June 25, 2024

Black Entrepreneur History

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Birmingham, Alabama’s Black Main Street Is Being Revitalized

Birmingham, Alabama is getting a boost to the dollar amount of an estimated $15 million in order to improve the city’s infrastructure and bring revitalization to the city’s Black Main Street. The fifteen million dollar grant will be used to improve two-way transport and connectivity that was once destroyed by an interstate that was placed directly in the middle of the city’s Black Main Street that separated the communities for decades, since the time of the Civil Rights Movement of the mid 1900s.

Birmingham Black businesses boomed in the 1950s and the outlook was extremely positive as Black American people in the city took part and wanting to not only look and feel good individually, but be good economically through entrepreneurship. For instance, the Greater Birmingham Negro Business League launched a campaign of education and membership to teach Black Americans in the city about the potential of their buying power – meaning to really invest in their own grocery stores, banks, life insurance companies, construction companies – and not just open them but grow and expand them. In 1952, the Black American market in the area of Birmingham alone was 75 million annually, and in the Birmingham area alone were over 800 Black-owned businesses[1]. The first Black-owned financial institution, the Penny Savings Bank was one of the businesses in the area.

This new grant for the revitalization of the city is huge news, and it seems to be coming at the right time. There are 2 million Black American millionaires in the country, and surely this will mean for more investment, not only in Birmingham, but in many more African American areas around the nation.

See more information at Alabama News Center.


  1. Birmingham Post-Herald Thu, Jul 10, 1952 ·Page 23