Category:
Money

The Man Who Owned the Salvation Army

The Salvation Army was founded by William Booth, a dedicated altruistic soul who ran it until his death in 1912.

But he also had to be a canny businessman, and in 1878 he had the entire holdings of the enterprise put into his name as sole proprietor.

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That paragraph above comes from this Australian newspaper, which state that at time of Booth's death the Australian holdings alone amounted to "over half a million pounds."

I find the figure of £975,000 for worldwide holdings from this 1912 biography of Booth. An online inflation calculator for British pounds figures that sum equals £81,700,000.00 today.

So the selfless General was a multimillionaire when he was Promoted to Glory and passed on the Sally to his son Bramwell.

I can't find any data on when the Booth family gave over control of the Army to some kind of board of directors. I assume they did. Did they?

Does any WU-vie have the answer?

Posted By: Paul - Mon Sep 23, 2013 - Comments (17)
Category: Charities and Philanthropy, Money, 1910s

Most Expensive Everything

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We often feature luxury or dumb or crazy products that cost an unreasonable fortune. Well, here's a website that highlights nothing else.

Most Expensive website.

For instance, above is the Most Expensive Honey they could find, $83.00 per jar.

Posted By: Paul - Sat Jul 27, 2013 - Comments (1)
Category: Money, Outrageous Excess

Man inherits 143 Trillion Marks

From the Daily Kennebec Journal - Aug 23, 1928:

Remarkable confidence in the future ability of the German nation to redeem at "a reasonable price" all outstanding German paper marks issued during the World War is found in one of the clauses of the will of a wealthy out-of-State man whose death occurred recently and whose will has been filed with Assistant Attorney General Philip D. Stubbs for the assessment of the Maine inheritance tax on the shares of the Maine corporations in the estate. The will was drawn in June of 1926.

The deceased left an estate of approximately $800,000, aside from one hundred and forty-three trillion German marks which had cost him about $6,000. The will is unique in the fact that the executor is directed to hold these marks until such time as they shall be redeemed rather than to appraise them as practically worthless.

The following clause in the will covers this point:

"In the belief that the German people will ultimately require redemption of all outstanding German paper marks issued during the World War of 1914-1918 at a reasonable price, I direct my said executor and trustee to continue to hold the German paper marks of such issue as may belong to me at the time of my death (amounting to about one hundred and forty-three trillion marks according to the American method of reckoning) until such marks can be sold at about the cost thereof to me, namely about $6000."

Although the article says the trillions of marks were acquired during World War I, that must be wrong. The period of German hyperinflation occurred from 1921-1924.

Posted By: Alex - Sun Jul 07, 2013 - Comments (3)
Category: Money, 1920s

Blue Bills

Montana Public Radio reports about artist Tim Holmes, who's dying money blue and giving it away. He also stamps it with the phrase, "Based on the value of a clean world!" He hopes this will prompt a widespread discussion about environmentalism. Why? Because the money is blue. He elaborates at his website bluebills.us:

Regular green bills express no value. The money we use every day is backed by NOTHING! Its only value is what others think it has. But when two people exchange a Blue Bill, both agree on the value of a clean environment and a healthy community. Every exchange thus is a vote for a clean world! 

So green = "no value" but blue = "clean environment and a healthy community". Got it?

Posted By: Alex - Sat May 11, 2013 - Comments (11)
Category: Art, Money

Parakeet demands tax refund

It's a long-standing tradition in the media to come out with stupid tax stories around April 15. Here's one from 1955.

Jo-Jo Kay the parakeet was paid $615 a year by the Kay Jewelry chain to go around to their stores and say the phrase "It's Okay to owe Kay." Of this money, $20.50 went to income tax and $12.30 to Social Security. However, Jo-Jo claimed $25 in deductible travel expenses and $1 in charitable contributions (given to the zoo). This dropped his total income to $589, which was less than the $600 personal exemption. So Jo-Jo asked for a refund.

The IRS responded by pointing out that Kay Jewelry wasn't paying Jo-Jo the minimum wage, which meant they were liable to have their property (including Jo-Jo) seized as a penalty.

The picture shows Jo-Jo standing on the head of Internal Revenue Commissioner T. Coleman Andrews. [Milwaukee Sentinel — Jun 24, 1955]

Posted By: Alex - Wed Apr 10, 2013 - Comments (4)
Category: Animals, Government, Money, 1950s

What a Life!



Always good to keep your sense of humor in hard economic times.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Apr 07, 2013 - Comments (2)
Category: Money, 1940s, Europe

Parker Brothers Billionaire Game

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Perhaps it's wise that this 1973 game is no longer manufactured. Hard to imagine it being very popular in today's economy. But if you still want a set, so you can pretend to be part of the 1%, check out the link to Amazon below.

More info here.

And here.




Posted By: Paul - Thu Sep 27, 2012 - Comments (9)
Category: Games, Money, Outrageous Excess, 1970s

Dollar Dance



If money could talk.....

Posted By: Paul - Sat Sep 22, 2012 - Comments (6)
Category: Money, PSA’s, Cartoons, 1940s

Follies of the Mad Men #188

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Subtext: our arcane, byzantine loan policies are as horrifying and deadly as this nausea-inducing hybrid nightmare creature we chose as our new mascot.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Aug 31, 2012 - Comments (7)
Category: Animals, Business, Advertising, Products, Money, Fictional Monsters

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Alex Boese
Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction, science-themed books such as Elephants on Acid and Psychedelic Apes.

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Paul has been paid to put weird ideas into fictional form for over thirty years, in his career as a noted science fiction writer. He has recently begun blogging on many curious topics with three fellow writers at The Inferior 4+1.

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