1926 First Edition copy of Poro College in Pictures. -- a short history of its development. The many images of the college are absolutely stunning, costing over a half a million dollars to construct! The Founder and President of Poro College was none other than Annie Malone. Annie was the founder of hair care product line for African Americans; developed business into the Poro System, a network of franchised agent-operators who operated salons under Malone's guidelines using Poro products. She founded Poro College, 1917, in St. Louis, MO, the first school for the training of beauty culture specialists for African American clientele. She manufactured a line of beauty products for black women and created a unique distribution system that helped tens of thousands of black women gain self respect and economic independence. The college trained women as agents for Poro products and by 1926 claimed to have graduated some 75,000 agents located throughout the world including the Caribbean. However, her contributions to African American culture are often overlooked because her business empire collapsed from mismanagement. One of her students, Madame C.J. Walker, later created a similar enterprise and is largely credited with originating the black beauty business, a feat that rightly belongs to Malone.
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