Andrew Carnegie's Philanthropy Research Paper by JPWrite

Andrew Carnegie's Philanthropy
A review of the life and philanthropy of Andrew Carnegie.
# 67156 | 5,643 words | 2 sources | MLA | 2006 | US
Published on Jun 29, 2006 in History (Leaders) , Philosophy (History - 19th Century)

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The paper examines Andrew Carnegie's early life, detailing his rise from bobbin boy in a cotton mill to wealthy industrialist. The paper explains that Carnegie's interest in philanthropy began in 1870, at the age of thirty-five, but that he first publicly set forth his concept of what he termed "scientific philanthropy" in an 1889 essay entitled "Wealth", which succinctly stated his thesis that "The problem of our age is the administration of wealth." The paper shows that reaction to Carnegie's ideas was mixed, and cites examples both from those in favor and those opposed. It shows how Carnegie applied his principles in funding libraries and then moved on to develop the modern philanthropic foundation and organize the business of philanthropy at the turn of the century. The paper discusses his competition with John D. Rockefeller to see who could give the most. The paper analyzes the long-term changes that Carnegie's philanthropy brought about in American culture and society. In conclusion, the writer feels that Carnegie's example is one that should be followed by other persons of great wealth, since prudent and judicious distribution of private wealth is the only way that the free enterprise system can hope to survive for more than a short term in a historical time frame.

Table of Contents:
Early Life
Carnegie the Philanthropist
Competitive Philanthropy
The Carnegie Legacy

From the Paper:

"Carnegie's ideas about the distribution of his vast wealth drew criticism at the time he began his philanthropic activity. However, his ideas are sound and, in retrospect, most of the criticism can be observed to come from those who either did not receive the extent of support that they sought or objected to the restrictions and qualifications placed upon them as beneficiaries. However, he was true to his own ideals. He had ample reason for making the provisions he did, and they have held up to public scrutiny and examination after the fact. Libraries are an acknowledged necessity in today's world, and it is difficult to imagine what the world would be without them. Certainly, they have served as an aid and an impetus to education to the entire population. It may have been a small beginning, considering the extent of his fortune, but it was characteristic of Carnegie to act in ways that are well thought out and methodical. Libraries were his first endeavor, but he never meant them to be his last."

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