In the early decades of the 1900s, Durham acquired a national reputation for entrepreneurship. Businesses owned by African Americans lined Parrish Street, and among them was North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company. For much of the 20th century, North Carolina Mutual was the largest Black-owned company in the United States, serving the needs of over two-million Americans through employment, mortgages, and premiums in its first 115 years. As NC Mutual outgrew its original headquarters on Durham’s famed Parrish Street, the company acquired land that once housed the Duke family estate, building a thoroughly modern headquarters tower in 1963 – now Mutual Tower. The NC Mutual headquarters was not only the tallest building in Durham until 1987, but also the tallest Black-owned building anywhere in the U.S.