A Black real estate entrepreneur and lawyer, came to live in Greenwood, a segregated Black neighborhood in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1901. Oil had been discovered in Oklahoma in 1897 and had rapidly created a very wealthy White Tulsa which supported a burgeoning Black Tulsa workforce, living in Greenwood. Stradford and several other Black entrepreneurs bought land, financed, supported and shaped the increasingly successful Greenwood enclave of Black citizens over the next 2 decades. The backed and built restaurants, movie theaters, Ice rinks, haberdasheries, grocery stores, eventually a library and schools, Blacks only. It was a make-your-money-"over there"- spend -it-here principle. It was an exciting idea: establish an economically self-sustaining, successful Black community in the Jim Crow era. Greenwood Avenue, the center of it all, was lauded as Negro Wall Street by Booker T Washington. Stradford was accepted as the leader of the community.