Andrew Carnegie was born on November 25, 1835 in Dunfermline, Scotland. His father, a handloom weaver, was impoverished by the introduction of power looms. In 1848, the destitute family emigrated to the United States.
They settled in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where Carnegie found work as a bobbin boy in a textile mill at a salary of $1.20 a week. A year later, he got a job as a messenger in a telegraph office and began his rise from "rags to riches," earning a salary of $2.50 a week.
Carnegie also impressed Thomas A. Scott of the Pennsylvania Railroad, a businessman whom Carnegie saw frequently in the telegraph offices. Again, Carnegie did such a good job that six years after joining the railroad, he was named superintendent of the Pittsburgh division.