Benjamin Banneker is an African American almanac author, surveyor, and farmer. He was born in 1731 and passed away in 1806 at the age of 74. He taught himself most of what he knew. He was known for being part of a group that was led by Major Andrew Ellicott. This group surveyed borders of the District of Columbia. On the day of his funeral, most of his works and belongings were destroyed in a fire, although some were able to be salvaged.