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David Crosthwait was born in Nashville, Tennessee back in 1898. At a young age the family moved to Kansas City, Missouri where he attended school. He received his Bachelor of Science and a Masters of Engineering degree from Purdue University.
His expertise was air ventilation, central air conditioning and heat transfer. He held 39 United States patents and 80 international ones. He invented a vacuum pump, a boiler and thermostat control devices. He retired in 1971, when he returned to Purdue to teach a course on steam heating and control systems. He died in 1976, he was 77.
What you may not know about David is that he created the heating systems for the Rockefeller Center and New York’s Radio City Music Hall. Such an accomplishment for an African-American back then, don’t you think? I can’t confirm it, but as far as I can tell his system is still in use to this day.
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