(GEORGE CURRY MEDIA)—“There are [Blacks] who are willing to worship the pyramids of 4,000 years ago but will not build pyramids in the present so their children may see what they left behind as well. We have a leadership who rallies the people to look at past glories but leave their children neglected; who will make great analytical and oratorical dissertations on the inadequacies of Eurocentric education and yet will not contribute one penny of their money or their time to the construction of their own schools.”—Amos Wilson, Afrikan Centered Consciousness versus the New World Order
Montoya Smith, host of the Atlanta talk show, Mental Dialogue, asked: Can we rebuild Black Wall Street? “No, really,” he added, recognizing the depth of his question and assuring folks he was not kidding or just being rhetorical.
So, what was Black Wall Street? Most of what I have learned about it was obtained from a book by John Sibley Butler titled, Entrepreneurship and Self-Help Among Black Americans, A Reconsideration of Race and Economics,which contains an exhaustive section on Tulsa, Oklahoma’s history and a detailed account of what took place in its Greenwood District. Some of the information below comes from Butler’s book. I also learned from face-to-face conversations with six of the survivors of the Tulsa Riot.