# Benjamin Banneker's Influence On African American

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Benjamin Banneker was an important mathematician who was also African American. Banneker was born on November 9, 1731 in Ellicott’s Mills, Maryland. He always had an interest in mathematics while his grandmother, a freed slave, taught him. His grandmother was not his only source of learning, though, for he also attended a Quaker school until the 8th grade (Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806), n.d., p. xx). He did not finish his entire education because later on because he was forced to work ("Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806)," n.d.). In his early life, he lived by Baltimore, Maryland on a farm which his family owned. On this 100 acre farm, he gained a love for astronomy and the connection it had to mathematics. He would teach himself about these things …show more content…

He did this with the help of a friend who had given him a clock, which he disassembled for the purpose of learning about the way it functions. With what he found out, he built a different clock, as mentioned above and earned fame. It also helped him learn more about math (Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806), n.d., p. xx) ("Mathematician and Astronomer Benjamin Banneker Was Born," n.d.) ("Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806)," n.d.). Another significant thing he did was that Banneker predicted a solar eclipse using the knowledge which he had taught himself with. This happened in 1789 and because of it, he showed other mathematicians and astronomers their errors in predictions("Mathematician and Astronomer Benjamin Banneker Was Born," n.d.). The reason why this is an important contribution to math and science is because of the people who came to learn about him, and it helped the research of eclipses with the use of …show more content…

He learned how cicada’s may understand prime numbers because the periodical cicada issue that periods 13 and 17 were both prime numbers and adults appear every certain year according to a prime number. This taught him about the cicada lifestyle and lifespan. By further investigating locusts, Banneker would create mathematical models. Many people never understood this form of work, but banneker proved a connection with nature and math (Barber & Nkwanta, 2014, p. xx). Benjamin Banneker died on October 9, 1806 in Boston. Without his skills with math and science, the world would not be so far advance in the predictions and studies of astronomical events due to his calculations (published in almanac), and oddly, the world would know less about the connection cicada’s have with math. And these are his most significant contributions to math! We as a society would probably have low understanding of astronomical calculations. Banneker definitely is an underappreciated mathematician with a giant offering to the