John Lee Love

John Lee Love was an African-American inventor who patented a portable pencil sharpener.

Born: 1889[1]

Died: December 26, 1931

Public lifeEdit

Love's original occupation was a carpenter. His first invention was an improvement to plasterer's hawk. His design for the plasterer's hawk included a detachable handle and a folding aluminum board, making it portable and lightweight. Love later invented and patented a portable pencil sharpener called the Love Sharpener. In the patent application, it says the Love Sharpener could double as a paperweight or ornament. The Love Sharpener used the pencil itself as a hand crank and a place to collect pencil shavings attached to the standard blade housing.[2]


He died in a car and train collision in North Carolina


  1. "John Lee Love". Biography. Retrieved 2019-04-26.
  2. "Patent Images". Retrieved 2019-01-17.