JP Morgan Net Worth At Death (Forbes) – How Did He Get Rich? Exposed!

J.P. Morgan Net Worth At Death

J.P. Morgan had an estimated net worth of $25 Billion at death. He became one of the wealthiest and most powerful businessmen in the world through his founding of private banks and industrial consolidation in the late 1800s. He earned the majority of his income from businesses.

J.P. Morgan, born in 1837 into a prominent New England family, began his career in the New York financial industry in the late 1850s. In 1871, he co-founded the bank that would become J.P. Morgan & Co., and in the 1880s, he established himself as a major player in the country’s railroad industry. Morgan, in addition to amassing enormous wealth through the creation of corporations such as US Steel, led efforts to bail out the US Treasury in 1895 and 1907. He died in Rome in 1913, leaving behind a world-renowned art collection and a business that thrived into the twenty-first century.

To calculate the net worth of J.P. Morgan, subtract all his liabilities from his total assets. Investments, savings, cash deposits, and any equity he has in a house, car, or other similar asset are included in the total assets. All debts, such as loans and personal debt, are included in total liabilities.

Here’s the breakdown of his net worth:

Name: J.P. Morgan
Net Worth: $25 Billion
Monthly Salary: $100 Million+
Annual Income: $1 Billion+
Source of Wealth: Banker, Financier, Businessperson

Early Years

On April 17, 1837, in Hartford, Connecticut, John Pierpont Morgan was born into a prominent New England family. His father, Junius, became a partner in a successful dry goods business around the time he married Juliet Pierpont, daughter of noted minister and poet John Pierpont.

Pierpont, a sickly child who suffered seizures and other mysterious ailments, was sheltered at home for long periods of time. When he was healthy, he went to galleries and concerts with his parents, sparking a lifelong interest in the arts. Initially a bright but uninterested student, he began to improve his grades by the time he arrived at English High School in Boston.

Junius Morgan relocated his family to London in 1854 to begin a new career as a partner in the banking firm of George Peabody & Co. Pierpont was sent to the Swiss Institute Sillig, where he learned French and demonstrated a talent for mathematics, and then to Göttingen University in Germany.

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Early Career and Marriages

Morgan moved to New York after finishing his education in 1857 to work as a clerk at Duncan, Sherman & Co., his father’s firm’s American branch. Morgan’s ingenuity was demonstrated early on when he was in New Orleans on business and encountered a ship captain with a boatload of coffee and no buyer. Morgan purchased the coffee with company funds and then resold it to local merchants for a profit. His success encouraged him to go it alone, and he continued to work with his father after establishing J. Pierpont Morgan & Co. in the early 1860s.

Morgan became close to Amelia “Memie” Sturges, the daughter of a successful merchant, through his New York social circle. Their blossoming romance was shattered when she was diagnosed with tuberculosis in 1861, and they quickly married and relocated to Algiers in the hopes of hastening her recovery. Despite Morgan’s best efforts to nurse his wife back to health, she died in February 1862.

Devastated, the young businessman returned to New York and got back to work. In 1864, at the urging of his father, he formed Dabney, Morgan & Co. with senior partner Charles Dabney. With Junius Morgan now in charge of the London banking firm, the Morgans continued to amass wealth and power by channeling foreign investments into American businesses.

Meanwhile, Pierpont began a new relationship with Frances Louisa “Fanny” Tracy, the daughter of a New York attorney. They married in May 1865 and had four children, with son John Pierpont “Jack” Morgan Jr. later taking over his father’s business.

Railroad Magnate

When Dabney retired in 1871, Morgan joined forces with Philadelphia banker Anthony Drexel to form Drexel, Morgan & Co., which relocated to a towering new building in lower Manhattan. With his enormous frame, piercing eyes, and brusque nature, Morgan was developing into the outsized figure who would dominate the financial world as he entered his mid-30s.

When William Vanderbilt approached Morgan about selling 250,000 shares of stock in the New York Central Railroad in 1879, Morgan’s already successful career took a leap forward. Morgan completed the massive transaction without causing the share price to fall, and in exchange, he was appointed to the New York Central board of directors. The following year, he led a syndicate that sold $40 million in bonds to finance the Northern Pacific Railroad, which was then the largest railroad bond transaction in US history.

