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Madam CJ Walker's Daughter Blew Through Her Mother's Fortune and Ended Up Broke

10 Views· 06/18/22
Shala Yisrael
Shala Yisrael
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Many of us know the name Madam CJ Walker. She is recorded as the first woman to become a self-made millionaire in America in the Guinness Book of World Records, and according to some sources, the first black American self-made millionaire ever. She earned her massive fortune by becoming a mogul in the black hair care industry. Much talk has surrounded her fortune and her life that ended too soon because of her hypertension. So, what happened with all of that wealth that she left behind?
Well, in addition to leaving that wealth behind, she left behind a daughter, and upon Madam CJ Walker’s death, her daughter, A’lelia Walker took over of the reigns of a sizable piece of what her mother had left behind - the money, the business, the upscale brownstones in Harlem, and the mansion on the Hudson River. By the time A’lelia died, most of what her mother had earned and built was gone. Many writers who have looked into A’lelia’s life say that her mother’s money was squandered away with A’lelia at the helm of the family business because she was just a party girl who was far more interested in throwing extravagant parties than running the business and other affairs that her mother had left behind. And not many writings about A’lelia counter that narrative. Was she really just a spoiled rich girl who didn’t care about what her mother had built for her? Or were there other factors at play regarding the huge financial loss that she took at the end of her life?

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