African American

Black Business in the Gilded Age: Poro Beauty College

Beauty culture was big business at the turn of the century, and just as the beauty industry liberated women like Helena Rubenstein, Harriet Hubbard Ayer, and Elizabeth Arden, among others, it also liberated black women. Madame C.J. Walker’s fame as the first black millionairess has overshadowed America’s other successful black beauty businesswoman, Annie Turnbo Malone. …

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Education

Working Your Way Through Princeton University in the 1890s

Professor W.M. Sloane, a member of the Princeton faculty, undertook the task of refuting claims that not only was Princeton was the bastion of the elite, but that young men of limited means could never attend the university. These are the letters he compiled from new graduates (note, according this inflation calculator, $1 in 1896 …

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