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John D. Rockefeller, Living The American Dream

"I do not think there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcomes almost everything, even nature." - John D. Rockefeller

A majority of the stories that we learn as children and in school ingrain in us the idea of the American Dream. We learn and discuss heroes – with their trials and tribulations of the present and past societies – that rose from nothing but overcome obstacles to success and take America by storm. These individuals visualized and changed the course of their lives, and of others, to have an impact on generations that followed. John D. Rockefeller, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and creator of the Standard Oil Company, has a story we share that exemplifies our natural rights in terms of business ventures, creativity, freedom, and more, in America.

The Standard Oil Company was one of many whose management understood the importance and common use of oil and natural gas. In today’s society, we use these fossil fuels in almost every aspect of our daily lives. Cosmetics, cars and even medical technology systems take and employ these products in both their construction and use. In the mid to late 1800s, where our story begins, fossil fuels were also on the rise for their use in everyday life. At the time, individuals maneuvering tools, wagons, and other machinery, needed petroleum and other natural gasses to complete tasks at hand. The use of kerosene in lamps, at the time, was of utmost importance.

Rockefeller was able to recognize the value that this industry would present to the American people, as well as himself and his family, and capitalize on his strengths as a businessman to successfully conquer his dreams. However, this was not an easy task to complete. He had difficulties to overcome. Rockefeller did not finish his high school education. He worked from an early age to save up for his entrepreneurial ventures. He began working as a commodities broker, however, after a boom in the oil and gas industry, his interests honed in on a specific sort: agricultural exploration in terms of oil refinement. This is where the Standard Oil Company began.

At the beginning, when the company was created by John D. Rockefeller, along with other company partners, the group could see the long-term investment of digging and refining oil for profit, as well as national and international distribution. After the initial start of his company, he and his counterparts focused on removing oil “impurities” from existing land already owned. Because his researchers and other employees were able to find, extract, and purify this overlooked oil, a smart, resourceful business was on the rise.

The Standard Oil Company, after many years of success, growth, and profitability, split into its own companies that covered a multitude of American states. Many of these companies such as Exxon, Conoco, and Chevron, still exist today. The test of time for Standard Oil Company and the natural resources industry is a testimony to the American Dream. The American Dream encompasses the idea that no matter what socioeconomic status or family we belong to, we can produce and conquer our own version of success and upward mobility that lies within our legacy – whatever that may be.

What legacy of the American Dream holds value to you? And what impact did it have on you, or the community you live in?


*All opinions expressed by WYO Conservative guests are theirs alone and may not represent the views of WYO Conservative’s Founder and Owner, Donna K. Rice, or any WYO Conservative affiliates.


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