They Had to Go Through “The Rock”

They Had to Go Through The Rock


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One way we remember who John D. Rockefeller was in History class is by saying that “they had to go through the ROCK to get the OIL”.  John D. Rockefeller became one of America’s wealthiest industrial owners by controlling all or most of the U.S. oil refineries in a horizontal monopoly.  He did not control the costly digging for oil but he did control the profit making production of oil for industrial use.  His corporation was the American Standard Oil Company.

John D. Rockefeller is the founder of Standard Oil Company.   He made the first great U.S business trust in 1870 when he founded the Standard Oil Company and kept it running until he officially retired in 1897. Rockefeller became the worlds richest man and the first American man to be worth more than a billion dollars. He controlled 90% of all oil production in the United States.  His fortune upon his death in 1937 stood at $336 billion. He was the richest man in history. His fortune was mostly used to create the modern systematic approach of targeted philanthropy- giving to causes that would help large amounts of people. His foundations pioneered the development of medical research and were instrumental in the eradication of hookworm and yellow fever.  It is interesting to think that some of the owners of industry who workers were protesting actually contributed to the progress of the average American citizen.

Some people complained that the owners with money were controlling the government.  This is shown by the political cartoon below.

Rockefeller (1)

“One of the charitable organizations established by John D. Rockefeller, Sr. was the Rockefeller Sanitary Commission, founded in 1909. Less than 20 years after its creation, the Commission had achieved its primary goals, the successful eradication of hookworm disease across the southern United States.”

Rockefeller is the founder of university of Chicago and Rockefeller University. He funded the establishment of Central Philippine University in the Philippines and set up a foundation that continues to fund American education today.