How Cornelius Vanderbilt made his millions

WalletPop's Lan Nguyen chats with T.J. Stiles, author of The First Tycoon: The Epic Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt (Knopf), on how the Commodore became one of the wealthiest and most powerful men in American history. Stiles recounts and explains how Vanderbilt catapulted himself from a working-class Dutch background to wealth so vast that if he sold all his assets at full market value at the moment of his death in 1877, he would have taken one out of every twenty dollars in circulation, including cash and demand deposits.

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