(Born 1871, Died 1932). Little is known about Frederick Patterson, the first African American football player at Ohio State University who played for the school in 1891. His father was a slave who had escaped to Ohio shortly before the Civil War. His father became a blacksmith and founded a successful carriage company called C.R. Patterson & Son Company which was later renamed C.R. Patterson & Sons Company. Frederick played football for the University in his junior year but withdrew from Ohio State in his senior year, never graduating.
Upon his withdrawal from Ohio State University he became a high history teacher for a short period of time in Kentucky before returning to Ohio to run his father’s business. He converted his father’s carriage business into an automotive company becoming the first African American to own and operate a car manufacturing company. He decided to change the business once more and started to produce trucks and buses. The Great depression had a tremendous impact on the company and Frederick’s son closed the businesses doors in 1939.