The story behind the first Traffic Light, used globally today


If you live in a metropolitan city, you know how important traffic lights and more so how pivotal it is that every single traffic light on your way to work, school, meetings, home are working at every single point. However, how much do we know about traffic lights and where do they come from or who came up with the ingenuity of using a traffic system?
It turns out the first traffic light was invented by our very own black innovator Garret Morgan, in 1923. He was the seventh of eleven children and his mother Elizabeth Morgan was of Indian descent and African descent. He was only able to finish primary school, when he later moved on to working for a sewing machine company, where he became a sewing machine mechanic.
Morgan, throughout his lifetime was a natural problem solver and came to make several inventions, from hair cream relaxer, gas masks, which are the blue print of what firefighters use today, as well as globally known traffic light. What came to inspire the invention behind it, was when Morgan witnessed a carriage accident, at a busy intersection in his town, he saw the need for a 3–way warning light to notify drivers when to slow down, stop or keep going. He later sold the patent to General Electric for $40 000. Today a traffic light can be found in every city all over the world, with the very same 3-way light system Garret Morgan invented.
Outside of his inventing career, Morgan was heavily involved in the freedom and progression of African Americans. He would later make numerous donations African American universities, as well as become an active member of the National Association and Advancement of Colored People.