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Charles F. Haanel – Biography


Charles Haanel’s family was of Swedish origin. However, his family had lived in Silesia, Prussia and thereafter moved to Canada and finally moved to the United States where they permanently settled. Charles Francis Haanel was born on 22nd May in the year 1866 in Ann Arbor which is in Washtenaw County Michigan in the United States of America. His father was Hugo Paul Haanel and his mother was Emeline Cordelia Fox. His family later migrated to St. Louis Missouri when his father got a job at the picker school as a teacher while Haanel was still a child. Haanel had other seven siblings but out of the seven only six survived.

Charles Francis Haanel got his first job as an office boy at the National Enameling and Stamping Company in St. Louis in the year 1886. He thereafter served the company in several other sectors for fifteen years. He thereafter decided to quit his job at this company to concentrate and chase his ambitions. It is during this time that he decided to venture into business and writing with the aim of elevating his financial status. In the year 1885 Haanel married Esther Martha Smith and they had a son and two daughters. Sadly, she passed away in the year 1891. Haanel married again in 1908. His second wife was from St. Louis and she was called Margaret Nicholson and her father was W. A. Nicholson.

Haanel became a member of the Republican Party and also strongly supported the Missouri Athletic Club. He also became a member of several other societies such as the Authors League of America, American Society of Physical Research, Society of Rosicrucians, the American Suggestive Therapeutical Association and Science League of America among many others. Haanel passed away on 27th November in the year 1949 at the age of 83. Haanel’s ashes were buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery which is located at St. Louis.


Haanel’s first book was known as The Master Key system and was published in 1912 at the age of 46. This book entailed a course in New Thought, personal health and financial success. This was a major step that brought a lot of success to him as this book captured the attention of many people in the world. He managed to sell over 20,000 copies around the world. Haanel strictly followed his financial strategies and principles and in turn became so successful in the business sector by owning quite a good number of companies. For instance, he controlled the Continental Commercial Company, Oaxaca Coffee Culture Company, The Continental Sugar Company, Mexico Gold and Silver Mining Company and the Sacramento Valley Improvement Company. During this period, The continental Commercial Company was among the largest recognized companies in the world which had a capital of about two million five hundred thousand dollars. Other than The Master Key System, Haanel proceeded to publish other books. He published Mental Chemistry in 1922, The New Psychology in 1924, and A Book about You in 1927 and The Amazing Secrets of the Yogi which he coordinated with Victor Simon Perera in 1937.


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