Elijah McCoy


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  • Birth
  • May 2nd 1844 Colchester, Ontario, Canada
  • Family
  • McCoy Family
  • Going to Scotland
  • Engineering
  • Invention Engine Lubricant
  • Death
  • Summary
  • Elijah McCoy was born May 2 1844 in Colchester, Ontario, Canada. His parents were George and Mildred Goins McCoy. His family was a family of run away slaves from Kentucky to Canada. He had 11 siblings.The family reunited at in Ypsilanti, Michigan. At a young age he had an interest for Mechanics and would often fix things that were broken. When he was 15 his parents sent him to Scotland to be an apprentice in mechanics because you couldn't be a black mechanic in the U.S. He got a job as a fireman and oiler for Michigan Central Railroad. While working he looked at what was wrong with the oiling axles of the train's engine. He then invented the lubricating cup that would distribute oil evenly over moving parts of the engine. He later went on to invent other commonly used items like the ironing board and the lawn sprinkler. He married Ann Elizabeth Stewart in 1868, however she died tragically four years later. He then remarried to McCoy married Mary Eleanor Delaney in 1873. In 1922, the couple got into an automobile accident. Mary died on the spot while McCoy never recovered and died in 1928, at age 85. McCoy's inventions lived on and made traveling by train much safer. He is also where we get the expression "The real McCoy" meaning the real deal.
  • The Real McCoy!
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