Names like the Rockefellers and Vanderbilts are the first things that we think about when considering traditionally wealthy, reputable American families. The world of the American Elite looks like a fantastical, glittering one, with ‘old money’ families mingling to make a focus of beauty and wealth in the middle of the nation. However, as Forbes’ recent compilation of the richest American families as of 2014 – 2015 catalogs, American families are new and old alike. The fortunes of the same started a long time ago in the eighteenth century while some of the richest families only began to accumulate their billion as recently as the last fifty years.
0.5% of the United States’ entire wealth are represented by the following twenty families alone, with a combining net worth of a whooping $252.1 billion.
20. The Brown family – $11.6 billion
Coming in at the twenty spot is the Brown family. This family has wealth which is one-hundred and forty-four years old. Where they got their net worth of eleven point six billion dollars is the liquor market. Brown-Forman, the family company, was created in 1870, and it is one of the biggest liquor companies in the US today. This wealth is shared by around twenty-five family members.
19. The Mellon Family – $12 billion
A family with Irish heritage took the 19th spot. The Mellons have increased their wealth mostly through banking. Nowadays worth twelve billion dollars, the Mellon family first started making serious money during the 1840s, after Judge Thomas Mellon left Ireland. He started to work with the land, real estate and banking, his work in each of these has been carried on by future generations. Business building is the focal point of the current generation of the Mellons.
18. The Dorrance family – $12.8 billion
At number eighteen is the Dorrances, with a net worth of twelve point eight billion dollars. They have accumulated their money from the Campbell Soup Company, which started in 1897 when John T. Dorrance thought of the renowned recipe for condensed soup. Campbell Soup is a huge company all over the world today, and has a revenue of over eight billion dollars. A lot of members of the Dorrance family still sit on the Campbell board. There are at least eleven members sharing the collective wealth of the Dorrance family today.
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