Richest Woman in the World
Full name was Henrietta Howland Robinson Green
Born in Massachusetts in 1834
Spent her youth learning about financing and business through her father and her grandfather
After the death of her father and aunt, her relatives tried to keep Hetty Green from inheriting their fortunes.
Was able to secure one million dollars of her father’s fortune in 1865 and a portion of her aunt’s in the 1870s
In 1867, she married Edward H. Green, and by mutual consent, they kept their finances separate, allowing Hetty to maintain complete control of her fortune.
Died in 1916 in New York City and her vast fortune was willed to her two children
Full detail of achievements
Green primarily invested in railroads and real estate in places like New York, Chicago, and St. Louis.
Her strategy was always to buy stock cheap and act with shrewdness, persistent, and thrift.
Green was frugal with her money and when panics hit, Green was able to loan money and pick up investment bargains.
Over the fifty-one years she spent investing, it is estimated that she increased her fortune to over one hundred million dollars.
By the time of her death, she owned about 6,000 pieces of real estate across forty-eight states, including railroads, theaters, cemeteries, hotels, office buildings, and the mortgages to nearly six hundred churches.
- Green earned the title of richest woman in the world.
Explanation of Significance
Despite all of the obstacles and stereotypes she faced, Green was a peer with the best male financiers of the time and helped open the way for women in finance for decades after.
- Green proved that the stereotypes about women’s math abilities were incorrect when she greatly increased her fortune through careful investing.