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Business Hints for Men and Women by Alfred Rochefort Calhoun

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The deposit book must be carefully guarded, for without its
presentation at the savings bank money cannot be drawn. You cannot
check against your savings bank account, as with a commercial


After the first account is opened the rest is easy.

On the second, as on all subsequent visits, the deposit book, with
the amount to be entered, is handed to the receiving teller. He
counts the money, makes a record of it for his own use, enters it
on your book as a deposit, and hands the book back. That is all.

Whenever interest is due it is written down in the book as if it
were a cash deposit.

The interest, if desired, will be paid in cash, but if allowed to
remain, it begins at once to earn interest for itself.

Interest grows like a rolling snow ball. On such small beginnings
great fortunes have been built.

Savings banks keep a reserve, made up of earnings in excess of
interest and all expenses.

This reserve earns money.

The money so earned is reckoned as a net profit, and it may be
distributed, and usually is, among its depositors as a "dividend."


Different banks have different limits of deposit, that is fixed
sums beyond which they will not receive.

The limit is from one thousand to five thousand dollars.

When the fortunate depositor has reached the limit with one
savings bank, there is no law to prevent his opening another
account with another, or with any number of similar banks.

Remember the savings banks are not meant for capitalists, but for
small depositors.

After deposits and interests have reached a total of $1,600, the
interest will not go on earning interest, but will be regarded
simply as a deposit.

This is in compliance with law.

Depositors, posted as to the law, open another account with
another bank, and keep on till the interest limit is reached.


A savings bank depositor may either draw money himself or through
some properly authorized person.

This is the method:

The deposit book is presented to the paying teller. The owner
states the sum he wants to draw.

Having assured himself that the bearer of the book is the right
person, the teller takes a receipt in a book kept for the purpose,
for the amount, enters the same on the right hand or debit side of
the book, and hands out the money.

There is a form of authorization for another to draw, printed on
the deposit book. This must be copied and its directions complied

Most banks will not allow depositors to draw out less than a fixed
sum, say $5.00.

This saves trouble, and prevents thoughtless depositors from going
to the bank every time they want a dollar.

Before a depositor can draw a large sum from a savings bank he may
be compelled, under the law, to give from one week to six weeks'
notice of his intention.

This provision may not prevent a run on the bank, but it gives the
managers time to provide for it.

Read the rules in the deposit book.


How can a bank that does not discount notes or deal in loans and
commercial paper earn money? How can it pay interest?

While they may be individually small, the aggregate of all the
deposits in a savings bank may, and often do, amount to many

This money is not allowed to lie idle.

Under the skilled direction of the bank officers, the money,
instead of lying idle in the vaults, is invested in many ways, but
always in accordance with the laws of the state under which the
bank is chartered.

Much of the money is invested in mortgages on real estate, never
on personal property.

National bank stocks, sound railroad bonds, and other forms of
reliable interest security are fields for the investment of
savings bank funds.

Savings banks are subject to the periodic inspection of state
officers appointed for the purpose.

The failure of a savings bank through bad investments or the
dishonesty of officials is very rare.

Avoid all banks that promise more than the regular rate of

Private banks may be, and usually are, honestly conducted, but to
be safe, deposit only with a bank that is regularly chartered and
is subject to the inspection of the law.

The savings bank is the best for the wage earner.



The promissory note is a most useful kind of commercial paper, and
it is in general use in business.

If a man has not sufficient ready cash to pay for the real estate
he is about to purchase, he makes up the difference by a note,
which note is secured by a mortgage on the property.

Remember the mortgage must always be regarded as security. The
note represents the debt.

Often wholesalers take a note as part or even full payment for a
bill of goods to a retailer.

If the wholesaler needs money, he endorses these notes and putting
them in his bank draws against them, less the discount he has to
pay for the accommodation.

As has been shown, an account may be transferred and sold, but a
note is more convenient for that purpose.


As with a check the maker of a note is known as a "drawer," the
person in whose favor it is drawn is the "payee."

Notes may be written in pencil, but it is better and safer to
write with ink on good paper.

Supposing you buy a team of horses, or it may be a bill of goods,
from John Brown, for $350.

Now you have only $100 in cash. What are you to do?

Mr. Brown, knowing you to be reliable, says: "That's all right,
friend Jones. You pay me the $100 cash for which I will give you a
receipt, then I will take your note for six months, payable at my

You agree to this; pay out the money, make and deliver the note
and take the property in question, which is now yours as much as
it had been his before the transfer.

The following would be a legal form in which to make the note:

$250. Summit, N. J.
October 10, 1910.
Six months after date I promise to pay to
the order of John Brown..............
Two hundred and fifty ...... dollars,....
At the Lincoln National Bank of Summit
.......... Value received.
George Jones.
No. 1. Due April 14, 1911.

Now, if before the expiration of this note, you want to make a
payment on it of, say, $75, you take the money to Mr. Brown, who
endorses on the back of the note, "Received on the within note
$75, January 3rd.," if that be the date, and signs, "John Brown."

It may be well to remember that while a running account may be
collected at any time, the law cannot prevent the maker of a
promissory note from selling all his belongings and leaving the
country before the note is due.


Notes may be "time" notes, that is where there is a specified time
for payment, or "demand" notes. The latter are collectable on

With the time notes "three days grace" are allowed after the
expiration of the date for payment. No such favor is allowed in
the case of demand notes.

These grace days do not seem businesslike. Why not add them to the
date in the note? Well, it is a custom, quite as old as the
greater part of our laws, and so it must be observed.

Under the law a note is payable at the home or business place of
the drawer, unless otherwise specified.


A note secured by a mortgage has its payment guaranteed.

The usual way of securing the payment of a note given in business
is to have it endorsed with a good name across the back, as in
endorsing a check.

By writing your name across the back of another man's note you
announce to all the holders of that note that you know the maker
and that if he does not pay it you will.

In most states the indorser of a note cannot be held responsible
for payment, unless the holder notifies him, within twenty-four
hours after the note comes due, that the maker cannot or will not

If an indorsed note changes hands, each indorser is responsible to
all endorsers who follow him and also to the last holder of the

If an indorser, that is, one into whose hands the note has come
after the first endorsement, should not wish to guarantee payment,
he writes before his name, "Without recourse to me."

This is known as a "qualified endorsement."


Most notes are negotiable; that is because they may be sold, like
any other personal property, or the ownership may be transferred
from one person to another.

