The Man Who Made Wall Street: Anthony J. Drexel and the Rise of Modern Finance

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9780812219661: The Man Who Made Wall Street: Anthony J. Drexel and the Rise of Modern Finance
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He tamed the market's bulls and bears. "He was the best friend I have ever had in every way."—J. P. Morgan

It was the height of the Gilded Age and J. Pierpont Morgan controlled the fate of railroads, corporations, and governments. The wealthy and influential were said to tremble before his blinding intellect and intimidating gaze, yet he deferred to one man: Anthony J. Drexel. Drexel—whose name is familiar today only through the university he founded and his recently canonized niece and protegee, Katharine—was the most influential financier of the nineteenth century.

The second son of an Austrian emigre, Anthony Drexel (1826-1893) soon established himself as the preeminent financial mind in the Philadelphia currency brokerage his father began in 1838. Shunning publicity, self-promotion, and high-profile public accolades (he declined President Ulysses S. Grant's invitation to become Secretary of the Treasury), Drexel initiated a partnership with J. P. Morgan and his father, Junius, that became the most powerful financial combination of its age.

At a time when the United States did not have a central bank, the government as well as large-scale commercial ventures relied on financiers to raise the enormous sums of money necessary to build railroads, construct factories, and fight major wars. With branches and partnerships in London, Paris, Chicago, and New York, all benefiting from their leader's reputation for impeccable integrity, Drexel's firms were able to steer American business through the most extraordinary long-term economic growth of any nation in world history, as well as through four devastating depressions, an enlightening lesson in the cyclical nature of the U.S. economy.

Drexel and his firm quietly pioneered many of the financial and business strategies that we now take for granted, such as trading national currencies, guaranteeing credit for travelers abroad, rewarding workers based on individual initiative, and offering "sweat equity" to deserving employees who could not afford to buy stock. By cultivating Morgan's self-confidence and allowing his younger business partner to become the public face for the firm, Drexel was able to avoid attention and, instead, nurture his extended family.

Today, Anthony J. Drexel's influence and accomplishments are mostly forgotten or credited to others, but after decades of detective work and careful research, Dan Rottenberg has succeeded in writing the first biography of this exceptionally influential and elusive man. Since Drexel gave no interviews, kept no diaries, held no public offices, and destroyed most of his personal papers, Rottenberg had painstakingly to track down every reference and anecdote he could find and, in the process, discovered 150 previously unknown letters and cables in Drexel's hand. Drexel believed that there is no limit to what one can accomplish if one doesn't mind who gets the credit, but as The Man Who Made Wall Street shows, the balance has finally been paid in full.

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About the Author:

Dan Rottenberg is the editor of BroadStreetReview.com, an internet arts and culture forum. He is the author of nine books and has written for Town and Country, New York Times Magazine, Forbes, Civilization, TV Guide, Rolling Stone, and many other publications.

From Publishers Weekly:

Though Drexel (1826-1893) was a major player in American finance as the country moved into the industrial age and certainly deserves a serious biography, his achievements are often overlooked in favor of more famous figures such as Jay Gould and J.P. Morgan. In fact, the book's title is ironic, given that Drexel's base was Philadelphia's Third Street financial district. Yet most of this book concerns his indirect effect on New York financial circles and his very direct effect on the fortunes of his good friend J.P. Morgan. Some of Drexel's obscurity is attributable to his private nature; there are few surviving papers and no interviews. On this score, Rottenberg (Finding Our Fathers) has done a superlative job, tracking down hundreds of bits of information, collating indirect references and interviewing many surviving relatives. Unfortunately, the other reason that Drexel gets little fanfare is that he was less interesting, energetic and imaginative than his celebrated contemporaries. Perhaps partly due to a lackluster portrayal, Drexel never comes alive in these pages, either as a person or as an important force. His introduction of financial practices that are now entrenched norms is indeed important, but to general readers his influence will seem very subtle and indirect. In the high drama of American finance, Drexel secured a seat with an unobstructed view. Readers with a particular interest in 19th-century financial affairs will find this work an invaluable resource, providing a rigorously researched and solidly presented illumination of hitherto neglected details. 26 b&w illus.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Book Description University of Pennsylvania Press, United States, 2006. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. He tamed the market's bulls and bears. "He was the best friend I have ever had in every way."-J. P. MorganIt was the height of the Gilded Age and J. Pierpont Morgan controlled the fate of railroads, corporations, and governments. The wealthy and influential were said to tremble before his blinding intellect and intimidating gaze, yet he deferred to one man: Anthony J. Drexel. Drexel-whose name is familiar today only through the university he founded and his recently canonized niece and protegee, Katharine-was the most influential financier of the nineteenth century.The second son of an Austrian emigre, Anthony Drexel (1826-1893) soon established himself as the preeminent financial mind in the Philadelphia currency brokerage his father began in 1838. Shunning publicity, self-promotion, and high-profile public accolades (he declined President Ulysses S. Grant's invitation to become Secretary of the Treasury), Drexel initiated a partnership with J. P. Morgan and his father, Junius, that became the most powerful financial combination of its age.At a time when the United States did not have a central bank, the government as well as large-scale commercial ventures relied on financiers to raise the enormous sums of money necessary to build railroads, construct factories, and fight major wars. With branches and partnerships in London, Paris, Chicago, and New York, all benefiting from their leader's reputation for impeccable integrity, Drexel's firms were able to steer American business through the most extraordinary long-term economic growth of any nation in world history, as well as through four devastating depressions, an enlightening lesson in the cyclical nature of the U.S. economy.Drexel and his firm quietly pioneered many of the financial and business strategies that we now take for granted, such as trading national currencies, guaranteeing credit for travelers abroad, rewarding workers based on individual initiative, and offering "sweat equity" to deserving employees who could not afford to buy stock. By cultivating Morgan's self-confidence and allowing his younger business partner to become the public face for the firm, Drexel was able to avoid attention and, instead, nurture his extended family.Today, Anthony J. Drexel's influence and accomplishments are mostly forgotten or credited to others, but after decades of detective work and careful research, Dan Rottenberg has succeeded in writing the first biography of this exceptionally influential and elusive man. Since Drexel gave no interviews, kept no diaries, held no public offices, and destroyed most of his personal papers, Rottenberg had painstakingly to track down every reference and anecdote he could find and, in the process, discovered 150 previously unknown letters and cables in Drexel's hand. Drexel believed that there is no limit to what one can accomplish if one doesn't mind who gets the credit, but as The Man Who Made Wall Street shows, the balance has finally been paid in full. Seller Inventory # AAV9780812219661

