Part 4 out of 4
"A bottle of morphine pills." He looks at me an instant and says,
"For neuralgia, perhaps"? I reply, "Yes." He hands me a book. I
register a fictitious name and address, take the bottle and leave
the store. How easy it is to get possession of this deadly drug
which brings rest in a sleep that knows no end.
How can I go into that home and greet my loved ones with this awful
thought in my mind? What am I about to do? Am I going to plunge
that poor family into the lowest depths of grief and shame? God,
forgive me! I do not think of that phase. And why do I not think
The brain is weary to the straining point. Nothing but abject poverty,
cruel, gaunt want stares me in the face. Can I see my loved ones
hungry without a roof to shelter them? I am penniless. The tradesmen
will give no further credit. The landlord wants his rent and I have
not a friend in the world that I can think of to help me. I have
humiliated myself in the dust in my efforts to borrow a little money.
I have asked it as a loan or charity, if they chose to regard it
as the same thing, from men of wealth who have known me intimately
for many years, but all in vain.
And so I am going to destroy myself that my family may get immediate
relief through the paltry few thousand dollars of life insurance,
all that remains of the nearly two hundred thousand dollars I
carried in my prosperous days.
I have thought of what will be the probable course of events after
my death. Probably my wife, perhaps with Mrs. Slater, will buy
a small farm and raise chickens or something of that sort, out of
which all can get a living until the boys can help to something
better--anyway, they will be better off without me.
Fallacious reasoning to ease the mind for a coward's act, say you?
Perhaps--but I could not see it so at that time. All that I could
grasp in my mental state was the fact that I had no money and knew
not where to get any. Money must be found for my family to exist
and my death would bring it--consequently I must die.
On the ferryboat I stood on the rear deck and looked back at the
lights of the great city. It was, so I believed, my last farewell
to the scene of my busy life. I was strangely calm.
On the train I read the evening paper as usual and after arriving
at my station walked home. The fond greeting from all, never omitted,
seemed that evening especially tender. There was no poverty of
love, whatever the material conditions might be. Our simple dinner
over, the evening was passed as usual and we retired.
The details of the awful horror which followed would inflict too
much pain on me to write and give my readers no pleasure to read.
For many hours the physicians labored at their almost hopeless task
and finally dragged me back from the brink of the grave.
Before leaving my office I had mailed a letter to a friend in the
trade requesting him to take charge of my business matters the
following morning. He did so, and in the evening came to my home,
having kept himself informed during the day, by telephone, of my
condition. He told me he had come to help, and before anything else
wanted my promise never again to repeat my action. I had already
given a sacred vow to my poor wife to that effect, and so help me
God, come what may, I will never break it!
This friend and another gentleman in the trade provided me with
money to pay my pressing bills. They amounted to less than three
hundred dollars, and in a few days I was able to return to the
office. Meanwhile, Mrs. Slater had been informed of the exact
situation. It was a terrible blow to her, but she did all she could
to help by releasing me from a large part of the indebtedness and
agreeing to accept a very low rate of interest on the remainder.
AGAIN AT THE HELM
When I again took up my work at the office, it was with courage
renewed and fortified by a week of constant effort on the part of
my wife to make me realize more than ever before how much easier
it would be for her to bear any trials, no matter how severe, with
me, rather than a life of ease, even were that possible, without
me. While with loving care she nursed me back to health, she showed
me the folly of what I had attempted, and though making that point
clear and forceful avoided saying one word that would add to the
depression which weighed me down. Despite the frightful shock she
had received her love remained faithful and undiminished. It was
marvelous--the love and courage of that noble woman!
With a determination to succeed in at least making a living and
sufficient beside to meet the payments to Mrs. Slater, I put my
whole soul in my work. I do not suppose I really worked any harder
than I had for years past, but it seemed so, and in a measure my
efforts were rewarded.
We had on our books a good many customers who were small buyers.
The rest of the trade not competing with us so actively for this
class as for the larger business, made it easier for us to hold it.
Most of these firms we had been selling for more than a quarter of
There had recently been much complaint from these customers of the
prices we charged them, compared with published quotations of the
On the occasion of a call at the office, one of them asked if it
would not be practicable in some way to buy to better advantage?
We explained to him the terms on which the business in importation
lots was done. If we were in a position to buy our supplies direct
in large lots, as importers, paying cash against the documents on
arrival of the steamer, and then await discharge of cargo, after
which would come weighing up in small lots and making shipments, we
could afford to sell at lower figures, but we had not the capital
to do the business.