No note is negotiable that does not bear on its face, the words,
"Pay to bearer," or "Pay to the order of," followed by the payee's


When two persons sign a note they become jointly and individually
responsible for its payment.

Such persons are known as "joint makers."

If one signs his name on the back of a note before it has been
handed to the payee, he makes himself not only an endorser, but a
joint maker.

If the maker of such a note refuses to pay on the expiration of
time stated, he is liable for the amount without any notification.


If a business man borrows from a bank on his note, he must pay for
the privilege.

Interest is a sum paid for the use of money.

Interest is reckoned as a certain percentage yearly on the

Interest on interest is called "compound interest" and is unused
in ordinary business transactions.

Instead of collecting interest when the amount borrowed on a note
is due, or deducting it from the principal in advance, it
discounts the note at the rate agreed on and pays the rest.

This is called bank discount and its rate is variable, depending
on the abundance or scarcity of money.

Money is a marketable article, and the price, like that of wheat
or cotton, is governed by supply and demand.


A note may be made payable "with interest," or not, as the parties
concerned may agree.

If nothing is said about interest in the note, no interest can be

Again a note may go into details and specify that "the interest
shall be ten per cent, payable semi-annually," provided always
that the rate shall not be higher than the legal interest of the

Excessive interest is known as "usury." It invalidates all the
interest, and in some places the principal is forfeited.

When the holder of an interest note receives interest payment he
must record the date and sum on the back of the note.


If a note comes due on Sunday or on a legal holiday, payment must
be made on the following day.

Holidays are appointed by the separate states.

The United States recognizes no day as a holiday, except Sunday,
and that is acknowledged through custom.

It is customary for banks to notify makers of notes held by them a
few days before time set for payment; but this is not required by

If a note lies unpaid in bank the day set for payment, as soon as
the office closes for regular business the note is protested.

The protest is made before a notary public; he is usually an
employee of the bank.

In the protest formal objection is made against the breaking of
the promise, and demanding that the matter be set right by the
maker, or on his failure, by the indorser.

The indorser, who has to pay, has a claim for the amount on the
maker of the note, as he would have for money loaned or goods
sold, and he can sue to collect.

A note that is not paid within a fixed time is said to be

Remember the indorser of a note must be notified within twenty-
four hours of the failure of the drawer to make good.


The object in protesting a note is to fix the liability on the

If there be more than one endorser notice of protest must be sent
to all at the same time.

It is better, where possible, to serve the notices on the
indorsers in person.

The payee must also be notified.


There is a form of note sometimes used in business which is given
without any consideration on the part of the maker. This is known
as an "accommodation note."

The maker of such a note does not expect to pay it, nor does the
man in whose favor it is drawn expect to do so.

An accommodation note is an instrument by the sale of which, or
through a bank, money may be raised for immediate use.

The maker in this case is a friend who loans his name.

As there was no value received such a note could not be collected
by the payee.

But if it passes into the hands of a third party, who endorses it,
then the maker of the note can be compelled to pay.


A note may be lost or stolen.

The losing of a note does not release the maker from payment of
the full amount on the date and at the place named.

The loser should at once notify the maker of his loss.

A man who buys, before its maturity, a lost or stolen note, may
collect the full amount from the maker, provided the note is
payable to "bearer" and no notice of the loss has been published.

When the maker of a lost note pays the amount to the original
owner, he should receive from him what is known as a "bond of

This bond is to secure him against paying a second time.


There are some things worth remembering about promissory notes.

1. Never give one if you can pay cash.
2. A note made on Sunday is worthless in some states.
3. A note given under compulsion is worthless.
4. Notes made by a drunken person, or obtained by any form of
fraud cannot be collected under law.
5. Notes bear interest only when so stated in body of note.
6. The holder of a note has a legal claim against every indorser.
7. Each indorser is responsible to every indorser who follows him.
8. Notes are valid without reference to the kind of paper, or
whether they are written with pen or pencil.
9. Losing a note does not release the maker from payment.
10. If no time is set in a note for payment, it becomes due as
soon as it is made.
11. Where a note is made in one state and is payable in another,
it is governed by the laws of the state in which it is to be paid.
12. Notes payable on demand draw no interest until after they have
been presented for payment.
13. If a note reads "with interest" and no rate is specified then
it draws the legal interest in the state in which it was made.
14. Demand notes are not entitled to days of grace.
15. If no place of payment is named in a note, it should be
presented to the maker personally in business hours.
16. The misspelling of a word or words in no way invalidates a
17. If a person who cannot write makes a note his mark should be
properly witnessed.
18. The makers of a joint note must be sued jointly.
19. If the words and the figures in a note disagree, the words
take precedence.
20. A note signed by a firm may be collected from either of the
21. When a payment is made on a note secured by a mortgage, the
amount is endorsed on the note, never on the mortgage.
22. A note given by a minor is void, unless given for actual
necessities, like food and clothing.
23. If a note made by a minor is acknowledged when he comes of age
it is binding and collectible.



A draft is a written order from the first party to the second
party to pay to the third party a certain sum of money at a
certain time.

The first party is called the "drawer."

The second party is the "drawee."

The third party is the "payee."

There are two kinds of draft.

The first is usually where the cashier of one bank, through his
own check, draws on another bank for the cash difference in their
accounts with each other.

The second form of draft is the most usual and is the one we shall
here consider.

The cashier's draft is always for cash and the demand is always
honored. The ordinary business draft may be for cash or for goods.

The business draft is usually honored, but there are circumstances
under which it may be ignored.


But let us suppose that the draft is all right and that a
merchant, let us call him Henry Thomas, and suppose him a resident
of Philadelphia, has a bill against James Taylor, of Cleveland,
and he wants to collect it, without recourse to law. How will he
go about it?

The bill is for $100.

Mr. Thomas writes this draft:

Philadelphia, Pa., Sept. 5, 1910.
At sight pay to the order of
Johnson National Bank of Philadelphia
One hundred................... dollars.
With exchange
and charge same to
Henry Thomas.
To James Taylor,
Cleveland, Ohio.

Having drawn his draft, Mr. Thomas takes it to the Johnson
National Bank for collection. The collection is actually made by
some bank in Cleveland to which the Johnson has endorsed it over.

If Mr. Thomas wished he might have sent his draft direct to the
Cleveland bank, but he no doubt thought it better to transact such
matters through his own bank.

