Elijah McCoy Homesite
Elijah McCoy, the noted black inventor, lived on this site for much of his adult life. Born in 1844 to fugitive slaves residing in Canada, McCoy was trained in Scotland as a mechanical engineer, and came to Michigan after the Civil War. Discrimination forced him to become a fireman on the Michigan Central Railroad. In 1872 McCoy patented his first automatic lubricating cup which oiled the locomotive while the train was in motion, thus eliminating frequent stops for oiling. He soon moved to Detroit were he improved his designs, and later setup a company to manufacture lubricators. These were installed in locomotives and steamships both here and abroad. McCoy died in 1929, honored for his important engineering innovations.