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CO.OPERATIVE-.STORE' SAVED INDIANA TOWN AND.
DROVE -WOLF TO, THE WOODS
Shirley, Ind., ha? "solved the
high cost of living. '
The solution is a co-operative
store. It is a general $tore, car
rying everything thatpeople who
work have to buy. 'There are 2,
000 people in, Shirley.
Noble Van Meter came to the
rescue when hard times'' gripped
the town. He levied a town
meeting. Shirley was boiling
with socialists'ind there was a lot
of hot speeches, 'The other mer
chants simply raisedain when
they heard about ' the proposed
co-op store plan; it wo'uld ruin
their business. 'But they had'had
their dhance and failed to make
The co-op stpre was started in
Mar.ch, 1911, capitalized at $5,
000. Stockholders buy things at ac
tual cost,' plus justenough to run
the store. Anyone can buy stock.
It costs $10 a shar'e. One share
gives a man all' buying privileges.
People who are not members
must pay regular price for what
they buy; this profit goes to the
stockholders up to 8 per cent.
Any profit over that amount is
paid to the stockholders in pro
proportion to what they .have
bought. To jusjly distribute this
surplus, credit slips are given
with each purchase and called in
at regular intervals.
In four months Lee Ayres got
$1 1 rebate on his $10 stock. This
was clear velvet. Besides, he had
bought all his store supplies at
almost cost ,
The brotherly spirit of the
store is shown when a man gets
sick. He is refunded his stock
money and given 30 days to take
it up in. Meantime his buying
privilege is continued gratis to
help him out.
The matter of graft and one
man control . are carefully safe
guarded. The stock limit is $50.
Every man has one vote regard
less of the amount of stock he
owns. Everyone who has any
thing to do, with handling the
money is under heavy bonds. Di
rectors go over the books month
ly. Noble Van Meter delivers all
town purchases in a small wagon
which he hauls. "For what is the
use of hiring a boy and keeping a
horse?" he asks; "that would
make the people pay more for
what they buy."
"'Tis a cru-el, cru-el, wor-ld,"
A Shopper said one day,
"I find the costly trimmings
On my hat are just plain hay.
"But then they're very stylish,
And I'll leave 'em on, I guess,
For even if they're 'phony'
They're a fine match for my
Picked a Lemon.
"Oh dear," said a maiden bold,
'T fear that I'm getting old,
I'm going to look out
For a Leap-Year hold-out,"
She did, but is sorry, we're told.
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