Andrew Carnegie

Andrew Carnegie was born in Dunfermline, Scotland, on November 25, 1835.

His father supported the Carnegie household by damask weaving on hand looms in the family home in Dunfermline. Both his father and his uncle were involved in Chartism, and his uncle helped found the Tradesman's Subscription Library in Dunfermline. Andrew started school at the age of eight and seems to have enjoyed his time there.

Andrew emigrated with his family to America in 1848. Andrew was thirteen years old and had just finished school. The family settled in Allegheny City, Pittsburgh. Carnegie went to work as a bobbin boy in a cotton mill. In 1865, he established his own business enterprises and eventually organized the Carnegie Steel Company, which launched the steel industry in Pittsburgh.

At age sixty-five, he sold the company. Carnegie never forgot his roots and always had an interest in philantropic deeds. In 1881 he presented a free public library to his home town of Dunfermline. One of Carnegie's lifelong interests was the establishment of free public libraries to make available to everyone a means of self-education.

previousPrevious - Development of Public Library Service in Waterford
Next - The Library moves to other premisesnext