George Washington Carver is one of our favorite people to study. His life is fascinating to learn about from beginning to end. One of the reasons we love to learn about his legacy is because he was born near present-day Diamond, Missouri not too far from where we live. There’s a sense of familiarity about the place he grew up, the land he explored, and the nature he loved. We feel a sense of kinship with this great man. He also attended the same university from which both my husband and I graduated. We have fond memories of our time taking math classes in Carver Hall during our years there. George Washington Carver was the first African American student at Iowa Agricultural College (now Iowa State University) and later the first African American faculty member. For all these reasons, we chose to explore the life and contributions of George Washington Carver as the first in our naturalist series.