Skip to main content
Search IntMath

Math movie: The exceptional life of Benjamin Banneker

By Murray Bourne, 19 Feb 2017

The exceptional life of Benjamin Banneker tells the story of the son of a former slave father and a free African American mother. Banneker was largely self-educated in astronomy and mathematics.

He assisted in surveying the site of Washington DC, and exchanged letters with president Thomas Jefferson asking him to ensure racial equality.

Banneker built a wooden clock, and taught himself astronomy, accurately predicting solar and lunar eclipses.

Benjamin Banneker almanac cover
Image source

He wrote a series of popular almanacs containing some of his calculations and tidal information.

On with the short video, by TED-Ed.

To conclude, here's a great quote by Banneker:

The colour of the skin is in no way connected with strength of the mind or intellectual powers.

Be the first to comment below.

Leave a comment

Comment Preview

HTML: You can use simple tags like <b>, <a href="...">, etc.

To enter math, you can can either:

  1. Use simple calculator-like input in the following format (surround your math in backticks, or qq on tablet or phone):
    `a^2 = sqrt(b^2 + c^2)`
    (See more on ASCIIMath syntax); or
  2. Use simple LaTeX in the following format. Surround your math with \( and \).
    \( \int g dx = \sqrt{\frac{a}{b}} \)
    (This is standard simple LaTeX.)

NOTE: You can mix both types of math entry in your comment.


Tips, tricks, lessons, and tutoring to help reduce test anxiety and move to the top of the class.