The true name of the man most famously known as Lord George Gordon Gordon will likely never be known. His name, though false, will nevertheless live in history for pulling one of the great advance-fee cons of all time, swindling in 1872 over a million dollars out of Jay Gould, most unscrupulous of all the robber barons and no stranger himself to a long con. Gould's quest for revenge would nearly lead to a military invasion of Manitoba by the Minnesota state militia. [more inside]
Mr. Rockefeller has not squandered his income. He has applied it for thirty-five years to accumulating not only oil property but real estate — railroad stock, iron mines, copper mines, anything and everything which could be bought cheap by temporary depressing and made to yield rich by his able management. For thirty-five years he has worked for special privileges giving him advantages over competitors, for thirty-five years he has patiently laid net-works around property he wanted, until he had it surely corralled and could seize it; for thirty-five years he has depreciated values when necessary to get his prey. And to-day he still is busy. In almost every great financial manoeuvre [sic] in the country is felt his supple, smooth hand with its grip of steel, and while he directs that which is big, nothing is too small for him to grasp. [more inside]
Cantankerous curmudgeony robber baron Wellington R. Burt was among the 8 wealthiest Americans, worth around $90 million when he died in 1919. He feuded with his 7 children, and left them very little. In an act of supreme cruelty, or foxy genius, his will stipulated that 21 years after the death of his last grandchild, any remaining heirs would receive the fortune. 92 years later and the money is being distributed, to three great-grandchildren; seven great-great grandchildren; and two great-great-great grandchildren.