Most Americans are familiar with the political history of the United States, but there is another history woven all through it, a largely forgotten history--the story of the money men. Acclaimed historian H. W. Brands brings them back to life: J. P. Morgan, who stabilized a foundering U.S. Treasury in 1907; Alexander Hamilton, who founded the first national bank, and Nicholas Biddle, under whose directorship it failed; Jay Cooke, who helped to finance the Union war effort through his then-innovative strategy of selling bonds to ordinary Americans; and Jay Gould, who tried to corner the market on gold in 1869 and as a result brought about Black Friday and fled for his life.
Click for the original review.
In the Panic of 1907, J.P. Morgan placed his personal fortune against the tide of panic and saved Wall Street. Alexander Hamilton was one of the authors of the Federalist Papers, the first Secretary of the Treasury and died in a duel with Aaron Burr. Jay Gould was a railroad investor and speculator during the Gilded Age and is sometimes regarded as the epitome of the immoral robber baron. A country is said to be on the gold standard if its paper currency can be converted to gold at a fixed rate of exchange.