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While we were working on this book, or maybe in the early days when we still thought it would only be a journal article, Barbara described it to someone as a “zinger” of a story. And it is. The journalist Edwin Lefèvre wrote at the time our story was unfolding, “The history of the bull speculation in cotton of 1903 will never be fully written, because, though the men who influenced it are very interesting, their operations are interwoven with bloodless statistics and tiresome technicalities.” Bloodless statistics there are, but they are more than balanced by interesting characters, none more so that William P. Brown. Born along the Buttahatchie River in Mississippi at the beginning of the Civil War, Brown was an orphan by his teens and a small-town businessman by his mid-twenties. He was also known “through the Mississippi delta as one of the best poker players that ever handled a card" and “owned the finest lot of fighting chickens in the state.” By the time he was in his mid-thirties, Brown had become a cotton broker, mixing with the great and the good in New Orleans, and married into a prominent family. He...[read on]Learn more about The Cotton Kings at the Oxford University Press website.
The Page 99 Test: The Cotton Kings.
My Book, The Movie: The Cotton Kings.