The Richest Woman In America Spent $5 a Week And Had 1 Dress

The Richest Woman In America Spent $5 a Week And Had 1 Dress


Imagine this: one morning you wake up a multi-millionaire. He’s probably surprised to see you there,
a little cranky, and calls the police. Oops sorry, I mean you wake up AS a multi-millionaire. Yeah that sounds like more fun. So, what would you do? Buy a yacht or a garage full of sports cars;
maybe a diamond tiara and a cruise around the world? All this would sound tempting to just about
anyone, but not Hetty Green, who was the richest woman in America and wore one black dress
for years. Hetty, or Henrietta Green, whose maiden name
was Robinson, was born in New Bedford, Massachusetts in 1834. Her father, Edward, owned an extremely successful
whaling company. Her mom also came from a well-off family. Instead of playing with dolls, Hetty learned
all about the stock market and business from the age of six. She would read financial papers to her nearly
blind grandfather, and follow her dad to work. Both her family and her school taught Hetty
one important thing: you don’t need that much to get by in life, and the goal of making
money is to save it, not spend it. The girl, who had an obvious talent for Math,
oversaw all the family accounts by thirteen. Even her teen years, when hormones tend to
take over, didn’t really affect her. Hetty invested $1000 out of the $1,200 spending
allowance she was given at 16 to mingle in New York society. She managed to somehow survive in the Big
Apple with the remaining $200 and have a good time at all the parties and balls. At some point she realized there were a lot
of gold diggers around, and when Hetty came home without a fiancé, she told her dad that
if she ever had to get married, it would be to a guy with his own fortune. She helped him manage the family business,
and was becoming more and more of a financial guru. After her mom passed away in 1860, Hetty moved
back to New York with her dad, who was going through a mid-life crisis and was hoping to
find a new wife. Henrietta didn’t want that to happen, and
ironically, while trying to ruin her father’s love life, she found one for herself. Edward Henry Green, one of Hetty’s father’s
business partners, was twelve years older than her and was a successful investor, trading
with the Philippines. It’s hard to judge if it was love from Hetty’s
side. Knowing her true passion was finance, and
logic was her best friend, you might think she just realized Edward was a perfect match
for her. In 1865, Mr. Robinson passed away, leaving
his daughter a million dollars and a trust fund of four million dollars. The last words he uttered to his daughter
were: “I have been poisoned. You will be next”. Well isn’t that harsh! Believing him, Hetty made a storeroom closet
into her bedroom and hard-boiled eggs that can’t be poisoned her main meal. They say she also kept a pistol in bed. Two weeks after the death of Mr. Robinson,
Hetty’s aunt passed as well, and once her will was announced, a five-year court case
started for Henrietta. She was furious that her aunt didn’t leave
her a two-million-dollar fortune like she promised, but only $65,000 a year in interest. So Hetty made a fake will and brought it to
court, claiming that her aunt dictated it to her. Five years and thousands of dollars in legal
fees later, Hetty received around half a million dollars that she happily invested in “greenbacks”
– bonds issued by the government. You’ll find out how that worked out for
her later. Now that she was one of the richest women
in America, Hetty decided it was time to do what society expected of her and get married. In 1867, after making him sign a prenuptial
agreement that said he wasn’t after her fortune, she tied the knot with Edward Green. They moved to London for a few years. The family lived at the Langham hotel, and
this is where their kids were born. Edward, whom everyone called Ned, was born
in August of 1868. Three years later, Hetty gave birth to a daughter
whom they named Sylvia, after her aunt. Edward Green had the prestigious job of director
of three banks in London, but his wife surpassed him even at that time. Remember I mentioned “greenbacks”? Not many people believed in their success,
but Hetty had an exceptional financial gut, as you know, and was positive they would bring
her another million dollars. And, she wasn’t mistaken. So she made another million by 1874. This was the year the Greens returned to the
US. They didn’t go to New York, but moved into
Edward’s family home in Bellow Falls, Vermont. This is where and when Hetty’s stinginess
really took off. America’s wealthiest woman would bargain
with shop owners over every price. She reused envelopes; and it wasn’t because
she cared about the economy. When it got cold, she wouldn’t buy winter
clothes, but wore layers of newspapers under her coat to keep herself warm. She refused to pay the bills from lawyers
and doctors. In 1882, when her son Ned, who was 14 at the
time, dislocated his knee, she didn’t take him to a good doctor. Instead, she tried a hospital for the poor
and then home treatment. As a result, his leg was amputated. Ned, however, never blamed his mother for
it. When her husband’s mother passed away, Hetty
refused to let reception guests use expensive crystal, as she feared it would be stolen
by visitors or servants whom she constantly accused. Hetty’s stinginess, of course, affected
her family life. Basically, it was the reason for her split-up
with Edward. In 1885, the financial house John J Cisco
and Sons went bankrupt. Edward was the biggest debtor of the firm,
and Hetty was one of the investors. He hoped that Hetty would forgive him his
debts because they were a married couple, you know. But Hetty was positive financial and family
affairs were two completely different things and refused to do so. Her husband went bankrupt, and the couple
split up. Hetty eventually paid Edwards’s half a million
dollar debt, by the way, but she didn’t want to get back with him anyway. By 1900, Hetty had an annual income of around
seven million dollars, while average American families made $500. Yet, the split-up with her husband made her
even more frugal (and you’d think you couldn’t go any further with that). Hetty let her son Ned go off on his own, and
now lived with her daughter, Sylvia, on around $5 a week. Hetty controlled Sylvia because she feared
that all men were only after her money. They moved from apartment to apartment since
Hetty still feared someone was after her, trying to poison her. And if you think they were luxurious apartments
in Manhattan, you’d be wrong! The place she stayed at the longest was in
Hoboken, New Jersey. It was small, cold, and quite miserable. And while they stayed there, the name by the
bell on the front door was “Dewey” – after Hetty’s beloved dog. By the way, while the millionaire herself
would normally have oatmeal or eggs, she’d always feed her dog good steak. That’s a good boy. Hetty never gave up her passion for the stock
market. She had her money in a few banks and, since
she didn’t want to rent her own office, she’d just go pick one of the banks each
day and demand a free desk to work at. Fearing she would otherwise take her millions
elsewhere, the banks agreed to it. In 1898, Edward Green got sick, and it was
clear he wouldn’t recover. Sylvia persuaded her mother to forgive him,
and so Hetty spent the last years of his life with him. After Edward passed away in 1902, she swore
she would only wear black for the rest of her life. She never broke her promise. While it sounds beautiful and romantic, the
reality was that she didn’t wear different black clothes, but the same dress day by day. Some people believe the reason she did it
was practical – black needs less cleaning than other colors. And when she did take her black dress to the
dry cleaners, she only paid for the hem to be cleaned. As a result, her clothes grew moldy. Add the smell of the onions she constantly
chewed on for good health and imagine what the richest woman in New York looked and smelled
like. She stayed true to herself up to an old age,
and when she got hernia, she only agreed to see a doctor when it was so bad she couldn’t
walk. When the doctor told her she needed surgery
for $150, she was shocked and tried to bargain with him. Hetty passed away in July of 1916 after having
a few strokes. Her children inherited her fortune, which
was estimated between 100 and 200 million dollars. Sylvia, who only escaped from her mother and
got married at the age of 38, donated her share to relatives, friends, and charity. Ned spent his money in a more extravagant
way – on luxurious estates, yachts, jewelry, diamond studded chamber pots, and ladies. It was maybe because she only wore black for
a long time, or because of her financial wizardry, that people called Hetty “The Witch of Wall
Street”. Years after her death, her name was still
a synonym for “miser”. Are you good at saving money or do you just
spend it all come pay day? Let me know down in the comments! If you learned something new today, then give
this video a like and share it with a friend. But – hey! – don’t go all Ebenezer Scrooge,
I mean Hetty Green just yet! We have over 2,000 cool videos for you to
check out. All you have to do is pick the left or right
video, click on it, and enjoy! Stay on the Bright Side of life!

