Category:
Money

Teach your wife to be a widow

Donald L. Rogers was financial editor of the New York Herald Tribune. He originally wrote "Teach your wife to be a widow" as an article for Collier's Magazine, and later expanded it into a book (1952).



The article (and book) urged husbands to educate their wives about finances, so that in case the husband died the wife wouldn't end up going destitute.

I think Jean Mayer's article, "How to murder your husband," pairs particularly well with it. Both appeared in the 1981 Reader's Digest collection, Love and Marriage.











Posted By: Alex - Sun Dec 04, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Money, Husbands, Wives, Books, Marriage

Trapdoor for bank tellers

I'm aware of quite a few inventions designed to trap or incapacitate bank robbers. But the idea of allowing a bank teller to abruptly vanish is more novel.

Of course, this approach could only work if there was a single teller working, and hopefully no other customers in the bank.

I was curious whether this bank with the cashier trapdoor might still exist, but I had no luck finding its address. I did find that it was acquired by another bank in 1948. So it was probably demolished long ago.

Hagerstown Morning Herald - Aug 9, 1932

Posted By: Alex - Mon Nov 28, 2022 - Comments ()
Category: Crime, Inventions, Money, 1930s

Charles Garland and his Love Farm

Elon Musk, stand back!

If you inherited a ton of money at a young age, you too might be confused about how to live. At first, you might radically decide not to accept the fortune. Then, you might decide to use it for charitable purposes. Finally, you might opt to establish a free-love commune.

That's the path that one Charles Garland took. Read his whole story at Wikipedia.

After his separation from his wife, Garland established two successive agricultural communes, or "colonies of idealists", both named April Farm.[19] The first April Farm, in which Garland lived from January 1922, was at North Carver, Massachusetts.[22] In 1924, Garland moved to a new "April Farm" in Lower Milford Township, Pennsylvania.[19]

Garland scandalized polite society by inviting young women to live with him at these colonies, where he planned to "work out the problems of life".


Naturally, newspapers had a field day with all this.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Nov 10, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Money, Communes, Utopias, and Other Alternative Societies, Public Indecency, Bohemians, Beatniks, Hippies and Slackers, 1920s

Miss Drive-In Teller

According to wikipedia, drive-through windows began appearing at banks in the early 1930s. By 1958, over 4000 women were working as drive-in tellers, and that's the year that the Mosler Safe Company sponsored the first nationwide "Miss Drive-In Teller" contest.

Contestants were judged on "personality, courtesy, and efficiency." And, of course, appearance. The winner got a two-week all-expense-paid trip for two to Havana, Cuba. Plus $500 in spending money. So it attracted quite a few contestants. In later years, winners went to places like Bermuda and Norway.

Marion Polk, a teller at Peoples National Bank in Rock Hill, South Carolina, became the first Miss Drive-In Teller. She must have been fairly proud of this because it's mentioned in her obituary. The contest continued to be held annually until 1972 (as far as I can tell) when Jacqueline Fleming became the final Miss Drive-In Teller.

Marion Polk, Miss Drive-In Teller of 1958
Columbia Record - Oct 4, 1958



Tamra Evans, Miss Drive-In Teller of 1961
Wausau Daily Herald - Oct 3, 1961



San Rafael Daily Independent Journal - June 27, 1961



Susan Erickson, Miss Drive-In Teller of 1962
Corvallis Gazette-Times - Aug 16, 1962



Jean Doggett, Miss Drive-In Teller of 1964
Morgan City Daily Review - July 3, 1964



Jeanie Archer, Miss Drive-In Teller of 1966
Racine Journal Times - Sep 1, 1966



Jacqueline Fleming, Miss Drive-In Teller of 1972
Sioux City Journal - Oct 23, 1972

Posted By: Alex - Fri Sep 30, 2022 - Comments ()
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, Money

Using comic strips to forecast the stock market

Frederick N. Goldsmith published a successful stock-market newsletter from 1916 to 1948, when he came under investigation by the New York Attorney General for telling his subscribers that his market advice was based on "inside information."

Goldsmith, however, had an unusual defense. He revealed that the primary source of his inside information was the comic strip "Bringing Up Father." Goldsmith believed that the comic strip provided clues, in code, about the direction of the market. The clues had been placed there by "big insiders." This was apparently their way of communicating with each other. But Goldsmith believed he had cracked the code. Details from The Manipulators (1966) by Leslie Gould:

Goldsmith got the "word" as to what the market and individual stocks would do from following the antics of Jiggs in the "Bringing Up Father" comic strip, which for years was drawn by George McManus. If Jiggs was pictured with his right hand in his pocket, the market was a buy. If there were two puffs rising from Jiggs' cigar, it meant the second hour would be strong.

In one episode, explained Goldsmith, Jiggs was at the theater and remarked: "The intermissions are the only good thing about this show." Goldsmith interpreted that as a sure-fire tip to buy Mission Oil, which he passed on to his market letter subscribers. It went up fifteen points the next day.

When questioned, McManus (author of the comic-strip) insisted he knew nothing about the stock market and pointed out that he prepared his strip nine weeks ahead of publication. He also noted, "What would I be doing with cartoons if I were so hot on the stock market?"

Having learned the truth, the AG could have dropped the case, but he decided to shut down Goldsmith anyway for misleading his subscribers.

NY Daily News - Nov 18, 1948



The problem that the AG faced at the trial, however, was that Goldsmith's predictions had actually been pretty good and had served his subscribers well. In fact, many of his subscribers came to his defense during the trial. Nevertheless, the judge shut down Goldsmith's business. More details from The Manipulators:

Despite Goldsmith's record of accurate predictions, New York County Supreme Court Justice Benjamin F. Schreiber signed an injunction putting him out of business for keeps in these words:

The defendant. . . was engaged in the business of writing and distributing a market letter to the public which attempted to forecast and predict future prices of securities and commodities.

Subscribers were led to believe that the defendant used statistics, financial reports and charts in preparing. . . prognostications of future price movements. The letter was also so worded as to imply that the defendant had sources of special and secret information concerning stock movements. . .

The subscribers to the defendant's daily market letter had the right to assume that the defendant possessed a superior knowledge of the stock market, that whatever information he had came from living persons and recognized sources and not as a result of interpretations of comic strips. When he failed to inform his subscribers of the alleged sources of information he was concealing a material fact.

Terre Haute Tribune - June 13, 1948

Posted By: Alex - Mon Sep 05, 2022 - Comments ()
Category: Money, Comics, 1940s

The Strange Will of John Mostow

Source: The Boston Globe (Boston, Massachusetts)04 Apr 1928, Wed Page 16



Posted By: Paul - Wed Jul 06, 2022 - Comments (1)
Category: Death, Eccentrics, Law, Money, Candy, 1920s

Follies of the Madmen #536



How would you like the angry Amazing Colossal Man for your Dad or husband? While the females are appalled, the boy seems thrilled.

Source.

Posted By: Paul - Sat Jun 25, 2022 - Comments ()
Category: Domestic, Money, Advertising, Giant People in Ads, 1960s

Payment in Clams



When the nation's banks closed during the Depression, Leiter's Pharmacy in Pismo Beach, California, issued this clamshell as change.

The 1929 stock market crash triggered banking panics, as people rushed to withdraw their savings before they were lost. In March 1933, President Roosevelt ordered a four-day bank holiday to prevent further withdrawals. To compensate for the currency shortage, communities created emergency money, or scrip. This clamshell was signed as it changed hands and redeemed when cash became available again.


Source.

Posted By: Paul - Mon May 16, 2022 - Comments (2)
Category: Money, Nature, 1930s

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