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The Vanderbilts amassed a fortune from shipping, railroads, and other industries, then used their vast wealth to build a series of incredible Beaux Arts mansions. A case in point is the townhouse erected at the corner of West 57th Street and Fifth Avenue by Cornelius Vanderbilt II. It was and remains the largest private residence ever built in Manhattan. The Bergdorf Goodman store now stands on the site.
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