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    "Commodore" Cornelius Vanderbilt Rare Autograph Letter - About Running His Business! Autograph Letter Signed ("C. Vanderbilt"), 1 full page, 8" by 10", New York, June 17, 1848. To C.F. Pond. In Fine condition. The Commodore's fortune, when judged in comparison to the Gross National Product of his day, was the second largest in American History - only John D. Rockefeller's was bigger. (Bill Gates, using this formula, ranks thirty-first.) Vanderbilt began with a small barge bought with borrowed money, at age sixteen - and became the leading American steamship owner. Here we see how. "Messrs. Northam, Peck & Stone have called on me for a settlement for past work. My answer is that there is none to make according to the agreement, as they have run but a 1/4 of a line to New Haven and we have run 3/4 - therefore it was no fault of ours that they did not perform theirs; so much for what is past. For time to come... they are to run 1/2 of the day line, we the other. This they want to alter so as to run Month to Month. This I would not do for a number of reason: take care how you get committed on this point... A good argument is that you wish our line kept up in a first rate manner, which cannot be done if we are compelled to break in a new crew every month. It will not do to lay up the Commodore at all, much rather run half of the day line & they the other half... Now comes the nice point. Act cautiously previous to your seeing me"

    Later, Vanderbilt turned to railroads, and began to build his second fortune. From the Henry E. Luhrs Collection. Accompanied by LOA from PSA/DNA.

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    Auction Dates
    February, 2006
    20th-21st Monday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 5
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