September 30, 2015

Richie Zweigenhaft Writes Article on Cone Family


Faculty member Richie Zweigenhaft’s article “The Cones of Greensboro” has been published in the September issue of O. Henry Magazine.

The article traces the history of the Cone family from the arrival in the U.S. of Herman Kahn in the middle of the 19th century. Herman changed his last name to Cone and eventually moved to Baltimore, where he operated a successful grocery business.

His sons, Moses and Ceasar, created a selling and finance agency for Southern cotton mills in 1890. They expanded into mill ownership, opening Proximity Mill in Greensboro in 1895. Headquartered in Greensboro, Cone Denim became the world’s leading producer of denim, corduroy and flannel.

The Jewish family’s pivotal role in the local economy played an important part in making Greensboro relatively welcoming to Jews, the article states. Although Jews were often excluded from the upper levels of the power structure in America, Herman Kahn’s grandson, Ben Cone Sr., served as Greensboro’s mayor 1949-51.

Richie will give a talk based on the research that went into the article at Friends Homes in late October.

The Charles A. Dana Professor of Psychology, Richie is co-author of four books, including New CEOs: Women, African American, Latino, and Asian American Leaders of Fortune 500 Companies. He is currently co-editing Collaboration in Psychological Science, due out in 2016.