How Did Cornelius Vanderbilt Make America

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Cornelius Vanderbilt grew up as a poor boy in New York City and would become the richest man in the country. He was not only extremely competitive, but used any means necessary to get ahead. He began building his career at age 16, buying a boat and serving as a ferryman. Over the next forty years, he went on to create his fortune in the steamship business, building the world’s largest shipping empire. He was given the informal nickname of “the Commodore” by the public (Allen). One of the most critical elements these entrepreneurs had to have as America was being established was vision: something the Commodore undeniably possessed. Vanderbilt was willing to bet his entire career once he saw the potential in one industry- the railroad. Vanderbilt…show more content…
Rockefeller’s oil refinery was almost to the point of bankruptcy. However, contriving Cornelius Vanderbilt saw potential in young Rockefeller, so he came to the rescue and invited Rockefeller and invited him to New York to talk business. When Rockefeller missed his train - which would have taken him to his death - he became a changed man. He believed that God had spared him, and therefore chose to no longer be intimidated, but confident in himself. When he headed to New York again, he offered Vanderbilt the lofty price of $1.67 a barrel, and agreed to fill all of his trains with oil. Thanks to his deal with Vanderbilt, Rockefeller was able to ship his oil cheaply, all across the country. However, there was still one problem: he had too much oil (Allen). Tom Scott, one of Vanderbilt’s greatest competitors, was looking for a way to overcome the Commodore. To do this, he offered Rockefeller a better deal than Vanderbilt could ever offer. Thanks to Scott, Rockefeller was able to use his abundance of oil to supply every home in the nation with Standard Oil. Because of his competitive nature, Rockefeller then fought to buy out all of his competitors. He succeeded, creating the nation’s first monopoly (Allen). At the age of 33, only six years after he almost went out of business, John D. Rockefeller became the most powerful man in the

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