Vanderbilt: The Rise and Fall of an American Dynasty
September 24 Zoom at 6pm ET
The Prologue Society is joining with Miami Book Fair, Books & Books and a number of independent bookstores around the U.S. to sponsor this special virtual event
This is a ticketed event, but 2021-2022 Prologue members will attend and receive the book at no additional charge
New York Times bestselling author and journalist Anderson Cooper teams with New York Times bestselling historian and novelist Katherine Howe to chronicle the rise and fall of a legendary American dynasty—his mother’s family, the Vanderbilts.
When eleven-year-old Cornelius Vanderbilt began to work on his father’s small boat ferrying supplies in New York Harbor at the beginning of the nineteenth century, no one could have imagined that one day he would, through ruthlessness, cunning, and a pathological desire for money, build two empires—one in shipping and another in railroads—that would make him the richest man in America. His staggering fortune was fought over by his heirs after his death in 1877, sowing familial discord that would never fully heal. Though his son Billy doubled the money left by “the Commodore,” subsequent generations competed to find new and ever more extraordinary ways of spending it. By 2018, when the last Vanderbilt was forced out of The Breakers—the seventy-room summer estate in Newport, Rhode Island, that Cornelius’s grandson and namesake had built—the family would have been unrecognizable to the tycoon who started it all.
Now, the Commodore’s great-great-great-grandson Anderson Cooper, joins with historian Katherine Howe to explore the story of his legendary family and their outsized influence. Cooper and Howe breathe life into the ancestors who built the family’s empire, basked in the Commodore’s wealth, hosted lavish galas, and became synonymous with unfettered American capitalism and high society. Moving from the hardscrabble wharves of old Manhattan to the lavish drawing rooms of Gilded Age Fifth Avenue, from the ornate summer palaces of Newport to the courts of Europe, and all the way to modern-day New York, Cooper and Howe wryly recount the triumphs and tragedies of an American dynasty unlike any other.
Written with a unique insider’s viewpoint, this is a rollicking, quintessentially American history as remarkable as the family it so vividly captures.
ANDERSON COOPER joined CNN in 2001 and has anchored his own program, Anderson Cooper 360°, since March 2003. Cooper has won 18 Emmys and numerous other major journalism awards. He lives in New York with his son, Wyatt.
Photo credit: John Nowak
This Zoom Virtual Event is FREE with a Paid
REGISTRATION DETAILS WILL FOLLOW ASAP
New Information: Members will be contacted ASAP with the registration details. Note that this is a Zoom event and not a Crowdcast event. We are coordinating registration details with Books & Books and will update our members ASAP.
Members will receive a free book by mail* as soon as they are made available by the publisher. Watch your inbox for details!
- We cannot guarantee that late-joining members will be able to receive books from past 2021-2022 events.
- New Information: As The Prologue Society members are guests to this special Zoom event, we may not be able to provide a recording to our members. We will of course share a recording with our members should one become available.
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