I’ve seriously wondered over the years if this perennial was ever named after someone. After a little googling it looks as if the plant is named after a poem “Black-Eyed Susan” by John Gay. It speaks of a young woman boarding a ship looking for her love, Sweet William. How clever.
According to this American Meadows, colonists named the Rudbeckia fulgida sullivantii “Goldsturm” after the poem “Black-Eyed Susan”.
The center is really brown, not black but from afar, it definately looks black.