Photos: African-American Inventors

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Jack Johnson

While serving a one-year prison sentence for violating the Mann Act, a law often used to prohibit Black men from traveling with white women in the early 20th century, Jack Johnson improved on the traditional wrench, patenting his tool in 1922. Johnson was also the first Black heavyweight boxing champion, garnering more press than all other notable Black men combined during his reign.

(Photo: PA Photos /Landov)

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