This is the first biography of the man who, as J.P. Morgan's CEO and the leading banker of his generation, helped establish U.S. economic policy through his broad-reaching financial, political and social connections. Thomas W. Lamont began life as the son of a Methodist parson. By the time he was 40 he was a partner with J.P. Morgan & Co. Within a decade he emerged as chief executive. With the powerful Morgan bank at the pinnacle of domestic and international finance, Lamont was in the middle of economic history as it was being made - from the Versailles Treaty to the New Deal. He was on the inside of many of the most politically charged international events of the time - the Dawes Loan and Young Plan negotiations on German reparations, the disputes over the Allies' war debt, the Japanese domination of Manchuria, the Mexican debt debacle, and the rancornus American debate over aid to embattled England before Pearl Harbor. Lamont advised presidents, prime ministers and their lieutenants for more than 25 years. Woodrow Wilson, Herbert Hoover, Franklin Roosevelt and Ramsay MacDonald were among the political leaders who relied on his keen sense of international banking and politics. Benito Mussolini ignored Lamont's words of caution and paid the price. This intimate biography also tells the personal story behind the public figure by exploring Lamont's friendships with prominent personalities such as Charles Lindbergh, Lady Astor, H.G. Wells, Jan Christiaan Smuts and dozens of other leading figures. Edward Lamont offers fresh insights into the turbulent period between the two world wars through this fascinating account of the life of the most influential banker of his era.
Eward Lamont was a banker for 23 years with the World Bank and J.P. Morgan & Co., Inc. He and his wife, Camille, live in Laurel Hollow, Long Island, New York.
This affectionate and well-researched volume tells of one of the most influential, ven powerful financial figures of his time and certainly one of the most diverse intelligent. We are greatly in debt to Edward Lamont for this literate and thoroughly interesting biography.--John Kenneth Galbraith, Harvard University
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