Business Deal (04:58)
John D. Rockefeller promises to fill Cornelius Vanderbilt's railroad cars with kerosene in exchange for cheap shipping rates. As a child, Rockefeller helps support his family by selling candy to children; his father was a conman who frequently disappeared.
Oil Refinery (07:59)
Rockefeller realizes he can create a business in crude oil without risk. He creates Standard Oil as a way to assuage the public's fears. The Oilman makes a deal with Vanderbilt for reduced shipping rates.
Breaking Deals (02:33)
Standard Oil becomes the largest supplier of kerosene in the country. Tom Scott wants to overtake Vanderbilt's place as king of the railroads. Andrew Carnegie crafts the pitch to Rockefeller to become Standard Oil's exclusive distributor.
Vanderbilt Loses Control (05:10)
Rockefeller pits the railroads against each other and buys out his competitors, creating a monopoly. Standard Oil controls 90% of the oil supply. The Commodore forms an alliance with Scott.
Alternative Method of Transportation (03:03)
Rockefeller believes his decisions are sanctioned by God and realizes that a long pipeline could cut the railroads out of the oil business. Mark Cuban explains that there is an opportunity whenever there is uncertainty.
Creating the Pipeline (04:10)
Workers lay over a mile and a half of pipe a day. The pipeline stretches from Ohio to Pennsylvania connecting all the oil wells to Rockefeller's refineries, devastating the industry.
Loss of Business and Stocks (04:07)
Vanderbilt and Scott struggle to find consumers to use the railroads. Stocks plummet; 1/3 of railroad companies go bankrupt. The stock exchange shuts down and remains closed for 10 days.
Rockefeller, the Entrepreneur (04:22)
Rockefeller buys bankrupt oil companies and creates the largest corporate empire in America. Vanderbilt dies; Scott and Carnegie plan on expanding their empire. Rockefeller confronts Scott's plan of building a pipeline and threatens to take his business to another railroad.
Ending the Monopoly (03:50)
Rockefeller orders the Pittsburgh refineries shut down. Scott lays off tens of thousands of workers; riots erupt.
Credits: Oil Strike (01:42)
Credits: Oil Strike
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