Or if Mr. Thomas lived where he was not in touch with a bank, he
might have drawn through any person whom he knew in Cleveland.

On receiving the draft for collection, the Cleveland bank would at
once give it to a clerk who would without delay present it to Mr.

Mr. Taylor, having written his acceptance of the draft, is given
three days grace in which to make payment.

In states where days of grace are not allowed, he would have to
pay at once.

Mr. Taylor writes the word "accepted," with the date and his name
across the face of the draft, and if he does not pay cash, he
states in the writing where payment will be made.

Of course, Mr. Taylor cannot be compelled to accept a draft. There
may be good and honest reasons for his not doing so, but having
accepted it, in business honor he is bound to pay it.

The term "Sight draft" explains itself, but the order to pay a
draft may indicate, and often does, the number of days allowed for
payment, after presentation.


What should be done by the man to whom a bill or a note is due,
when the debtor lives in a place where there is no bank?

In that case he must learn in some way the name of a promising
person to make the collection for him.

In this case he makes out the draft as before, and adds the words
"for collection." This acts as a bar to any transfer of the paper.

Most banks refuse to handle a draft marked "for collection."


Drafts are not necessarily duns.

Some country merchants prefer to pay their bills to wholesalers in
that way, so that collecting drafts is no small part of the
business of the ordinary bank.

While men are not compelled to meet drafts when presented, if the
amount is due and he defaults or refuses to pay he injures his own

In refusing a just draft he is said to "dishonor" it.

So sure are wholesalers that their drafts will be met by their
distant debtors that they do not hesitate to draw against them
when deposited for collection, regarding them as cash to their
credit in bank.


When a draft is not accepted or paid when due, if it be a time
draft, it is protested in the same way as a note.

The protest of a draft serves as a notice to the drawer of its

Like notes and checks, drafts may be transferred by a similar


If I wanted to pay a bill for $150 to Albert Holt, living at
Wallace, Kansas, and did not wish to trouble him with a check, how
would I go about it?

1. I might express the cash, which would be expensive.
2. I might send it in postal order, not always certain.
3. I might send it by a trusted hand, but might have long to wait
before I found a friend going out to Wallace.

I am living in New York City, and am familiar enough with banking
to know that New York is a great financial center and is in
constant communication with nearly all the outside banks.

The outside banks keep money in deposit here, and the New York
banks, particularly in the spring and autumn, keep deposits with
their correspondents.

With my $150 and a small extra sum to pay my bank for drawing the
draft, I go thither and buy a draft for the sum I owe Mr. Holt.

I mail this draft to my creditor and he can cash it without loss
in his home bank. Here is the form:

No. 101.
Madison National Bank of New York.
Pay to the order of Albert Holt,
One hundred and fifty dollars ($150.)...
.......... L. N. Jones,
To Prairie National Bank,
Wallace, Kansas.


When you buy a draft which you mean to send off in payment of a
debt, a good plan is to have it made payable to yourself.

Let us suppose it is the case of Albert Holt. You transfer the
draft to him by writing across the back, "Pay to the order of
Albert Holt," and add your signature.

Now as all drafts are returned, as payment vouchers, to the banks
from which they were issued, and as Mr. Holt must have signed the
draft to get his money, it follows that there is a record of his
having received it, and this has all the force of a receipt.

Do not endorse a draft with just your name, for in that case,
anyone into whose hands it falls may collect. First write "Pay to
the order of" the person for whom it is intended.


A draft made payable to yourself is as good as cash, and far safer
to carry.

If you are identified at any bank between the Atlantic and
Pacific, you can have your draft cashed.

All banks furnish blank drafts.

Never endorse a draft made payable to yourself, and this applies
to a check, until you are about to use it.

It is a good plan never to sign your name until it is actually

Some people have the foolish habit of signing their names on stray
bits of paper.

Do not get into this habit, even if there is no space to fill out
a note or order above the signature.



As has been before stated, money in its broadest meaning is a
medium of exchange.

Anything that can pay a debt or purchase property, in any part of
a country, is the money of that country.

Every civilized country has its own minted or printed money.

The usual mediums of circulation are gold, silver, nickel and
copper, the latter alloyed more or less in the United States with

Government and bank bills, while having all the purchasing power
of gold, are simply promises to pay in gold, or other coin of
"redemption", the amounts they represent.

The money of one country cannot legally be made to pay a debt in
another country, unless both parties to the payment agree to it.

When gold is exchanged to settle the balances of trade between two
countries, it is not reckoned, if coined, at its face value, but
at its bullion value.

The word "pecunia" meant in ancient Greece and Rome a flock or

In those days live stock were used as a medium of exchange, or

We keep the word and often use it as in "pecuniary" affairs, and
when we call a moneyless man, "impecunious."


The United States Government reserves to itself the right under
the constitution, to coin and issue the money to be used by its
own people.

Formerly we had two standards of value, gold and silver, or

If gold and silver were produced in relatively equal quantities,
the world would go on trading with money of both kinds, but the
proportions are not the same.

Among the Aztecs and Peruvians silver ranked with gold as two to
one, that is, two pounds of silver would purchase as much as one
pound of gold.

But when great silver mines were discovered and new methods were
discovered for extracting the metal, it became more and more
abundant, till it depreciated far below the former value it had in
its relation to gold.

Most of the commercial nations decided to have but one standard of
value, and that gold, long before the United States fell into

Our money measure is known as the decimal, or metric. It would be
convenient, if we could follow the example of nearly all the other
commercial nations, and use the metric system for all our weights
and measures.


In the United States Treasury at Washington, there are many
million dollars in silver coins and bullion.

The gold standard has not driven silver out of circulation, for it
is still found convenient to use it in settling immediately our
smaller business transactions.

When the silver dollar was first coined, and indeed up to the
present date, the intention was that it should contain about a
dollar's worth of silver, or 374 1/4 Troy grains of the pure
metal. This amount of silver was supposed to represent permanently
24 3/4 grains of pure gold, and it did so represent its value at
one time, and would have continued to do so, had the relative
output of both metals been the same.

Our chief mint is in Philadelphia, where is coined all the copper,
nickel, silver, and gold money in use.

To imitate these metals, even where the full value is given,
constitutes the criminal offence called "counterfeiting."

In former times, some of our older readers will remember them, the
Government meant to have the metal in each coin of about its
unstamped value in the market.

