Madam Walker : The First African American Woman Essay

1884 Words Apr 22nd, 2015 8 Pages
Madam C.J. Walker, originally named Sarah Breedlove, was the first African-American woman to be a self-made millionaire. Madam Walker was a Louisiana native, born on a humble cotton field on December 23, 1867, to Owen and Minerva Breedlove. She was the first, out her three siblings, to be born free. Throughout her early life, Walker went through many hardships. At the age of seven, her parents died from yellow fever leaving her orphaned (Citation). In result of their tough situation, she and her older sister moved to Mississippi where they worked as laundry women. She then got married at the age of fourteen to Moses McWalker, who died two years later after her first daughter was born. As a single parent, she headed up North to St. Louis where her brothers were employed as barbers. Making a $1.50 each day, she did her best to take care of her daughter, but could barely afford an education for her (Citation). One day, her hair started to fall out due to scalp disease. The appearance of her hair left her dissatisfied. In St. Louis, Walker recognized that the women with the long flowing locks were usually in a higher social standard. She realized that if she needed to get a job and move higher up in success, she had to look her best. This led her to inventing her own hair loss formula for African-American women. Later, through time and hard work, her development of cosmetic products ended up becoming into one of the nation’s largest black companies. Her success also made her…

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