African-American Railroader Month - Celebrating Leadership

African-American Inventors
Railroad/Transportation Industry

Inventor Date of Patent Patent Number Invention
Adams, James S. October 19, 1920 1,356,329 Propelling means for aeroplanes
Baker, David February 25, 1913 1,054,267 Railway Signal Apparatus
Baker, David March 8, 1927 1,620,054 Interliners to prevent tire puntures
Baker, David September 21, 1915 1,154,162 Signal apparatus high water indicator for bridges
Banks, Charles M. May 13, 1930 1,758,640 Hydraulic jack
Banks, Charles M. September 2, 1930 1,774,693 Jack
Banks, Charles M. January 10, 1933 1,893,757 Release valve
Barnes, Ned E. March 13, 1906 815,059 Rail & Tie Brace
Barnes, Ned E. September 29, 1908 899,939 Hot box cooler and oiler
Barnes, Ned E. Septebmer 6, 1910 969,592 Indicator or cooler
Barnes, Ned E. April 25, 1916 1,180,467 Tie Plate
Barnes, Ned E. January 3, 1928 1,655,305 Tie Plate & Joint Brace
Barnes, Ned E. June 12, 1928 1,673,729 Pole, post and tree protector
Beard, Andrew J. July 5, 1892 594,059 Rotary Engine
Beard, Andrew J. November 23, 1897 594,059 Car-Coupler
Bell, Landrow May 23, 1871 115,153 Locomotive Smoke Stack
Blackburn, Albert B. January 10, 1888 376,362 Railway Signal
Blackburn, Albert B. April 3, 1888 380,420 Spring seat for chairs
Burr, William F. October 31, 1899 636,197 Switching Device
Butler, John W. June 15, 1897 584,540 Train Alarm
Campbell, Robert Leon May 19, 1903 728,364 Valve gear for steam engines
Cherry, Matthew A. January 1, 1895 531,908 Street Car Fender
Clare, Obadian B. October 9, 1888 390,753 Trestle
Cobbs, William N. November 4, 1930 1,780,865 Locomotive headlight
Dickenson, Robert C. August 26, 1970 1,314,130 Troller guard
Downing, Philip B. June 17, 1890 430,118 Street Railway Switch
Jackson, Henry A. March 9, 1897 578,641 Railway Switch
Jackson, William H. November 16, 1897 593,665 Railway Switch
Jackson, William H. August 23, 1898 609,436 Automatic Locking Switch
Jones, James C. 1895   Ratchet Drill Frame
Latimer, Lewis H. & Brown, Charles February 10, 1874 147,363 Water Closet
Latimer, Lewis H. November 3, 1884   Couplings for Electric Conductors
McClennan, Walter N. March 9, 1920 1,333,430 Automatic Railway Car Door
McCoy, Elijah Various (See List)  
Moore, Samuel November 30, 1926 1,608,903 Self-directing headlight
Moore, Samuel February 7, 1928 1,658,534 Vehicle-headlight mechanism
Moore, Samuel February 14, 1928 1,659,325 Locomotive headlight
Morgan, Garrett A. November 20, 1923 1,475,024 Automatic Traffic Signal
O'Connor, John and
Turner, Collantinus A.
August 25, 1896 566,613 Steam gauge
Purvis, William B. May 1, 1894 519,291 Electric Railway
Purvis, William B. May 21, 1894 539,542 Magnetic Car Balancing Device
Purvis, William B. August 17, 1897 588,176 Electric Railway System
Richey, Charles V. June 15, 1897 584,650 Car Coupling
Richey, Charles V. August 3, 1897 587,657 Railroad Switch
Richey, Charles V. October 26, 1897 592,448 Railroad Switch
Robinson, Elbert R. September 19, 1893 505,370 Electric Railway Trolley
Robinson, James H. March 14, 1899 621,143 Lifesaving Guard for Locomotives
Romain, Arnold April 23, 1889 402,035 Passenger Register
Shanks, Stephen C. July 27, 1897 587,165 Sleeping Car Berth Register
Spikes, Richard December 6, 1932 1,889,814 Automatic Gear Shift
Spikes, Richard November 28, 1933 1,936,996 Transmission & Shifting Means therefore
Spikes, Richard January 2, 1962 3,015,522 Automatic Safety Brake System
Woods, Granville T. Various (See List)