In those days the cent was as large as our present silver half
dollar, and the copper two-cent piece was a monster in the way of

Now our copper and nickel coins are small and can be carried
without testing strength of pockets. They are regarded as money

Silver coins that are punched can be refused in the settlement of
a debt.

Punched gold coins should always be refused, for they are never of
their face value.

Silver coins may be used in the settlement of bills up to $5.00.

Gold coins are, of course, legal tender up to any amount.


We usually class all paper money as "bills."

There are three classes of bills, all quite different in their
inception and meaning. These are--

1. National bank notes.
2. Treasury notes or "greenbacks."
3. Treasury certificates.


A national bank note is the guaranteed promise of some national
bank to pay coin or its equivalent to any one presenting the note
at the bank and asking to have the exchange made.

This exchange is called "redeeming."

If you examine a bank bill you will notice that it is drawn much
like an ordinary business "demand" note, made payable to "bearer,"
and signed by the bank president and cashier.

For every dollar of its own sent out in the form of a bill by a
national bank, the Government holds a dollar of the bank's
collateral to guarantee the redemption of the note if the bank
should fail.

National bank notes are received in all business transactions,
because they are secured by the Government, yet there are cases in
which even the Government will not receive them in payment of a
claim, nor pay them out itself.

1. All import duties must be paid in gold.
2. The Government pays the interest on its own bonds in gold.

The Bureau of Engraving and Printing--a department of the United
States Treasury--makes and prints all the national bank notes.

On all these notes the names of the United States Treasurer and
the United States Register appear. The names look like signatures,
but they are facsimilies and are printed with the note.

The notes are printed on specially prepared paper, to imitate
which is regarded as a counterfeit.

Soiled and worn out bank notes may be exchanged for fresh ones at
the Treasury Department.


Greenbacks are treasury notes. The name comes from the color in
which they first appeared in the years of our Civil War.

The treasury note is really an engraved promissory note of the
United States Government made payable to the bearer, and bearing
the signatures of the Treasurer and Register of the Treasury.

These notes are issued in denominations of from five to ten
thousand dollars.

Formerly there were one and two-dollar treasury notes issued, and
we still find some of these "old-timers" in circulation.

There are so many treasury notes in circulation that the
Government, vast though its bullion and coin reserves are, could
not redeem them if presented at once.

The treasury note is a legal tender for any amount of

The Government prints the following guarantee on every treasury

"This note is, by law, to be considered as good as coin. Any one
to whom you pay it must reckon it as equivalent to a dollar (or
face value in dollars) in value."


The treasury certificate is, in form, very much like the treasury
note, and it bears the signatures of the same officers.

Treasury certificates are of two kinds, gold and silver.

The gold certificates are printed in yellow.

The silver certificates are light black and white.

These certificates are issued against the great reserves of gold
and silver that are kept to redeem them.

The use of the gold certificate saves the loss of the gold that
comes through abrasion when handled.

A five-dollar silver certificate is much more convenient to carry
than five silver dollars.

These certificates, as may be seen, are issued for the convenience
of the public.

Certificates of either character will be redeemed to any amount,
in the metals for which they call, if presented at the United
States Treasury at Washington, or at any of the sub-treasuries to
be found in our larger cities.


Only those familiar with the work can realize the great quantities
of bank bills, treasury notes, and certificates continually being
made and sent out from Washington.

While a stream of clean, fresh paper of enormous value is going
out to be spread all over the country, another stream of soiled,
torn and altogether disreputable-looking paper is flowing back to
the Treasury.

The filthy paper is quite as valuable as the clean, so it is
properly checked, recorded, and credited before new paper is sent
out in its place.

They are now trying to make old bills presentable by washing them
at the Department. Meanwhile, most of them are ground again into
pulp, made into new paper, and all the first processes gone
through with to make the paper into money.



Up to a few years ago, it was the city, town and village dweller
who reaped the greatest benefit from the post office.

In dense communities carriers leave the mail at the place to which
it is addressed. Where this is not done the walk for the mail is
not far.

Now the purpose of our Government, which is of the people and by
the people, is to treat all the people alike.

However, up to a few years ago the farmer, our most essential
producer, had not a fair deal.

Fortunately things have changed and are still changing for the

Rural Free Delivery was an idea as just as it was grand, and as
welcome as it was necessary.

The good work began October 1, 1896.

The purpose of rural free delivery is to accommodate dwellers in
the country, whether farmers or not.

Through this branch of the service mails are carried daily, on
fixed lines of travel, to people who otherwise would have to go
long distances to reach a post office.

The Government requires that the states or counties shall keep in
good condition the roads traversed by the mail carriers.

Gates must not obstruct, and it is required that every unfordable
stream shall be bridged.

It is further required, as a condition for establishing a line for
rural free delivery, that each route of twenty-four or more miles
in length shall have at least one hundred families resident on
either side.


Mail matter is divided into four classes. For each class a
different rate is charged.

First Class:--All letters, and all other written matter, with a
few exceptions, pay two cents for each ounce, or fraction of an

Second Class:--Newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals, one
cent for each four ounces or fraction of four ounces. Publishers
of periodicals, sending direct from place of publication, get a
lower rate,--one cent a pound.

Third Class:--Books, circulars, and other printed matter, one cent
for two ounces or fraction of two ounces.

Fourth Class:--Merchandise and miscellaneous articles, weighing
not over four pounds, one cent for each ounce or fraction of an


1. On a tag, or the paper on which the address is written, the
sender of third class matter may write "from" and add his own name
and address.
2. On the blank leaf of a book, forwarded as third class matter,
the sender may write a dedication or inscription, but it must not
be in the form of a letter.
3. Fourth class matter must be so wrapped that the postal
authorities can examine the contents without much trouble.
4. Such articles as glass, nails, needles or other matter that
might work injury if it came loose, must be enclosed in two
separate wrappings, or a double case.
5. Poisons, explosives, inflammable substances, and live animals
are excluded from the mails.
6. Firearms may only be sent in detached parts.
7. All alcoholic liquors are regarded as explosive.


The rates to Canada are the same for all classes of matter as in
the United States, except that seeds, scions, bulbs, cuttings, and
roots are one cent per ounce.

To Cuba all the rates are the same as for domestic matter.

