Lewis Howard Latimer
Born September 4 1848 Ė Died December 11 1928
Lewis Latimer invented a method for producing a more durable carbon filament, making incandescent lighting practical and affordable for consumers.
Latimer was born in Chelsea, Massachusetts, the son of former slaves. He enlisted in the Union Navy during the Civil War and was a lieutenant in the Massachusetts Volunteer Militia. Working as a self-taught draftsman after the war, Latimer made the drawings for Alexander Graham Bellís first patent application for the telephone. He made his most important innovation in electric light technology while working for the United States Electric Lighting Company in the 1880s.