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Busch, August Anheuser, Jr. (28 March 1899–29 September 1989), corporate executive and philanthropist, was born in St. Louis, Missouri, the son of brewmaster August Anheuser Busch, Sr., and Alice Zisemann. Busch, known as “Gussie,” was accustomed to wealth and was steeped in a rich family tradition from his grandfather, ...

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Armand Hammer Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-114806 ).

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Hammer, Armand (21 May 1898–10 December 1990), entrepreneur and philanthropist, was born on the Lower East Side of New York City, the son of Russian-born Julius Hammer, a pharmacist and physician, and Rose Robinson. Hammer’s childhood economic circumstances were better than those of many of his immigrant contemporaries. When he was still a child, his family moved to the Bronx, where his father balanced a quest for a medical degree with the demands of his drugstores. Hammer attended Morris High School and in 1917 registered at Columbia Heights Premedical School. Two years later he enrolled at Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons, from which he graduated in June 1921....

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Hershey, Milton Snavely (13 September 1857–13 October 1945), candy manufacturer, was born at his family’s homestead in Derry Church, Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, the son of Henry H. Hershey and Fannie B. Snavely. In search of elusive wealth and success, Henry Hershey moved his family numerous times, always failing at his varied business ventures, including farming, cough drop manufacturing, and sales. As a result of the instability, Milton’s formal education was haphazard, and he never went beyond the fourth grade....

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Ludwig, Christoph (17 October 1720–17 June 1801), baker and philanthropist, was born in Gießen, Hesse-Darmstadt. Little is known of his childhood, including the names of his parents. His father was a baker from whom he learned the trade that was to garner him fame in the Continental army. He attended a free school at the age of fourteen and by the age of seventeen joined the ill-fated army of the Holy Roman Emperor in the 1736–1739 renewed war against the Ottoman Empire that lost all of the Balkan territories acquired up to the treaty of Passarowitz (1718). Ludwig made his way back from Turkey to Vienna. He nearly starved to death on the way, and in his old age he included Roman Catholic institutions of charity in his will in remembrance of the Catholic peasants who gave him enough to eat and sufficient clothing to return to Vienna. Scarcely had he and his fellow soldiers recuperated but their further journey homeward was interrupted at Prague, where the French laid siege to the city in the War of Austrian Succession....

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Tulane, Paul (10 May 1801–27 March 1887), merchant and philanthropist, was born in Cherry Valley, near Princeton, New Jersey, the son of Louis Tulane, a lumber merchant, and Marie Tulane (maiden name unknown), who died when Paul was fifteen. His father, a native of France, had relocated with his wife to New Jersey following a 1791 slave insurrection in Santo Domingo (now Haiti) that had claimed the life of several of his relatives. After attending a private school in Princeton and an academy in nearby Somerville, Tulane ended his formal education at age fifteen and became a clerk in the Princeton-based mercantile establishment of Thomas White. Two years later (1818), he set out on a three-year tour of the southern United States in the company of a French cousin. Family position gained him meetings with both ...

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Vaughan, John (15 January 1756–30 December 1841), wine merchant, librarian, and philanthropist, was born in London, England, the son of Samuel Vaughan, a merchant in the Jamaica trade, and Sarah Hallowell of Boston, Massachusetts. The family were Whigs in politics, dissenters in religion, and lovers of science, humanity, and America. Destined by his father for a mercantile career, young Vaughan spent the year 1776–1777 in Jamaica and in 1778 was sent to France to learn French and gain further business experience, with a view to settling eventually in America. In France, where he was attached to a merchant firm in Bordeaux, he became intimate with ...