100 Replies to “The Richest Woman In America Spent $5 a Week And Had 1 Dress”

  1. Money never ever wrong, but the Love of Money are more miserable.
    Lets balance, we need money to sustain our need, but make sure that money is not your master. Like Women on there topic for this video, she is selfish and Greed for money, for that reason, she never know the meaning of successful and humility.

  2. Stanky rich smelly bihπŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ bih was this lady super cheap haha.

  3. shes having all those money yet shes not enjoying her life and thats the saddest part, yolo bicthes, i dont care if im gonna be poor ,im used to being poor anyway, but i want to enjoy life u know, having hobbies that makes me happy

  4. What a remarkable woman. Obviously she was not the most sentimental type (or even the most logical when it came to the austerity of her lifestyle), but a force to be reckoned with nonetheless.

  5. I have a hindden talent:……. I CAN SPENT A MILLION DOLLAR IN A DAY

  6. OBVIOUSLY HER PARENTS INTRODUCES HER TO MONEY IN A WRONG WAY..LIFE IS NOT JUST TO SAVE AND SAVE BUT TO ENJOY WITH WHATEVER YOU HAVE AS WELL..

  7. OML!!!! YOU ARE A FAMOUS I SAW YOU HAD 28M SUBSCRIBERS AND I TAKE A LOOK TO BLACKPINK AND SAW BLACKPINK HAD 28M SUBSCRIBERS TOO!!!!!!😱😱😱😱😱 Its so UNBELIEVABLY!!!! Btw congratulations BRIGHT SIDE it's so awesome that you had a 28m subscribers!!! I'm happy for you!!😊😊😊

  8. Nothing to admire… one dress every day … newspaper padding in winter… caused her own son's leg… split the family all to own money
    Money is needed for this life
    But heart causes us to be human…

  9. What's the point of having so much money, and you don't enjoy it. You are not goning to take it with you to the grave.

  10. Other people be talking about how rich she is
    But I’m talking about how she was born in Massachusetts:3

  11. What the point of having so much money if you don’t spent it at all. You can’t take it’s with u when you die. I think she might be the richest women, but she is the poorest women a live

  12. Lol the most painful thing about frugality is that your efforts will be wasted when someone else squanders your money. Enjoy what the Lord has given you while you can

  13. Misery up to the next level. She used to do so much misery that she even didn’t take his son to a good doctor for a proper treatment. Poor boy……….

  14. I know someone like that. Wealthy but gets his food from dumpsters. Crazy! Told me he doesn't agree with spending money.πŸ™„πŸ˜

    Also, complained because I owned more than one 'garment'! Says he's going to leave his money for charity rather than his daughter because she's beautiful and beautiful women don't need money. Monster!!

  15. What would I do if I woke up a millionare? … Probably get my numerous health issues fixed and pay off my student loans.. πŸ™

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