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April 15, 2004

Author Carol Jenkins to Discuss Biography Regarding A.G. Gaston, African American Millionaire and Philanthropist

Emmy Award-winning journalist and entrepreneur Carol Jenkins will discuss her book, "Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire," at the Library of Congress, at noon on Tuesday, June 8, in the sixth-floor West Dining Room, Madison Building, 101 Independence Avenue S.E. in Washington, D.C. The lecture, sponsored by the Humanities and Social Sciences Division, is free and open to the public and will be followed by a book signing.

A.G. Gaston (1892-1996), the grandson of slaves, was a well-established businessman and one of the wealthiest black men in 20th century America. He built and controlled an empire that included ownership of the Alabama enterprises Booker T. Washington Insurance Co., Smith and Gaston Funeral Home, Booker T. Washington Business College, A.G. Gaston Motel, Booker T. Washington Broadcasting Co., A.G. Gaston Construction Co. and Citizens Federal Savings and Loan. When Gaston died in 1996, his was worth more than $130 million.

"Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire," written by Carol Jenkins, Gaston's niece, and Elizabeth Gardner Hines, his grandniece, describes the extraordinary life of this business pioneer and benefactor. Commenting on Gaston's philanthropic and political contributions, David Dinkins, former mayor of New York City, remarks: "Gaston shows us how wealth can be used to benefit the powerless."

Jenkins owns a production company specializing in television films and documentaries. A graduate of New York University, she also holds an honorary doctorate from the College of New Rochelle. Her co-author and daughter, Elizabeth Gardner Hines, is a writer with degrees from Yale and Harvard universities.

The Humanities and Social Sciences Division in the Library of Congress provides reference service and collection development in the Main, Local History and Genealogy, and Microform reading rooms and sponsors lectures in the arts, humanities and social science.

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PR 04-084
04/15/04
ISSN 0731-3527

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