The net worth of Josephine Baker is estimated to be around $89 million. She was born on June 3, 1906 and is best known for her roles as Black Pearl, Tumpie, Black Venus, and the Creole Goddess. She has also worked as a Soundtrack, Actress, and as an activist during the Civil Rights Movement.
Besides being an actress, Josephine Baker has also been a music director and soundtrack composer. The artist was a multi-faceted personality, with varied interests and a large net worth to match. Although she’s best known for her dancing, she has a variety of career backgrounds.
Josephine Baker’s life story has been told through a number of films. Her life was portrayed in 1991’s The Josephine Baker Story and a 2018 documentary Josephine Baker: The Story of an Awakening. The actress won a prestigious Emmy Award for portraying the role.
In the 1950s, Josephine Baker returned to the United States often to help the Civil Rights Movement. She was a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and earned a life membership. In 1963, she spoke at the March on Washington with Martin Luther King Jr., and the NAACP made May 20th “Josephine Baker Day” to commemorate her. Josephine Baker’s estate was sold in 1968. Her return to the stage was met with a standing ovation.
Throughout her career, Baker has been recognized as a humanitarian and a war hero. In World War II, she served in the French Resistance, entertaining troops, and providing entertainment to Allied soldiers. Her wartime service added gravitas to her cause. However, her reputation was often criticized for her racy.
Baker has been an activist for child advocacy for over 60 years. She was instrumental in popularizing the concept of international adoption. She also adopted 12 children of different ethnicities. Her children, who came from diverse backgrounds, were raised by a loving mother. Their descendants have also been involved in her charitable endeavors.
Baker was a popular performer during the Jazz Age, as well as a prominent figure in French history. Her performance in the play Un vent de folie in 1927 caused a stir in Paris. Her colorful costumes and beaded necklace became an iconic image of the Roaring Twenties and the Jazz Age.
Her popularity as a performer led to her obtain French citizenship. She was also considered the “Black Pearl” of her time and received more than 1,000 marriage proposals. Although her fame was widely recognized in her native France, Baker never enjoyed the same success in the United States. Her star turn in the Ziegfeld Follies on Broadway failed to garner the same box office success. Her career waned after her role in the show. In 1934, she made her film debut in Zou-Zou alongside Jean Gabin. This film earned her a role in Princesse Tam-Tam. She later married Jean Lion, who was a French industrialist. Afterward, she renounced her American citizenship and became a legal French citizen.
Her early life was hard, as her mother was a single parent. She missed school between the ages of eight and ten to help the family. Despite the hardships, Baker developed a passion for flamboyant performance. She first toured with a dance troupe in Philadelphia before moving to New York City to perform in the show “Shuffle Along.” In 1924, she toured with Ethel Waters at the Plantation Club.
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