At holder of the Pullman patents, and

At the age of 14 Carnegie became a messenger boy in the Pittsburgh telegraph office, and 2 years later a telegraph operator.

So quickly did he improve himself that at 18 Thomas A. Scott, superintendent of the western division of the Pennsylvania Railroad, made Carnegie his secretary at $35 a month, soon raised to $50—a large enough salary to buy a house for his mother.Carnegie stayed with the Pennsylvania Railroad until 1865, by which time he was a young man of real means. During the Civil War, when Scott was named assistant secretary of war in charge of transportation, Carnegie went to Washington to act as Scott’s right-hand man and to organize the military telegraph system. But Carnegie soon was back in Pittsburgh, succeeding Scott as head of the Pennsylvania’s western division.

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He was one of the backers of the Woodruff Sleeping Car Company, the original holder of the Pullman patents, and also bought into a successful petroleum company. He became a silent partner in a number of local small iron mills and factories; the most important was the Keystone Bridge Company, formed in 1863, of which he owned a one-fifth share.

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