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Aldrich, Winthrop (02 November 1885–25 February 1974), lawyer, banker, and legal and political adviser, was born Winthrop Williams Aldrich in Providence, Rhode Island, the son of Nelson Wilmarth Aldrich, a U.S. senator, and Abby Chapman. Aldrich graduated from Harvard College in 1907 and Harvard Law School in 1910. Upon graduation from law school Aldrich joined the New York City law firm of Byrne, Cutcheon & Taylor, specializing in finance and commercial law. In 1916 Aldrich was named a junior partner in the firm, and in December of that year he married Harriet Alexander, the granddaughter of California railroad and banking magnate ...

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Bloomingdale, Alfred Schiffer (15 April 1916–20 August 1982), cofounder of Diners Club and adviser to President Ronald Reagan, cofounder of Diners Club and adviser to President Ronald Reagan, was born in New York City, the son of Hiram Bloomingdale and Rosalind Schiffer. Alfred Bloomingdale attended Brown University, where he played varsity football, graduating in 1938 after spending a year in a hospital recovering from a football-related back injury. He began his business career working as a salesman at Bloomingdale Brothers, the firm founded by his grandfather Lyman and great-uncle Joseph in 1872. In 1941 he switched careers and became a theatrical agent, producer, and financial backer of Broadway shows and Hollywood movies. Among his clients were ...

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Marcus Alonzo Hanna. Photograph by Frances Benjamin Johnston. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-103995 ).

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Hanna, Marcus Alonzo (24 September 1837–15 February 1904), businessman, presidential campaign manager, and U.S. senator, known as Mark Hanna, was born above his family’s grocery store in New Lisbon, Ohio, the son of Samantha Converse, a schoolteacher, and Leonard Hanna, who practiced medicine before joining his father and brothers in the grocery business. A proposed canal to link New Lisbon to the Ohio River failed, wiping out Hanna’s grandfather’s investment and pushing the town into commercial decline. Hanna’s father established a new wholesale grocery and shipping business in Cleveland, where he moved his family in 1852. Mark Hanna attended public schools and Western Reserve College, leaving college after getting caught in a student prank. As a traveling salesman for the family business, the gregarious Hanna proved a resourceful competitor. Elected second lieutenant in a Cleveland-based infantry in 1861, he instead became managing partner of the business following his father’s illness and December 1862 death. Called to defend Washington, D.C., during the summer of 1864, he served briefly in uniform but saw no combat....

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Hauge, Gabriel Sylfest (07 March 1914–24 July 1981), economist, White House aide, and banker, was born in Hawley, Minnesota, the son of Soren Gabrielson Hauge, a Lutheran minister, and Anna B. Thompson. Hauge lived in the small town of Hawley until he enrolled in Concordia College at Moorhead, Minnesota, in 1931. Active in clubs as well as the student newspaper and radio station, he was elected class president each of his first three years. As a senior, he was student body president and class valedictorian....

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Wallace, Hugh Campbell (10 February 1863–01 January 1931), financier, politician, and diplomat, was born in Lexington, Missouri, the son of Thomas Bates Wallace, a wholesale merchant, and Lucy Briscoe. Wallace attended public and private schools in Lexington. His entrepreneurial spirit was evident in childhood, as he worked many jobs and organized numerous business enterprises. In 1885 President ...

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Warburg, James Paul (18 August 1896–03 June 1969), financier, government official and presidential confidant, and political writer, was born in Hamburg, Germany, the son of Paul Moritz Warburg, a banker, and Nina Jenny Loeb. James Warburg was settled with his family in the United States in 1901 and naturalized in 1911 along with his eminent father, a brilliant financier. If Paul Warburg embodied the classic reserve and discipline of the fin de siècle German-Jewish elite, the rebellious and impetuous James seemed equally and defiantly proud of the free-wheeling American style that would be his trademark. A brilliant student, James attended private elementary schools in New York City, the Middlesex School in Concord, Massachusetts, and Harvard, where he finished his B.A. in three years, graduating Phi Beta Kappa in 1916....

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Sidney Weinberg. October 1942. Courtesy of the Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (LC-USE6-D-000432).

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Weinberg, Sidney James (12 October 1891–23 July 1969), investment banker and presidential adviser and administrator, was born in Brooklyn's Red Hook section, as the son of Sophie Barr Weinberg and Pincus Weinberg, a wholesale liquor dealer. As a boy, he attended Brooklyn Public School 13 and at age ten held several part-time jobs. In 1901 he sold newspapers at the Brooklyn ferry station, peeled oysters, and served as a deliverer for a millinery firm. In 1906 the young Weinberg acquired his first experience in the investment world, working first as a broker's runner and then as a helper for two brokers. Having come from a poor family and having wished to improve his plight in life, Weinberg quit school in the eighth grade and went to work full time....