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Typed Letter Signed on "Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute" stationery, 4to, Tuskegee Institute, Alabama, May 10, 1937
About to visit the Ford Motor Plant in Dearborn, Carver writes to his "much appreciated friend, Mr. Tubs," who worked at the Drakeford Greenhouses in Tuskegee. Edward Tubbs, a friend who worked at the Drakeford Greenhouses in Tuskegee, shared Carver's interest in and love of botany. As in other known letters Carver wrote to Tubbs, Carver thanks him for flowers received and mentions other flowers he has, specifically an amaryllis "through flowering now." At the outset, Carver writes that he, "wore the white carnation all day yesterday and it is just as pretty today. I shall wear it more or less all the week…." Carver explains that while he would like to see Tubbs, he has been too busy and informs him that "in about two weeks I shall have to leave for Dearborn, Michigan, Mr. Curtis and myself. We will visit the Ford Plant, and I am to speak on the evening of the 25th. I shall go by Mr. Curtis's home and rush back for commencement." He says that he hopes to see Mr. Tubbs upon his return. Above his typed name he signs, "G. W. Carver." Condition: Folds at center and two vertical folds, on verso and showing through are two light tan stains possible from sunning, else fine. Carver refers here to his visit to Dearborn at the invitation of Henry Ford to speak at the Third Dearborn Conference of Agriculture on "What Chemurgy means to my People." He also refers to his assistant, Mr. Austin Curtis, Jr., who escorted him to Dearborn. Carver and Ford began corresponding via letter in 1934, and their mutual admiration deepened after Carver made a visit to Michigan in 1937, the year of our letter. Carver and Ford worked together to create the field of Chemurgy, a new branch of science to merge agriculture and industry. During Carver's visit to Dearborn in 1937, he spoke at the Conference of Agriculture and a summary of his speech, published in Farm Chemurgic Council Proceedings of the Third Dearborn Conference…, so cited in Henry Ford and his Researchers… by William Shurtleff and Akiko Aoyagi, [page 77] states in part, "soybean was regarded a sort of curiosity… what Chemurgy has done with this bean under the direction of Mr. Ford is truly amazing, and the end is not yet. More things will be made…." The authors note that this is the earliest document seen using the word "Chemurgy" in the title. The Special History Study from the National Park Service website notes that in 1937, Carver attended two Chemurgy conferences, and that he was invited by Henry Ford to speak at the conference in Dearborn where "they developed a friendship." As Carver's health deteriorated, Ford installed an elevator at Tuskegee where Carver lived so that he wouldn't have to walk up and down the stairs. As Douglas Brinkley writes in 'Wheels for the World,' his history of Ford, the automaker donated generously to the Tuskegee Institute, helping finance Carver's experiments, and Carver in turn spent a period of time helping to oversee crops at the Ford Plantation in Ways, Georgia." The article continues, "By the time World War II began, Ford had made repeated journeys to Tuskegee to convince Carver to come to Dearborn and help him develop a synthetic rubber to help compensate for wartime rubber shortages." Eventually, in 1942, they devised a way to make the rubber from goldenrod, a plant weed. The two were kindred spirits in many ways, specifically about working to merge agriculture and industry. This letter appears to be unpublished.
      [Bookseller: Schulson Autographs]
Last Found On: 2016-11-29           Check availability:      Biblio    


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