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Conrad Nicholson Hilton ( 1887 - 1979 )  Category ( Businessmen_Women ) [suggest a correction]
 

Conrad Nicholson Hilton was born in 1887 into a large family living in the New Mexico territory. He attended school at the New Mexico Military Institute and later attended what is now considered the New Mexico Technical School.

Hilton was a Republican Representative in the First Legislature of the State of New Mexico. He was active in the military and served in World War I as an army officer. He received his training in San Francisco and went on to serve as a lieutenant in France. However, his particular unit didn't engage in active combat.

Conrad Hilton formed his Hilton Hotels Corporation in 1946. He almost immediately lost the corporation due to the threat of bankruptcy. During the Great Depression, he actually lost a few of the hotels. Escaping the throes and stigma of bankruptcy, Hilton survived the era and went on to collect hotels accumulating and building up his company until right before his death.

Conrad Hilton had three wives and three sons. He was married to Zsa Zsa Gabor for a short time and had his only daughter with Zsa Zsa. Hilton also had a son who was Elizabeth Taylor's first husband.

While Hilton accumulated massive wealth and laid the groundwork for a phenomenal corporate lifestyle for his family, he left most of his assets to the Roman Catholic Church. He also left money to his siblings and nieces and nephews. However, Conrad's son Barron was forced to contest the will in order to gain access to much of the Hilton fortune. When he won, the Hilton empire grew to a new worth of over 335 million dollars.


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