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IOWA — For the first time in Iowa’s history the state is celebrating George Washington Carver Day.

Governor Kim Reynolds signed the legislation that would make February 1st a celebration of the trailblazing Black scientist last June.

Carver is the third person to be recognized with a holiday bearing his name in Iowa, the other two are former president Herbert Hoover and agronomist Norman Borlaug.

Carver attended Simpson College in Indianola and studied botany at Iowa State Agricultural College, now known as Iowa State University. His research on alternative crops to cotton resulted in the development of hundreds of products using peanuts and sweet potatoes, as well as the creation of new products from waste materials.

Simpson College is honoring him Wednesday with a day of recognition event with festivities happening at various places around Indianola through 6:00 p.m.

Iowa State is hosting a similar event starting at 5:00 p.m. in the Great Hall at the Memorial Union. It will feature many different speakers including the president of the university, the president of Simpson College, and world-renowned opera singer Simon Estes.