In 1911, Andrew Carnegie established Carnegie Corporation of New York, one of the last institutions he created and the only U.S. organization he formed as a grantmaking foundation.

For Carnegie, who was president during the first eight years of operation, the Corporation represented a final step in his plan to invest most of his accumulated wealth, over 90 percent, or more than $330 million, in doing "real and permanent" good in the world. The Corporation's mission is "to promote the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding" among the people of the United States, in perpetuity. Though up to 7.4 percent of the funds may be used for the same purpose in countries that were members of the British Commonwealth as of 1948; the Corporation's current focus in this area is on selected countries in English-speaking Sub-Saharan Africa.

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