Rates with Mexico are the same as if mailed between our own
states. Packages are limited to 4 pounds 6 ounces, except that
single books may weigh more. Merchandise must be sent by parcel

To all other countries, in what is known as the "Postal Union",
the rates for letters are five cents for each half ounce or
fraction thereof.

Postal cards two cents each, double four cents.

Registration fees or letters or other articles, four cents each.

Ordinary letters for foreign countries, except Canada, Cuba and
Mexico, must be forwarded, whether any postage is paid on them or

All other mailable matter must be prepaid.

Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, Tetuila, the Philippines and Porto Rico are
regarded as insular or territorial possessions of the United
States, and are entitled to the same postal rates.


Postage stamps may be purchased at any United States post office,
or at any place authorized to sell them.

Anyone may sell postage stamps as he would any other personal

If stamps are bought to be enclosed in a letter, they should never
be of a higher denomination than twos and ones, as they are easily
disposed of.

Letters should always be stamped on the upper right-hand corner of
the envelope.

Packages should be stamped in the same way and on the addressed

The using of cancelled stamps is a felony.

Foreign stamps have no value on letters or parcels mailed in the
United States.

A domestic, unstamped letter will not be forwarded.

If a stamped letter is found to require more postage, the amount
lacking is stamped on the letter, and must be paid by the

Stamped envelopes and stamped wrappers are sold by the post office
at the usual rates of postage, with the cost of the paper added.

If a stamped envelope or wrapper is spoiled, the stamp must not be
cut off and used by pasting on another envelope or wrapper, for it
will be treated as if no postage were paid.

Such spoiled wrappers or envelopes will be exchanged, without
charge, by the postmaster, for stamps of the same value.


Never use a postal card to dun a debtor.

Never send a confidential message on a postal card.

Foreign postal cards, that is those bearing a foreign stamp,
cannot be used in the United States.

An international postal card can be bought.

Postal cards and letters may be redirected and forwarded without
extra charge, where the address of the receiver has been changed.
Packages require a renewal of payment in such cases.


A letter or a parcel may be registered to further insure its safe

When a letter or parcel is registered, it must have the sender's
name and address written across the left-hand end of the envelope
and on the reverse side.

In addition to the stamps required ordinarily, eight cents in
stamps or in a regularly prepared stamp, is the registration fee.

The clerk, receiving a registered parcel, gives the sender a
receipt for the same. After the letter has reached its
destination, the sender gets a second receipt, through the post
office, signed with the receiver's name.

The receiver of a registered parcel signs two receipts, one for
the post office and the other for the sender.


The purpose of what is known, in connection with the post office,
as the "Special Delivery System", is to insure the delivery of any
letter or package to the person, to whom it is addressed, as soon
as it reaches his post office.

In addition to the regular post charge, a fee of 10 cents is added
for special delivery. This is in the form of a special stamp,
though when this cannot be had, the same amount in ordinary stamps
may be attached.

In the case noted, the sender should write in line with the
stamps, "special delivery."

Special delivery messages are delivered, not by ordinary carriers,
but by special delivery messengers.

The special delivery letter is used when immediate knowledge is
necessary. It saves a long telegram.


Money, in limited sums, may be sent through the post office. One
advantage of sending money in this way is that it practically
insures the sender against loss.

All post offices are not money order offices.

A post office money order may only be sent to those places where
there are such offices.

At all post offices, authorized to send money orders, proper
blanks can be had on which the sender can write his order.

Any sum may be sent by postal order, from one cent to one hundred

The fee is from three to thirty cents.

Read the blank carefully; it is simple, but be sure you understand
it before filling out the order.

If in doubt, ask the clerk.

Having filled out the order, hand it to the clerk with the sum
required, and the additional fee.

The clerk then prepares and hands out an order for the amount, on
the postmaster of the town to which you are sending your letter,
and this you enclose to your correspondent.


The money order never contains the name of the sender; this the
postmaster of the office from which it is sent supplies in a
separate communication to the postmaster who is to pay.

No money passes from one office to the other.

A post office order is like a draft drawn by one postmaster on
another. The one credits the sum, the other debits it.

The holder of an order will not get his money unless he is known
to the paying postmaster or is identified.

Before paying an order the postmaster requires the holder to
receipt it.

A post office money order, like a check or draft, may be
transferred to another for collection.

Banks receive transferred money orders as if they were cash

The party to whom orders are transferred must go through the same
forms at the office, where payment is made, as if he was the
original payee.


It is not necessary to register letters containing checks. Never
write "personal" on a business letter.

Always enclose a stamp for reply when writing to a stranger.

See that the addresses on your letters are distinctly legible.



To send a telegram, you or your messenger must take what you have
written to the nearest telegraph office.

You may write a telegram on any kind of paper, provided always
that the writing is plain.

All telegraph offices are provided with regular blank forms, which
may be had without cost, and it is better to use these when they
are available.

The blank is properly ruled, with lines for the date, for the
address of the one to whom it is to be sent, and for the message.


The telegraph company charges a fixed sum for a message of, say,
ten words. These words do not include the name and address of the

The amount of the charge is always dependent on the distance
between the office from which the message is sent and the one at
which it is received.

Every word over ten, in the message, pays an extra fee, dependent
again on the distance.

Getting just what you mean into ten words may seem difficult when
you have a lot to say, but it is surprising how you can boil the
message down when each additional word costs five or more cents.

It may pay to practice this.

If it is actually necessary to make your meaning clear by the
addition of more words, do not hesitate at the cost.

If you are known at the telegraph office, you can send a message
to be collected from the receiver.

Never permit the receiver to pay for a message that is exclusively
on your own business.

Always make and keep a copy of every important telegram you send
away. Do not neglect this.

If you have neglected to keep a copy of a telegram, or having made
one have lost it, you may get a copy from the telegraph office,
provided the application be made within six months of the sending
of the message.

Telegrams are delivered by the company's messengers.

You must give receipt to the messenger on the delivery of a

Where the receiver lives a long distance from the telegraph
office, it is customary to pay the messenger an additional fee,
depending on the distance.

The charges for telegrams to be sent at night and delivered in the
morning, are much lower than for day messages.

For an additional charge, less than the original, messages may be
repeated back to insure their accuracy.

Read over to the official, or still better, have him read your
message over in your presence, that you may be sure he understands
it as written.

You cannot hold others responsible for your own mistakes.


You can telegraph money with as much safety as you can send it
through a bank.

In handling money in this way, the telegraph company does not act
as a banker but as a carrier.

