Native Son

Lorenzo Langstroth is the man who revolutionized the beekeeping world. He has a connection to Dayton, Ohio. Beekeeping for a thousand years was done using straw skeps. They are very beautiful, organic and a romantic way to keep bees except you must destroy the bees to get their honey. Langstroth was a christian minister who labored to find a way to keep bees without having to destroy them to get their honey. After close study of bee behavior he realized that bees need a specific amount of space to do their work. He invented frames that could go in a box, set at a specific distance, that could be pulled out to inspect the bees, or harvest their honey without harming the bees. The white beehive boxes you see dotting our landscapes are named Langstroth Hives. Why his name isn't as well known as other great inventors is a mystery to me. Being that the honeybee is the second most written about topic in human history right behind religion. Maybe it is because he was a humble man who labored for his bees and his church quietly. His daughter upon marrying moved to Dayton, Ohio. Lorenzo Langstroth moved in with his daughter in Dayton and continued to be a minister in one of the churches in Dayton. Lorenzo died peacefully at his pulpit one Sunday morning in a Dayton, Ohio church. Dayton has many reasons to be proud of some its exceptional citizens. Lorenzo Langstroth is certainly one. As a side note, I find it interesting and amusing that the best inventions ever created are done by common men, or women in their garages, backyards or workshops, rather than by professionals in their labs. A form of genius is in us all!


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