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Book Description University of Pennsylvania Press, United States, 2006. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. He tamed the market's bulls and bears. "He was the best friend I have ever had in every way."-J. P. MorganIt was the height of the Gilded Age and J. Pierpont Morgan controlled the fate of railroads, corporations, and governments. The wealthy and influential were said to tremble before his blinding intellect and intimidating gaze, yet he deferred to one man: Anthony J. Drexel. Drexel-whose name is familiar today only through the university he founded and his recently canonized niece and protegee, Katharine-was the most influential financier of the nineteenth century.The second son of an Austrian emigre, Anthony Drexel (1826-1893) soon established himself as the preeminent financial mind in the Philadelphia currency brokerage his father began in 1838. Shunning publicity, self-promotion, and high-profile public accolades (he declined President Ulysses S. Grant's invitation to become Secretary of the Treasury), Drexel initiated a partnership with J. P. Morgan and his father, Junius, that became the most powerful financial combination of its age.At a time when the United States did not have a central bank, the government as well as large-scale commercial ventures relied on financiers to raise the enormous sums of money necessary to build railroads, construct factories, and fight major wars. With branches and partnerships in London, Paris, Chicago, and New York, all benefiting from their leader's reputation for impeccable integrity, Drexel's firms were able to steer American business through the most extraordinary long-term economic growth of any nation in world history, as well as through four devastating depressions, an enlightening lesson in the cyclical nature of the U.S. economy.Drexel and his firm quietly pioneered many of the financial and business strategies that we now take for granted, such as trading national currencies, guaranteeing credit for travelers abroad, rewarding workers based on individual initiative, and offering "sweat equity" to deserving employees who could not afford to buy stock. By cultivating Morgan's self-confidence and allowing his younger business partner to become the public face for the firm, Drexel was able to avoid attention and, instead, nurture his extended family.Today, Anthony J. Drexel's influence and accomplishments are mostly forgotten or credited to others, but after decades of detective work and careful research, Dan Rottenberg has succeeded in writing the first biography of this exceptionally influential and elusive man. Since Drexel gave no interviews, kept no diaries, held no public offices, and destroyed most of his personal papers, Rottenberg had painstakingly to track down every reference and anecdote he could find and, in the process, discovered 150 previously unknown letters and cables in Drexel's hand. Drexel believed that there is no limit to what one can accomplish if one doesn't mind who gets the credit, but as The Man Who Made Wall Street shows, the balance has finally been paid in full. Seller Inventory # AAV9780812219661

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Book Description University of Pennsylvania Press. Paperback. Condition: New. 296 pages. Dimensions: 8.8in. x 5.9in. x 0.8in.He tamed the markets bulls and bears. He was the best friend I have ever had in every way. J. P. MorganIt was the height of the Gilded Age and J. Pierpont Morgan controlled the fate of railroads, corporations, and governments. The wealthy and influential were said to tremble before his blinding intellect and intimidating gaze, yet he deferred to one man: Anthony J. Drexel. Drexelwhose name is familiar today only through the university he founded and his recently canonized niece and protegee, Katharinewas the most influential financier of the nineteenth century. The second son of an Austrian emigre, Anthony Drexel (1826-1893) soon established himself as the preeminent financial mind in the Philadelphia currency brokerage his father began in 1838. Shunning publicity, self-promotion, and high-profile public accolades (he declined President Ulysses S. Grants invitation to become Secretary of the Treasury), Drexel initiated a partnership with J. P. Morgan and his father, Junius, that became the most powerful financial combination of its age. At a time when the United States did not have a central bank, the government as well as large-scale commercial ventures relied on financiers to raise the enormous sums of money necessary to build railroads, construct factories, and fight major wars. With branches and partnerships in London, Paris, Chicago, and New York, all benefiting from their leaders reputation for impeccable integrity, Drexels firms were able to steer American business through the most extraordinary long-term economic growth of any nation in world history, as well as through four devastating depressions, an enlightening lesson in the cyclical nature of the U. S. economy. Drexel and his firm quietly pioneered many of the financial and business strategies that we now take for granted, such as trading national currencies, guaranteeing credit for travelers abroad, rewarding workers based on individual initiative, and offering sweat equity to deserving employees who could not afford to buy stock. By cultivating Morgans self-confidence and allowing his younger business partner to become the public face for the firm, Drexel was able to avoid attention and, instead, nurture his extended family. Today, Anthony J. Drexels influence and accomplishments are mostly forgotten or credited to others, but after decades of detective work and careful research, Dan Rottenberg has succeeded in writing the first biography of this exceptionally influential and elusive man. Since Drexel gave no interviews, kept no diaries, held no public offices, and destroyed most of his personal papers, Rottenberg had painstakingly to track down every reference and anecdote he could find and, in the process, discovered 150 previously unknown letters and cables in Drexels hand. Drexel believed that there is no limit to what one can accomplish if one doesnt mind who gets the credit, but as The Man Who Made Wall Street shows, the balance has finally been paid in full. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Seller Inventory # 9780812219661

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