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The Life and Legend of E. H. Harriman (Unc Press Enduring Editions) ePub download

by Maury Klein

  • Author: Maury Klein
  • ISBN: 0807865532
  • ISBN13: 978-0807865538
  • ePub: 1505 kb | FB2: 1183 kb
  • Language: English
  • Category: Americas
  • Publisher: The University of North Carolina Press; Reissue edition (April 1, 2011)
  • Pages: 544
  • Rating: 4.4/5
  • Votes: 501
  • Format: txt rtf mobi lrf
The Life and Legend of E. H. Harriman (Unc Press Enduring Editions) ePub download

Paperback: 544 pages. Mr Klien has done it again. I read Mr. Klein's The Life And Legend of Jay Gould with much anticipation and found it to be very engaging.

Paperback: 544 pages. That is exactly how i felt about his latest endeavor, The Life and Legend of . Mr. Klien handles a complex person with much skill and depth. He brings to life a monumental person who was both very complex and yet very human.

Originally published 2000. Entrepreneurs Biographies Business. To read this book, upload an EPUB or FB2 file to Bookmate.

Maury Klein was able to paint a very sympathetic picture of a man, that was apparently quite a controversial figure.

Here, Maury Klein offers the first in-depth biography in more than . great turn-of-the-century business titans

Here, Maury Klein offers the first in-depth biography in more than seventy-five years of this influential yet surprisingly understudied figure. A Wall Street banker until age fifty, Harriman catapulted into the railroad arena in 1897, gaining control of the Union Pacific Railroad as it emerged from bankruptcy and successfully modernizing every aspect of its operation. great turn-of-the-century business titans.

The Life and Legend of E. H. Harriman - eBook.

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Harriman (2000) Book details. Publisher: University of North Carolina Press. Place of publication: Chapel Hill, NC. Publication year: 2000.

At this end of the twentieth century the name of E. Harriman may be less familiar than that of his son W. Averell Harriman, who followed an already impressive career in business with long and distinguished service in diplomacy and politics. To any American living in the first years of this century, however, the name and face of E. Harriman were as familiar as those of his fellow titans J. P. Morgan, John D. Rockefeller, and Andrew Carnegie.

The Life & Legend of . According to Klein, Harriman rose during a period when the changing nature of the American economy called for a ne. . Harriman is a well-written, highly readable, noteworthy contribution both as a biography of the individual and an analysis of the restructuring of railroads. It is a commendable effort to understand a man who drove himself to the heights of his chosen profession and put him within the complicated business history of his times. According to Klein, Harriman rose during a period when the changing nature of the American economy called for a new breed of bold businessmen. Competition was seen as wasteful and inefficient. Are you sure you want to remove The Life and Legend of E. Harriman from your list? The Life and Legend of E. Harriman. Published March 1, 2000 by The University of North Carolina Press.

Published online by Cambridge University Press: 26 July 2012. Recommend this journal. The Journal of Economic History.

To Americans living in the early twentieth century, E. H. Harriman was as familiar a name as J. P. Morgan, John D. Rockefeller, and Andrew Carnegie. Like his fellow businessmen, Harriman (1847-1909) had become the symbol for an entire industry: Morgan stood for banking, Rockefeller for oil, Carnegie for iron and steel, and Harriman for railroads. Here, Maury Klein offers the first in-depth biography in more than seventy-five years of this influential yet surprisingly understudied figure. A Wall Street banker until age fifty, Harriman catapulted into the railroad arena in 1897, gaining control of the Union Pacific Railroad as it emerged from bankruptcy and successfully modernizing every aspect of its operation. He went on to expand his empire by acquiring large stakes in other railroads, including the Southern Pacific and the Baltimore and Ohio, in the process clashing with such foes as James J. Hill, J. P. Morgan, and Theodore Roosevelt.With its new insights into the myths and controversies that surround Harriman's career, this book reasserts his legacy as one of the great turn-of-the-century business titans.Originally published 2000.A UNC Press Enduring Edition -- UNC Press Enduring Editions use the latest in digital technology to make available again books from our distinguished backlist that were previously out of print. These editions are published unaltered from the original, and are presented in affordable paperback formats, bringing readers both historical and cultural value.
Acrobat
Another one of this authors biographies tied to the development of the Union Pacific. Just similar to his earlier Jay Gould biography and continues to offer a fair and evan evaluation ofvits subject.
Agantrius
I enjoyed the book. Some parts of the book were hard to get through especially parts dealing with finances and stock trading. The book is well researched and documented. It ties in well with the authors other books- "Union Pacific", an "Jay Gould".
Oppebro
A most remarkable entrepreneur and visionary that revolutionized the management of railroads. What Alfred T. Sloan did for the auto industry and John D. Rockefeller for the oil industry, E.H. Harriman did for transforming, modernizing and scaling the railroad industry to profitability and operational efficiency.
White gold
E.H. Harriman is one of the most important figures in North American railroad history. Yet this book is a frustrating, and ultimately unsatisying read.

