Lewis H. Latimer
The historic Victorian home of Lewis Latimer stands now as a testament to this talented and gracious man. A New York City Landmark, the Lewis Latimer House Museum calls attention to Latimer's and other People of Color's contributions to American life, through interactive tours, exhibits, public and educational programs. The Lewis Latimer House Museum was founded in 1989, when the historic home of Lewis Latimer was saved and moved from its original location to the current site. The building was designated a New York City Landmark in 1995. It is owned by the Department of Parks & Recreation, operated by the Lewis H. Latimer Fund, Inc., and is a member of the Historic House Trust.
Lewis Howard Latimer (1848-1928), was an African-American inventor, electrical pioneer, and a son of fugitive slaves. With no access to formal education, Latimer taught himself mechanical drawing while in the Union Navy, and eventually became a chief draftsman, patent expert, and inventor.
Latimer worked with three of the greatest scientific inventors in American history, Alexander Graham Bell, Hiram S. Maxim, and Thomas Alva Edison. He played a critical role in the development of the telephone, and invented the carbon filament, a significant improvement in the production of the incandescent light bulb.
Outside his professional career, Latimer developed a passion for visual art, creative writing, and music. Some products of his artistic endeavors can be viewed at the Lewis Latimer House Museum. Latimer was a Unitarian and a family man.
We had the honor to visit the Lewis Latimer House Museum in March 2020!