Most people don’t know that a Black man was the first to create and receive a patent for the airplane. Bet you didn’t know that said Black man has a direct connection to Tupac, Do or Die, Scarface and so man more.
Well, Hip-Hop producer, Mr. Lee is working to make sure everyone knows this bit of Black History. And he has a reason to be so passionate about informing the masses: it’s his great grandfather that we are talking about.
The multi-platinum music producer, who has worked with Pac, Nipsey Hussle, Scarface, Slim Thug, Trae tha Truth, and many more, is a direct relative to Charles Frederick Page (1864-1937).
According to FOX8Live, Page and the Wright brothers were testing their models the same year (1903) but the Black man was the first to receive a patent for what he called his “airship” in 1906. It was even covered in the paper, a huge marker for this young inventor.
New Orleans’ Times-Democrat newspaper noted on April 21, 1906, in an article entitled, “Pineville Colored Man Has Invented An Air Ship,” the following:
“Charles F. Page, a colored citizen of Pineville, and a native of that town, aged about 31 years, has for a number of years been engaged in trying to invent an airship. He first made an application for a patent on April 24, 1903, and has now secured a U.S. Patent which was issued to him on April 10, 1906.”
“The Town Talk was shown Wednesday a copy of the patent which gives a description of the invention. After an examination, we feel confident that the invention is one of merit, and many ideas brought out by the inventor entirely new, and we believe that with this invention of the navigation of the air, in a safe manner, is nearer insight than it has ever been.”
And continued, “The strength of the invention is, that the main portion of the machine is boat-shaped, made of wire, and covered with strong canvass. The lifting air balloons are two in number and are strongly fastened in the hull of the boat, with proper values to permit gas to be pumped in or out of the balloons, to give or take away buoyancy as desired. The balloons are fastened securely to the wired boat. Attached to the boat is a rudder for steering purposes, and it also has a propeller, operated with a gas motor, which can be used to send the airship in any direction.”
“There are many other new things in this invention which we do not have the time or space to enumerate, but anyone who sees the model and has knowledge of mechanical contrivances can see that inventor Page has made a valuable addition to air navigation machines.”
It was noted that Page wanted to share it at the World’s Fair for a cash prize of $100,000 but the craft was stolen and destroyed before he could get it there.
As an in-house producer at Rap-A-Lot, Mr. Lee was connected to a lot of stars and history makers.
Yet, it is his own blood that probably is the biggest star of them all.
Charles Frederick Page is more than just a Black History celebrant, but a world history icon.
For more information on his extraordinary life and story, click here.