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Morgan, J. Pierpont (1837–1913)

J. P. MORGAN became the quintessential gentleman banker of the last quarter of the 19th century through a combination of inherited wealth, British connections, and a very Protestant version of chutzpah. J. P. Morgan and Co. was the American successor company to his father's J. S. Morgan of London, England, itself a successor to George Peabody, the first American merchant banker in London.

By the time J. P. Morgan took over, merchant bankers in the United States had become financiers who controlled not only business, but also government borrowing and financing, and Morgan was at the pinnacle of the group. Morgan prevailed in the railroad combines and railroad bond debacles of the 1870s and 1880s. In 1901, Morgan engineered the conglomerate that became U.S. Steel, made ...

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