Morgan’s influence in the industry was highlighted in 1885 when he arranged a meeting aboard his yacht, the Corsair, with the feuding directors of the New York Central and Pennsylvania Railroads. Morgan made it clear as they sailed up and down the Hudson River that the yacht would not return to port until they reached an agreement that allowed for adequate competition. The executives eventually reached an agreement known as the Corsair Compact.

Financial Empire and Government Savior

Morgan’s life and career took a new turn after his father died in 1890. After a decade of railroad consolidation, he broke new ground in 1892 when he arranged the merger of Edison General Electric and Thomson-Houston Company to form General Electric. In addition, the lifelong art collector began rapidly expanding an already impressive collection of valuable works.

The extent of Morgan’s power was revealed in the aftermath of the 1893 Panic. With the United States’ gold reserves rapidly depleting, Morgan formed a syndicate of international investors willing to supply gold in exchange for a favorable 30-year bond rate. He then reassured President Grover Cleveland, who was skeptical, by citing an obscure 1862 statute that gave the Secretary of the Treasury the authority to carry out such a transaction without congressional approval. In early 1895, the syndicate purchased and quickly resold the bonds, thereby stabilizing the shaky economy.

Pierpont reorganized his company into J.P. Morgan & Co. after Drexel died that year. By financing the formation of Federal Steel in 1898, the firm quickly became a major player in the steel industry. Three years later, after paying nearly $500 million for Andrew Carnegie’s steel company, Morgan merged the entities into U.S. Steel, creating the first billion-dollar corporation.

Presidential Foe and Ally

Morgan also formed the Northern Securities Company with James J. Hill in 1901. Northern Securities controlled the majority of Northern Pacific, Great Northern, and CB&Q railroads, giving Morgan control of roughly one-third of the country’s railways.

However, he was met with opposition from President Theodore Roosevelt, who sought to use the populist tide against Wall Street’s wealthy “robber barons.” Northern Securities was charged with violating the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890 by the Justice Department in 1902. In 1904 the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the government, ending a protracted legal battle.

Regardless, Morgan maintained his power in both industries and government. J.P. Morgan & Co. was appointed fiscal agent for a newly independent Panama in 1903, with duties including supervising the transfer of $40 million to the New Panama Canal Co.

Morgan was summoned once more in 1907 to assist the United States government in the midst of an economic crisis. Seeking to stabilize a string of collapsing trust banks, he summoned several bank presidents to his Manhattan library and, in a nod to his Corsair meeting of 1885, locked the door until a solution could be found. After all-night talks failed, Morgan broke the deadlock by drawing up a bailout contract and ordering the exhausted presidents to sign.

Morgan, who was semi-retired by the time the crisis was resolved, devoted much of his time and energy to his art collection and philanthropy. He returned to the spotlight for the final time in 1912, when he testified before the Pujo Committee, a congressional investigation into Wall Street bankers’ collusions.

Death and Legacy

Morgan embarked on an overseas voyage following the hearings, but his health deteriorated and he died on March 31, 1913, in a hotel in Rome, Italy. The New York Stock Exchange remained closed until noon on the day of his funeral to honor his passing.

Morgan’s phenomenal success transformed the financial industry and left a lasting legacy. Although he twice bailed out the United States Treasury, his ability to do so alarmed many, prompting the establishment of the Federal Reserve System in late 1913. His name lives on through the massive international banking firm he founded, which became JPMorgan Chase & Co. in the twenty-first century.

Furthermore, the financial titan left behind a personal art collection worthy of any king. His ornate library was built to house the majority of his works, which were unveiled to the public in the 1920s with the opening of the Morgan Library & Museum, thanks to the efforts of Jack Morgan.

Favorite J.P. Morgan Quotes

Go as far as you can see; when you get there, you’ll be able to see farther.

JP. Morgan

 

A man always has two reasons for doing anything: a good reason and the real reason.

JP. Morgan

 

If you have to ask how much it costs, you can’t afford it.

JP. Morgan

 

Well, I don’t know as I want a lawyer to tell me what I cannot do. I hire him to tell how to do what I want to do.

JP. Morgan

 

No problem can be solved until it is reduced to some simple form. The changing of a vague difficulty into a specific, concrete form is a very essential element in thinking.

JP. Morgan

 

A man generally has two reasons for doing a thing. One that sounds good, and a real one.

JP. Morgan

 

When you expect things to happen – strangely enough – they do happen.

JP. Morgan

View our larger collection of the best J.P. Morgan quotes.

Further Reading

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