After watching the first episode I have noticed that the railroads were a big part of everyone lives. The railroads were built for cheap imports. What I also noticed was about business. Every company wanted you out if you were getting bigger. Also if you didn't fix the problems in your company then there would be no company. That will be the chance were other company owners would take you down. Being in business is like a game. You have to know who you are playing with. For example you have to know who is going to be on your team, who is going to ring you down, who you have to go over, etc. Religion was also a part of people. Some thought God himself have chosen them to do the thongs they were going to do like John D. Rockefeller. He believed that nothing good will happen without Gods blessing. John D. Rockefeller was an oil man who took his business very seriously.
I agree with your statement about business being like a game. The competitors respond to each move you make. The goal is to win, but in a selfish way. They had a mindset of winning at all costs. I think thats why J. P. Morgan was able to make a great appearance. His strategy of Morganizing the companies allowed them to flourish and decrease tensions. In a way, ruthless competition is needed for advancement. When all you want to do is win, you will push yourself further than others. As a result, technology will advance, products will be produced massively, and businesses will expand.
Faith was an intricate part of society as the people devoted themselves to a higher power. They believed everything happened for a reason because God chose to play out the events in their life. The complex part of religion is that some didn't think it was the "man above's" decision to go through a certain circumstance. The controversy roots from individuals debating what's real and what's fake. Every human is entitled to their opinions. Popular belief in that time period was to place one's trust in the supreme ruler of the universe. For Rockefeller, he was privileged and thanked God Almighty for his prosperity.
In continuation to episode one Rockefeller was the type of guy who saw something in something unusual. For example his oil company, he knew that the oil industry would save the world and make him rich in the process. However looking for oil is a gamble and Rockefeller didn't really believe in luck so he wanted to find a way to make money from oil without having to have problems. Which is kind of hard because sometimes you have to take risk into things that you really want to happen. However Rockefeller always found a better way to do things. Rockefeller was a very young business guy who started his first point at the age 24. Also in the episode there was a statement saying the people who want to be successful do not quit and it is true because if you want something then you go for it and not let anything stop you from anything.
While watching this video, what surprised me the most was the life of Andrew Carnegie, who started working at the age of 12 because he had to maintain a living for his family. Another thing is back then if you were going to build a bridge all the way to the Mississippi river than you would become the big shot. Andrew Carnegie wanted to build a bridge but the problem was he didn't know how to. A bridge was very hard to make because you had to know how strong it would be to hold heavy weight. What surprised me most about the video is learning about how strong steel was and how expensive and difficult it was to produce. Also surprised on how back Andrew Carnegie was on his payments. He owed so much money that he didn't even have. This made him hold his project on the ridge because of money problems. Another thing that was interesting to learn was the elephant that was said that if the elephant makes it across the bridge then the bridge is a success. Carnegie tested this and his bridge was a success. People were happy that this bridge ans sustain any wight it comes upon.
Episode 2: In continuation from this episode what was surprising was the water flood and the breaking of wall that was holding the water. People were running from this water that was going to crash everything . Many people died from the water including children. This way very sad because more than 2,00 people died and some people couldn't be identified because of being in the water so much. 600 hundred homes were destroyed. I can't even imagine the lost in everything families owned and how much money would be spent to rebuild everyone ones homes or to give the necessary things to the people who have suffered. The town was completely flooded and it was in comparison to 9/11 because it was the worst day anyone could experience. People came from other places to help others in need. Later on people were looking for someone to blame of the incident but others denied the blame.
What caught my eye in this video was the life of JP Morgan. He had a very odd relationship with his father. His father made him do the checks and balances, which is very crazy because Morgan was just a little boy. Later on as he got older he didn't want to do the ways as his father anymore but to build industries from the ground just like Andrew Carnegie and the others. He wanted to be someone big. JP Morgan then later on worked hard to have electricity in his on home. Which was later on to be a success, however his father wasn't so happy for his accomplishment. His father wasn't really happy with anything from him which is really sad because Morgan did everything to make his father happy. When his father saw risk, Morgan saw opportunity. Pretty brave to actually face your father and not listen to him even though he may know what he is talking about. Another thing that amazed me was the progress with Edison and Morgan on electricity. They both were becoming big, putting John D. Rockefeller at risk with his company. Times like this was seeing who can hold longer in the game. If you lose than game over.
