Born and Raised in Sawdust

My Journey around the World in Eighty Years

by Lewis Thigpen Ph.D. PE


Formats

Softcover
$20.99
Hardcover
$34.99
E-Book
$5.99
Softcover
$20.99

Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 10/21/2019

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 6x9
Page Count : 332
ISBN : 9781728329611
Format : Hardcover
Dimensions : 6x9
Page Count : 332
ISBN : 9781728329604
Format : E-Book
Dimensions : N/A
Page Count : 332
ISBN : 9781728329598

About the Book

Born and Raised in Sawdust: My Journey Around the World in Eighty Years is the deeply moving autobiography of Lewis Thigpen as a black boy growing up in a loving family in a small, tight knit community in the deep South during the extremely segregated Jim Crow era. It captures his life on the farm and in school in a revealing, instructive, yet colorful way despite the discrimination he encountered. Fearful of being a farm worker or common laborer for the rest of his life, he joined the U.S. Army, where racism persisted even though President Truman had ordered desegregation of the entire military in 1948. He served for three years. Against the odds, Thigpen persevered. Despite adversity and lack of money, he attended college, earned the Ph.D. degree, and became a renowned engineer, research scientist, and scholar. He rose to become chair of mechanical engineering at a distinguished university. The book is an easy read, designed for those who choose to pick it up at a bookstore, order it online, check it out at their public library, or download it to Kindle or other apps. It is a valuable addition to the canon of biographies, histories, literary works and cultural studies of the South. It captures the mood of Southern writers such as Flannery O’Conner, Pearl Cleage, William Faulkner, Richard Wright and Ralph Ellison. Readers interested in family history and ancestry will love tracing through Dr. Thigpen’s family tree, photographs and drawings. One photo shows him holding a silver salmon, the outcome of one of his favorite hobbies—fishing. In his autobiography, Dr. Thigpen brings the clarity and conciseness of an engineer and research scientist who has written and published numerous articles in refereed journals.


About the Author

Lewis Thigpen’s autobiography is an insightful, heroic, against-the-odds story for readers interested in history, southern culture, race relations, farm life, and professional achievement. His remarkable story is enlightening, entertaining and frequently humorous as well as humane. Born in the late 1930s and raised in a loving, close-knit family on a farm in Sawdust, Florida, during the extreme cruelty of the Jim Crow era, he depicts a world of limited resources to put food on the table. Yet he finds joy as a boy in a time of austerity and adversity. He relates his creativity in fishing, hunting and trapping wild animals and birds, and making his own toys—anything having to do with a boyhood full of delight. His story is in many ways a perspective on the life of any boy—the many games they play, the delights of competition. Much of his ingenuity shows early signs of the outstanding scientist he would become. Fearful of being a farm worker or common laborer for the rest of his life, Thigpen joined the U.S. Army, where racism persisted even though President Truman had ordered desegregation of the entire military in 1948. During his three years in the Army, he served in the States and West Germany and achieved the grade of E-5. Despite the challenges of segregation and severely limited funds, Thigpen achieved an excellent education and proceeded to prominence as a renowned engineer, scholar and inventor; research scientist at leading national laboratories; tenured professor; and university administrator. His research has been published in numerous juried science and engineering journals. Thigpen’s book covers eighty years—his journey to outstanding accomplishments and embrace of cultural, technological and political changes. Along the way, he built strong friendships across many races and countries lasting a lifetime.