"Carnegie and Franklin both credited their success to self-education (both spent their spare moments reading any books they could get their hands on)."
Rags to riches millionaire Andrew Carnegie dedicated his life to the pursuit of knowledge. While he only had a couple of years of formal education, he was constantly educating himself and claimed that this pursuit was the key to his success.
In his Scotland hometown, Carnegie used to visit the library where he would listen to the poetry of Robert Burns. Immigrating to America, Carnegie wrote a letter to the editor protesting the fact that he couldn't borrow books from the library, a letter which gained him entry to the library. As a telegraph deliverer he paid visits to the theatre where he lingered to watch productions of Shakespeare. With his Pittsburgh Library card he borrowed essays written by Charles Lamb and Thomas Macaulay.
As a teenager, he joined the debating club and pondered questions like "Should the judiciary be elected by the people?" Carnegie explained: "Much of my reading...had a bearing on forthcoming debates and that gave clearness and fixity to ideas." (www.artofmanliness.com/2012/03/28/andrew-carnegie-financial-lessons/)
As a businessman, first with the railroad, then in iron and steel, Carnegie poured over Pittsburgh papers as well as the New York Daily Times. The entrepreneur started writing books sharing his business strategies like The Gospel of Wealth and The Empire of Business. Like Benjamin Franklin, Carnegie knew that improving himself included educating himself. "Carnegie and Franklin both credited their success to self-education (both spent their spare moments reading any books they could get their hands on)." (https://richstudents.wordpress.com/tag/carnegie/)
Carnegie amassed a fortune only surpassed by John Rockefeller. He believed in the mantra: "The man who dies rich dies in disgrace." (http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/carnegie/peopleevents/pande01.html). Carnegie started building libraries which he called "instruments of change" and "temples of learning". One of the first libraries, a beaux arts building in Washington D.C., the inscription read "Dedicated to the diffusion of knowledge." In total, Carnegie gave $60 million for 2500 libraries in North America and the United Kingdom, all in the name of educating both rich and poor.
For more information, read Andrew Carnegie's Letter to the Editor at