As an entertainer and human being, I’ve benefited greatly from the trail blazed by the likes of Sammy Davis Jr., Lena Horne and Pearl Bailey, all friends of mine — the challenges they overcame demonstrate that talent alone is not the key to longevity in Las Vegas. As Beyond the Glimmering Lights skillfully documents, passion and perseverance are essential traits. I am profoundly grateful for the high standards set by these amazing role models.”
— WAYNE NEWTON Entertainer, aka: Mr. Las Vegas
To most Americans, Las Vegas is a city of lights and glitz and nonstop entertainment . . . the mecca for millions, that looks to the future with few regrets for a past it barely remembers.
But Las Vegas is also a city rich with diversity, including many African Americans who came in the early 20th century hoping for a dream city on the dry desert plains. Funny and fascinating, Beyond the Glimmering Lights tells the story of Las Vegas through the eyes of one African American family, and one woman in particular, Magnolia —“Aunt Mac”—who bears witness to the many successes and setbacks experienced by black folks as they helped to build America’s number one travel destination.
Beyond the Glimmering Lights covers Las Vegas’s early history—segregation and inequality—the breaking of the “color line” by entertainers and the brave efforts of the proud, everyday people who worked to finally end legalized racism in the city.