California Amazons Invent!

Because the Month of April is all of the following: 1) National Black Women’s History Month, 2) National Inventors Month, and 3) National Awareness Month, I think it is fitting to discuss a blend of all three.  Today, CALIFORNIA IS ME® has taken the time to shine a light on those who illuminate the invisibles, like Queen Calafía’s California Amazon, Fawn Weaver.  Are you aware that a Slave, Nathan “Nearest” Green, invented the process of making Jack Daniels®?  Fawn Weaver, a black woman, recently used her California courage to restore a wrong (see New York Times article).  She, an author too, has since invented a whiskey brand, called “Uncle Nearest 1856” to honor a slave’s legacy.  Indeed, necessity is the mother of invention.  The American Black person was uniquely born out of necessity-in the American fabric of enslavement and their own personal struggles.  Law Professor Kevin J. Greene of TJSL commented both on the Black American contribution in music and inventorship:

“Similarly, Black inventors (against stunning odds) created technical and scientific works that impacted entire early American industries. Evidence that exists indicates that Black inventors too faced similar divestiture in the industrial marketplace.  The misappropriation of the work of Black artists and inventors reflects the systemic subordination based on race that characterized most of U.S. history.”

-Kevin J. Greene. See (Stealing the Blues article by Kevin J. Greene). 

Fawn Weaver.JPG

Thus, it is logical, due to the upward mobility from slavery, that the Black person in America would have unknown historical intellectual property treasures then and today.  Black women aka California Amazons and their children continue to develop dreams and conceptualize ideas.  I dub Fawn Weaver the “Queen of Restoration” for uncovering, monetizing, and crediting King Nathan Green for his tasty invention. 

Queen Fawn has been a guiding light for CALIFORNIA IS ME EST. 1510® and my discovery of California’s Black Queen Calafia.

Inspired also by Sarah Breedlove Walker aka Madame C.J. Walker, America’s first woman, of any race, self-made millionaire, I am now not only a copyright holder, but now I am a trademark holder.

“I am a woman who came from the cotton fields of the South. From there I was promoted to the washtub. From there I was promoted to the cook kitchen. And from there I promoted myself into the business of manufacturing hair goods and preparations….I have built my own factory on my own ground.” 

-Madam Walker, National Negro Business League Convention, July 1912 (Madam Walker Essay” from by A’Lelia Bundles )

For more background on Madame C.J. Walker, click ( here ).

For more background on Madame C.J. Walker, click (here).

I dub thee Queen C.J., the “Queen of the Glory Crown” for revolutionizing haircare and making a way out of no way! According to Queen C.J. “America doesn't respect anything but money. What our people need is a few millionaires.“

Complied by CALIFORNIA IS ME- Partial Credit to  Interesting   Engineerinng .

Complied by CALIFORNIA IS ME- Partial Credit to Interesting Engineerinng.

Blacks invent. Thank you to Interesting Engineering for educating me further! We stand on giants. Get your intellectual property up!   

HELP and Shop the cause (see

  1. Educate (book),

  2. Celebrate (gear), and

  3. Act! (press sign) .

Celebrating First African American Black Women Ingenuity  

Martha Jones of Amelia County, Virginia, became the first black woman to receive a United States for the “Corn Husker, Sheller, &c.” on May 5, 1868 (U.S. Patent No. 77,494).

Source: USPTO Full-Text and Image Database

Source: USPTO Full-Text and Image Database

Mary Jones De Leon, a black woman of Baltimore was granted a patent on June 24,1873 (U.S. Patent No. 140,253) for a cooking apparatus (looks like the current day crock pot!). 

Judy W. Reed, a black woman, of Washington D.C. was granted a patent in 1884 for a dough kneader and roller (U.S. patent No. 305,474).

Sarah Goode, a black woman, of Chicago, Illinois was granted her patent on July 14, 1885 (U.S. patent No. 322,177).

Sarah Boone, a black woman of New Haven, Connecticut, was granted a patent on April 26, 1892 for an ironing board (U.S. Patent No. 473653). 

Marjorie S. Joyner, a black woman of Chicago, Illinois, was granted a patent on November 27, 1928 for the permanent-waving machine (U.S. Patent No. 1,693,515) and granted a patent on June 4, 1929 for the Scalp Protector (U.S. Patent No. 1,716,173).

You may access any U.S. patent here by inserting the patent numbers:

Our Ancestors’s IP

 These phenomenal California Amazon women above received patents.  However, it is of note how some Blacks did not receive credit for their inventions. According to interviews of ex-slaves according to their masters here is such a story:

My master told me that the niggers started the railroad and dat a’ nigger lookin' at a boilin coffee pot on a stove one day got the idea 
dat he could cause it to run by putting wheels on it. 
Die nigger being a blacksmith put his thoughts into action by makin wheels an’ put coffee 
on it, an by some kinder means he made it run an’ the idea waz stole 
from him and dey built de steam engine. 

-Interview of Mrs. Fannie Berry, Ex-Slave

861 E. Bank Street - Petersburg, Virginia 
By Susie Byrd, Petersburg Virginia 
Date: February 26, 1957 

Thank you Queen Fannie and the Federal Writers’ Project: Slave Narrative Project Virginia for the California courage to contribute to history.  An updated translation of the above communicates that black people invented the railroad and a black man invented the concept for the steam engine.  You may access other inventions of slaves by accounts of their masters collected by the Library of Congress, here:

  1. Protect what you value!

  2. Further reading: The Real McCoy by Raymond Millen.

  3. For the California invention revived, current STEM and legal examples: Click: California Essence link and Read “Who is the Black Queen Calafia of Goldern California?: The Real Wonder Woman by Ms. Tamra L. Dicus”.

#BlackHERstoryMonth #STEM #Justice4QueenCalafia #IntellectualProperty #Caliisme #BlackInventors

Any copying is prohibited unless you use the following phrase: “Source: “California Amazons Invent!” by Ms. Tamra L. Dicus, Owner and Founder of CALIFORNIA IS ME aka, 04/20/2019, contact for more; Disclaimer: Ms. Dicus is not speaking on behalf of the Federal Government nor the USPTO but as a private citizen; all expressed herein is opinion and not legal advice.”