Download The Strange Career of William Ellis: The Texas Slave Who Became a Mexican Millionaire Audiobook

The Strange Career of William Ellis: The Texas Slave Who Became a Mexican Millionaire Audiobook, by Karl Jacoby Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Karl Jacoby Narrator: J. D. Jackson Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2016 ISBN: 9781515974277
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To his contemporaries in Gilded Age Manhattan, Guillermo Eliseo was a fantastically wealthy Mexican, the proud owner of a luxury apartment overlooking Central Park, a busy Wall Street office, and scores of mines and haciendas in Mexico. But for all his obvious riches and his elegant appearance, Eliseo was also the possessor of a devastating secret: he was not, in fact, from Mexico at all. Rather, he had begun life as a slave named William Ellis, born on a cotton plantation in Texas during the waning years of King Cotton.

After emancipation, Ellis, capitalizing on the Spanish he learned during his childhood along the Mexican border and his ambivalent appearance, engaged in a virtuoso act of reinvention. He crafted an alter ego, the Mexican Guillermo Eliseo, who was able to access many of the privileges denied to African Americans at the time.

The Strange Career of William Ellis offers fresh insights on the history of the Reconstruction era, the U.S.-Mexico border, and the abiding riddle of race. At a time when the United States is deepening its connections with Latin America and recognizing that race is more than simply black or white, Ellis's story could not be more timely or important. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • Readers will gain fresh insight into life during Reconstruction as well as the riddle of racial identities. Library Journal Starred Review

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About the Author

Malcolm Hillgartner is an accomplished actor, writer, and musician. Named an AudioFile Best Voice of 2013 and the recipient of several Earphones Awards, he has narrated over 175 audiobooks.

About the Narrator

J. D. Jackson is a theater professor, aspiring stage director, and award-winning audiobook narrator. He is a classically trained actor, and his television and film credits include roles on House, ER, Law & Order, Hack, Sherrybaby, Diary of a City Priest, and Lucky Number Slevin. He is the recipient of more than a dozen Earphones Awards for narration and an Odyssey Honor for G. Neri’s Ghetto Cowboy, and he was also named one of AudioFile magazine’s Best Voices of the Year for 2012 and 2013. An adjunct professor at Los Angeles Southwest College, he has an MFA in theater from Temple University.