As Carnegie, Morgan, and Rockefeller were getting rich, there was a huge gap between the rich and the poor was big as its ever been. Working conditions were almost not trustworthy to the people to say that they will be safe. Another thing that caught my eye during this video is of how one wanted to be better than anyone else. Rockefeller wanted to beat Carnegie so badly that he wanted to put him out of business. What was also interesting to watch in the fourth episode is looking at actual footage during the time and seeing what these men actually did. Learning about Roosevelt was interesting too because he was a man who wanted things done but right. Another thing was the talking of the oil octopus. Which meant big business but evil. It meant big businesses getting way too much power and nothing getting in the way. Looks like everything was about business and trying to become rich as possible and to take down companies that were weak and unnecessary.
From a business owner's point of view, I see why they would work their laborers the way they did. This was a time when immigrants, women, and blacks were given a chance to work. Bosses knew that these people were desparate for money so they would take advantage for them. I'm not saying this is right, but out of these bosses' eyes, I can see their reasoning. They just wanted money. So many people would take desparate measures for money. What is the most you would do for money? (To anybody on the blog)
I agree with you on that too. I would do anything for money if I was in their shoes. All I am trying to do is become rich and have the biggest company ever so yea I would do anything for money. I would try to start low but then as more people are coming to my business I would raise the price to gain even more money. Little by little these business men were becoming rich even if there were some obstacles on the way.
The men who built America might have improved the country, but the workers were the one who paid the price. In the beginning of the video, the speaker describes these men as leaders. They exhibited competitive characteristics and were willing to do anything to get to the top. John D. Rockefeller was one of the richest among the group. He had the most interesting story to me because the Rockefeller Foundation paid for some expenses for the Hamilton Show for juniors sometime this year. Although these men took advantage over millions of Americans, their earnings are amazing. At one point, John D. Rockefeller had more oil than he can export. This monopolist not only expanded his company, he also maximized his profit.
I agree. Workers during this time period were not treated fairly at all and often worked in dangerous conditions. Their lives were often at risk, while Rockefeller and the others only counted their coins. This is reminiscent of when the farmers didn't trust bankers because while they were working hard on the fields, the bankers were sitting counting their profits.
Oil and railroads revolutionized business and American culture. Oil provided a safe and cheap source of light. Before oil, the average Americans didn't have access to a consistent source of light. Now that this is changed, American culture will soon revolve around light. Railroads brought America to the biggest industrialization it ever experienced. The most important group in business are the workers. Laborers were the reason America was able to have the leading economy of the world. The men who built America created the process of watering down stock. Although it is illegal today, this process wasn't even thought of back then. Stocks would be issued at a value incredibidly higher than the value company's assets would issue them. This man-made inflattion brought a huge fortune to businesses. Competition between these leaders were tense. All wanting to be the "king", they would dismantle friendships and alliances for money. They would view each other as competitors with suspicion. In the end, the best strategist and most ruthless would land on top. Laborers would protest consitstently over the wage shortages. In one night, a strike was capable of destroying 39 buildings and 1,200 train cars. As a result, Tom Scott's company was ruined giving John D. Rockefeller the opportunity to climb further towards the top.
John D. Rockefeller lead the emerging oil industry. Other business leaders saw oil as an opportunity to gain new wealth. Before the leaders sought to enter the oil industry, John D. Rockefeller "declared war" on the railroads. As for the railroads, true success came from expansion. A risky goal was set by Carnegie to extend over the Mississippi River. One out of four bridges failed in doing so; Carnegie had a different plan. He had a vision of using steel to make a rail-bridge over the Mississippi River. Steel was rare from its expense and inability to be mass produced. America was built from visions and risks. In order to be a successfull business person, one must take risks that would either strengthen or weaken one's wealth. At the time, steel was commonly used for forks and spoons. Until Carnegie, nobody attempted to make anything as large as a rail-bridge out of steel. In the end, John D. Rockefeller had personal fortune of seven times more than Carnegie. Carnegie believed that he must surpass Rockefeller to avenge his mentor's death, Tom Scott. He reached out to Henry Frisk, one of the largest coal suppliers. Henry Frisk had a reputation of doing whatever it takes to get what he wants. This mentality was needed in business. Not to justify the cruelty or support the Darwinist theory, but business is cut-throat; only the best strive.
