Leonard C. Bailey
Leonard C. Bailey (1825–1918) was an African-American business owner and inventor.
Born into poverty, Bailey initially found work as a barber, building up a string of barber shops in Washington D.C.
He invented and received patents for a series of devices, many designed for military or government use. These included a folding bed, a rapid mail-stamping machine, a device to shunt trains to different tracks, and a hernia truss adopted into wide use by the U. S. Military. These inventions provided him with a sizable income.
He helped establish the Capital Savings Bank of Washington D.C., one of the first African-American owned banks in the U.S. and during the Panic of 1893 maintained its solvency through obtaining a personal loan from a national bank.
He died September 1, 1918 of sudden illness.
- Union League of the District of Columbia (1901). The Twentieth Century Union League Directory: A Compilation of the Efforts of the Colored People of Washington for Social Betterment ... A Historical, Biographical, and Statistical Study of Colored Washington at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century and After a Generation of Freedom.
- US, Leonard C. Bailey, "Folding Bed"
- Theda Perdue (1 October 2011). Race and the Atlanta Cotton States Exposition of 1895. University of Georgia Press. ISBN 978-0-8203-4201-6.
- Patricia Carter Sluby (2004). The Inventive Spirit of African Americans: Patented Ingenuity. Greenwood Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-275-96674-4.
- "Application, National Register of Historic Places" (PDF). dhr.virginia.gov. Retrieved 2015-02-24.