By Shomari Wills

ISBN-10: 0062437593

ISBN-13: 9780062437594

ISBN-10: 153849714X

ISBN-13: 9781538497142

The staggering untold heritage of America’s first black millionaires—former slaves who persevered superb demanding situations to accumulate and preserve their wealth for a century, from the Jacksonian interval to the Roaring Twenties—self-made marketers whose unknown luck reflected that of yank enterprise heroes reminiscent of Henry Ford, John D. Rockefeller, and Thomas Edison.

While Oprah Winfrey, Jay-Z, Beyoncé, Michael Jordan, and may Smith are one of the anticipated 35,000 black millionaires within the state at the present time, those well-known celebrities weren't the 1st blacks to arrive the storied one percentage. among the years of 1830 and 1927, because the final new release of blacks born into slavery was once attaining adulthood, a small team of shrewdpermanent, tenacious, and bold women and men broke new floor to realize the top degrees of economic success.

Black Fortunes is an interesting examine those striking participants, together with Napoleon Bonaparte Drew—author Shomari Wills’ great-great-great-grandfather—the first black guy in Powhatan County (contemporary Richmond) to possess estate in post-Civil battle Virginia. His achievements have been matched by way of 5 different unknown black marketers including:

  • Mary Ellen friendly, who used her Gold Rush wealth to additional the reason for abolitionist John Brown;
  • Robert Reed Church, who grew to become the biggest landowner in Tennessee;
  • Hannah Elias, the mistress of a brand new York urban millionaire, who used the land her lover gave her to construct an empire in Harlem;
  • Orphan and self-taught chemist Annie Turnbo-Malone, who constructed the 1st nationwide model of hair care products;
  • Madam C. J Walker, Turnbo-Malone’s worker who could earn the nickname America’s "first woman black millionaire;"
  • Mississippi college instructor O. W. Gurley, who built a section of Tulsa, Oklahoma, right into a "town" for filthy rich black execs and craftsmen" that may turn into referred to as "the Black Wall Street."

A clean, little-known bankruptcy within the nation’s story—A mixture of Hidden Figures, Titan, and The TycoonsBlack Fortunes illuminates the start of the black enterprise titan and the emergence of the black market in the United States as by no means before.

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