Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad Co. Issued to and Signed by William Astor - Autographed Stocks and BondsInv# AG2653 Stock
Stock issued to William Astor and signed on stub. Rare!
William Backhouse Astor, Sr. (1792-1875) William Backhouse Astor, Sr. was a businessman and member of the prominent Astor family. William Backhouse Astor, Sr. inherited the bulk of his father's estate and also that of his uncle Henry Astor who had died a wealthy man but without children. The combined inheritance made William Astor the richest man in the United States. He was the last member of the Astor family to enjoy this distinction. During the American Civil War he successfully brought a case against the income tax imposed by the United States government, which was ruled unconstitutional. His management of the family real estate holdings succeeded in multiplying their value, and he left an estate worth close to $50 million. It was at this time that the Astor fortune underwent its first major division, between William Backhouse Astor, Jr. (1830-1892) and John Jacob Astor III (1822-1890), whose son William Waldorf Astor relocated to Great Britain in 1893. His sons, whose side-by-side mansions were on the site later occupied by the first Waldorf=Astoria Hotel (a family property) and then the Empire State Building, inaugurated an era of both more flamboyant living and more generous philanthropy than their austere father and grandfather.
A stock certificate is issued by businesses, usually companies. A stock is part of the permanent finance of a business. Normally, they are never repaid, and the investor can recover his/her money only by selling to another investor. Most stocks, or also called shares, earn dividends, at the business's discretion, depending on how well it has traded. A stockholder or shareholder is a part-owner of the business that issued the stock certificates.