Harold Livesay’s Biography of Andrew Carnegie

Updated October 19, 2020

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Harold Livesay’s Biography of Andrew Carnegie essay

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In Harold Livesay’s Biography of Andrew Carnegie the narrator, Livesay, takes the reader through Carnegie’s life in a linear fashion from childhood to death and similarly humbling desperation to copious success from early 19th century to early 20th century. I believe that Livesay’s goal is to reinforce the idea that through determination, hard work, effort and grit ones life can go from the lowest low to the highest high not held back by ones societal background, making a point to reference the idea of the American Dream early on into his work. Truthfully, I believe Livesay defended this assertion well through his detailed narration of Carnegie’s life, choices, careers and development of his character; however, pointing out some of the drawbacks to Carnegie’s coming to success.

Initially, Livesay makes note of and references Carnegie’s Scottish upbringing and prefaces the ways in which his cultural background play a role in his overarching journey. For example, Carnegie’s family being textile weavers which is a job that would soon fall victim to the industrial revolution. In predictable fashion due to the authors preface of the American Dream the Carnegie family proceeds to voyage to America in pursuit of opportunity. These hardships shaped Carnegie to an extent at which he was eager and ready to work early on in his life in America which would be very valuable for him in the future.

Moving forward, Carnegie begins to dabble in many fields of work while growing up in America. He dabbled in jobs in multiple fields of work such as doing factory work to help provide for his family, becoming a telegraph operator, Telegraph lining for a railroad company, business work, and steel production. Working as a telegraph operator allowed Carnegie to advance and sharpen his trade which landed him the spot for working as a telegraph liner for the Pennsylvania Railroad under the wing of Tom Scott who plays a very influential role in Carnegie’s life. Importantly, this plethora of work experience was a driving force in shaping Carnegie into a tactful and masterful businessman who succeeded to unforeseeable proportions.

The latter half of the biography details Carnegie’s inner conflicts with success, fortune and fame, as well as his revolutionary business and his impact on the industrial revolution its self. Tom Scott played a part in this conflict by influencing Carnegie to begin investing in companies and truly divulging into acquiring profit without working and this was all closely related to the railroad industry. Additionally, this seemed to lead to a certain uncanny ability for Carnegie to understand the market, collect consumer cost data, and revolutionize the industry.

Furthermore, his diverse background of work experience, the support of family, friends and influential figures Carnegie was able to establish one of the biggest businesses of the 19th century and one of the wealthiest men of all time.

Harold Livesay’s Biography of Andrew Carnegie essay

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Harold Livesay’s Biography of Andrew Carnegie. (2020, Sep 23). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/harold-livesays-biography-of-andrew-carnegie/


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