Why?

It might have been entitled "As far as I am concerned, Harriman can do no wrong". There is great irony in Klein's disclaimer of the previous captive biography by Kennan (no, no that George Kennan, an earlier one).

Consider at page 76, or page 170, where Klein, in discussing what we apparently would nowadays call price fixing, excuses it as "an attempt to impose stability" by, in effect, wise, well meaning, far-sighted men of business. Klein writes of Harriman's view of one railroad manager (Stilwell) who refused to engage in price fixing (i.e., he opposed "stability", and kept cutting rates to attract business) as "a menace". Or, for example, page 204, the first full paragraph from lines 9 - 11, and lines 12 - 14 in the next paragraph:

"Reluctantly the federal government entered the fray in ways that threatened to reverse its historic relationship with the private sector.
The uncertainties spawned by these clashes drove businessmen to conclude that competition was fine in theory but ruinous in practice. It bred waste, inefficiency, and instability ... To survive, much less prosper, managers had to curb competition in their own industry, however much they extolled its virtues in other fields ..."

So price fixing in the railroad business must be good for the economy then. Is that right Mr. Klein?

This theme is repeated over, and over, and over throughout the book. Well, gosh, Mr. Klein, so the creation of the Interstate Commerce Commission, the Sherman Act, and the early anti-trust efforts were all entirely misguided efforts to deal with a non-problem, is that right?

On page 97 Mr. Klein finds it a laudable tonic that Harriman encouraged domestic employees on his estate, Arden, to go to church - by implicitly threatening to dismiss them if they did not. Thus did Harriman set a moral example for others to follow.

On page 114 Mr. Klein applauds the Union Pacific foreclosure that made the UP "free of the federal government for the first time." There is no explanation of the background of this statement, why the foreclosure took place, or why the government had been involved in the first place, or how Harriman bought the property for what amounted to a relatively few cents on the dollar. Perhaps a little light could have been shed on the history of corruption, the bribery of politicians, the unbelievably favourable system of land grants, the insider construction contracts, and the machinations of, e.g., Huntington and Stanford, the efforts of Charles Francis Adams to turn it around, the intervention of Gould?

On page 188 we see a lovely passage of paternalism and condescension toward BC native peoples that Klein passes over without further comment.

On page 215 Mr. Klein tells us that "Labor too showed a disturbing tendency to consolidate into larger units, the better to fight the corporate giants facing it."

And then this gem: "Against this backdrop Harriman went his way, determined to make his contribution to progress by imposing order on the largest and most unruly industry in America."

The coverage of Harriman's botched attempt to take over the Northern Pacific, and the stock market panic it precipitated does not really give the reader an adequate appreciation of the seriousness of the matter either in terms of business consequences or of securities regulation.

And on, and on, and on.

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Harriman was a very important figure in railroad history. His achievements, and his legacy, were both huge. But the wart-less glossing-over in this book is well beyond irritating. Facts are needed to give depth and context. Some of us like our facts without varnish, a nail file, or a comb. It is like being locked in a phone booth, without being able to step back and get an appropriate perspective. If you have knowledge of the surrounding events, of the huge anti-trust issues and battles of the times; of the then very high death and injury toll among railroad workers, e.g., brakemen; of labor practices that would now bring criminal prosecution or civil liability, or both; of securities practices that, likewise, would probably now bring criminal prosecution, to read this book and see these things either explicitly or implicitly excused, or sanitized, or swept under the carpet, or omitted, ... after a while it becomes laughable. You begin to ask yourself "how many different kinds of white-wash are there?"

A lot more hard-edged analysis with a critical eye and a lot less sepia would have been more worthy of the man being portrayed. A great man deserves a great biography. This isn't it.

This book could have been a far better book than it is.
Ohatollia
good
Asyasya
Mr Klien has done it again. I read Mr. Klein's The Life And Legend of Jay Gould with much anticipation and found it to be very engaging. That is exactly how i felt about his latest endeavor, The Life and Legend of E.H. Harriman. Mr. Klien handles a complex person with much skill and depth. He brings to life a monumental person who was both very complex and yet very human. His use of the social and cultural aspects of the era help to put his subject in context without detracting from the person. Many biographies fail either because the subject is dimmed by the amount of background information on the social and cultural aspects of the era or just the opposite, the subject is not brought to life by too little backgroung of the forces that helped shapped his/her life. Mr. Klein succeeds in reaching a great balance. The book is a great read.
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