Oakland: Louise Whitfield Carnegie
Louise Whitfield Carnegie
BORN: 7 March 1857.
DIED: 24 June 1946.
- On Tuesday, June 24, Mrs. Andrew Carnegie died at her home in
New York City, in her eighty-ninth year. This brought to an end a long
and exceptional life of great distinction and fine living. Although
since the death of her husband in 1919 Mrs. Carnegie had seldom visited
Pittsburgh, she was known to many here for her high purpose,
kindliness, and nobility of character.
Notwithstanding the great wealth and prominence of her husband, she
played her individual part in all his philanthropies as a counselor and
an enthusiastic co-planner in his hopes for the betterment of the human
race. She was self-effacing in her own benefactions, which were many,
but fully lived up to what she felt to be the responsibilities placed
upon her by her opportunities for service. A true lady in the old
fashioned sense of the word, she was most gracious and kindly to all
with whom she came in contact and could well be taken as an outstanding
example of American womanhood. (3)
- Mrs. Carnegie Dies at 89 in New York.
Mrs. Andrew Carnegie, 89, widow of the steel maker and philanthropist,
died today at her Fifth Ave. mansion in New York City, according to an
Associated Press report.
A retiring woman, whose philanthropies always were conducted quietly, she
had been in failing health for more than a year.
A daughter, Mrs. Roswell Miller of New York, was at her bedside. A
granddaughter, Mrs. Gordon Thompson, flew from England May 12 to be with
During her last public appearance in Pittsburgh, years ago, Mrs. Carnegie
looked at the institutions of learning and culture her husband had given
the city, and declared:
"Here is the best conception of the idea of the brotherhood of man. I
have never enjoyed a visit to any part of the world as I have this visit
The former Louise Whitfield of New York, she had married Mr. Carnegie in
1887--38 years after he came to Pittsburgh from Scotland to work as a
bobbin boy in a cotton factory. He had hitched his wagon to the rising
stars of iron and steel and was a wealthy but lonely man.
Gave Away Half Billion.
Soon after their marriage he became the richest man the world has ever
seen and one of the happiest.
Speaking of his life with his 'beloved Lou,' Carnegie said:
"Why, oh why, are we compelled to leave the heaven we have found on earth
and go we know not where?"
With his wife's help Carnegie also became a great philanthropist. In the
18 years from 1901 to 1919 he gave away the bulk of his fortune of half a
billion dollars at the rate of $25,000,000 a year.
His beneficiaries included old employees, old friends, educational
institutions, organizations for world peace, several nations, a United
States President, three President's wives, a British prime minister and
the City of Pittsburgh.
The various money-giving corporations which he established still pour out
from four to five million dollars a year.
One night in August, 1919, after Mrs. Carnegie had said good night to her
husband, he sank into his last sleep. He was buried on top of a small hill
in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery near Tarrytown, N.Y.
Lived in Scotland.
During the last 27 years, Mrs. Carnegie led a quiet, retiring life in New
York and Scotland. She met annually with the members of her late husband's
corporations, made suggestions, and took great pride in their work.
Meanwhile, she kept giving away sums of her own money.
On the occasion of the Carnegie Centennial in 1935, a little gray-haired
lady with a kindly voice, she reminisced:
"Pittsburgh has a warm place in my heart. I have so many recollections of
the lovely, affectionate friends whom I knew there."
Her last public appearance with Andrew had been in Pittsburgh. He had said
"Peace and good will attend her footsteps wherever her blessed influence
- The great Carnegie wealth, which Louise Whitfield had feared, she
made her servant. (5)
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