Andrew Mellon served as United States Secretary of the Treasury from March 9,1921 to February 12,1932, presiding over the boom years of the 1920s and the Wall Street crash of 1929.
81 Facts About Andrew Mellon
Andrew Mellon was an influential donor to the Republican Party during the Gilded Age and the Progressive Era.
Andrew Mellon would remain in office until 1932, serving under Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Herbert Hoover, all three of whom were members of the Republican Party.
Some of Andrew Mellon's proposals were enacted by the Revenue Act of 1921 and the Revenue Act of 1924, but it was not until the passage of the Revenue Act of 1926 that the "Andrew Mellon plan" was fully realized.
Andrew Mellon presided over a reduction in the national debt, which dropped substantially in the 1920s.
Andrew Mellon participated in various efforts by the Hoover administration to revive the economy and maintain the international economic order, but he opposed direct government intervention in the economy.
Shortly before his death, in 1937, Andrew Mellon helped establish the National Gallery of Art.
Thomas Andrew Mellon established a successful legal practice in Pittsburgh, and in 1843 he married Sarah Jane Negley, an heiress descended from some of the first settlers of Pittsburgh.
Andrew Mellon, the fourth son and sixth child of Thomas and Sarah, was born in 1855.
Andrew Mellon joined his father at the bank, quickly becoming a valued employee despite being in his early teens.
Andrew Mellon attended the Western University of Pennsylvania, but he never graduated.
Andrew Mellon acquired or helped found the Union Insurance Company, City Deposit Bank, the Fidelity Title and Trust Company, and the Union Trust Company.
Andrew Mellon branched out into industrial concerns, becoming a director of the Pittsburgh Petroleum Exchange and a co-founder of two natural gas companies that collectively controlled 35,000 acres of gas lands in the late 1880s.
In 1890, Thomas Mellon transferred his properties to Andrew, who would manage the properties on behalf of himself, his parents, and his brothers.
In 1889, Andrew Mellon agreed to loan $25,000 to the Pittsburgh Reduction Company, a fledgling operation seeking to become the first successful industrial producer of aluminum.
Andrew Mellon became a director of the company in 1891, and he and Richard played a major role in the establishment of aluminum factories in New Kensington, Pennsylvania, and Niagara Falls, New York.
Andrew Mellon would emerge as one of the most profitable ventures invested in by the Mellons, and in 1907 it was renamed Alcoa.
Andrew Mellon invested in mining concerns, becoming vice president of the Trade Dollar Consolidated Mining Company.
Frick and Andrew Mellon both joined the Duquesne Club and, after Frick established the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club, Andrew Mellon became one of that club's first members.
Andrew Mellon did not publicly comment on the flood, though he did donate $1,000 to a relief fund.
Andrew Mellon became a co-owner of the McClintic-Marshall Construction Company and established Crucible Steel Company, the Pittsburgh Coal Company, and the Monongahela River Coal Company; the two coal companies collectively contributed 11 percent of the coal production of the United States.
Some of Andrew Mellon's investments experienced a sustained down period after 1907, but most experienced a quick recovery.
Andrew Mellon became an investor in George Westinghouse's Westinghouse Electric Corporation after he helped prevent the company from going into bankruptcy.
In 1914, Andrew Mellon became a co-owner of Koppers, which produced a more sophisticated coking oven than the one that had earlier been pioneered by Frick.
Andrew Mellon served as a director of various other companies, including the Pennsylvania Railroad and the American Locomotive Company.
In 1887, Frick, Andrew, and Richard Mellon jointly purchased Old Overholt, a whiskey distillery located in West Overton, Pennsylvania.
In 1907, as prohibition became more popular across the country, Frick and Andrew Mellon removed their names from the distilling license but retained ownership in the company.
In 1925, under pressure from prohibitionists, Andrew Mellon sold his share of the company to a New York grocer.
Andrew Mellon especially opposed the Taft administration's investigations into Alcoa, which in 1912 signed a consent decree rather than going to trial.
Andrew Mellon strongly approved of the party's conservative platform, and he served as a key fundraiser for Harding during the presidential campaign.
Andrew Mellon was reluctant to enter public life due to concerns about privacy and a belief that his ownership of various businesses, including Old Overholt distillery, would be a political liability.
Andrew Mellon agreed to accept appointment as Secretary of the Treasury in February 1921, and his nomination was quickly confirmed by the United States Senate.
Andrew Mellon's fortune continued to grow, and at one point in the 1920s he paid more in federal income tax than any other individual save John Rockefeller and Henry Ford.
Unlike the progressives in his party, Andrew Mellon rejected the redistributive nature of the taxation system that had been left in place by the Wilson administration.
Andrew Mellon instead advocated for the retention of a progressive income tax that would serve as an important, but not primary, source of revenue for the federal government.
The central tenet of Andrew Mellon's tax plan was a reduction of the surtax, a progressive tax that affected only high-income earners.
Andrew Mellon argued that such a reduction would minimize tax avoidance and would not affect federal revenue because it would lead to greater economic growth.
Andrew Mellon hoped that tax reform would encourage high earners to move their savings from tax-exempt state and municipal bonds to taxable, higher yield industrial stocks.
Andrew Mellon strongly disapproved of a "Bonus Bill" passed by Congress that would provide for additional compensation to veterans of World War I, partly because he feared it would interfere with his plans to reduce debt and taxes.
Andrew Mellon enjoyed closer relations with President Coolidge than he had with President Harding, and Coolidge and Andrew Mellon shared similar views on most major issues, including the necessity for further tax cuts.
Congress rejected Andrew Mellon's proposed constitutional amendment that would have barred the issuance of tax-exempt securities and, over Coolidge's veto, authorized a bonus to World War I veterans.
