American Dreams: Richest U.S. Families With Immigrant Roots

The Du Ponts. The Mellons. The Pulitzers. They’re among the most prominent families in American history, and still some of the wealthiest. But each clan owes its fortune to an immigrant.

They’re among 17 of the richest families in the U.S. whose modern-day wealth dates back to an industrious foreign-born ancestor who moved to the U.S and had an idea for a business (full list below).

Most hailed from Europe, but two came from China and Iran. They crafted beer and cheese, invented blue jeans, peddled insurance, produced chemicals and bought real estate. In most cases, they had some money in their pockets and marketable skills when they arrived in the U.S. Decades and sometimes centuries after their arrival, their descendents top the nation’s wealth hierarchy. The American Dream may have been a siren song for most, but it paid off for these billion-dollar families.

The Du Ponts trace their fortune to Eleuthère Irénée “E.I.” du Pont (1771-1834), a prisoner during the French Revolution who fled to the U.S. in 1799. Armed with expertise in chemistry and capital from French investors, he founded a gunpowder manufacturing company in Delaware in 1802. The company branched out into dynamite, plastics and paints, eventually evolving into the chemical giant that invented nylon, rayon and Teflon. The Du Ponts no longer run the company, but the sizeable stake they’ve held onto is the main reason the family’s estimated 3,500 descendants share a fortune now worth $15 billion.

America’s taste for German beer made the Busch and Coors families rich. German-born Adolphus Busch started brewing Budweiser in 1876. His son August supposedly sent a beer crate to the White House when Franklin D. Roosevelt repealed Prohibition. The family’s $13 billion fortune comes mostly from selling off Anheuser-Busch stock and proceeds from the company’s merger with Belgian-Brazilian brewer InBev in 2008. Three years before Busch started his brewery, 26-year-old Adolph Coors opened one in Colorado after stowing away on a ship from Prussia. He’d trained in brewing since he was 14 and found a partner to invest $18,000 in the venture. An estimated 70 members of the Coors family now share $2.9 billion in beer wealth.

Two of Manhattan’s flourishing real-estate dynasties date to enterprising immigrant forefathers who started buying land in the 1900s. In 1902, Louis Rudinsky, an immigrant from Eastern Europe, bought a property on East 54th Street. Five generations later, the land is still part of the Rudin family’s portfolio of 34 office and apartment buildings, including properties on Times Square and Park Avenue. Rudinsky’s investment earned his descendents a fortune of $4.4 billion.

Iranian-born businessman Nourollah Elghanayan started buying land in Manhattan in the 1950s and 1960s. His sons turned the holdings into a booming real-estate business. Now, the family is worth $1.9 billion and has more than 20 million square feet of residential and commercial holdings to its name, split among two firms.

Here’s a complete list of today’s richest U.S. families with immigrant patriarchs:

1. Du Pont family

Patriarch: E.I. du Pont

Country of origin: France

Net worth: $15 billion

Source of wealth: DuPont

2. Busch family

Patriarch: Adolphus Busch

Source Article from
American Dreams: Richest U.S. Families With Immigrant Roots
immigrant – Yahoo News Search Results
immigrant – Yahoo News Search Results


メールアドレスが公開されることはありません。 * が付いている欄は必須項目です

次のHTML タグと属性が使えます: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>