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America's Sixty Families

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Subject: Thomas W. Lamont, Ferdinand Lundberg, New Deal
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America's Sixty Families

Ferdinand Lundberg (April 30, 1902 – March 1, 1995) was a 20th-century journalist who studied the history of American wealth and power.[1]


Ferdinand Edgar Lundberg, of Swedish and Norwegian parentage was born in Chicago and received his B.A. and M.A. degrees at Columbia University.


He started working in Chicago in 1924, transferred to New York in 1926 and joined the Wall Street Journal staff in 1927. He became a specialist for financial reporting and he covered the Wall Street Crash of 1929. He held several positions in his lifetime: a journalist with United Press International, the Chicago Daily News, and the New York Herald Tribune (1927–1934); and editor for the Twentieth Century Fund. In 1934 he resigned from the Herald Tribune to do research for his two major muckraking books of 1936 and 1937. He also lectured as an adjunct professor of social philosophy at New York University from 1952 to 1968.

He was the author of a 1936 social biography of William Randolph Hearst entitled Imperial Hearst, detailing his political involvements, and of America's Sixty Families, an exposure of the leading groups in business and finance. A later exploration of American wealth entitled The Rich and the Super-Rich is less critical. He co-wrote, with Carol Bram, a strong critique of the US charter called Cracks in the Constitution. In Scoundrels All (1968), a collection of sceptical quotes on politicians, he admits to a preference for H. L. Mencken. Along with a psychiatrist, Dr. Marynia Farnham, Lundberg wrote a 1947 book titled, Modern Woman: The Lost Sex, whose contention was that contemporary women suffered from neuroses they were likely to pass on to the next generation.

At the time of his death he lived in Chappaqua, New York.[2][3]

Further reading

  • Imperial Hearst;: A social biography (1936) (reprinted with a biographical preface on Lundberg by Charles A. Beard (vii-x).
  • America's Sixty Families (1937)
  • Who controls industry?: And other questions raised by critics of America's 60 families ( 1938)
  • The Treason of the People (1954)
  • The coming world transformation (1963)
  • The Rich and the Super-Rich (1968)
  • The Rockefeller Syndrome (1968)
  • Cracks in the Constitution (1980)
  • The Myth of Democracy (1989)
  • Politicians and Other Scoundrels (1992)
  • The Natural Depravity of Mankind (1994)


  1. ^ (Los Angeles Times. March 04, 1995)Ferdinand Lundberg, Iconoclastic Journalist Assailed the Rich
  2. ^ Saxon, Wolfgang (March 3, 1995). "F. Lundberg, 92, Author Who Wrote of the Rich". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-06-23. 
  3. ^ "Ferdinand Lundberg; Iconoclastic Journalist Assailed the Rich". Los Angeles Times. March 4, 1995. 

Other sources

  • Benson, Adolph B. and Naboth Hedin, eds. (1938) Swedes in America, 1638-1938 (The Swedish American Tercentenary Association. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press) ISBN 978-0-8383-0326-9
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