooper

You must have surely used some glue at some point in your life. I’m sure no one has ever told you where glue came from. Was it mined, extracted or cooked? Why does it not stick to its bottle? Well, Peter Cooper was the first inventor of glue. Just imagine where history would’ve led us without it.

John Walker

You use fire every day. Fire was accidentally invented way back in the stone age. At least that is what we were taught in history class. What would happen if your fire went out or you wanted to travel? Luckily enough, and closer to today’s times, an inventor named John Walker made portable fire. He invented the friction matches with which you can now literally start a fire anytime. The world seems to have him forgotten though.

Garret Morgan

Imagine this: four different direction highways intersect at a roundabout. Loads of traffic is coming through from each lane. Each motorist, of course, wants to arrive at their destination as soon as possible. They all meet at the roundabout, eager to jump in and proceed. How will things turn out? Things will be under control due to traffic lights. Thanks to Garret Morgan for his invention.

Dr. Charles Drew

Inventions throughout the medical field have had life-changing impacts. Dr. Charles invented the modern blood banks. Now, thanks to his brilliant invention, blood can be easily stored and or transfused without compromising its quality. Many people in critical conditions have had their lives saved. Sadly, Dr. Charles is not celebrated in any form.

Harvey Ball

Communication in today’s age of the internet has reached a different level. Instant messaging is quickly replacing verbal communication, even in a family or office setup. To enhance text-based communication, emoticons come in handy. I bet you didn’t know the creator of the first smiley face was Harvey Ball back in 1963. He never patented it though, and just like that, we never hear of him in our history lessons.

Francis James Canova Jr.

You’re probably reading this on your smartphone. If not, you still very likely own one. The smartphone has revolutionized today’s world. Many rarely know of its inventor. Some think Steve Jobs is the mastermind behind it with the iPhone. The first all-in-one device was however created by an IBM engineer, Francis Canova in 1993.

Forgotten History

Those are just some of the great personalities whom the world has forgotten over time. There are still many others out there. If only the world would recognize them all. History can be a double-edged sword.

About Alex Muiruri

Alex is a passionate writer based in Kenya. He's also a professionally trained health officer and a great enthusiast of science and technology. Besides writing, he enjoys doing motivational speaking and possesses strong opinions on life. He's a lover of people and enjoys good company. He's also a devoted Christian, but respects the beliefs of others.

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