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Lunch » Tags » Books » Reviews » Meet You in Hell: Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, and the Bitter Partnership That Transformed America » User review

The pros & cons of capitalism: should be required reading for all high school students.

  • Nov 27, 2008
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They say that those who do not know history are certainly doomed to repeat it.  It has been my observation that the overwhelming majority of students who have graduated from our high schools in the past quarter century are pretty clueless about American history in general and about the history of the labor movement in this country in particular.  Most are blissfully unaware of the sacrifices and hardships our ancestors endured in the struggle for better working conditions.  I would strongly recommend Les Standiford's great new book "Meet You In Hell:  Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, and the Bitter Partnership That Transformed America" to history and civics teachers everywhere.  It would be a great book for your class to read and offers a tremendous opportunity to discuss with your students the pros and cons of our capitalist system.

"Meet You In Hell" chronicles the lives of two American industrial giants.  Henry Clay Frick and Andrew Carnegie represent the consummate "rags to riches" story that we so romanticize in this country.  These two men helped to forge America's steel industry and would play a major role in the transormation of the United States from an agrarian society into the most powerful nation on earth.  Yes, America is indeed the land of opportunity and our young people should realize that capitalism offers them opportunities that other economic systems simply do not afford.  At the same time "Meet You In Hell" will make young people acutely aware of what can happen when capitalism goes awry.  For this was clearly the case in the town of Homestead, Pa. in the summer of 1892 when Henry Clay Frick with the tacit approval of Andrew Carnegie commissioned Pinkerton guards and brought in boatloads of "scabs" in response to a labor dispute at the Carnegie Steel mill.  The violence and carnage that resulted from that grim confrontation is still considered to be one of the low points in management-labor relations in this country.

"Meet You In Hell" also offers the reader a glimpse into the rather complicated and often turbulent relationship between Carnegie and Frick.  In retrospect, it is really quite amazing that their business relationship lasted as long as it did.  For these were two headstrong men with huge egos.  The relationship would eventually crash and burn and Carnegie and Frick would go their seperate ways to pursue their own individual interests.  Curiously, both Carnegie and Frick would spend the final years of their lives giving away the great fortunes they had amassed to worthwhile projects and institutions that would ultimately benefit us all.

"Meet You In Hell: Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, and the Bitter Partnership That Transformed America" is at once a very readable and highly enjoyable offering.  Whether or not author Les Standiford intended it, this book presents a very balanced view of the pros and cons of capitalism.  Students need to understand that many of the issues presented in "Meet You In Hell" are still very relevant today.  If you have done any reading at all about Wal-Mart for example you are most likely aware that this company has been accused of employing many of the same tactics against labor that were used by Frick,Carnegie and others more than a century ago.  As I said earlier those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it.  There is such a lack of critical thinking on the part of most young people today.  Students need to read this book and decide for themselves.    Highly Recommended.
Andrew Carnegie Henry Clay Frick Carnegie steel mill Homestead riot

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October 01, 2009
This is a great recommendation. i think many these days take our country and its history for granted...I'll definitely have to get this book!
 
April 02, 2009
Meet You in Hell sounds like a great read. Those who don't know history and there are many.....more importantly, they don't care. Out of the hundreds of students I've taught, I've only come across a handful that have any interest in what happened in the past. They're too busy thinking about the future....and their future lies in cell phone usage and text messaging. A big part of the problem is that America's educational system is in shambles. Subsequently, most students in high school and college aren't trained to be analytical thinkers....yes, this would be a great book for those teaching Civics. I hope they get hold of a copy!
 
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Paul Tognetti ()
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I guess I would qualify as a frustrated writer. My work requires very little writing and so since 1999 I have been writing reviews on non-fiction books and anthology CD's on amazon.com. I never could … more
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Wiki

ABOUT THIS BOOK

Two founding fathers of American industry.One desire to dominate business at any price.

The author of Last Train to Paradise tells the riveting story of Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, and the bloody steelworkers’ strike that transformed their fabled partnership into a furious rivalry. Set against the backdrop of the Gilded Age, Meet You in Hell captures the majesty and danger of steel manufacturing, the rough-and-tumble of the business world, and the fraught relationship between “the world’s richest man” and the ruthless coke magnate to whom he entrusted his companies. The result is an extraordinary work of popular history.

LES STANDIFORD is the author of the critically acclaimed Last Train to Paradise, Meet You in Hell, and Washington Burning, as well as ten novels. Recipient of the Frank O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, he is director of the Creative Writing Program at Florida International University in Miami, where he lives with his wife and three children. Visit his website at Les-Standiford.com.


--Crown Publishing
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Details

ISBN-10: 1400047676
ISBN-13: 978-1400047673
Author: Les Standiford
Genre: History, Labor & Industrial Relations
Publisher: Crown
Date Published: May 10, 2005
Format: Hardcover
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