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 William Henry Vanderbilt

William Henry Vanderbilt

Birth
New Brunswick, Middlesex County, New Jersey, USA
Death 8 Dec 1885 (aged 64)
Manhattan, New York County (Manhattan), New York, USA
Burial New Dorp, Richmond County (Staten Island), New York, USA
Memorial ID 1059 · View Source
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19th Century American railroad developer and financier. He was born William Henry Vanderbilt, in New Brunswick, New Jersey on May 8th, 1821, the son of the famous New York ferry and railroad pioneer Cornelius “The Commodore” Vanderbilt. Starting at the bottom, he worked his way up through the family business, to become his father’s closest aide, with a major role in the series of acquisitions that led to the formation of the New York Central Railroad in the 1860’s. William took over as president of the New York Central following the death of his father in 1877. As a leading American businessman, Vanderbilt was considered a member of the “robber barons” and as such was often heavily criticized in the press. His luxuriant “mutton chop” side whiskers were quite distinctive and widely lampooned by the political cartoonists of the day. Seeing that the tide of public opinion was turning against vast monopolies such as his, he sold large amounts of his stock in 1879. As his health declined, he resigned as president of the New York Central Railroad in 1883, and gave over his final years to his philanthropies and his horses. By the time of his death in 1885, he had doubled his 1877 inheritance to the then-unheard-of sum of $200 million.

Bio by: Edward Parsons



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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 1 Jan 2001
  • Find A Grave Memorial 1059
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for William Henry Vanderbilt (8 May 1821–8 Dec 1885), Find A Grave Memorial no. 1059, citing Vanderbilt Mausoleum, New Dorp, Richmond County (Staten Island), New York, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .