William Henry Osborn (1820 - 1892)

‹ Back to Osborn surname

View William Henry Osborn's complete profile:

  • See if you are related to William Henry Osborn
  • Request to view William Henry Osborn's family tree


Related Projects

Death: Died
Managed by: Ric Dickinson
Last Updated:

About William Henry Osborn


William Henry Osborn (December 21, 1820–March 2, 1894) was a 19th Century railroad tycoon. Born and educated in Salem, Massachusetts, Osborn became one of the most prominent railroad leaders in the United States.

After several years working in business in the Philippines, Osborn took an interest in the Illinois Central Railroad in 1854. The Illinois Central, the first land grant railroad in the United States, was on the verge of bankruptcy in the wake of a stock scandal. A year after joining the railroad's Board of Directors, he was elected president, a position he held from December 1, 1855 to July 11, 1865.

Osborn became interested in the Chicago, St. Louis and New Orleans Railroad and guided the railroad from difficult economic times to profitability between 1875–1882. He retired from the railroad business in 1882 to concentrate on philanthropy near his home in Garrison, New York.

view all

William Henry Osborn's Timeline

December 21, 1820
August 8, 1857
Age 36
Fairfield, CT, USA
Age 41
March 2, 1892
Age 71