He then suggested that the difficulty of lack of capital could be
surmounted by making our sales on terms of payment of approximate
amount with order. I was so eager for business that I probably
did not give to the possibility of loss to me in carrying out such
a suggestion the consideration it should have had. At all events,
we mailed a few letters to customers explaining the matter, and
a business on this basis was commenced and quickly grew to large
This fact made it dangerous, for the larger the business the greater
the risk. We had to continually have an interest in the market
either on one side or the other, and if the business was large our
interest must be in proportion.
For some time the business was most satisfactory. My judgment of
the market was correct, our customers were well pleased, and we
made good profits. I was greatly encouraged with the outlook and
believed my troubles were at an end. During this period a certain
large interest used our office as a medium for some market manipulation,
and while this was going on that interest stood behind us in this
Then came the other side of the story. We made losses. The market
went against us when our interest in it was considerable, and the
losses, not a large amount, still, were to us staggering. Compared
with the business we had been doing, there were but few contracts
outstanding. We tried to complete them. The material had arrived,
we arranged to have it weighed up, and it was invoiced, but we
could not make the shipments.
Just as events culminated there came to me in a most unexpected
manner an opportunity for a connection in another line of business
which promised large and almost immediate results.
I was through with the struggle in my own trade. Without large
capital it was useless to go on; and even with this, the business
had been so cut into by the trusts, the opportunity for making
money was far less than in the earlier years of my career. In the
new line I would meet with strangers and must of necessity carry
with me no complications. I believed in a comparatively short time
I could make enough money to pay my creditors and with that end in
mind I embraced the opportunity.
To my wife I said simply that my affairs had become involved, and
then started on the journey to my new field, many hundreds of miles
from New York, leaving her to adjust the old matters, with my aid,
All but two or three of the smaller creditors showed the utmost
kindness, expressing their sympathy and the willingness to give me
time to pay my debts. This was all I asked.
The new connection was all that was represented. I liked the
business, my particular work was congenial, and so good were the
prospects I was as nearly happy as a man of my domestic taste could
be when separated from his wife.
Early in 1904 it became necessary for me to spend some time in
a city near New York. My wife then gave up the house, stored her
furniture, and with the family joined me.
It was here the hardest blow of all was dealt me. One of the small
creditors, in an attempt to collect his debt through the office of
the district attorney, caused my arrest. This came at a time when
my efforts were about to show tangible results, and its publicity
severed my business connection. Instead of hastening the payment
of his claim, my creditor by his action delayed it. The blow was
a crushing one in every way--to my financial prospects and to my
mental and physical condition.
"In the eyes of the law a man is innocent until proven guilty; the
world says he is guilty until proven innocent."
I was taken to the district attorney's office, treated with courtesy,
and told I would be released on giving five hundred dollars bail.
I believed I could do this and was given the day to accomplish
it. By telephone and telegraph I tried to find the friends whom I
thought would surely stand by me to that extent in this emergency,
especially as there was no possible risk of loss. They had but to
take the five hundred dollars out of their bank and deposit it in
another place quite as secure. Sooner or later it would come back
When the day was ended I was poorer by the amount of the tolls I
had paid and had not found the friend. This one would like to do
it, but could not; another had gone to luncheon and would call me
up on the telephone as soon as he returned--he must be still at
luncheon. Every one I tried had some excuse.
To my wife I wrote fully, suggesting to her a number of people to
whom she might appeal in her efforts to effect my release. Then I
settled down to grim despair.
For three full weeks my wife labored unceasingly to get bail. The
amount had been reduced, first to three hundred, then to two hundred
dollars, and finally she secured the latter sum and I returned to
her almost a wreck mentally and physically.
Among the people I had told my wife to apply to was Mr. Mallison,
who, it will be remembered, was the man to whom I sold the Wood
and Slater interests in certain properties.
For some time before our second failure he had been doing business
in our office on joint account and some of the money he had
contributed was lost. In reply to my wife's letter he gave these
losses as a reason for not helping, and added that I had admitted
to his lawyer I had not made the purchases for which his money was
to be used for margins.
I know the man and do not believe he would knowingly make a statement
contrary to the facts, but I cannot conceive how he could possibly
place such a construction on anything that was said by me at the
interview he referred to, or at any other time. It is absolutely
and unqualifiedly false. Not only did I make clear that every dollar
of his money had been applied as intended, but I urged his lawyer
to examine the books and trace the losses, and understood he would
do so. When he did not, I supposed he was entirely satisfied and did
not want to further mix in my affairs for fear that the creditors
would try to hold his client responsible as an undisclosed partner.
