When Money Was In Fashion: Henry Goldman, Goldman Sachs, and the Founding of Wall Street

Paperback | November 22, 2011

byJune Breton Fisher

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This epic biography tells the story of the rise of Wall Street and the growth of Goldman Sachs from a small commercial paper company to the international banking business we know today. At its heart is the story of Henry Goldman, a man who spoke out passionately for his beliefs, understood the importance of the bottom line, and was known to chuckle, draw on his cigar, and remind his young protégés, "Just keep in mind . . . Money is always in fashion."

Though you will rarely find a mention of him in the official history of Goldman Sachs, it was Henry who established many of the practices of modern investment banking. He devised the plan that made Sears, Roebuck Co. the first publicly owned retail operation in the world, helped convince Woodrow Wilson to pass the Federal Reserve Act of 1913, and became a power player in the world of Wall Street finance at a time when Jews were considered outsiders.

The book traces Henry Goldman's hard-fought and often frustrating career with Goldman Sachs, a company founded by his father Marcus and fraught with professional rivalries. The tensions between the Goldman and Sachs families extended outside of the boardroom and into the larger world as the United States went to war. Henry's steadfast support for Germany during World War I would tarnish his reputation and drive him from the firm. But his involvement with finance would continue throughout his life, as would close friendships with luminaries like Albert Einstein, whom he would later join in outspoken denunciation of Hitler's atrocities against European Jews.

Here, June Breton Fisher, Henry Goldman's granddaughter, tells his whole story-a story that has shaped contemporary finance and continues to resonate with us today.

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This epic biography tells the story of the rise of Wall Street and the growth of Goldman Sachs from a small commercial paper company to the international banking business we know today. At its heart is the story of Henry Goldman, a man who spoke out passionately for his beliefs, understood the importance of the bottom line, and was kno...

June Breton Fisher is Henry Goldman's granddaughter. She was born in New York City in 1927, graduated from the Brearley School and attended Bryn Mawr College. She lives in Santa Barbara, CA.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.65 inPublished:November 22, 2011Publisher:St. Martin's PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230114059

ISBN - 13:9780230114050

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Against all Odds
Growing Pains
Bickering in the Boardroom
Phoenix Rising
The Fine Art of Collecting Fine Art
Family Matters
End of the Line
Acknowledgments

Editorial Reviews

"When Money was in Fashion provides a much needed and fascinating look into the life of one of Wall Street's original elder statesmen. Fisher's story is both revealing and personal and provides behind-the-scenes insight into the formative period of Wall Street's growth." -Charles Geisst, Author of The Last Partnerships and Wall Street: A History"Most Americans know more more about string theory than they do about high finance -- and even less about the character, family background and inner life of Wall Street's principle protagonists. This beautifully written and quietly revealing biography provides a timely, fascinating and discretely unflinching account of the life of Henry Goldman -- the sixth child and second son of Bertha and Marcus Goldman, the founder of Goldman Sachs, and a key if complex force in the evolution of the firm during the first two formative decades of the 20th century. Written by Goldman's granddaughter, June Fisher, it combines a rare inside family portrait of America's most powerful banking dynasty with an unusual degree of elegance, irony and restraint. Anyone interested in the history and lineage of Goldman Sachs will be riveted by Ms. Fisher's story." -Ric Burns, documentary filmmaker"When Money Was in Fashion is a fascinating and enlightening window into a major part of Wall Street history: the now legendary investment banking firm of Goldman Sachs and Henry Goldman, one of the firm's prime shapers." -John Steele Gordon, Author of An Empire of Wealth: The Epic History of American Economic Power"[An] immigrants-made-good saga..[A] memoir of an admired grandfather by a current-day octogenarian who was 10 years old when he died..Patriarch Goldman knew how to enjoy his money after earning it, knew how to enjoy togetherness with family members, knew how to enrich the citizenry he sometimes had been accused of exploiting." -USA Today"A graceful account of Goldman and his era....[A] charming family scrapbook." -Bloomberg Businessweek