Henry Ford: Robber Barons Or Captains Of Industry

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The Gilded Age was an era that transformed from agrarian to industrialized working/businesses and goods. The Gilded Age soon came after Reconstruction and lasted from the late 1860’s to the late 1890’s. During the Gilded Age there were many businessmen that were labeled Robber Barons or Captains of Industry based on their actions of ruthlessness and monopoly or their actions of generosity and kindness. A Robber Baron is a businessman who obtained wealth through cruel manors. A Captain of Industry is a business leader who obtained wealth through positive and generous ways that had a good impact on those around them. History should remember the entrepreneurs of the 1800’s and 1900’s as Captains of Industries or Robber Barons. These entrepreneurs…show more content…
Henry Ford greatly contributed to the American people. He should be classified and remembered as a Captain of Industry because of his industrial contributions such as the revolutionization of how people used transportation and by helping increase the economy through his 1908 Model T automobile. Henry Ford set great examples for other businessmen with his creation of the assembly line,making the production of industrialized goods faster and easier. Henry Ford used tactics to build his empire such as making the Model T affordable for everyone,good wages for his labor, and buying out other shareholders. With his great generosity and acts of philanthropy,he paid his employers more than average and also supported the people(affordable prices). Some may argue that Henry Ford in fact was a Robber Baron or had the characteristics of a Robber Baron instead of a Captain of Industry. He did believe in anti-semitism and was believed to sympathized with the Nazi’s (based on his attacks on the Jewish in the newspaper “Dearborn Independent” and the decoration from Hitler 's government). Henry Ford was a business leader and should be remembered as a Captain of Industry for his great contributions to humanity such as the increase in the economy,the affordability of automobiles, and the good treatment/payment of his…show more content…
Rockefeller was also one of the most successful wealthy Gilded Age entrepreneurs. Although Rockefeller did make a name for himself in the oil industry,supplying the U.S with oil, and creating the Standard Oil Company;his road to power was paved with the pain and suffering of others due to his malicious behavior. He should be remembered as a Robber Baron because of his attempts at monopoly, malicious behavior to those who stood in his way, and especially the treatment of his workers in order to get the wealth he desired. J.D. Rockefeller used tactics such as vertical integration, using rebates to transport his oil for cheaper prices, and using ruthless methods to eliminate the competition. Rockefellers ruthlessness lead him to be very successful up until his fatal encountered with Ida Tarbell. Ida Tarbell was an American muckraker(reformed American journalist)whose father had been put out of the oil business by Rockefeller. Tarbell later gained fame from exposing some of the wrongdoings J.D. Rockefeller performed. Tarbell using powerful journalism and wrote a 19-part series in McClure’s magazine brought down the Standard Oil Company’s monopoly. One could argue that Rockefeller was in fact a Captain of Industry instead of a Robber Baron. This can be argued because he did show characteristics of philanthropy by donating millions for education,charities, and the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research. J.D. Rockefeller was another very wealthy Gilded Age businessman. He
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