Is it reasonable to suppose that I would appeal to Mallison for
help if there had been the slightest shadow of foundation for the
statement in his letter? The idea is preposterous.
My condition was now such that rest was imperative. In three weeks
I had lost in weight twenty-one pounds and my nerves were almost
in a state of total collapse. I hoped a few weeks in the country
would renew my physical strength and mental equilibrium, but I had
underestimated the force of the shock. All the summer and fall the
weakness remained and it was only toward the close of the year I
was able to resume my labors. This enforced rest was made possible
through the kindness of two or three gentlemen in the trade and one
or two other friends who contributed the funds to meet my family
When bail was given I was told trial would come early in October.
Letters of inquiry to the district attorney brought only indefinite
replies, simply telling me I would be notified when wanted, and
there the matter ended.
Nearly forty, or, to be exact, thirty-nine years of my life have
been covered by this narrative, now drawing to its conclusion.
As I sit at my writing-table, memory carries me back to the first
chapter, and even before--to my school-boy days, those happy days
when care was unknown.
The panorama moves slowly on before my mental vision and I see
myself a youth at the portal of manhood.
Into view now comes the fair girl who honored and blessed me with
a love that has proved almost beyond the power of conception. As I
raise my eyes from the paper they rest on her dear face. Wonderful
to relate, no lines of care do I discover. Save for the premature
and very becoming silver of her hair and the matronly development
of figure there is but little indication of the many years that
have passed since we joined hands in our voyage of life. As her
glance meets mine, she flashes at me, as in the days of yore, the
same sweet smile of love and tenderness.
The early years of our married life appear before me. Those years
when periods of worry alternated with others of freedom from care.
The years of my early struggle against heavy odds, to gain success.
The years of "Love's young dream" how sweet that side of my life
seemed then, and how far sweeter, deeper, stronger seems now the
love of our later years through the triumphs and trials those years
brought with them.
To my mind comes the successive births of our children and the joy
the advent of each brought into our family circle.
And now I see myself in the delirium of that well-nigh fatal illness
when but for my devoted wife's careful nursing the occasion for
writing this narrative would never have arisen.
The scene changes and year after year of prosperity rolls into view.
Those years when with wealth steadily increasing I reveled in the
business I had created and reared to such large proportions. The
thought of the contrast with present conditions for an instant
stops the beating of my heart--and yet I think, "'Tis better to
have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all."
Now comes that day when I considered the question of retiring from
business. Oh! why did not the fates then guide me rightly? What
years of misery would have been spared to those I loved--and yet
that very love was the motive that swayed me.
The pictures change. Clouds gather and darken the sunshine of my
life. Crashes of thunder sound in my ears and the storm of my first
failure is upon me. "The ship founders." God help the passengers
The boat is launched and gathers them in--can it make the shore?
Here and there a little smooth water, an occasional rift of light
through the clouds--alas! only to be followed by greater darkness--and
the pictures cease. But no, there is still one to come.
The boat is aground. Mountains of surf dash on the rocky coast,
seeking to tear the frail craft to pieces. In the perspective behold
the sea of many years, studded with the crafts of those friends of
my former good ship _Prosperity_. How many I see that owe to me,
some only a pennant, many a sail or two, and others the stanch deck
on which they stand.
Do they see our signal of distress? Beyond a doubt. Do they answer
Speeding toward us, with the flag of true friendship flying at the
peak, comes a gallant ship. In letters of gold the name _Dwight
Temple_ stands out from the bow. Many times we have asked aid from
its owner and never once has it been refused, though in our great
wreck his loss was heavy. Here comes to our relief the good ship
_George Todd_, a friend that has never failed; but in many of our
dark hours his ship has sailed in foreign waters, far removed from
our troubled seas. Then comes sailing right for us _Charlie Fitch_,
never but once appealed to, and then did his best and instantly to
help us. And now one more, the _Carleton Cushing,_--a true friend,
a heart of oak, but the craft too small to avail in a heavy sea--and
that is all!
How about the great ocean steamer which could take on board our
whole boat and never miss the cost? Has the captain seen our signals?
Seen them?--yes, again and again, written in letters of blood drawn
from our hearts, and ignored them. Freighted with probably fifty
millions of dollars that ship goes from port to port doing good.
