1835 - 1919
Andrew Carnegie, steel magnate and philanthropist, died August 11, 1919. He was 83.
Carnegie was born November 25, 1835 in Dunfermline, Scotland. When Carnegie was 13, his family came to America, settling in Allegheny, Pennsylvania in 1848.
Carnegie was ambitious and by 1859 he was chosen to become superintendent of the Pennsylvania Railroad’s Pittsburgh division.
He was a wise investor, and began buying stock in various companies, including the steel industry. In the early 1870’s, Carnegie founded a steel company, which eventually bore his name.
Carnegie was first to utilize the Bessemer steel-making process of making steel from pig iron. In the 1890’s, his company was the first to operate open-hearth furnaces in steel making.
Before the turn of the 20th century, Carnegie dominated the American steel business. In 1901, he sold his operation to J.P. Morgan, netting a personal fortune of $230 million.
Carnegie spent the rest of his life in philanthropic activities. Over the next 18 years, he financed 2,509 public libraries, built Carnegie Hall in New York, and established several foundations to enhance teaching and world peace.
At the time of his death in Lenox, Massachusetts on August 11, 1919, Carnegie had given away $350 million to fund scores of public projects.