Black History Month: Edmond Albius

The world enjoys vanilla extract today because of the horticultural contributions of Edmond Albius in 1841, when he was 12. Edmond was enslaved on a plantation where he learned botany. He developed the method to pollinate the vanilla orchids that allowed them to produce the seed pods used all over the world. Although his development saved vanilla production, he earned no benefit from it, even though it is still the method used today.

This work is in the public domain in its country of origin and other countries and areas where the copyright term is the author’s life plus 70 years or fewer.
First published in Album de l’Ile de la Réunion (volume III – 1863)
Lithography : Antoine Roussin / Publisher : Antoine Roussin.