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City Life 1880-1920: Websites

Robber Barons or Captains of Industry?

Millionaire's Row

Millionaire's Row, circa 1898.  Home to Andrew Carnegie, Henry Frick, Cornelius Vanderbilt, and others of the well-heeled elite.  -- photo from Amherst University

"During the "Gilded Age," every man was a potential Andrew Carnegie, and Americans who achieved wealth celebrated it as never before. In New York, the opera, the theatre, and lavish parties consumed the ruling class' leisure hours. [. . .] Europeans were aghast. America may have had money and factories, they felt, but it lacked sophistication. When French prime minister Georges Clemenceau visited, he said the nation had gone from a stage of barbarism to one of decadence -- without achieving any civilization between the two."  -- from PBS