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Freeman Ransom

Freeman Ransom
Flickr / <a href="https://www.findagrave.com/user/profile/49462455">Jessica Bennett</a>

Freeman Ransom aka Freeman Briley “F.B.” Ransom was an American lawyer, civil activist, and businessman living in Indianapolis, Indiana. Most notably, he was Madam C.J. Walker’s right hand man, and served as the attorney and general manager for the Madam C. J. Walker manufacturing company. 

Ransom came to Indianapolis after attaining his law degree in 1910, graduating from Columbia University. He was born in Grenada, Mississippi. Prior to attending law school, Ransom studied both divinity and law, graduating from his undergraduate studies as a decorated valedictorian.

Outside of his work with the Walker Manufacturing Company, Ransom’s client list included the NAACP, State School for the Blind Trustee, and Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church. He was also a City Councilman for the city of Indianapolis. He made such an impact on the city, and Madam Walker, that they named a district after him and his family: Ransom Place Historic District. 

After Ransom’s death in 1947, his son Mike carried his father’s torch. Mike took his father’s place as general manager at the Walker Co., and served in the Indiana chapter of the NAACP where he led citywide segregation protests. Mike also went on to become the first African-American director of the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce. Mike attributed his success to the influences and legacy that his father, Freeman Ransom left to him. 


Freeman Ransom’s Black Moments:

  • The first African American neighborhood in the State to receive a district named after him in 1992
  • Helped to establish on of the top African American neighborhoods in Indianapolis that is still revered to this day
  • Madam C.J. Walker’s right hand man
  • African American community activist



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