Andrew Carnegie is one of the most well-known and successful businessmen of the early 20th century. He started out as a poor, uneducated boy in Scotland and came to America at the age of 13, working in a Pittsburgh cotton mill. From there, he rose to become one of the richest men in the world. He was known for his philanthropy, and gave away much of his fortune to charity.
However, some people argue that Andrew Carnegie was not a true hero. They point to the fact that he made his money in steel, which was a major industry in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Steel was necessary for the construction of railroads, ships, and other infrastructure, but it also had a dark side. The working conditions in steel mills were notoriously dangerous, and Andrew Carnegie’s mills were no exception. Workers were often injured or killed on the job, and they were paid very low wages. Andrew Carnegie was aware of these conditions, but he did not do anything to improve them.
Andrew Carnegie, the epitome of “multi-millionaire”, was in fact a hero. He rose from being an impoverished youth to becoming one of the most successful businesspeople not only by refocusing America’s steel industry through vertical integration but also by creating millions of jobs. He was a genuine hero.
Andrew Carnegie’s parents, Margaret and William, were Scottish immigrants who arrived in America in 1773. Andrew was born in 1835 in Dunfermline, a small town outside of Edinburgh, Scotland. When Andrew was 13 years old, his family immigrated to the United States in search of a better life.
They settled in Allegheny, Pennsylvania, which is now part of Pittsburgh. Andrew’s father worked as a weaver and earned very little money. Andrew started working when he was just a boy. His first job was as a bobbin boy in a cotton mill. He worked 12 hours a day for six days a week and earned $1.20 per week . Despite the long hours and low pay, Andrew was happy to have a job because it meant that he could help his family.
Andrew’s family was very poor, so when he was offered a job as a telegraph messenger boy, he jumped at the chance. He worked for the Pennsylvania Railroad Company and earned $2.50 per week . He saved every penny he could and eventually had enough money to buy shares in the railroad company. When Andrew was just 20 years old, he had made his ﬁrst $1,000 from investing in stocks.
In 1865, Andrew Carnegie sold his shares in the Pennsylvania Railroad Company for $400,000 and used the money to start his own steel company, Carnegie Steel Company. Andrew Carnegie is often credited with inventing the process of vertical integration, which is when a company controls all of the steps involved in producing a product.
For example, Andrew Carnegie’s steel company not only owned the steel mills where the steel was made, but also the coal mines that supplied the coal to power the steel mills, the ships that transported the raw materials to the mill, and the railway lines that transported the finished product to market. By owning all of these different companies, Andrew Carnegie was able to make his steel company very efﬁcient and very profitable.
In 1901, Andrew Carnegie sold his steel company to J.P. Morgan for $480 million . After selling his company, Andrew Carnegie devoted himself to philanthropy. He donated millions of dollars to charities, colleges, and universities. He also founded the Carnegie Corporation, a charity that gives grants to support education and research.
Andrew Carnegie was a true hero because he was not only a successful businessman, but also a generous philanthropist. He helped millions of people through his businesses and his charities. Andrew Carnegie is an inspiration to us all.
Carnegie genuinely achieved the American dream, as demonstrated by his purchase of Skibo Castle (Document 1). How did he rise to such a prominent position in business? That’s thanks to his technique of mass-producing steel and selling it at low prices, which integrated all raw materials suppliers into his firm; he called it vertical integration.
Andrew Carnegie’s successes did not just stop at business. In his essay, “The Gospel of Wealth”, he states that it is the duty of the rich to help the poor and invest in society (Document 2). He believed in social Darwinism, which is the idea that the strong will survive and the weak will perish. This is seen when he donated money to build libraries and public parks (Document 3).
Andrew Carnegie was also a generous philanthropist; he donated over 350 million dollars to various causes. Out of all his donations, my favorite has to be the one where he gave away his entire steel company so that it could become a part of what we now know as United States Steel Corporation. Andrew Carnegie was definitely a true hero.
Through his success, he opened up employment opportunities for millions of people, instilled hope in them that they might be wealthy, and even assisted the United States in becoming the most powerful steel industry. In addition, Andrew Carnegie was one of the most charitable of the rich people on Earth. We may get a sense of Carnegie as a man who valued financial generosity while still alive through his quote “A gentleman who dies rich is dishonored.”
Andrew Carnegie is one of those men who we can look up to and see his great accomplishments not only in business but also in his philanthropy. Andrew Carnegie was a true hero.
Andrew Carnegie’s philanthropy may be verified by his donations, which demonstrate that he kept his word (Document 9). Even now, the Carnegie Corporation’s foundation distributes about $100 million each year mostly to education. Andrew Carnegie was not only a successful businessman who achieved the American Dream, but he also utilized his enormous wealth to improve the community through his numerous contributions.