In early December 1923 in Memphis, Tennessee, Minnie Geddings Cox sat in a hastily arranged board meeting across from Heman Perry, clear now that the man she had believed her advocate was most assuredly her adversary. Cox and Perry, a man Forbes magazine would describe in 1924 as the richest Negro in the world, spent nearly a year maneuvering a merger to join her company, Mississippi Life Insurance Company, the third largest black-owned life insurance company in the United States, with his Standard Life of Atlanta, which ranked second. 1 They shared a vision to create the largest black-owned life insurance company in the United States—or so Cox thought.
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