It must be so, for these philanthropic acts have been widely
advertised. But while we have sailed in the same waters for nearly
forty years our boat is now too small to be noticed, though once
we did receive a keg of ship biscuit for which we still owe and
are not ungrateful.
And there is another large steamer--how about that one? No help
for us there. We sailed in company for years, but now that steamer,
the _Viedler,_ is bound on a voyage of discovery to the North Pole
and has no desire to aid a craft which has met with disaster, even
though manned by old friends.
And so it is with all the rest.
See all those small boats--not one but has seen our signals of
trouble. We did not expect from them material aid. They are too
small to give it. But though for many years we have been friends,
helping them time and time again in their days of need, they have
forgotten us. From them we looked for the touch of sympathy, the
firm grasp of the hand, the friendly word of encouragement, and we
looked in vain. Not even to the woman came a single line to lighten
It's the way of the world. Thank God, I have been able to chronicle
exceptions, even though so few.
It is midnight--my narrative is finished. As the pen drops from my
hand the weary eyes close and I sleep.
The living room in our bungalow. Before the great stone fire-place
sitting side by side, my wife and I. Her hand rests in mine as we
gaze into the flames ascending from the fragrant logs resting on the
massive wrought-iron andirons. These and the caribou head looking
down on us from above the high mantel came from the hall at "Redstone."
The chime rings out as in the days long gone by from the dear old
clock re-purchased from Charlie Wood.
As we look around the room in the soft fire-light we see the few
old friends left from that awful slaughter when our household gods
were sold; and best of all, in the low shelves at one end of the
room are the dearly loved volumes, all that remain of our once fine
[Illustration: "Redstone"--The Hall]
We leave our chairs, and going arm-in-arm to the window stand
watching the moon rise out of the sea. All is peace and contentment
in this modest home wherein we plan to end our days, for at last
we have found rest.
The maid comes in the room, lights the lamps, draws the draperies
over the windows and again we are alone. From my writing-table I
take up the letter received from my publishers by the last mail.
It has been read and re-read, but again I read it aloud. It tells
such good news.
From the profits of my book I have already satisfied my creditors,
repaid Mrs. Slater, bought our home and secured a moderate income.
"Still," the publishers write, "there seems no end to the demand
for 'Romance and Tragedy'"; and they enclose a handsome cheque,
one of many that have reached me.
My wife kisses me and--I awaken.
'Tis but a dream--will it come true?
The public must decide.
"FROM GOD AND THE KING"
After the "Dream" came a trying period; long and exasperating delay
in the publication of the book; frequent promising but unsuccessful
efforts to secure a business connection that would afford a living
for my family; a continued strain which my nervous system was ill
prepared to stand and always, just when it seemed as though there
was no way to turn, some light and help came.
My contract with my publisher called for some financial contribution
from me--not a large sum, expressed in dollars, but monumental in
the effort required to raise it. Most of the amount was gained through
advance sales of the book, the rest I was forced reluctantly, to
raise in small loans. This was accomplished after much correspondence,
chiefly with my former customers in the trade.
Amongst others to whom I wrote requesting assistance in this matter
was one man, formerly a broker in New York and to whose firm I had
given a good deal of business in the old days. He is now connected
with the Chicago branch of one of the trusts. He returned my letter
after writing across it in red ink: "Had you not held your head so
d--n high in your halcyon days, I might respond. You should look
to the 'Four Hundred' for help."
Consumed with envy in the days of my success, it afforded him, no
doubt, some gratification to kick a man when he is down, but his
effort brought only a smile--the animus was so apparent and the
effort so feeble.
At last! The book was published.
A few copies were sent to the press; the advance orders filled and
then I commenced a canvass by mail to dispose of the remainder of
the edition. Perhaps one-quarter of my sales were to strangers, the
rest to people who knew me, or knew of me, in business and social
The press reviews were very favorable. This was gratifying, but
the letters that came to me from all over the country from friends,
acquaintances, and strangers brought rays of sunshine that after
the dark days were dazzling in their brilliancy.
A few friends and a number of acquaintances I expected would be
kindly critics, but when I gave to the world the outpourings of my
heart, with the sale of the book went the right of criticism, and
as there are always some who cannot or will not understand us, I
was prepared for anything--except what I received.
