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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.
©2006 David Nasaw; (P)2007 Gildan Media Corp
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Critic Reviews

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

Most Helpful

By Peggie on 10-01-07

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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29 of 31 people found this review helpful


By Jonathan on 03-13-12

Everything you ever wanted to know about...

If you could sum up Andrew Carnegie in three words, what would they be?

Interesting and detailed

Would you recommend Andrew Carnegie to your friends? Why or why not?

Very interesting insight into 19th Century capitalism through the life of its greatest success story.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By ganiyu on 11-13-12

A riveting book.

A well researched and insightful account of the now iconic Andrew Carnegie.

Riveting and one that you will probably come back to again.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful


By Mr. Acapella on 12-01-17

Excellent biography

David Nasaw does a brilliant job of portraying Carnegie and the reading by Grover Gardner is up to his usual top standards. I would have welcomed a bit more on the social and political side of his times, such as labour relations and anti-trust moves by the government. But that is a personal preference on my part, not a criticsm of the author who keeps his narrative focussed on the man himself and his many fascinating friendships and business acquaintances. Problem is that much of Carnegie's thinking is a bit simple if not childlike. So you can't help being pleased when Mr. Frick or President Roosevelt tire of his weedling and send him a sharp reproach. At the same time, Carnegie was clearly a very genuine, clever and affable man who was well liked, at least by his friends.

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