Telegraph money orders are a great convenience, when one wants to
send cash to a distant point in a hurry.

Country telegraph offices do not, as a rule, transmit money; that
function is left to the offices in the larger centers.


One wishing to "wire money" will find at the telegraph office
suitable blanks; they are furnished gratis.

On lines provided for the purpose and properly indicated, as in a
postal order form, write the name and address of the person to
receive the money, with the amount.

This paper, properly signed, is handed to the clerk with the money
to be sent and the fee for transmission.

The fee is double that charged for an ordinary message of the same

If, for any reason, the person to whom the money is sent cannot be
found within forty-eight hours, the money is returned to the
sender, but the fees are retained, as the company is not to blame
for failure.

The receiver of a money order, if unknown, must identify himself
as he would at a bank, and he must receipt for the money.

If the person to receive the money is an entire stranger in the
place to which the money is sent, the sender knows it, and he
provides for the situation by signing, on the reverse of the
application, an order to the distant operator to pay the money to
the person named within, without further identification.

When a telegraph operator receives a money order, he at once seeks
out the person to whom it is sent, and pays the money in
accordance with his instructions as to identification.


The telephone, local and long distance, is fast superceding the
telegraph as a medium for speedy business communications.

Its use is not confined to large cities as at first.

Nearly every village is now in communication with the outer world
through the telephone.

The world has just awakened to the needs of its food producer, the

In Norway, which is not a rich country, the telephone has been
introduced on the farms. The rates are low and the benefits are

On our large farms, in the West, telephones have been in use for
some time as an essential part of the machinery.

Now, there is a move on foot to make them available for every
farmer in the more settled regions.

While business can be conducted over the telephone, as if the
speakers stood face to face, yet such transactions not being
recorded, will not stand in law, if one of the parties should
dispute the other's word.



There are two kinds of expresses, viz.: local and general. The
names describe the provinces of each, though a general express may
do a local business.

All express companies are common carriers.

The carrying business done by our express companies is enormous.
They have their own special cars attached to passenger and fast
freight trains, and their goods are given special departments in
water transportation.

If living between two towns, it is always better to have your
letters and express business done through one office.


When ordering material by express, make sure that you give the
address, to which you wish it sent, in such a way that a mistake
on the part of the forwarder will be out of the question.

If you send away goods by express, make sure that they are
securely packed, and be equally sure that the address is clearly
written and in a large hand. It would be better if the address
could be painted on with a brush.

If you should send perishable stuff, like meat, flowers, glass, or
fruit, be sure to label the package "perishable" or "Handle with
care, glass."

On long distance transportation prepayment is required; on short
distances it is optional.

It is always better to get from the express agent a receipt for
the matter taken in charge.

Take care to put your own address on the lower left-hand corner of
the package to be sent.

If the person to whom the parcel is sent cannot be found, the
address will enable the express company to notify the sender at
once of the fact.

When sending any goods by express, it is always prudent to notify
the person for whom they are intended of the fact by mail, and
also to state the company by which the matter was sent and the
date of shipment.


The express company must always require, on delivering goods, a
receipt from the receiver.

If the goods should be received by a second person, on behalf of
the consignee, he must sign the consignee's name, and under that
his own.

If a package appears to be damaged in transmission, the express
company must permit the receiver to examine it before signing. He
may refuse to sign or to accept in any way, if the goods are
injured, or not as he ordered.

Express companies are responsible for all damages sustained by
goods while in their charge.


All the large express companies have the machinery for collecting
accounts and notes whenever they have branch offices.

Such companies are reliable collectors. Their services are prompt
and their charges reasonable.

Where an express company fails to collect, notice is promptly
given with the reasons for failure.

When you wish an express company to collect, it will be necessary
for you to make out a statement of the account. This is placed in
a special envelope, provided by the company. It is properly
indorsed and handed to the company's representative.

The company charges a small fee for collection, whether it
succeeds or not. In any case the fee is not much above a fourth of
one per cent, unless there should be unusual trouble.


As you know, C.O.D. means "cash on delivery".

Cash on delivery orders constitute no small part of every express
company's business.

When goods are forwarded in this way, the sender furnishes with
the goods an itemized bill duly receipted. The express company's
charges should be included in the bill.

The express agent is sure to collect the bill before he lets the
goods leave his keeping.


Should you desire to send money by express, it will be well to go
to the company's office before you pack it up.

Express companies have special receptacles or envelopes in which
to store coin or bills. There is no charge for these.

The sender must himself seal the packages containing the money,
and write on them the address of the consignee, also the amount

Having received the packages, the express agent ties them up,
affixes his official seal, which is so arranged that the package
cannot be opened or tampered with, without breaking. This done, he
gives the sender a receipt. This should be cared for as a vital
part of the record.

The charges for sending money by express may or may not be paid in
advance. They vary with the amount to be carried and the distance.

Packages of money are receipted for in the usual way. They are
delivered only to the legal consignee, unless a second person
should appear with an order, amounting to a power of attorney, and
which the company cannot reject.


The foregoing by no means limits the express company's usefulness
or field of opportunities.

Express companies issue money orders much as does the Post Office

As with the post office, the fees for orders vary, but no order is
issued for more than fifty dollars.

If you want to send such an order, the express company will
furnish the proper blank for you to fill out.

On this form must be written out very plainly the name and address
of the person to whom the order is to be sent, with the amount, in
words and in figures.

On receiving the money the express agent gives to his customer two
papers; one is the company's receipt for the money, the other is
the order itself.

The order instructs the agent at the point to which it is to be
sent to pay the sum named to the person named.

To complete the order the sender should sign his name in a place
indicated for the purpose on the back of the paper.

This done, the order can be sent to the person for whom it is
intended, in an ordinary envelope.

The receiver of an express money order can have it cashed at the
express office in his town, or sign it and place it in his own
bank as if it were cash.



Not everything about railroads, that would be a tremendous
undertaking, but just enough to show what everyone should know
about them as carriers of goods.

The express companies have practically a monopoly of the
transportation of the smaller packages of goods requiring quick
transit and immediate delivery, but the longer, heavier, and
slower freight are in the hands of the railroads, and where it can
be done, and time is not a first factor, the steamboat takes the
place of the train.


As most of the goods in changing hands are carried by steamboat or
railroad, the method of shipment should be understood by everyone
who may be called on to use one or the other means of

The person shipping goods in this way is the "consignor."

