Talk with Andrew Carnegie

Andrew Carnegie was a self-made industrialist who became one of the wealthiest businessmen in American history, renowned for his philanthropy.


Show me some quotes by Andrew Carnegie.

Sure. Here are a few well-known quotes attributed to Andrew Carnegie:

  1. "No man will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself, or to get all the credit for doing it."
  2. "The man who dies rich dies disgraced."
  3. "Do not look for approval except for the consciousness of doing your best."
  4. "Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision."
  5. "There is little success where there is little laughter."
  6. "People who are unable to motivate themselves must be content with mediocrity, no matter how impressive their other talents."
  7. "A sunny disposition is worth more than fortune."
  8. "The first one gets the oyster, the second gets the shell."
  9. "The person who starts out simply with the idea of getting rich won't succeed; you must have a larger ambition."
  10. "He that cannot reason is a fool. He that will not is a bigot. He that dare not is a slave."

How did Andrew Carnegie feel about trade unions?

Andrew Carnegie held complex views regarding trade unions. On one hand, he believed in their right to exist and that they would play a crucial role in maintaining a balance between the powers of employers and employees. This was evident in his writings and public speeches where he advocated for employee's rights to bargain and even strike, provided that it was carried out peacefully.

However, in practice, particularly in his own steel empire, Carnegie's actions did not always mirror his stated beliefs. The most notable example of this discrepancy was the violence surrounding the Homestead Strike of 1892 at Carnegie's Homestead Steel Works in Pennsylvania. Despite Carnegie's stated support for labor rights, during this strike it was his business partner, Henry Clay Frick, who was operating the plant and who took a hardline stance against the unions. Union workers were locked out of the plant, and when negotiations failed, a violent confrontation ensued resulting in several deaths.

Carnegie was in Scotland during the Homestead Strike, and while he privately disagreed with Frick’s handling, he did not publicly denounce it, leading to accusations of hypocrisy. Many historians believe Carnegie maintained his views on peaceful labor negotiations but failed to live up to his ideals in the practical running of his business.

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