While John D. Rockefeller gets richer, steel becomes the choice for construction With steel production being mastered, Carnegie became one of the wealthiest. Money brought him success, but also placed a target on his business. When one is competing in business, the person with the largest net worth or largest company is always the target. People start to see the best as an enemy. Business competitors might have been a threat, but a bigger one was the laborers. Strikes and protests continiously went on throughout the success of these men. If every worker decided to stop working, the whole business would have collapsed and America wouldn't have been what it is now. Workers would be on their feet 12 hours a day for 6 days a week. The average working hours today is around 8 hours a day. These laborers experienced extreme exhaustion for small wages. Soon, the disadvantaged will have enough.
Personally, I wouldn't say money brought him success, it was his possessions; there's a difference. When you're on top of the mountain, people are jealous of the heights you reach. They'll get at anything to bring you down so they can reach a level they've been striving to get to. That's the beauty in competition. People aren't satisfied until they're number one on the leaderboard. Unfortunately, greed consumes the mind of investors, causing them to think irrationally. Laborers feel they deserve to be treated better and that's where unions will come to improve conditions. They must find a way to please workers and the business if both want to make a living.
True money was his possession, its really all he ever wanted. Just to be the best of the best. People do get jealous of where you want to reach in life. Which is like you said competition. Its a game where you either win it or lose and if you win then you have everything and keep on going but if you lode then there is no point to going back in the game because the other players are stringer, faster, and smarter than you are.
When you talk about people with the highest net worth being targets, I think you need to be remembered that Carnegie was not the one with the highest net worth. Remember that Rockefeller was America's richest as published in the newspapers, and even after Carnegie worked hard to avenge his mentor's death by becoming America's richest, his net worth was still only up to half of Rockefeller's net worth.
Henry Frick pushed the workers to their limit. Carnegie pushed him aside, causing Frick to be furious. He felt betrayed by Carnegie and ed a revolt that would potentially destroy Carnegie's property. J. P. Morgan emerged as a big threat during this chaos. He became a successful man by buying failing companies and returning them into profitablities. I am directly connected to his success because I am associated with Chase. It is the second largest hedge fund in America. J. P. Morgan had clear domination over the banking industry. He eliminated competition. His strategies involved creating bargains that were suitable to business owners but profitable to him. The most interesting thing about J. P. Morgan, is that he is the model for the Monopoly man. Rich Uncle Pennybags represents capitalism and business competition. Similar to this industrial age, people compete for property and money. One of the biggest technology advancements was the electric light. Living in New York, one is bound to witness thousands of situations where lights are used. Times Square would be Times Square without lights. J. P. Morgan saw the electric light as one of the largest opportunities in business. Inventions might have been the foundation of a new age, but business men brought them to the public. J. P. Morgan was so significant to business, he started the process called "morganization." He would settle tensions between companies and try to increase the profit. He prioritized profits over everything. His biggest impact was his effect on the workers. He fired laborers in order to reconstruct business and maximize the profit.
These men once possessed one trillion dollars combined. That is more than the combination of the 10 most richest people alive today. J. P. Morgan sweeps the steel industry and starts the first company in history to be worth one billion dollars. These leader's companies became challenged by the emerging Theodore Roosevelt. He was known as the "trust buster." If Theodore Roosevelt was never elected president, the monopolies would have had their freedom extended and their businesses would have been wealthier than it is now. Henry Ford was apart of the new age of business leaders. Once again, his achievements have impacted my life. My mom had a Ford that took me to school every school day. Henry Ford was the reason for the assembly line, something that would make Ford cars affordable. Determination can place anybody to the top. Henry Ford was rejected in his attempts to make his car. Henry Ford was worth around 199 billion dollars. One similarity with great business leaders is the experience of failure. In order to succeed, one must be ready for failure.