The person to whom the goods are shipped is the "consignee".

The goods shipped are described in a paper called a "bill of

A bill of lading is a written contract, or statement of the goods
shipped, their condition, and the time of shipment.

Bills of lading and receipt blanks are furnished at the offices of
the transportation companies.

Two copies of the bill of lading should be made out. One of these
is signed by the consignor and the other by the transportation

The copy signed by the consignor is kept by the agent, and the
copy signed by the agent is retained by the consignor, as a
voucher for the goods shipped.

This receipt should be mailed to the consignee.

When the consignee gets this bill of lading, it is a voucher to
the freight agent, where the goods are to be delivered, as to the

It is usual for the agent at the point of shipment to send a copy
of the bill of lading to the agent where the goods are received.
In this way he can compare the consignment with the consignee's


It is not usual to pay freight bills at the point of shipment,
that being left till the goods reach their destination.

The agent at the place of delivery makes out an "expense bill,"
which is an itemized statement of the freight charges, and must be
paid by the consignee before delivery.

This done, the consignee must sign a receipt for the goods
delivered, and the affair is closed.


Before wholesale houses or manufacturers ship goods, they are
either paid for or they have a business understanding with the
consignee as to when and how the payment is to be made.

There are occasions, however, when no such arrangement has been
made, and a man not well known to the merchant orders goods
shipped by freight.

In a case like this, the merchant may ascertain through a
commercial agency--the agencies make it their business to keep
posted in such matters--the standing of the man giving the order.

Trade has its risks and the merchant, even where the information
is not quite assuring, may decide to fill the order and ship it.

As with express companies, goods may be sent as freight, C. O. D.

This is done by means of a bill of lading, to which is attached a
draft. The shipper bills the goods to himself at the point to
which they were ordered.

To the bill of lading he attaches a draft for the sum involved,
but this, instead of being forwarded to the consignee by mail, is
sent to him through a bank for collection.

Now before the consignee can get the bill of lading, which
authorizes him to receive the goods, he must pay the draft.

The bill, which is in the shipper's name, is then endorsed over to
the payer of the draft.

Country merchants and sometimes farmers send produce by freight to
be sold on commission in the city.


Delhi, N. Y., Sept. 9, 1910.
Invoice of Merchandise shipped by
Harry T. Jackson
and consigned to Brown, Smith & Co.,
Newburg, N. Y.
to be sold on commission.
120 bbls. Potatoes
70 " green apples
40 Crates tomatoes.

Mark plainly all goods shipped.



Generally speaking, tax bills are paid with reluctance.

This is no doubt due to the fact that with every other form of
payment one has something tangible to show for the expenditure.

If every good citizen could be brought to see that his private
interests are closely linked with public affairs, he would take
more interest in the local politics of his town and county, and so
have a voice in the expenditure of taxes by selecting the best men
to do the work for him.

Taxes are forced contributions levied on citizens to provide money
for public expenses, such as law and order, schools, charities and
public institutions.

All tax laws are made by the men who pay the taxes.

You say "No" to this.

"The tax laws are made by the legislators up at the state

Very true; but who nominates and elects the legislators? Did you
not put them into office?

"No, the bosses did that," you reply.

True again, but good men are in the majority and if they did their
duty to their country and themselves, there would be no bosses and
taxes would be honestly spent.


Tax laws are enacted by Congress, and by the legislatures of our
many states. Taxes cannot be collected without this authority.

State taxes are collected for the state use only.

United States taxes are expended for the benefit of all the people
of all the states.

Taxes may be further divided into direct and indirect.

Direct taxes are, at present, only employed by the states. They
are levied on realty and personal property, and are paid by the
particular person named in the tax bill presented by the
authorized collector.

The amount of these taxes vary each year, depending on the public

They are based on assessments made by officers appointed for the
purpose and generally known as assessors.


Though there is no demand made on each individual to pay the
indirect taxes required by the Government, yet indirectly every
person who spends little or much money is paying them.

The Government's chief means of raising the great sums of money
needed yearly to carry on its machinery is by customs duties and
internal revenue collections.

The customs revenue is obtained from a tax levied on certain
articles imported from foreign countries.

This customs tax is called a tariff.

The question as to the goods that shall be subject to a tariff and
the amount to be levied on the same, is one that has long
perplexed statesmen and been a leading party issue.

The merchant, to whom the goods are assigned from a foreign port,
must pay the duty levied on them by a Government Appraiser before
he can take them away.

Private parties, landing from abroad at any of our ports of entry,
are required, before getting their baggage, to write out a
declaration of the things contained in their trunks. But this
declaration does not prevent the customs inspectors from making a
careful personal examination. All things found dutiable, whether
declared or not, are set apart and held until the assessment or
duty is paid.

The evasion of a customs duty is called "smuggling" and is
punished by the confiscation of the goods, and penalties in the
way of fine and imprisonment.

There are people who would consider it a sin to cheat their
butcher, but see no wrong in cheating the Government.

To the merchant who pays tariff duties the amount involved is a
direct tax.

When the merchant sells his goods to the retailer or consumer, he
adds the tariff to his freight, insurance, interest, etc., as
direct purchase cost. This is strict business, but the consumer
pays all the bills with the profit added.


The second great source of Government revenue is derived from the
internal revenue tax, or excise duties.

Manufacturers of alcohol, whether as wine, whiskey, or beer, and
the producers of tobacco, in its manufactured forms, have to pay
an excise tax in proportion to the amount and character of their

As with the customs tax, the excise tax is added by the
manufacturer to the cost of production, so that at last it is the
consumer who pays it.


While the manufacturers of alcohol pay the excise tax in bulk,
that is on the number of gallons produced, the manufacturers of
cigars and tobacco have to attach to each separate package a
distinct internal revenue stamp.

These stamps are purchased from the internal revenue collectors,
appointed by the Government to certain districts. The stamps show
at a glance that the proper tax has been paid, just as the postage
stamp affixed to a letter proves that the price for carrying it
and delivering it has been paid.

As it is a penal offence to use a postage stamp a second time, so
it is a punishable offence to attempt the use of a cancelled or
torn internal revenue stamp.

If demanded, the Government will give a receipt for the sum
received from any one for considerable sales of postal or revenue


State taxes, as has been stated, are levied on real and personal
property. Some states have in addition a poll tax. This is levied
on the individual without any regard to his property, and a
receipt for it may be a requirement before a citizen is permitted
to vote.

