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When he showed up to register at the all-white college, an official said his acceptance had been a mistake as the school had never admitted a black and had no intention to do so. But the Milhollands persisted and Carver eventually entered Simpson College, a small Methodist school in Indianola, Iowa, that admitted all qualified applicants, regardless of race or ethnicity.One black had attended the school before Carver, and there were three Asians still on campus.Grant, who owned the adjoining plantation." Carver was never clear about when he was born, sometimes writing "about 1865," or "near the end of the war," or "just as freedom was declared." Since Missouri never seceded from the Union, and thus was not in rebellion when the Emancipation Proclamation was issued in 1863, slavery continued in the state until the adoption of a new constitution on July 4, 1865.
These writings tell of a poor orphan who sought knowledge and hungered for scientific discovery but who was sickly and weak.
Carver's early years were indeed difficult, but he seems to have exaggerated his frailty.
Carver's mother Mary was purchased as a thirteen-year-old girl in 1855 when Moses Carver decided that the need for help on his 240 acre farm trumped his antislavery views.
The youngster knew neither of his parents since his father was killed in an accident before his birth and his mother disappeared under somewhat mysterious circumstances.
Not satisfied with basic literacy, Carver decided to move west in the late 1870s, joining blacks disillusioned by the failure of Reconstruction in a vast migration to Kansas.
For the next decade or so, Carver shuttled among numerous Midwestern communities, attending school fitfully, trying his luck at homesteading for a time, and surviving by using the domestic skills he had learned from Susan Carver and Mariah Watkins.This meant that the young George would be raised by Moses and Susan Carver on their farm in Newton County, Missouri.Carver spent much of his boyhood assisting Susan with domestic chores, since his fragility apparently meant he could not help Moses with the farm chores.When Carver was an infant his mother and he were kidnapped by one of the many bands of bushwhackers roaming Missouri during the turbulent Civil War era.A neighbor of Moses Carver was hired to find them, but succeeded only in recovering George, at the cost of one of Moses' finest horses.Carver was hesitant; his one previous attempt at higher education resulted in racial humiliation.He had applied to Highland College in Kansas and had been accepted, sight unseen.Her influence and the rather eclectic introduction he had had to religion at a little church a mile from the Carver farm imparted in young George a deeply felt but unorthodox and nondenominational faith and a belief in divine revelation.He later testified to the number of revelations he had received, recalling the first as a child when his wish for a pocketknife was answered in a dream in which he had a vision of a knife sticking out a half-eaten watermelon.For the first time, Carver was in a predominantly African American environment.Previously, he had lived on the Carvers' farm in relative isolation; he had grown used to solitude and had developed a love of nature.