Episode 4: The wealth gap continues to be wider by the days. The lower class is struggling to make ends meet while the richest men in the "land of opportunity" make a percent of the economy. Even though that sounds minimal, it's a big deal because they possess incredible power over the vast majority of society. President McKinley wins the election because he is given financial support. Money is the deal breaker; when received, one immediately gains an advantage due to the ability of spending more without consequences. One must respect his opposition, for the great effort William Jennings Bryan displayed in over five hundred speeches. He may not have been backed up by millionaires, but he did let his voice be heard around the country, which is powerful in its own right. Bryan loses, making Rockefeller and Carnegie's reign at the top last longer.
Episode 4: John D. Rockefeller finds that Minnesota is rich in iron and he can invest in this material to surpass his fierce rival. The competition gets intense between the two powerhouses as they go all out to own the most figures. The 45th of the United States has experience negotiating and he knows the difficulty in two sides coming to a compromise. Individuals must understand they have to give before they can receive. J.P. Morgan wants to take over the steel industry so he indirectly targets Andrew Carnegie. He comprehends that everyone has a price. There is always a point when a person will settle; some are harder cases to crack. An interesting point made by Bryan is "destiny is not a matter of chance; it is a matter of choice." We are in control of our fate, even if it seems like the universe commands what behold us in the future. The deal is internal rather than external.
Episode 4: Theodore Roosevelt is the governor of New York and he aims at monopolies. He isn't interested in buying them, but destroying them. He eventually becomes vice president to the pleasure of the fortunate men. When the chief executive is assassinated, he steps into office with a mindset that intimidates Rockefeller and Morgan. They never pictured a man who is out to hunt them to lead the nation. Roosevelt doesn't play games as he refuses to be manipulated. When he sues Morgan's railroad company, trusts are cornered and have a legitimate threat looming closer. When Rockefeller is in court defending himself, he doesn't recall any accusations coming to light. The only way he can save himself in the case is if his memory doesn't serve him well. It's a smart move on his part to deny any shots taken at him. It's the only way he can dodge a bullet. Henry Ford comes up with the most affordable automobile up to date. He is determined to Patton his remodeled invention to supply the modern people. Even though his application is rejected, he won't give up on his dreams. In the face of adversity, he challenges the fastest car driver to a race. When the underdog comes up with the victory, he is able to start his own factory with the funds he is given to produce. He was relentless in his pursuit to provide the country with a vehicle they needed. He generously wants the average consumer to use his car. He had a different perspective on how business should be run. His employees were paid double the normal wage and he invented the assembly line. Mass production thrives because of the speed in the process. America has lived through the good, the bad, and the ugly. For change to occur, expect nothing less than something revolutionary.
displeasure* TDR is an enemy to the wealthy
Episode 3: A connection between the past and present is that Carnegie founded his steel company in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. That is why there is a football team today called the Pittsburgh Steelers. Anyways, J.P. Morgan teams up with his father to build their empire. He was born in the banking business and he thought financing would overpower other industries. He is tired of playing it safe; he wants to take risks to reach the top. He is done with being conservative and he aims at Thomas Edison; a world renowned inventor that catches his eye. The light bulb has the potential to change the world and Morgan knows he can promote this device to his personal benefit. This is the moment where he can create his own legacy. Morgan’s residence is the first in the world to be lit by electricity. He’s thinking bigger and expanding this nationwide. Rockefeller doesn’t like how this technology will be the main light source of America. He needs people to invest in kerosene or he will lose value.
Episode 3: Morgan funds Edison even if the light bulb is high risk, high reward. Manhattan has a high-tech power station that’s filled with generations. New York City has the pleasure of being filled with lights. Rockefeller threatens the business by inflicting fear into the public. He warns society of the potential harms of electricity, such as death. Nikola Tesla has developed an alternating current, which Edison thinks is too dangerous to share. The higher voltage is prone to error. Edison doesn’t pay mind to him because he’s superior and he ignores what his employee has to offer. “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.” Edison failed to do so. Eventually, he gets pressure to prove his critics wrong. Tesla has a system that attracts many and can uplift his reputation. Edison has a couple of tricks up his sleeve to sway the country towards his method; it's genius.
Morgan funds Edison because he believes that electricity is going to be of great importance in the future. After all, he had a lot of banks, he had bought a lot of banks and built them up to gain profits, so he just needed to move into another field and conquer it. He also invested in Edison's electricity because he wanted to live outside the shadows of his father. His father warned him not to take risks, so he took a risk to prove his father wrong and to show his individualism.
