Junius Morgan: Founder of a dynasty
J. Pierpont Morgan is arguably the most famous banker in American history, but he was not the founder of the House of Morgan. J. Pierpont had a colossal impact on American banking and commerce because he was carefully nurtured and artfully groomed for the role by his father, Junius Spencer Morgan. The story of Junius is not a rags-to-riches tale. When he was born in April 1813 in West Springfield, Mass., his father had just inherited property worth $15,000, enough to buy a stage line and several taverns. The family moved into one of the taverns, the Exchange Coffee House, in Hartford, Conn., when Junius was 4 years old. While Junius was growing up in Hartford, his father was amassing a fortune through investments in railroads, steamships and canals, becoming one of Hartford's most influential businessmen. He was also the founder of the Aetna Insurance Co.