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Belmont, August (08 December 1813–24 November 1890), financier, politician, and sportsman, was born in Alzey, a German Rhineland village, the son of Simon Belmont, a moneylender and landowner, and Frederika Elsass. He attended a Jewish school, the Philanthropin, in Frankfurt and in 1828 began work as an office boy for the local branch of the Rothschild banking family, to which he was distantly related through marriage. He was soon promoted to confidential clerk and in 1837 was sent to Cuba to investigate that Spanish colony’s stability. A stopover in New York changed the course of his life. The panic of 1837 had just struck, and the Rothschilds’ New York agent had declared bankruptcy. Belmont decided to stay and established August Belmont and Company, a private banking firm that would maintain a close, long-term working relationship with the Rothschilds. Belmont’s rise on Wall Street was rapid. He profited from foreign exchange transactions; commercial and private loans; corporate, real estate, and railroad investments; and as a U.S. government fiscal agent during the Mexican War. In 1849 he married Caroline Slidell Perry, with whom he had six children....

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Belmont, Perry (28 December 1850–25 May 1947), politician and sportsman, was born in New York City, the son of August Belmont, a banker, politician, and sportsman, and Caroline Slidell Perry, daughter of Commodore Matthew C. Perry. He attended Harvard College, 1867–1872, graduating with a B.A. in history, studied Roman and civil law at the University of Berlin, 1873–1874, and enrolled in the Columbia University Law School, 1874–1876. He was admitted to the bar in 1876 and the next year entered the law firm of Porter, Lowrey & Stone. In 1878 he established his own law firm of Vinton, Belmont, and Frelinghuysen....

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Hyer, Tom (01 January 1819–26 June 1864), boxer and politician, was born Thomas Hyer in New York City, the son of Jacob Hyer, a butcher and boxer, and Johanna (maiden name unknown). Little is known about Hyer’s childhood. Like his father, he was apprenticed as a butcher, but he remained in the trade only a few years. More frequently he worked as a bartender and volunteer fireman....

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Kemp, Jack French (13 July 1935–02 May 2009), professional football player, key conservative in the Reagan revolution, and vice presidential candidate, professional football player, key conservative in the Reagan revolution, and vice presidential candidate, was born in Los Angeles, the third of four sons of Paul Robert Kemp, the founder of a small trucking company, and Frances Elizabeth Pope Kemp, a social worker and Spanish teacher. Kemp grew up in the upper-middle-class Wilshire district of West Los Angeles, graduating from Fairfax High School in 1953. At only five feet ten inches and 175 pounds, he was too small to play quarterback at a Division I school, so he chose Occidental College because it ran a pro-style offense. College teammates remembered Kemp as very tenacious and determined to play professional football. A powerful arm made him a Little All-America standout and small college passing leader. Kemp had no bigger booster than college sweetheart, Joanne Main. They married on 19 July 1958 and would have two boys and two girls. Like their father, Jeff and James Kemp both became professional football quarterbacks....

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Wilkinson, Bud (23 April 1916–09 February 1994), college football coach, sports commentator, and politician, was born Charles Burnham Wilkinson in Minneapolis, Minnesota, to Charles Patton Wilkinson, a successful mortgage broker, and Edith Lindbloom Wilkinson, who died when Bud was seven years old. After his mother’s death, Bud attended the Shattuck Military Academy in Faribault, Minnesota. He thrived at the school and quickly became a standout student and athlete. He graduated in 1933....