August 8, 2005
John Harold Johnson died. Johson, who was born into abject poverty in Arkansas City (Desha County) in 1918, rose to become publisher of Ebony, the world’s most successful African-American publication. Johnson and his wife, Eunice Walker Johnson, who produced and directed the Ebony Fashion Fair, the world’s largest traveling fashion show, raised more than $50 million for charity after 1958. Johnson was listed in the Forbes list of the 400 richest Americans and sat on boards of several Fortune 500 companies. He was given America’s highest civilian honor by President Bill Clinton, who presented him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.