By Bryan Burrough
"What's to not get pleasure from a few ebook filled with colossal egos, incredible sums of cash, and the punishment of greed and shortsightedness?"
out of the ordinary studies and revenues greeted the hardcover e-book of The mammoth wealthy, ny Times bestselling writer Bryan Burrough's spellbinding chronicle of Texas oil. Weaving jointly the multigenerational sagas of the industry's 4 wealthiest households, Burrough brings to lifestyles the lads identified of their day because the colossal 4: Roy Cullen, H. L. Hunt, Clint Murchison, and Sid Richardson, all swaggering Texas oil tycoons who owned sprawling ranches and mingled with presidents and Hollywood stars. Seamlessly charting their collective upward thrust and fall, The substantial Rich is a highly exciting account that just a author with Burrough's abilities-and Texas upbringing-could have written.
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Extra resources for The Big Rich: The Rise and Fall of the Greatest Texas Oil Fortunes
A bigamist. identified of their heyday because the colossal 4, they turned the founders of the best Texas family members fortunes, headstrong adventurers who rose from nowhere to take turns being acclaimed America’s wealthiest guy. II. On an autumn afternoon in 1920, males ambled throughout a weed-strewn pasture seven miles south of downtown Houston. a the more youthful guy, a thirty-nine-year-old would-be oilman named Hugh Roy Cullen, led the older guy, his lead investor, pass judgement on R. E. Brooks, throughout their acreage, declaring the positive factors he felt made it a wise spot to drill. Cullen was once a major guy, slightly below six ft, with wide-set blue eyes, a thatch of black hair he combed to at least one part, and massive fingers. He used to be trying to find a dip within the land, an indication, he felt, of oil underneath. “See, pass judgement on, that’s dippin’ there,” Cullen stated, pointing to a patch of dust. “I can’t see it,” the pass judgement on acknowledged. “I imagine it’s emerging. ” That the pass judgement on couldn’t locate oil in a barrel didn’t topic to Cullen; all that mattered used to be that Brooks and a dozen different prime Houston electorate had dedicated funds to this drill website. Cullen with courtesy steered pass judgement on Brooks decide the spot to damage flooring, and he did. whilst Cullen discovered they'd not anything to mark it, he walked to a mound of what Texans tastefully name “cow chips,” picked up a couple of dry chunks, and piled it at the ground—which is how the fellow who could turn into Houston’s maximum wildcatter got here to drill his very first oil good underneath a pile of handpicked cow manure. background has no longer been type to Roy Cullen, a fifth-grade dropout who in his heyday was once most likely America’s richest guy. If he's remembered in any respect open air Houston, it is often as an early champion of Texas ultraconservatism, a compulsive letter-writer who jousted with politicians from Franklin Roosevelt to Dwight Eisenhower. Stern, humorless, and somewhat a scold, Cullen at his zenith used to be a Faulkneresque determine in a white summer time swimsuit, a guy who detested Communists, “pinkos,” and particularly Roosevelt, who hottest “niggers and spics” and “New York Jews” to understand their position, and whose preferred flesh presser used to be the red-baiting Joe McCarthy. the picture isn't unfair, yet there has been extra to Cullen than his political beliefs, that have been infrequently strange for mid-century southern millionaires. a guy whose lifestyles spanned the years from Jesse James to Elvis Presley, Cullen grew up negative in San Antonio. through his personal account—the just one that survives—he persisted a tricky adolescence, marked by way of relations turmoil, monetary reversals, and widespread fistfights with different boys. His mom, Louise, whom Cullen idolized, was once a slim South Carolina girl who moved to Texas after Union troops burned her family’s plantation through the Civil battle. She married a cousin named James Beck, settled in San Antonio, and gave delivery to 5 kids. After Beck’s dying within the 1870s Louise wed an itinerant farm animals shopper named Cicero Cullen and moved to a farm open air Denton, north of Dallas. Roy, the 1st of the Cullens’ sons, used to be born there in 1881.