John D. Rockefeller
With a very humble upbringing, John D. Rockefeller was your mediocre son of a traveling salesman who lived in Richford, New York. As a young boy, Rockefeller made money by selling candy, turkeys, and doing odd jobs for his neighbors. When Rockefeller was fourteen his family and he moved to Cleveland, Ohio, where he attended high school. When he was just sixteen he found a job as an office clerk for a Cleveland commission firm. The firm bought, sold, and shipped grain, coal, and other materials. Rockefeller later attended a local commercial college and studied bookkeeping.
When Rockefeller was only twenty years old he started his own Oil firm (what kind of firm?) with a partner; this was also the same year the first oil well was drilled. Rockefeller then began investing in an oil refinery in Cleveland. During this time, Rockefeller met and fell in love with Laura Celestia “Cettie” Spelman. Spelman was the daughter of a wealthy politician, merchant, and abolitionist who was actively involved with the Underground Railroad. Rockefeller and Spelman went on to have four daughters and one son.
As he became more involved, Rockefeller borrowed money to buy out his competitors so he could gain control over the industry. Meanwhile, the refinery he initially invested in had become one of the largest in Cleveland. He made new partners and continued to expand over the years. In 1870, Rockefeller created the Standard Oil Company of Ohio. The Standard Oil Company bought out rival refiners and became a monopoly. The company did everything from employing scientists to crafting their own barrels. A lot of the journalists and politicians around during this time viewed Rockefeller as being full of corporate greed. He was criticized about the methods by which he made his riches.
John D. Rockefeller was seen as a competitor who crushed his opponents. It was believed that he received money from the railroad industry and also bribed men to spy on his...
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