In 1864, Andrew Carnegie invested in the Story Farm on Oil Creek, which later became Columbia Oil Farm. Story Farm was located in Venango County, Pennsylvania.
Carnegie invested an estimated $11,000 and received approximately $18,000 in the second half of the first dividend year.
The farm continued to yield excellent cash dividends because petroleum from its oil wells sold profitably. These dividends gave Andrew the capital needed to support his later steel ventures.
Pittsburg Steel Industry
During the Civil War, Pittsburgh was the center of wartime iron product manufacturing. Iron for cannons, shells, gunboats and other industrial products were manufactured in Pittsburgh.
Although Carnegie was invested in the iron industry before the war, it was after the war when he left the railroad to focus solely on steel. He first formed the Keystone Bridge Company and the Union Ironworks, both in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania.
Carnegie continued his close relationships with Thomas A. Scott and J. Edgar Thomson from Pennsylvania Railroad Company. The railroad was Keystone Bridge Company’s top source for contracts.
Around 1872, when he was around 38, Carnegie founded J. Edgar Thomson Steel Works in Pittsburgh. The company eventually became the Carnegie Steel Company.
Andrew Carnegie’s steel plant was the first in the United States to use the Bessemer steel-making process. The Bessemer process was created in Britain.
In addition, Carnegie used other innovations to make his steel plant more efficient. For example, new cost and production accounting procedures made the company a model of efficiency.
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