Andrew Carnegie

  • by David Nasaw
  • Narrated by Grover Gardner
  • 32 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Andrew Carnegie, whose lifetime spanned the era from the beginning of the Industrial Revolution to the First World War was America's first modern titan. In this magnificent biography, celebrated historian David Nasaw brings to life this period of unprecedented transition - a time of self-made millionaires, scabs, strikes, and a new kind of philanthropy - through the fascinating rags-to-riches story of one of our most iconic business legends.The Scottish-born son of a failed weaver and a mother who supported the family by binding shoes, Andrew Carnegie was the embodiment of the American dream. In his rise from a job as a bobbin boy in a cotton factory to being the richest man in the world, he was single-minded, relentless, and a major player in some of the most violent and notorious labor strikes of the time. The prototype of today's billionaire, he was a visionary in the way he earned his money and in the way he gave it away.
Nasaw explains how Carnegie made his fortune and how he tried to pull the world back from a war he predicted. Brimming with new material, personal letters, diaries, prenuptial agreements, letters to and from presidents and prime ministers, Nasaw plumbs the core of this fascinating man, fixing him in his place as one of the most compelling, elusive, and multifaceted personalities of the 20th century.


What the Critics Say

"This is biography on the grand scale." (Washington Post Book World)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Andrew Carnegie

Fascinating! The author tells the good, the bad and the ugly about Carnegie, explaining the times and the laws. As an immigrant Carnegie goes from a poor boy to an influential millionaire, bestowing libraries and other gifts to citizens but early on learns to take time to enjoy life.

Carnegie learns through watching others and always giving his ute most to each task. At times he uses his influence to bully, at other times he is benevolent. A great overall view of the life and times in the 1800's and this world renown man.
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- Peggie

Robber Baron indeed

Excellently written, well read, I'd give this book 5 stars except for it's length. There's probably too much detail, but I don't know what I'd take out. Still, if you know nothing about the money and power grabbing of the later 19th and early 20th century, this may be too long for a beginning.

If you get angry easily, you might want to skip this one, too. To give you an idea of the impact of this book on me - it made me wish I believed in hell. Carnegie belongs there. I've never thought that Carnegie, or any of his "peers" were generous, warm hearted people, even when they were doling money out to good causes. It surprised me, but Carnegie was even worse than I had previously thought.

David Nasaw paints a vivid picture of this self-made man as he rose to the level of "the richest man in the world." Nasaw describes the early insider deals, hustling sales of bonds and securities, the conspicous consumption in an increasingly luxurious life (especially overseas beyond the sight of the American press), and the strategies to wring profits from his steel interests while demanding 12-hour workdays and decreasing income for his workers. Nasaw also details the force employed by this friend of the working man to keep those men working long hours in dangerous tasks, breaking strikes at the cost of workmen's lives.

It's a sorry tale, but a fascinating one.
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- Anne

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-21-2007
  • Publisher: Gildan Media, LLC