Andrew Carnegie, The Selfish Philanthropist
Andrew Carnegie, born on November 25, 1835, was a Scottish philanthropist who was one of the richest men in America in the 1900's. I completely agree with Carnegie's opinion of how the rich should donate their money toward the good of mankind before they die, but disagree with his actions toward his workers . He started working in a cotton mill making $1.20 a week only to upgrade to $2.20 working as a messenger boy. He eventually taught himself telegraphy and worked as Thomas A. Scott's assistant for $35 a month. He moved on to investing, with the help from his “mentor” Scott, in the Woodruff Sleeping Car Company and several small iron mills and factories. He was so successful that he was able to buy an industry of iron products. This investment brought him to buy a piece of land and build a steel manufacturing factory on it. With the millions he made, he visited Scotland often to see his family. Carnegie thought it was a good idea to put most of the money that he made back into the community. He gave his money away through public programs, which was a little overwhelming for him it seems. He cut the wages of his workers to provide more money for him to put back into his programs. There was a strike that broke out which caused his second in command to hire immigrants. This changed Carnegie's reputation. It also influenced him to retire and sell all of his holdings to J.P. Morgan for a sum of 480 Million dollars. Over the course of the rest of his lifetime, he ended up giving away 350 million dollars. He encouraged other fortune holders to do the same as him. John D. Rockefeller was one of the few that followed his Idea. Carnegie had great intentions. Carnegie believed that "a man who dies rich dies disgraced." He explains this as the wealthy who die wealthy , did nothing with their wealth to better mankind. His thinking was influenced by Herbert Spencer, who was a social Darwinist. Carnegie agreed with Spencer's...
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