Andrew Carnegie
Carnegie Steel’s founder, industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, died on August 11, 1919. It was in 1872 that Carnegie built a steel plant and revolutionized the American steel industry. After coming to America from Scotland in 1848 as a teenager, Carnegie worked in a variety of jobs that paid modestly, but prepared him well for future ventures. A few years after being hired by the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1852, he began to invest in railroads, receiving huge dividends. When a new steel-making process made cheap steel possible, Carnegie built his own plant. Soon Carnegie’s shrewd business decisions enabled him to become the primary source for steel at the turn of the 20th century. Believing that it was a sin to die rich, Carnegie became a philanthropist in later life, giving away more than $350 million and building 2,509 public libraries.

Photo: Library of Congress