Andrew Mellon did win one legislative victory, as he convinced Congress to create the Board of Tax Appeals to adjudicate disputes between taxpayers and the government.
Andrew Mellon had originally planned to retire after one presidential term but decided to remain in the cabinet in the hope of presiding over the full enactment of his taxation proposals.
Andrew Mellon was extremely pleased by the passage of the act, because, unlike the Revenue Act of 1921 and the Revenue Act of 1924, the Revenue Act of 1926 closely reflected Andrew Mellon's proposals.
Andrew Mellon focused on the construction of new federal buildings, and his efforts led to the construction of several buildings in the Federal Triangle.
Andrew Mellon strongly opposed the cancellation of European debts from World War I but recognized that Britain and other countries would be unable to pay those debts without a renegotiation of terms.
The conservative resistance to Hoover centered around Andrew Mellon, who controlled Pennsylvania's delegation at the 1928 Republican National Convention and was influential with Republicans throughout the country.
Several Republicans urged Andrew Mellon to run for president, but Andrew Mellon believed that he was too old to seek the presidency.
Andrew Mellon attempted to convince Coolidge or Charles Evans Hughes to run, but neither heeded his appeals.
Secretary Andrew Mellon had helped persuade the Federal Reserve Board to lower interest rates in 1921 and 1924; lower interest rates contributed to a booming economy, but they encouraged stock market speculation.
Andrew Mellon favored another interest rate increase in 1929, and in August 1929 the Federal Reserve Board raised the discount rate to six percent.
Andrew Mellon had little sympathy for the speculators who lost their money, and he was philosophically opposed to an interventionist economic policy designed to address the stock market crash.
Nonetheless, Andrew Mellon immediately began calling for cuts to the discount rate, which would reach two percent in mid-1930, and successfully urged Congress to pass a bill providing for temporary, across-the-board tax cuts.
Andrew Mellon supported the idea of asset liquidation to balance budgets, even if it meant shutting down entire industries.
In mid-1931, the country entered a deep depression and, at Hoover's request, Andrew Mellon negotiated a moratorium on German debt repayments.
Again following Hoover's lead, Andrew Mellon presided over the creation of the National Credit Association, a voluntary initiative among the larger banks that was designed to assist failing institutions.
Andrew Mellon believed that economic recessions, such as those that had occurred in 1873 and 1907, were a necessary part of the business cycle because they purged the economy.
In early 1932, Congressman Wright Patman of Texas initiated impeachment proceedings against Andrew Mellon, contending that Andrew Mellon had violated numerous federal laws designed to prevent conflicts of interest.
Andrew Mellon accepted the post, and Mills replaced his former boss as Secretary of the Treasury.
Andrew Mellon arrived in Britain in April 1932, receiving a friendly reception from a country he had often visited over the previous thirty years.
Andrew Mellon convinced the British to allow Gulf Oil to operate in Kuwait, a British protectorate in the oil-rich region of the Persian Gulf.
Andrew Mellon left office when Hoover's term ended in March 1933, returning to private life after twelve years of government service.
Andrew Mellon was unable to assert the same level of control that Boies Penrose had had over state politics, and his leadership of the state party was challenged by William Scott Vare of Philadelphia and progressive leader Gifford Pinchot, who won the 1922 Pennsylvania gubernatorial election.
Nonetheless, Andrew Mellon would continue to exert an important influence on Pennsylvania politics throughout the 1920s, especially in senatorial elections and in Allegheny County.
Andrew Mellon strongly opposed Roosevelt's New Deal policies, especially the 1933 Banking Act, which required separation between commercial and investment banking.
Andrew Mellon believed that the various New Deal policies, including Social Security and unemployment insurance, undermined the free market system that had produced one of the largest economies in the world.
Andrew Mellon endured numerous attacks during these campaigns, and his unpopularity in Pittsburgh led him to spend most of his final years in Washington rather than his home town.
Andrew Mellon's health declined in 1937, and he died on August 26,1937.
Andrew Mellon was buried at Trinity Episcopal Church Cemetery, Upperville, Virginia.
In 1898, while traveling with Frick and Frick's wife to Europe, Andrew Mellon met Nora McMullen, a nineteen-year-old Englishwoman of Ulster Scots ancestry.
Andrew Mellon visited McMullen's home of Hertford Castle in 1898 and 1899, and, after a period of courtship, Nora married Andrew Mellon in 1900.
Andrew Mellon later settled in Virginia, becoming a well-known philanthropist.
Andrew Mellon committed to his first large-scale act of philanthropy in 1913, when he and his brother, Richard, established the Andrew Mellon Institute of Industrial Research as a department of the University of Pittsburgh.
Andrew Mellon served as an alumni president and trustee of the University of Pittsburgh, and made several major donations to the school, including the land on which the Cathedral of Learning and Heinz Chapel were constructed.
In total it is estimated that Andrew Mellon donated over $43 million to the University of Pittsburgh.
Andrew Mellon decided to use his fortune and art collection to establish a national art museum in Washington modeled after the National Gallery in London.
In 1936, Andrew Mellon presented President Roosevelt with an offer to establish a national art museum to which Andrew Mellon would donate his art collection as well as an endowment, while the federal government would pay for the institution's upkeep.
Andrew Mellon conditioned the offer on the establishment of a board of trustees, a majority of whom would be chosen by Mellon.
Andrew Mellon was initiated to the Scottish Rite Freemasonry, till he raised the 33rd and highest degree.
Andrew W Mellon appears in the HBO drama series Boardwalk Empire, in the fifth, eighth and twelfth episodes of the third season, in his capacity as Secretary of the Treasury.
Andrew Mellon's character is played by Carnegie Mellon alumnus James Cromwell.