This is the first major biography of Alexander T. Stewart, known during his lifetime as "The Merchant Prince" for his success in retail, wholesale, and manufacturing in New York City. At the time of his death in 1876, Stewart was one of the three wealthiest men in America, along with William B. Astor and Cornelius Vanderbilt. But, because he died with no surviving children, his name has all but been forgotten. In this work, Stewart is revived, his remarkable success as the "father" of the department store examined, and his great contributions to retailing acknowledged and recounted. Not only a definitive account, this story of a major figure in America's Gilded Age, as told by Stephen Elias, is also an absorbing tale. This work fills a gap in the literature on American history and the history of our retail trade. It will be of use to historians, students of merchandising, and those interested in New York's golden age.