He was born Everette Earl Black. His company was called EE Black; folks called him ‘Johnny’. Black “was born on a log cabin ten miles from Terre Haute”, Indiana in 1889. His father “was originally a farmer, and then a carpenter, then a railroad car builder – freight cars first and then passenger cars later – for the Pennsylvania Railroad. (W)e were what they called poor honest people.”
“I graduated actually in electrical engineering. I had an uncle in Victor, Colorado on the old (Portland Mining Company) gold mine and I shook him down for a job, so I worked in the gold mine for a year after I graduated and got a little money ahead”. Then, he came to the Islands on the 10th of June, 1913, working various construction jobs and eventually formed his own company, in 1930 it became EE Black, Limited, earning the company’s slogan “On Track with Black”.