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Dale Carnegie (American writer) Bio, Facts 

Dale Carnegie

Born Name: Dale Breckenridge Carnagey
Date of Birth: November 24, 1888
Place of Birth: Maryville, Missouri, U.S.
Died: November 1, 1955 (aged 66), Forest Hills, New York, U.S.
Resting place: Belton, Missouri
Occupation: Writer, lecturer
Education: University of Central Missouri, Maryville High School, American Academy of Dramatic Arts
Spouse: Lolita Baucaire(m. 1927; div. 1931), Dorothy Price Vanderpool (m. 1944)
Children: Donna Dale Carnegie
Dale Breckenridge Carnegie (spelled Carnagey until c. 1922; November 24, 1888 – November 1, 1955) was an American writer and lecturer, and the developer of famous courses in self-improvement, salesmanship, corporate training, public speaking, and interpersonal skills. Born into poverty on a farm in Missouri, he was the author of How to Win Friends and Influence People (1936), a bestseller that remains popular today. He also wrote How to Stop Worrying and Start Living (1948), Lincoln the Unknown (1932), and several other books.

One of the core ideas in his books is that it is possible to change other people's behavior by changing one's behavior toward them.

Dale Breckenridge Carnagey was born November 24, 1888 on a farm in Maryville, Missouri. He was the second son of impoverished farmers James William Carnagey (1852-1941) and his wife Amanda Elizabeth Harbison (1858-1939). Carnegie grew up around Bedison, Missouri southeast of Maryville and attended rural Rose Hill and Harmony one room schools. Carnegie would develop a longstanding friendship with another Maryville author, Homer Croy.

In 1904, at age 16, his family moved to a farm in Warrensburg,Missouri. As a youth, he was unskilled athletically but enjoyed speaking in public and joined his schools debate team. Carnegie said he had to get up at 3 a.m. to feed the pigs and milk his parents' cows before going to school. During high school, he grew interested in the speeches at the various Chautauqua assemblies. He completed his high school education in 1906.

He attended State Teacher's College in Warrensburg, graduating in 1908.

His first job after college was selling correspondence courses to ranchers. He moved on to selling bacon, soap, and lard for Armour & Company. He was successful to the point of making his sales territory of South Omaha, Nebraska, the national leader for the firm.

His parents moved to Belton, Missouri in 1910 after he graduated and when Carnegie was 22. Carnegie would visit them frequently throughout his life.

After saving $500 (about $13 thousand today), Dale Carnegie quit sales in 1911 in order to pursue a lifelong dream of becoming a Chautauqua lecturer. He ended up instead attending the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York, but found little success as an actor, though it is written that he played the role of Dr. Hartley in a road show of Polly of the Circus. When the production ended, he returned to New York, unemployed, nearly broke, and living at the YMCA on 125th Street. There he got the idea to teach public speaking, and he persuaded the YMCA manager to allow him to instruct a class in return for 80% of the net proceeds. In his first session, he had run out of material. Improvising, he suggested that students speak about "something that made them angry", and discovered that the technique made speakers unafraid to address a public audience. From this 1912 debut, the Dale Carnegie Course evolved. Carnegie had tapped into the average American's desire to have more self-confidence, and by 1914, he was earning $500 (about $12500 today) every week.

During World War I he served in the U.S. Army spending the time at Camp Upton. His draft card noted he had filed for Conscientious objector status and had a loss of a forefinger.

Carnegie changed the spelling of his last name at a time when the steel magnate Andrew Carnegie, to whom he was not related, was a widely recognized, much-revered name. As Dale Carnagey, he worked as assistant to Lowell Thomas in his famous travelogue "With Allenby in Palestine and Lawrence in Arabia". He managed and delivered the travelogue in Canada.

By 1916, Dale was able to rent Carnegie Hall itself for a lecture to a packed house. Carnegie's first collection of his writings was Public Speaking: a Practical Course for Business Men (1926), later entitled Public Speaking and Influencing Men in Business (1932). His crowning achievement, however, was when Simon & Schuster published How to Win Friends and Influence People. The book was a bestseller from its debut in 1936, in its 17th printing within a few months. By the time of Carnegie's death, the book had sold five million copies in 31 languages, and there had been 450,000 graduates of his Dale Carnegie Institute. It has been stated in the book that he had critiqued over 150,000 speeches in his participation in the adult education movement of the time.

His first marriage ended in divorce in 1931. On November 5, 1944, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, he married Dorothy Price Vanderpool (1913–1998), who also had been divorced. Vanderpool had two daughters; Rosemary, from her first marriage, and Donna Dale from their marriage together. Dorothy ran the Carnegie company following Dale's death.

Carnegie died of Hodgkin's disease on November 1, 1955 at his home in Forest Hills, New York. He was buried in the Belton, Cass County, Missouri, cemetery.

How to Win Friends and Influence People
Published in 1936, How to Win Friends and Influence People is still a popular book in business and business communication skills. Dale Carnegie's four part book contains advice on how to create success in business and personal lives. How to Win Friends and Influence People is a tool used in Dale Carnegie Training and includes the following parts:

  1. Part One: Fundamental Techniques in Handling People
  2. Part Two: Six Ways to Make People Like You
  3. Part Three: How to Win People to Your Way of Thinking
  4. Part Four: Be a Leader – How to Change People Without Giving Offense or Arousing Resentment


  • 1915: Art of Public Speaking, with Joseph Berg Esenwein.
  • 1920: Public Speaking: the Standard Course of the United Y. M. C. A. Schools.
  • 1926: Public Speaking: a Practical Course for Business Men. Later editions and updates changed the name of the book several times:Public Speaking and Influencing Men in Business (1937 revised), How to Develop Self-Confidence and Influence People by PublicSpeaking (1956) and Public Speaking for Success (2005).
  • 1932: Lincoln the Unknown.
  • 1934: Little Known Facts About Well Known People.
  • 1936: How to Win Friends and Influence People.
  • 1937: Five Minute Biographies.
  • 1944: Dale Carnegie's Biographical round-up.
  • 1948: How to Stop Worrying and Start Living.
  • 1959: Dale Carnegie's Scrapbook: a Treasury of the Wisdom of the Ages. A selection of Dale Carnegie's writings edited by Dorothy Carnegie.
  • 1962: The Quick and Easy Way to Effective Speaking. (by Dorothy Carnegie, based upon Dale Carnegie's own notes and ideas)

(most given out in Dale Carnegie Courses)

  • 1938: How to Get Ahead in the World Today
  • 1936: The Little Golden Book (later renamed The Golden Book, lists basics from HTWFIP and HTSWSL)
  • 1946: How to Put Magic in the Magic Formula
  • 1947: A Quick and Easy Way to Learn to Speak in Public. (later combined as Speak More Effectively, 1979)
  • 1952: How to Make Our Listeners Like Us. (later combined as Speak More Effectively, 1979)
  • 1959: How to Save Time and Get Better Results in Conferences (later renamed Meetings: Quicker & Better Results)
  • 1960: How to Remember Names (later renamed as Remember Names)
  • 1965: The Little Recognized Secret of Success (later renamed Live Enthusiastically)
  • 1979: Apply Your Problem Solving Know How
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Categories: 1888 births,1955 deaths,20th-century American biographers,20th-century American educators,American military personnel of World War I,American motivational speakers,American motivational writers,American self-help writers,Deaths from lymphoma,Historians of Abraham Lincoln,Male biographers,People from Maryville, Missouri,People from Belton, Missouri,Retailers,United States Army soldiers,University of Central Missouri alumni,Writers from Missouri

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