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Andrew Carnegie

Andrew Carnegie
Artist
Unidentified Artist
Sitter
Andrew Carnegie, 25 Nov 1835 - 11 Aug 1919
Date
c. 1905
Type
Painting
Medium
Oil on canvas
Dimensions
Stretcher: 128.3 x 101.9 x 3.8cm (50 1/2 x 40 1/8 x 1 1/2")
Frame: 150.5 x 125.7 x 5.1cm (59 1/4 x 49 1/2 x 2")
Topic
Home Furnishings\Furniture\Seating\Chair
Printed Material\Book
Printed Material\Document
Interior\Office
Personal Attribute\Facial Hair\Mustache
Personal Attribute\Facial Hair\Beard
Home Furnishings\Furniture\Desk
Home Furnishings\Globe
Andrew Carnegie: Male
Andrew Carnegie: Business and Finance\Businessperson\Industrialist
Andrew Carnegie: Society and Social Change\Philanthropist
Andrew Carnegie: Business and Finance\Businessperson\Industrialist\Manufacturer\Steel
Andrew Carnegie: Literature\Writer\Essayist
Andrew Carnegie: Communications\Publicist
Andrew Carnegie: Education\Founder\Library
Portrait
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Margaret Carnegie Miller
Restrictions & Rights
CC0
Object number
NPG.74.44
Exhibition Label
Born Dunfermline, Scotland
At twelve, Andrew Carnegie helped support his immigrant family by working at a cotton mill near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He went on to amass a fortune through shrewd investments in the steel industry. Carnegie sometimes voiced support for labor interests, but his role in the 1892 Homestead strike, a violent conflict between the Carnegie Steel Company and unionized labor, turned him into a symbol of capitalist greed. In 1901, Carnegie Steel merged into the newly formed United States Steel Corporation, the nation’s first billion-dollar corporation.
In “The Gospel of Wealth” (1889), Carnegie argued that the rich were morally obligated to spend their fortunes to benefit society. Taking a businesslike approach to philanthropy, Carnegie donated $350 million during his lifetime and endowed many institutions and charitable foundations that bear his name today. Around the time this portrait was made, Carnegie began to establish foundations to promote international understanding and world peace.
Nacido en Dunfermline, Escocia
A los 11 años, Andrew Carnegie ya ayudaba a su familia inmigrante trabajando en una fábrica de algodón cerca de Pittsburgh, Pensilvania. Luego amasaría una fortuna gracias a inversiones astutas en la industria del acero. En ocasiones defendió los intereses laborales, pero su actuación durante la huelga de 1892 en Homestead, un conflicto violento entre la Carnegie Steel Company y el sindicato obrero, lo convirtió en símbolo de la avaricia capitalista. En 1901 Carnegie Steel se fusionó con la recién fundada United States Steel Corporation, primera compañía multimillonaria de la nación.
En “El evangelio de la riqueza” (1889), Carnegie decía que los ricos tenían la obligación moral de usar su dinero en beneficio de la sociedad. Con una visión pragmática de la filantropía, donó $350 millones durante su vida y dotó a numerosas instituciones y fundaciones benéficas que hoy llevan su nombre. Hacia la época de este retrato, Carnegie empezaba a crear fundaciones para promover el entendimiento entre las naciones y la paz mundial.
Provenance
Margaret Carnegie Miller, Fairfield, Conn., daughter of sitter; gift 1974 to NPG
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
Exhibition
2022 Rehang of Out of Many: Portraits from 1600 to 1900
On View
NPG, East Gallery 131