Charles F. Haanel was a businessman, a leader, a philosopher, and a visionary.
Born on May 22, 1866 in Ann Arbor, Michigan, he started his business career as an office boy for a company in St. Louis. In 1898, Mr. Haanel convinced investors that Tehuantepee, New Mexico would be a prime place to initiate the growth of sugar and coffee. He was made president of this venture. It grew in value greatly and made all of the investors and Haanel wealthy.
Mr. Haanel formed the Continental Commercial Company in 1905, which included the sugar and coffee plantation as well as six additional companies that were absorbed into the whole. At the time, it was one of the largest conglomerates in the world with a value of $2.5 million. Building upon those successes, Mr. Haanel formed many other companies that added to his wealth: The Sacramento Valley Improvement Company, vineyards, and a mining company. He was president of all the ventures and was responsible for their success and growth.
Beside his business interests, Mr. Haanel was a member of the Keystone Lodge, the Authors’ League of America, the American Society of Psychical Research, the St. Louis Humane Society, the St. Louis Chamber of Commerce, and the Science League of America. He was a thirty-second degree Mason, a Shriner, and a member of the Missouri Athletic Club. According to a short biography of him (from which much of this article derived its facts) in St. Louis — History of the Fourth City by Walter B. Stevens, “He is a man of mature judgement, capable of taking a calm survey of life and correctly valuing its opportunities, its possibilities, its demands and obligations.”
Mr. Haanel died on November 27, 1949 at the age of 83. He was buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery, St. Louis.
By taking an overview of Mr. Haanel’s life, it becomes clear how the tenets written in The Master Key System guided Mr. Haanel. He not only wrote what he thought — Mr. Haanel wrote what he lived.
Visit the Official Charles F. Haanel web site at www.Haanel.com for much more information about the man many consider to be the “Father of Personal Development.”