Rockefeller, John D. (1839–1937)

JOHN D. Rockefeller, founder of the Standard Oil Trust, was the archetypal robber baron of late 19th-century America. The label signalled public provaldisap of the business methods and attitudes of Rockefeller and fellow industrialists and financiers such as Andrew Carnegie, William Vanderbilt, Jay Gould and J. Pierpont Morgan. Political demagogues and muck-raking journalists criticized Rockefeller and Standard Oil for colluding with railroad companies on freight rates, making covert company acquisitions, and predatory price-cutting or threatening to cut prices.

Rockefeller, born in Richford, New York on July 8, 1839, was the son of William Avery Rockefeller and Eliza Davison. His father was a travelling salesman dealing in horses, timber, salt, patent medicines, and herbal remedies, and was an occasional money lender. The family moved several times ...

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