People Involved in Farming

Benjamin Banneker

When Benjamin Banneker (1731–1806) was in his early twenties, he made a clock out of wooden parts—the first wholly American-made clock in the country, which kept time accurately for more than twenty years (some sources say forty years, some say fifty years). He became a well-known scientist, astronomer, mathematician, surveyor, and gazetteer. He worked with surveyor Andrew Ellicott in the laying out the nation’s new capital in the District of Columbia.

Last modified: 22 February 2020

Benjamin Sterling Turner

Benjamin Sterling Turner (1825–1894), Republican from Alabama, served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1872 through 1873. Born in South Weldon, North Carolina, this former slave was a self-made businessman who lost property during the Civil War. As the first African-American representative from Alabama following the Civil War, he focused on restoring peace and repairing economic damage to the South. He also promoted his black constituents as industrious members of the working community.

Last modified: 13 February 2020

Hazel "Hayes" Turner

In 1918, a white mob on a manhunt for the murderer of a plantation owner lynched Hazel "Hayes" Turner (1898?–1918) in Brooks County, Georgia, although he was innocent of the crime another man committed.

Last modified: 28 August 2019

Mary Turner, Mary Hattie Graham Turner

In 1918, in Lowndes County, Georgia, a white mob lynched and burned Mary Hattie Graham Turner (1899–1918), hanging her by her feet from a bridge, and riddled her body with bullets after cutting her unborn baby from her body and stomping it to death. Mary had married Hazel "Hayes" Turner the previous year in Colquitt County, Georgia, and was eight months pregnant with their child when Hayes was lynched by a white mob searching for the murderer of a plantation owner in Brooks County, Georgia—the plantation owner for whom the Turners worked.

Last modified: 1 February 2020

Redoshi, Sally Smith

In 1860 (some sources say 1859), Redoshi (1848?–1937—some sources say she was 110 when she died) was just 12 years old when she was kidnaped and forced to leave her country of what is now Benin in West Africa and travel to the United States aboard the Clotilda, the last known slave ship to smuggle enslaved people into the United States, 52 years after importing slaves was in violation of U.S. law.

Last modified: 14 February 2020