From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Morgan, Garrett A., Sr.

(born: 1877  -  died: 1963) 

Garrett A. Morgan, who was born in Paris, KY, patented the breathing device - a gas mask - and the traffic signal. He owned sewing equipment and a repair shop, and a personal care products company. Morgan invented zig-zag stitching for manual sewing machines. Garrett Augustus Morgan, Sr. was the son of Sydney and Elizabeth Reed Morgan; he was the seventh of their eleven children. The children attended Branch School, located in the African American community of Claysville, later renamed Garrett Morgan's Place. Morgan quit school when he was in the fifth grade, and when he was a teen, he took a job in Cincinnati, OH. He would later move on to Cleveland, where he founded the Cleveland Association of Colored Men, which was later merged into the Cleveland Branch of the NAACP. Morgan also founded the Cleveland Call newspaper. For more see The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians, by A. A. Dunnigan; Created Equal, by J. M. Brodie; and Garrett A. Morgan in the Hutchinson Encyclopedia of Biography (2000).

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Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Morgan, Garrett A., Sr.,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed May 22, 2024,

Last modified: 2017-08-23 00:03:46