Episode 3: Society always lives with a "survival of the fittest" mentality. A New York state prison is looking to change the way criminals receive capital punishment. The death penalty can be given through electrocution instead of hangings. This is where Edison finds an opening to tarnish Tesla’s reputation. He is more than happy to provide an electric chair as long as it connects to a Westinghouse generator. The world witnesses the first human execution with electricity, specifically with alternating currents. The plan backfires as the shock doesn’t initially kill the man. J.P. Morgan disappoints his father as he has an aggressive strategy to be one of the greatest investors. He is still convinced electricity is the future. The world’s largest power plant is being built at Niagara Falls. This station will be able to power the entire Northeast. The question is, will direct currents (DC) or alternating currents (AC) be able to provide the source of power? Westinghouse was falling in debt and Morgan capitalizes off of the economy’s struggle. Tesla destroys his contract just to keep investors interested. Financiers back off when a company goes bankrupt. Tesla was never in it for the money; he was passionate about his product. The feud keeps on rising in intensity. When one side seems to fail, they find a way to comeback stronger.
Episode 1: In this episode, the narrator explains that Cornelius Vanderbilt started out by buying a small ferry boat with a one hundred dollar loan. I decided to look up exactly how much was one hundred dollars back in this time period. According to the website I used, one hundred dollars would be our current year equivalent to about two thousand dollars. I can definitely see how Cornelius Vanderbilt was able to buy a boat with that much money. Mark Cuban makes a comment about how competitive business was during this time period. I can see that there are time and places in which competition is not only beneficial but necessary for the advancement of all. In many ways, America has benefitted from the competitiveness of men like Cornelius Vanderbilt. Vanderbilt’s nickname was “the Commodore”. I looked up the definition of the word “commodore” on Merriam-Webster. I found several definitions, including “the ranking officer commanding a body of merchant ships” and “the chief officer of a yacht club or boating association”. I’ve never heard of the word “commodore” before this, so I wasn’t able to understand where Vanderbilt’s nickname came from until I had looked up the meaning of the word.
Cornelius Vanderbilt's net worth was $64 million, which is equivalent to $75 billion today, and he couldn't buy his escape from the war. By the war, I think it's his own war he's going to be facing with others and not a national war. If George Vanderbilt was Cornelius's most cherished son, why didn't he get a substitute for him in the war since he was rich? In addition, why would a rich person like Vanderbilt go out without protection from any men? Was personal guards an uncommon thing during the late 19th century?
"Robber Barons" get revenge by using their businesses to their advantage. To my amusement, it took two years to build grand central, I thought it took about four years. Instead of Vanderbilt owning the railroad company, I thought it was Pullman. In my opinion, I think Rockefeller was destined to be rich because he started his own business at a tender age. Did Rockefeller gain his oil from one area? If he did, how could he supply the whole nation with oil and kerosene? I realized that there were different railroad companies, and Tom Scott owned one of them. The idea of a pipeline came about through Rockefeller's desire to cut the railroad from the oil business, in my opinion.
Episode 2: If Tom Scott did school Andrew Carnegie, then he was not as bad as I thought he would be. Aside being a mentor of Carnegie, I think Scott was the somewhat the father of Carnegie. It was very smart of Scott to bring about the idea of a bridge to enhance Westward Expansion. I'm not sure if I should consider Tom Scott as part of the robber barons because I don't really see him to be a cheater.I think he was not like Rockefeller and Carnegie. I might be wrong though. Did he take care of Carnegie because he didn't because he didn't have a son? Or, did he take care of him because he worked for him as a kid?
I think People can be both good and bad. The kindness and warmth they show to some people might be exclusive to those people only. Scott is an example of when people can be both good and bad. He aimed to destroy Rockefeller and take advantage of him, but he also did mentor Carnegie.
Episode 2: Apparently, Andrew Carnegie wouldn't have been who he was without his mentor; Tom Scott. Scott brought up the idea of building a bridge to enhance the Westward Expansion. It was through this idea that Carnegie also brought about the idea of building with steel. Carnegie was very brave through the tough times he had when building the bridge. He was also very intelligent in using a superstitious belief to persuade the people to use his bridge. Who does that? At this stage, was Carnegie still working under Scott, or was he on his own? When Scott died, did he live his property in the care of Carnegie? If he did, then it justifies my guess that he had no son. Why is Henry Frick not as popular as other rich people in the late 19th century? Was it because he worked under one of them?
