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The Big Rich: The Rise and Fall of the Greatest Texas Oil Fortunes

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The Big Rich: The Rise and Fall of the Greatest Texas Oil Fortunes Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In The Big Rich, bestselling author and Vanity Fair special correspondent Bryan Burrough chronicles the rise and fall of one of the great economic and political powerhouses of the twentieth century¬—Texas oil. By weaving together the epic sagas of the industr‛s four greatest fortunes, Burrough has produced an enthralling tale of money, family, and power in the American century.

Known in their day as the Big Four, Roy Cullen, H. L. Hunt, Clint Murchison, and Sid Richardson were all from modest backgrounds, and all became patriarchs of the wealthiest oil families in Texas. As a class they came to be known as the Big Rich, and together they created a new legend in America¬—the swaggering Texas oilman who owns private islands, sprawling ranches and perhaps a football team or two, and mingles with presidents and Hollywood stars.

The truth more than lives up to the myth. Along with their peers, the Big Four shifted wealth and power in America away from the East Coast, sending three of their stat‛s native sons to the White House and largely bankrolling the rise of modern conservatism in America. H. L. Hunt became Americ‛s richest man by grabbing Texa‛s largest oilfield out from under the nose of the man who found it; he was also a lifelong bigamist. Clint Murchison entertained British royalty on his Mexican hacienda and bet on racehorses¬—and conducted dirty deals¬—with J. Edgar Hoover. Roy Cullen, an elementary school dropout, used his millions to revive the hapless Texas GOP. And Sid Richardson, the Big Fou‛s fun-loving bachelor, was a friend of several presidents, including, most fatefully, Lyndon Johnson.

The Big Four produced offspring who frequently made more headlines, and in some cases more millions, than they did. With few exceptions, however, their fortunes came to an end in a swirl of bitter family feuds, scandals, and bankruptcies, and by the late 1980s, the era of the Big Rich was over. But as Texas native Bryan Burrough reveals in this hugely entertaining account, the profound economic, political, and cultural influence of Texas oil is still keenly felt today.

Review:

For me as doubtless for uncountable thousands of others, the image of oil-rich Texas was shaped for good by the second half of George Stevens' sprawling film "Giant" (1956), adapted from Edna Ferber's best-selling novel. Jett Rink, a charmingly loutish wildcatter played by James Dean, strikes oil on a tiny patch of land, builds it into a vast empire, transforms himself into the epitome of nouveau-riche... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Synopsis:

Bestselling author and "Vanity Fair" special-correspondent Burrough chronicles the rise and fall of one of the great economic and political powerhouses of the 20th century--Texas oil.

Synopsis:

A rip-roaring saga of murder, money, and the making of Las Vegas

They say in Vegas you canand#8217;t understand the town unless you understand Benny Binionand#151;mob boss, casino owner, and creator of the World Series of Poker. Beginning as a Texas horse trader, Binion built a gambling empire in Depression-era Dallas. When the law chased him out of town, he loaded up suitcases with cash and headed for Vegas. The place would never be the same. Dramatic as any gangster movie, Blood Aces draws readers into the colorful world of notorious mobsters like Clyde Barrow and Bugsy Siegel. Given access to previously classified government documents, biographer Doug J. Swanson provides the definitive account of a great American antihero, a man whose rise from thugdom to prominence and power is unmatched in the history of American criminal justice.

Synopsis:

"What's not to enjoy about a book full of monstrous egos, unimaginable sums of money, and the punishment of greed and shortsightedness?"

Phenomenal reviews and sales greeted the hardcover publication of The Big Rich, New York Times bestselling author Bryan Burrough's spellbinding chronicle of Texas oil. Weaving together the multigenerational sagas of the industry's four wealthiest families, Burrough brings to life the men known in their day as the Big Four: 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 rise and fall, The Big Rich is a hugely entertaining account that only a writer with Burrough's abilities-and Texas upbringing-could have written.

About the Author

Bryan Burrough is a special correspondent at Vanity Fair and the author of numerous bestselling books, including Barbarians at the Gate: The Fall of RJR Nabisco (with John Helyar) and Public Enemies: Americ‛s Greatest Crime Wave and the Birth of the FBI, 1933-1934. A former reporter for The Wall Street Journal, he is a three-time winner of the John Hancock Award for excellence in financial journalism.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781594201998
Subtitle:
The Wild Ride of Benny Binion, the Texas Gangster Who Created Vegas Poker
Author:
Burrough, Bryan
Author:
Swanson, Doug
Publisher:
Penguin Books
Subject:
United States - 20th Century
Subject:
Petroleum industry and trade
Subject:
Texas
Subject:
General
Subject:
Corporate & Business History - General
Subject:
Industries - Energy Industries
Subject:
Petroleum industry and trade -- Texas.
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20150728
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Illustrations:
b/w photos throughout
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
8.44 x 5.5 in 1 lb
Age Level:
17-17

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Related Subjects

Business » History and Biographies
History and Social Science » Americana » Texas
History and Social Science » US History » Social and Economic History

The Big Rich: The Rise and Fall of the Greatest Texas Oil Fortunes Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.50 In Stock
Product details 368 pages Penguin Press - English 9781594201998 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Bestselling author and "Vanity Fair" special-correspondent Burrough chronicles the rise and fall of one of the great economic and political powerhouses of the 20th century--Texas oil.
"Synopsis" by ,
A rip-roaring saga of murder, money, and the making of Las Vegas

They say in Vegas you canand#8217;t understand the town unless you understand Benny Binionand#151;mob boss, casino owner, and creator of the World Series of Poker. Beginning as a Texas horse trader, Binion built a gambling empire in Depression-era Dallas. When the law chased him out of town, he loaded up suitcases with cash and headed for Vegas. The place would never be the same. Dramatic as any gangster movie, Blood Aces draws readers into the colorful world of notorious mobsters like Clyde Barrow and Bugsy Siegel. Given access to previously classified government documents, biographer Doug J. Swanson provides the definitive account of a great American antihero, a man whose rise from thugdom to prominence and power is unmatched in the history of American criminal justice.

"Synopsis" by ,
"What's not to enjoy about a book full of monstrous egos, unimaginable sums of money, and the punishment of greed and shortsightedness?"

Phenomenal reviews and sales greeted the hardcover publication of The Big Rich, New York Times bestselling author Bryan Burrough's spellbinding chronicle of Texas oil. Weaving together the multigenerational sagas of the industry's four wealthiest families, Burrough brings to life the men known in their day as the Big Four: 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 rise and fall, The Big Rich is a hugely entertaining account that only a writer with Burrough's abilities-and Texas upbringing-could have written.

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