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Simon Berry
(1890 – 1941)

From The Ghosts of Greenwood Past: A Walk Down Black Wall Street by Hannibal Johnson

“Berry created a nickel-a-ride jitney service with his topless Model-T Ford. He successfully operated a bus line that he ultimately sold to the City of Tulsa. He owned the Royal Hotel. He shuttled wealthy oil barons on a charter airline service he operated with his partner, James Lee Northington, Sr., a successful black building contractor. Simon Berry earned as much as $500 a day in the early 1920s.”

From Black Wall Street by Hannibal Johnson

“Berry reinvested in the community that had been so good to him. In 1926, he acquired land and established [what is now known as Lacy Park] on thirteen acres located on Madison Street between Virgin and Young Streets, complete with a swimming pool, a dance hall, and picnic grounds. Berry extended his bus service to provide transportation to his park. Years later, the City of Tulsa acquired Berry Park [to rename it at later dates to Lincoln and then Lacy Park].”

From the Artist, Roberto Delgado

The portrait of Simon Berry includes Berry as a young man, his plane, and a map of Greenwood

Further Reading

Tulsa Star
The Victory of Greenwood: Simon Berry by Carlos Moreno – August 23, 2020

Also in the Project

OW Gurley

Dr. AC Jackson

JB Stradford

Homer Johnson

Robert Fairchild

Dorothy DeWitty

Maxine Johnson

Juanita Hopkins

Madeline Manning Mims