Episode 3: J.P. Morgan to my surprise was born into banking. Banking was something his father was already involved in before his birth. However, was that the way J.P. Morgan was forced to study finance and banking when he was a kid as depicted in this episode. Thomas Edison did not only bring about the light bulb and electricity, but he brought about other inventions like the phonograph and the vitascope. Morgan wisely invested in electricity to make him more rich aside all the profit he earned from his banks.
Episode 4: Did William McKinley only become president because he was supported by the robber barons. Each of this rich people, given out $200000 each which is equivalent to $20 million today to McKinley was very huge. That shows how bad they didn't want William Jennings Bryan to win. Did William J. Bryan really think he was going to win? He was going against those who provide jobs in the country, and he expected to bring them down that easily. In addition, I find it very wise of the robber barons or the powerful men in the country during 1896 to adopt the strategy of "no job if Bryan wins" to convince the people in voting for McKinley.
In the first episode, we see Cornelius Vanderbilt, a self-made man, try to exploit John D. Rockefeller. This is ironic and also shows how people are in the real world. Once someone makes it, they feel they have earned it and the others must earn it, too. This justifies exploitation and conniving. The idea of Social Darwinism is that one is the fit to be in a higher position in society. When Rockefeller avoided certain death, he felt that he was destined to become rich and this justified his means to him. The constant trying to take advantage of each other that happens between Vanderbilt, Scott, and Rockefeller shows the incessant tide of the economy and how one might have the upper hand at one point and not the other.
Andrew Carnegie is trying to get revenge for Thomas Scott’s death, which he thinks was caused because of John D. Rockefeller. Much like Vanderbilt and Rockefeller, Carnegie is a self-made man, but why did he feel the need for revenge? He himself used ruthless tactics through Henry Frick, so why didn’t he understand how Rockefeller was able to take advantage of Scott, when he was doing it to his own workers? This comes to show the ambition of these people and how they felt the need to overpower everyone in order to be satisfied.
The third episode focuses on J. Pierpont Morgan. He invest on Edison’s Electric Light Company, which is a smart move because it ends up wiping out kerosene as a source of lighting. However, Rockefeller learns to use oil for the internal combustion engine. This comes to show how sometimes competition can eliminate one of the sources of revenue one relies on, but another use has to be found to continue. Morgan also helped the government by lending it $65 million, but it ended up gaining a lot through interests. This reminded me of when we studied the Great Depression last year and how the Captains of Industry were no longer alive to help the US government and that that was why the depression got worse.
The Captains of Industry could prove how much power they had in their actions. They didn’t like Williams Jenning Bryan because he promised to break up trusts, so they got together and financed William McKinley and persuaded him to take Theodore Roosevelt as vice-president. However, this backfired on them when McKinley was shot. The fact that these robber barons could determine who became president because they had so much power and money shows that our democracy isn’t always fair or representative of the people. During the Industrial Revolution, there were more exploited workers that magnates. Then, why did so many people become convinced to vote for someone who supported what oppressed them? Roosevelt could’ve been consider a middle-ground, but Bryan was directly going against the companies.
The Industrial Revolution then changed from exploiting its workers to paying them fair wages and not overworking them when Henry Ford stepped in. He invented the assembly line, which made cars so affordable that even his workers could afford it. This means he could make a profit off of everyone. His fairness led to a rise in the working middle class, the first of its kind. What made Ford treat his workers better than the robber barons treated theirs?
Andrew Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller had their own changes. Instead of exploiting the poor, they began giving to them. This ironically created competition over who could donate or contribute the most. Rockefeller focused on education, public health, and religious organizations. Carnegie focused on education as well and created over 2,500 libraries. Philanthropy became the rich man’s hobby because they had so much money that hey didn’t even need it. Although they were partially driven by competition and their egos, the philanthropic missions might’ve been their way of repenting for their mistreatment of the poor. It also shows they did have some good in them even though their business tactics were cruel.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.