I could not have foreseen how strangers, in remitting for their
copy, would send a cheque for many times its published price, writing
that "the book was worth it." I never dreamed of the large number
of acquaintances that must now be enrolled as friends--not the old
sort but the real thing. Nor could I have expected the material aid,
that came to me when so sorely needed, would have come so largely
from those who knew me only through my book. Least of all did I
have any premonition that within a few months after its publication,
the book would be the medium of bringing me in personal contact
with a gentleman, who has made possible, in a great measure, the
fulfillment of my "Dream."
And yet, such is the fact!
After an exchange of letters and in response to his kind invitation,
I called at his office, and as he grasped my hand I felt that I
had found a friend--how great a friend I did not then know.
The first call was followed by many others, and I was always welcomed
with the cordial greeting that is born of sincerity and sired by
true friendship. He took a keen interest in my affairs, discussed
with me my plans for again becoming a "moneymaker," and was ever
ready to lend a helping hand to bridge over the hard spots that
were more or less frequent.
Among other business prospects, there was held out to me the
possibility of becoming manager of a branch office of a New York
Stock Exchange firm in Washington, D. C. This position I lost in
competition with a man who had already an established clientele.
Then came an offer from another Washington concern, an opening
in a congenial and remunerative business, that would give me only
a small income to commence with, but which through a prospective
early reorganization of the concern presented great possibilities.
This I accepted.
As soon as it was decided we were to settle in Washington or its
vicinity, came the longing for a country home, not only as a matter
of choice, but the practical side appealed to us.
We believed we could make a farm certainly self-supporting and
probably a paying proposition. Our amateur experience in earlier
years had always been successful. We did not think there was much
to be made in farming, as it is generally understood, but the farm
would give us our living and certain specialties we thought could
be relied on for profit. Hot-house cucumbers, cold frame violets,
mushrooms, and last, but by no means least, the putting up "home-made,"
in glass of vegetables and fruits for sale to private buyers. In
this department my wife is a master hand. In our prosperous days she
always superintended such work in our home and always with unqualified
success. No better market than Washington could be desired for such
products and we longed for the opportunity to cater to it.
We talked it all over one evening and called it a fairy tale, it
seemed so far beyond the bounds of our possibilities.
As a singular coincidence, there came to me the following day a
catalogue of farms, published by a Washington real estate agent.
Looking it over, I clipped from its columns the following:
_334. $8000. 150 acres. "Chestnut Ridge." Elegant property delightfully
located._ Land of excellent quality, adapted to all agricultural
purposes; 50 or more acres of valuable woodland, embracing every
variety, suitable for timber ties and telegraph poles; many cool
and pleasant groves; handsome 3-story mansion; library, parlor,
dining-room, butler's room, pantry, kitchen, laundry, bath, 7 bed-rooms,
attic and 1 cupola room; open fire-place; grate; latrobe; approach
to mansion through driveway lined with evergreens, encircling
beautiful lawn; water supply ample and pure; 2 springs, 2 wells
and a constant running stream, with a tributary run, adding greatly
to the possibilities of the place. A lake, 150x75 feet, furnishes
pleasure in summer and sufficient ice in winter. Every kind and
variety of fruit; small fruit and grapes in abundance. The outhouses
embrace office, ice-house, gardener's house, stone dairy, barn with
loft and wagon sheds, hay-barracks and extensive poultry-houses,
systematically arranged for handling chickens and eggs. This choice
property is only 14 miles from Baltimore, near the Washington
Boulevard, and overlooks the surrounding country for miles; magnificent
scenery and a healthy, lovely home worthy the attention of connoisseur.
"The very place we want," said my wife, and I agreed with her.
I carried the clipping in my pocket, and a day or two later, when
calling on my friend I showed it to him. He, like myself, is an
enthusiastic lover of the country. We talked it all over, and as
I was leaving him, he said: "I don't know but I might help you in
the matter of that farm."
I do not think I grasped all that remark meant. Certainly I had
no idea then, that within a few months I should be writing this
chapter in my "Den" at "Chestnut Ridge."
I went to Washington, looked at the property, and after looking
at sixty-two other farms in Maryland and Virginia, returned to New
York and was authorized by my friend to make an offer for the place.
[Illustration: "Chestnut Ridge"--Library]
Before making the offer I wanted my wife to see the farm. When she
did so, she was delighted.
The day we spent in roaming over the broad acres, with the happy
thought in our hearts that this was to be our home, will ever be
a red-letter day in our calendar of life.
After a few day's negotiations the purchase was closed, and when
the necessary repairs to buildings had been completed and the farm
equipped we took possession.