Of course the real estate and personal property taxes are not the
same in all the states, for each state must raise every year the
sum necessary to meet its own special requirements.

The intention of all tax laws is to have every citizen's
contribution bear the same proportion to the whole amount to be
raised that his possessions bear to the aggregate property of all
the owners in the commonwealth.


All our state laws exempt from taxation certain kinds of property.

The state cannot tax the property held by itself for the common

The buildings and related properties of religious bodies and
societies are not taxable.

Such educational institutions as colleges, seminaries, and private
charities are not taxed.

Cemeteries and other places where the dead are disposed of are not

County buildings, city parks, public schools, penal institutions,
fair grounds for public use and similar property is never taxed.


There have been times in the life of the Government, and in the
building up of the states, when the funds necessary for
maintenance from taxes, heavy though these have been at times,
have not been sufficient to meet the essential expenditures.

This was particularly the case with our Government during the
trying days of our Civil War.

States entering on great public works, for the benefit of the
commonwealth, frequently cannot raise the necessary money by the
usual forms of taxation.

In these cases loans have to be made, that is the Government and
the state go out and borrow from those who have it to spare, the
necessary money.

The Government, the state, and it may be the city or county, gives
to the party providing the money what is known as bond or bonds,
each of a fixed amount and bearing a fixed rate of interest,
payable as a rule semi-annually.


There is no form of property so easy to assess for the purpose of
taxation as real estate, that is the land and the buildings, for
the last selling value of this property is a matter of public
record, and then the assessors, who should be men of honesty and
good judgment, are generally posted as to the value of the
property under consideration.

When, however, it comes to the taxation of personal property,
which means any kind of property that can be detached and carried
about, it is a different matter.

Just as many people, otherwise regarded as honest, do not think it
a great wrong to get the better of the Custom House, so many
reputable people are inclined to revolt against the tax on
personal property and to conceal their actual possessions from the
assessor, nor is this peculiarity confined to the poor.

Any man may be legally compelled to swear to the accuracy of his
statement, and if it is found that he has knowingly sworn to a
false statement, he may be brought to task for perjury.

What is known as "personal property" varies in many of the states.

Personal property generally includes, merchandise in possession;
all fixtures, all furniture in home, offices, and factories; all
live stock, all money on hand and in banks; other men's notes, not
transferred; all stocks and bonds and other forms of security.


Townships or counties, if properly authorized by charter or the
votes of the people, may levy special taxes for special purposes
within the limits of their own jurisdictions, or they may in the
same way sell bonds to carry out some work that has been decided
on for the common weal.

Two or more towns, or counties, may join in the same way to carry
out a project of benefit to both, provided that the burden of the
undertaking be equitably assessed.


All tax bills are due and collectable on presentation, but this is
never enforced.

A time is, however, fixed beyond which payment cannot be deferred.

A sufficient amount of any property may be sold at auction to
satisfy a tax bill.

Of old, and still in some places, the road taxes were paid in
cash, but more frequently by work on the roads, either by the
individual man, or in connection with his team, each day's work of
one or both being fixed at a regular rate.


The state does not tax the individual members of a corporation for
property held in common. The same result is secured better by
taxing the corporation as a body. This applies to banks,
railroads, and incorporated manufacturing establishments.

Savings banks are taxed lightly. Every depositor is liable for a
personal property tax proportioned to the amount of his credit.

To make collection easy the savings bank always pays the amount of
this tax in bulk, and then charges it to the expense account of
the establishment, so that indirectly the depositors pay after
all, as their dividends are reduced by just the amount of the tax.


When a man owns property in different towns, counties, or states,
he is regarded as so many individuals, and must pay each as the
local demands require. No matter where a man's personal property
is placed, the rule is to tax him for the whole at the place of
his usual residence.

The landlord and the merchant each pays a direct tax to the
collector, but it would be a business error to think that in so
doing either or both is carrying more than his share of the total

The landlord keeps in mind the added expense when he comes to
adjust leases with his tenants. The merchant, who pays taxes on
his stock and so adds to his expense account, should not be blamed
if he keeps this in mind when he fixes the selling prices of his


Taxes duly paid, honestly collected, and properly expended should
never be regarded as a burden.

From no equal expenditure of money do the people get so much good.

The public schools, the public highways, the protection of life
and property, public hospitals, public libraries, residences for
the old, the blind, the orphaned and the insane, as well as secure
places for the lawless, are built and maintained by the taxpayer.

As a rule all these things are done honestly and well,
notwithstanding the outcry to the contrary.

If there be dishonesty in places, it is the fault quite as much of
the voter who selected him as of the official culprit himself.

We must take all the responsibility of our agents, whether they be
public or private.

Every good citizen should feel that his public duty is an
important private business.



The law books define a contract to be "An agreement between two or
more persons to do or not to do a certain stated thing or things,
for a consideration."

The consideration is a vital part of every contract.

There can be no binding contract without a consideration.

The other requisites of a contract are--

1. It must be possible of accomplishment.
2. It must be in accordance with law.
3. Its performance must not injure the public.
4. The parties to a contract must be competent to do the things to
which they pledge themselves.
5. A drunken or an insane man cannot make a contract.
6. All parties to a contract must be agreed.


No contract can be held as binding where the consideration is not

A promise, verbal or in writing, to do something for a certain
party, cannot be enforced.

A promise to do the same thing for a stipulation named is a
contract and may be enforced.

A gift is not a form of contract. Once made it cannot be legally
taken back.


There are certain forms of contract which cannot be legally
enforced, unless they are in writing.

1. All contracts for the sale of real estate.
2. Contracts that are not to be performed for a year or more.
3. All contracts, to answer for the debt and obligations of
another, must be in writing.

If the contracting parties put but a part of their agreement in
writing the law will recognize only the written part. The whole
must be in writing, or the agreement will not hold.

Verbal contracts are not safe.

Although the law does not require even contract to be in writing,
yet, as it never declares that a contract must be verbal, it is
the part of prudence, wherever possible, to put every contract in

Owing to defects of memory even honest men may, and frequently do,
disagree as to the terms of a verbal contract.

Because the party with whom the contract is made is a close
friend, one is apt to depend on a verbal agreement, but the closer
the friend or relative, the more reason there is for an exact
written contract, if we would keep the friend.


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