Few names are more evocative of wealth and glamour than “Vanderbilt,” the dynasty founded by a New York ferryman who became the richest man in America.
Excess was his family’s signature style: A Long Island house with 110 rooms and 45 bathrooms. A summer cottage with both salt and fresh water flowing out of its taps. A private yacht with an ice-cream machine and a full-time mechanic to care for it. Marble driveways, seaplanes, sports cars, horses, gambling and over-the-top galas.
But within four generations, the staggering wealth the Vanderbilts had produced was so dissipated that by the time the ferryman’s great-great-great-great-grandson Anderson Cooper was born, it was gone entirely.
In Vanderbilt: The Rise and Fall of an American Dynasty, Cooper explores his legendary family, breathing life into the ancestors who built — and destroyed — their empire. He joins us to discuss how his storied relatives feuded and spent themselves into oblivion, opening a window into their lives and the unfettered capitalism of the Gilded Age.
Anderson Cooper is a CNN anchor and a contributor to CBS’s 60 Minutes. He has won numerous journalism awards, including nine Emmys, and is the author of two prior books, the first a #1 New York Times bestseller.
This event will not be streamed on social media. Registration is required for attending or viewing.
$35, $30 for Temple Emanu-El members
Includes a copy of the book