[Footnote: To the author, it seems unnatural to close this chapter
without any expression of the one all-absorbing feeling that almost
overpowered us as we realized we again had a home and yet he cannot
ignore the wishes of his friend.]
A FOUNDATION PRINCIPLE
_"It is well to profit by the folly of others"_
One morning in my mail I found a letter from which I quote:
"I have read your book with much interest. If it is to have a large
sale and you wish it to do good, as I presume you do, you should
write another chapter explaining that you failed because you lost
sight of the one thing necessary to permanent success, and state
clearly what it is."
Though I had no personal acquaintance with the writer, I knew him
as one of New York's most successful business men, a man whose name
carries great weight.
A personal interview followed, and I learned from him a lesson,
too late, _perhaps_, for me to reap the benefit, but I am passing
it on in the hope that it will not fall on altogether barren soil,
though I know how difficult it is to persuade young men of the
wisdom to be gained through another's experience.
Economy in personal and family expenditures was the text from which
the lesson was drawn.
In my prosperous days when I made large annual profits, I did not
realize how foolishly extravagant was my scale of living, for every
year I was adding a handsome amount to my accumulations which were
steadily increasing, and yet, looked at from the standpoint of this
clear-headed, successful business man, I was expending far more
than what should have been regarded as my income.
It will be remembered that in the early years of my career, shortly
after my marriage, I was handicapped by the loss through a stock
speculation of all my savings. This was followed by dull times
and increasing burdens, and it was not until the year 1878 that my
profits materially exceeded my absolutely necessary expenditures.
During that year I lived comfortably and happily on an expenditure
of three thousand dollars. My profits were twelve thousand, and I
started the year 1879 with nine thousand dollars to the good.
Taking my expenditure of three thousand dollars as a necessary
basis, no matter what my profits in 1879 were, I was warranted in
spending only the three thousand dollars plus the interest on the
nine thousand, which was my capital. This was the principle imparted
to me by the man who had put it in practice and who believes it to
be a foundation principle in business, and that neglecting to make
it the corner-stone is the cause of nine out of ten of the failures
in the business world.
Then he asked me to figure out how it would have worked in my case.
I did so and was astounded at the results. I may add it gave me
many hours of hard thinking over "what might have been."
In order to make the working of the principle entirely clear to my
readers, I have tabulated the figures for fifteen years, calculating
interest at six per cent, and showing for each year the profits of
my business, the permissible expenditure, and the amount of capital
as it would have been on December 3lst.
Year Profits Expenditure Capital, Dec. 3lst
1878..........$ 12,000 $3,000 $ 9,000
1879.......... 16,000 3,540 22,000
1880.......... 21,000 4,320 40,000
1881.......... 28,000 5,400 65,000
1882.......... 21,000 6,900 83,000
1883.......... 24,000 7,980 104,000
1884.......... 30,000 9,240 131,000
1885.......... 15,000 10,860 143,000
1886.......... 36,000 11,580 176,000
1887.......... 61,000 13,560 234,000
1888.......... 120,000 17,040 351,000
1889.......... 72,000 24,060 420,000
1890.......... 68,000 28,200 485,000
1891.......... 80,000 32,100 562,000
1892.......... 70,000 36,720 629,000
This brings me up to January, 1893, the period when I considered
the question of retiring from business and decided against doing
so for the reason that the income from my capital if invested would
have been far below my annual expenditures.
How would it have been had I lived the fifteen years on the scale
as figured out?
My capital invested at six per cent, would have realized an income
greater than my expenditure in any previous year! But look a little
If during all those years I had been in possession of such amounts
of capital as the evolution of this principle would have brought me,
I am perfectly confident that the profits of my business, handsome
as they were, would have been much larger. The money would have
produced earnings far in excess of six per cent., and in January,
1893, the capital would surely have been set down in seven figures.
Surely those longed-for years of travel would have been mine--or,
suppose I had remained in business? I could not have failed for my
capital would have safely carried me over.
And now to conclude the brief addition to my narrative.
The late Robert Ingersoll once said:
"Hope is the only universal liar who maintains his reputation for
Hope promised me, in the prospective reorganization of the Washington
concern, the certainty of a complete fulfillment of my "Dream."
Hope lied! The reorganization is indefinitely postponed. Now,
hope promises me success in a prospective business connection in
Baltimore, and I still have faith in him.
Once more in active business life with all the old energy and
ambition and in perfect health, I may yet have another fifteen
years to put in practice a principle that I know to be sound.