Tulsa’s Greenwood neighborhood wasn’t America’s only Black Wall Street
By Trevor Smith
May 30, 2021
“On this centennial of the brutal Tulsa riots, let’s remember other cities where Black wealth was decimated. In building the future of Black wealth, it’s important that we ground it in the history of its destruction.”
– Fay Horwitt, Lanessa Owens-Chaplin, and Trevor Smith
How many Black Wall Streets were there? What can we learn from their successes? And what policies are needed to repair, replicate, and rebuild wealth in Black communities?
But Greenwood wasn’t the only Black Wall Street in America, and mass violence wasn’t the only means of wiping them out. Urban renewal and redlining tore apart many Black neighborhoods, along with their promises of progress and economic freedom.
Explore how centuries of racial violence, displacement, segregation and a lack of investment have made the idea of a Black Wall Street – where businesses and entrepreneurship can thrive and money can continue to support it – a near impossibility.
Examine the three pillars of success of Black Wall Streets: the infusion of institutional capital, place-based clustering of Black-owned businesses, and the intentional reinvestment of Black wealth back into the Black community.
Consider policy recommendations to repair, replicate and rebuild wealth in Black communities.