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Captains of Industry

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In the late 19th century a captain of industry was a business leader whose means of amassing a personal fortune contributed positively to the country in some way. This may have been through increased productivity, expansion of markets, providing more jobs, or acts of philanthropy. This characterization contrasts with that of the robber baron, a business leader using political means to achieve personal ends. Some 19th-century industrialists who were called "captains of industry" overlap with those called "robber barons". These include people such as J. P. Morgan, Andrew Carnegie, Andrew W. Mellon, Henry Ford, and John D. Rockefeller. The term was coined by Thomas Carlyle in his 1843 book, Past and Present.

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