Cornelius Vanderbilt was a shipping tycoon that started with shipping freight by ferry to controlling one of the largest railroad networks.
Cornelius Vanderbilt Steamboat Legacy
Cornelius Vanderbilt quit school at age 11 and began working on one of his father’s ferries. By the time he was 16, he decided to start his own ferry business and bought a shallow draft two-masted sailing ship to ferry freight and passengers between Manhattan Island and Staten Island, New York. After saving his money, he bought his brother-in-law’s schooner and added it to his fleet.