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Andrew Carnegie

In: English and Literature

Submitted By linh123
Words 748
Pages 3
Class: Business and Social Responsibility
Professor: Pete Macky

Andrew Carnegie Andrew Carnegie was arguably one of the richest men in America. From his companies emerged the steel to build the infrastructures such as railroads, bridges, automobiles, and ships that would build a nation in need of direction. He played a major role in the transformation into the Industrial Revolution, producing the steels to make machinery and transportation possible. Carnegie built his empire from cost control, low prices, low profits, and high volume to make himself the richest man in the world. Some people call him a villain, some people call him a hero? So, was Carnegie really a business hero in American history?
Andrew Carnegie was born in a very poor family from Scotland. His first job was at the age of thirteen; he was working as a bobbin boy in a cotton mill. It was his second job in which he was able to learn many important structures of business. Working most of the day, he never had time to go to school like other kids. Therefore, he went to the library to study whenever he has time. He later was hired by Thomas A.Scott to work as a private secretary and a personal telegrapher. When the Civil War came, he was the right hand man of Scott, who was the supervisor of military transportation for the North back then. Working as Scott’s right hand man, Carnegie was able to gain experience in the railroad industry. After the Civil War, Carnegie took Scott’s former position as superintendent of the western division to the Pennsylvania Railroad. Andrew Carnegie formed his wealth by the production of iron and steel, and some of which was used in the making of railroads. At the time, railroads were the most demanded means of transportation. People travel to many places using the railroads. Carnegie saw this opportunity coming, and he saw that it would be good to mass produce steel since you need steel to make railroads. Andrew Carnegie developed most of his wealth by profiting off of this. Unlike other companies in the business back then, Carnegie came up with a genius idea which was to always improve his factories and his equipment. Other companies would wait till the machine is broken to replace or maintain them, but Carnegie would use all his profit to upgrade and improve his machinery. Along with this genius idea, Carnegie and his company invented many important processes to produce steel that helped to reduce costs and increase outputs. He later set a standard for the steel industry and force all the companies to adopt his methods for the better of the American economy.
While people keep questioning Carnegie’s morality on how he handled his employees, there is much more things to say about him: Andrew Carnegie had a big heart. There are no words to describe how much Carnegie has given in philanthropy. When Carnegie retired, he sold his company to JP Morgan for around 450 million dollars; 350 million of which he later donated to many different organizations. He believed that it’s not right to give money to the poor because they won’t know what to do with it. Instead, he built many free public libraries for people who could not afford to go to school to help them get education and have a chance to success in the future.
Some people might say that his wealth is a result of providing cheap and poor working conditions to his employees, but in my opinion, he was just an honest hard working man. Andrew Carnegie was definitely one of the most influential people in the late 19th century. Once he has taken over the company, he continually reduced the cost of production and selling. It’s true that working conditions at Carnegie’s company were not necessarily that good, but no one is flawless. Earning all that money is one difficult thing, but to give back most of that money to help provide a better education to people is a much more difficult thing. He could have kept all that money for himself and his family, but he chose not to. He once has experienced poverty, he wants to give people chances to escape that poverty. To me, Andrew Carnegie was one of the most influential businessman with a big heart in the late 19th century.

Works Cited: http://myhero.com/hero.asp?hero=a_carnegie https://www.scribd.com/doc/172237358/Was-Carnegie-a-Hero class notes

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