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R. Iset Anuakan

barber, entrepreneur, and inventor was born in Greene County, Alabama, the oldest of Holly and Olean (Jordan) Morrow's seven children. As a child, Willie worked on a farm planting corn and cotton. He worked in the fields before going to school, and he learned to cut hair by practicing on the children there. He became a barber at the age of seventeen when his mother took him to meet Jim Pierson, the owner of the Oak City Barber Shop in Tuscaloosa. Pierson employed him for three years and gave him a set of Oster clippers that replaced the rudimentary clippers he had used. Barbering became his lifelong vocation and would lead him into the beauty business—a world in which many African Americans had made their fortunes.

In 1959 Morrow took a train to San Diego, California, to work with his uncle, barber Spurgeon Morrow and to ...


Kathryn M. Silva

educator, minister, industrialist, physician, was born Thomas Wellington Thurston Jr. in Moorefield, West Virginia, to Betty (Jones) Thurston and Thomas W. Thurston Sr., both of West Virginia. Thurston grew up in Moorefield and attended Romney High School before leaving to receive his theological education in New Jersey. According to an article featuring Thurston in Who's Who of the Colored Race, after high school, Thurston studied theology under Reverend J. A. Gayley of Princeton University. Thurston married Julia Lacey of Washington, D.C., in 1890. The couple went on to raise eight children.

Thurston began his career as an educator He moved from West Virginia to Fort Barnwell North Carolina and served as the principal of the Barnwell Normal and Farm Life School for Colored Youth His work as an educator later intersected with his career in manufacturing with his pioneering work in the textile ...


Sarah Walker was born in Delta, Louisiana, to indigent former slaves Owen and Minerva Breedlove. She grew up in poverty on the Burney plantation in Delta, working in the cotton fields from sunrise to sunset. Uneducated in her youth, she learned as an adult to read and write. At fourteen, she married Moses McWilliams who was reportedly killed by a white lynch mob two years after their daughter A'Lelia's birth in 1885.

Walker worked as a domestic until she took several risks as an entrepreneur in black woman s hair care products To meet the needs of women who did not have running water supplies or equipment Walker created a hot comb with specially spaced teeth to soften or straighten black hair as well as her Wonderful Hair Grower for women who had experienced hair loss through improper care Business differences ended her marriage to C J ...