About A.G. Gaston

Entrepreneur of the Century

Get To
Know The Legend.

Arthur George (A.G.) Gaston owned several successful businesses in Alabama during the Jim Crow law time period. He amassed a fortune worth more than $40 million from a business empire spanning communications, real estate and insurance.

Business Pioneer

Experience Gaston's

Born into poverty.

Gaston was born in Demopolis, Alabama on July 4, 1892. As the grandson of former slaves, Gaston’s childhood was marked by poverty but also promise as he had an inclination towards business from an early age. 

Growing an Empire.

Partnering with his father-in-law, Gaston formed the Booker T. Washington Insurance Company and the Smith and Gaston Funeral Home. They later purchased the Mount Zion Cemetery. Gaston went on to create the Booker T. Washington Business College, A.G. Gaston Motel, Citizens Federal Savings and Loan, A.G. Gaston Building, A.G. Gaston Boys and Girls Club, Booker T. Washington Broadcasting Company and A.G. Gaston Construction Company. 

of Wealth.

 Remembered in the Alabama Academy of Honor, the Birmingham Hall of Fame and as Black Enterprise Magazine’s “Entrepreneur of the Century,” Gaston’s contributions to the community remain to this day. 

A.G. Gaston's Maxims

Learn from the Master.


Save a part of all you earn.

Pay yourself first. Take it off the top and bank it. You’ll be surprised how fast the money builds up. If you have two or three thousand dollars in the bank, sooner or later somebody will come along and show you how to double it. Money doesn’t spoil. It keeps.


Establish a reputation at a bank or savings and loan association.

Save at an established institution and borrow there. Stay away from loan sharks.


Take no chances with your money.

Play the safe number, the good one. A man who can’t afford to lose has no business gambling.


Never borrow anything that, if forced to it, you can't pay back.

Play the safe number, the good one. A man who can’t afford to lose has no business gambling.


Don't get "big-headed"with the "little fellows."

That’s where the money is. If you stick with the “little fellows,” give them your devotion, they’ll make you big.


Don't have so much pride.

Wear the same suit for a year or two. It doesn’t make a difference what kind of suit the pocket is in, it there is money in the pocket.


Find a need and fill it.

Successful businesses are founded on the needs of people. Once in business, keep good books. Also, hire the best people you can find.


Stay in your own class.

Never run around with people you can’t compete with.


Once you get money or a reputation for having money, people will give you money.


Once you reach a certain bracket, it is very difficult not to make money.