History has remembered J. Pierpont Morgan as a complex and contradictory figure, part robber baron and part patron saint. Now this magisterial biography, based extensively on new material, draws a definitive, full-scale portrait of Morgan's tumultuous life both in and out of the public eye.Morgan earned his reputation as "the Napoleon of Wall Street" by reorganizing the nation's railroads and creating some of its greatest industrial trusts, including General Electric and U.S. Steel. At a time when the United States had no Federal Reserve System, he appointed himself a one-man central bank. He had two wives, three yachts, four children, six houses, mistresses, and one of the finest art collections in America. In this extraordinary book, award-winning biographer Jean Strouse vividly portrays the financial colossus, the avid patron of the arts, and the entirely human character behind all the myths.
Brilliantly crafted, epic in scope, Morgan reveals a man we have never seen before, offering new insights on the culture, political struggles, and social conflicts of America's Gilded Age....Continua
This account of the life of the man who personified American finance in the 19th century makes today's "tycoons" look like chidren dressing in their parents' clothes and playing in their parents' offices.Through a combination of parental mentering and his own acumen, JP Morgan rose through the banking world to become the one person who could command events and people (colleagues and rivals alike) to save the United States from financial ruin during times of panic. Admire him as a titan, scorn him as an oppressor, one can't help but marvel at the scope of this man's influence. He saw ways to combine railroads and industries, and faced Government inquiries for doing so. In his private life, he pursued art from around the world and enjoyed mistresses while keeping his wife at ocean's width, albeit well-cared for materially.
Engrossing look at 19th century notable persons and events, seen through the prism of the era's money master. Not for everyone, but a rewarding read for anyone pursuiing 19th century American history.