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Audubon County journal. (Exira, Iowa) 1884-1993, June 09, 1921, Image 6

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn87057934/1921-06-09/ed-1/seq-6/

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By JOHN F. THORNTON, JR.
(From the American Boy, Detroit).
REMEMBER 'distinctly the parting
words of my old schoolmaster that
June morning my class graduated.
"What are you fellows going
to do now?" he asked. "1 suppose
every one here has several Ideas
of what he would like to be flut
tering around in his head. It's
pretty hard to decide between them
on a day like this—when the fish
are biting up In 'Old Sandy.'
"My advice to each one of you
is to get your Ashing pole and
carry rim question along with you. Near the shores
of 'Old Sandy' you will find schools of polliwogs.
Learn a lesson from them.
"These polliwogs? are on their way to froghood.
You fellows are on your way to manhood. But the
polliwogs are not in any particular hurry. 1 don't
think you'll find them trying to leap around and lift
their voices like frogs. As a matter of fact they
are going to assume several different shapes be
fore they settle down into froghood. For the
present, however, they are content to go right on
being polliwogs.
"You fellows are in the pollhvog stage. Your
powers and abilities are only half revealed. Look
around before you decide what you want to be or
do. In a few years you may become aware of qual
ities in your makeup whose existence you never
suspected. At the same time, abilities that you
think you now possess may facjp away. Take your
time. Vou may save yourself from the fate of 8
misfit. You've heard of them—the doctors are un
happy because they are not lawyers, the chemists
who would be of more service to the world as
newspaper men."
I have passed on these wise words to many boys.
And I pass them on now with a new application
e—to the small-town boy who dreams of achlev
sing success In the city. te
His mind is crammed with Horatio Alger, Jr., a
sBtuff. He has read the picturesque life stories
sot some of our big men who left the farm for the is
sclty. The whistles of a locomotive among the hills
sanakes him yearn for the city, bristling with op-p
/•portunities. He looks upon the glistening rails
.as the one avenue to his opportunity.
He is short-sighted.
A few years ago, a big city was the place for
an up-and-coming young man. It needed him, and®
it. was prepared to reward iiiin with money and po
sition. Today, however, the story is reversed.
"America has grown too fast," say our deep think
ing economists and publicists. "She has spread
.herself thinly over a large area. The future otm
the country lies in Its undeveloped small cities
and towns."
Are you looking for opportunity? Examine that"
little old "one-hoss" town of yours, before you
think of buying a one-way ticket from it. There
are many ambitious, and very wise, young mem
who are deliberately leaving the larger cities and
moving into towns such as yours.
A few months ago I visited a country store in a"
typical small town of the West. The owner is a
young man. Ten years ago he left the town and
went to Chicago for a "reahjob." But he had not
worked long before he realized that it would be
many years before he ,could get the kind of job
he wanted. There were opportunities for fore
men. managers, superintendents and other
"bosses." But they were purely administrative
jobs.
l-Ie wanted to create and build up a busi
ness of his own.
Tiic death of his father called him home to care
for his mother, and he got a job in a general store
of the jtown. It was a terrible grind. The work
itself was not back breaking. But the daily round
of little tilings to do—the same dull routine, hour
after hour, day after day, week after week, got
on his nerves. Weighing out a bagful of this,
wrapping up a handful of that—it was hard work
simply because it was not Interesting.
Did this young fellow settle down and wear him
self deeper and deeper into the rut? He did not.
He simply began to look around to see If he could
liven things up. -y
He suggested to the owner that he advertise.
'"Advertise!" snorted the owner. "What for?
Why—p'tu !—everyone 'round here knows we're
here. And open for business all the time. P'tu!
And carrying almost anything In stock that they'll
ever want. Advertise! What for?
He suggested specializing. "Why not throw out
some of these slow-moving articles and put in
goods that sell more quickly?"
"No." said the merchant. "We depend on tbe
farmers for the bulk of our trade, and we've got
to carry a general line—a little bit of everything.
No—p'tu!—we'll go right on with our line of
staples."
The next year the young man bought out the
old man and started In to he a business-builder.
His first reform was to get rid of half the stock.
You know what a collection of junk the average
country general store is, with its haunting odor
of harness grease, calico, soda crackers, horse
liniment and cheese.
He had observed that the women did most of the
buying. So lie molded his store's service to meet
their nooiK He, investigated their buying habits.
He lennxMl that those who could afford to buy
finery patronized the large city stores, or sent
away to the mall order houses.
The young man visited the Jobbers and manu
facturers In the city. He brought back a large
oonslgninent of hats, suits, dresses and other
stylish things that women ar. Then lie fitted
up a sppclal department in ttoe space fioni which
lie had thrown the «un oil and teu-peiugr nalto
and skunk traps and a lot of other odds and ends.
The other merchants of the town predicted ruin
for the youngster. So did the banker of the com
munity.
"He'll never be able to compete with the city
stores," he said.
But the young merchant surprised them. He
sent letters to a list of prospective customers.
The women's wear was sold in two weeks.
From that time on he gradually turned the old
£eneral store Into a women's and children's store.
He did not specialize on clothing. But be limited
his stock to those tilings in which a woman is
naturally interested—clothing and house furnish
ings and groceries.
I
And he advertises. That is one of the main rea
sons for his success. The town alone could not
support his store. One new business idea he uses .,
Is very effective. He has appointed "agents" in
the surrounding small towns. Their work is to
report to him weekly, on printed forms, any In
formation that will put him in touch with new
customers. If a girl becomes engaged, or a couple
is married, he knows about it, and is after the
business that usually results from such events.
He knows also whenever a new house Is built,
or an old house Is remodeled, or a new family
moves into his territory.
In seven years this young man has built up a
business that is known for miles around. Sev
enty-five per cent of his business is done with
farmers and their families, who drive or motor
in from points fifty miles away. That Is the rea
son why, during the past year, he has been able
to do a business of more than $780,000 in a town
-whose population does not run much over 2,900.
Hundreds of small towns hold similar oppor
tunities for young men. If ever there were "golden
opportunities," small-town merchandising holds
them today. For American farming is fast becom
ing a mighty fine paying business. Wealth is ac
tually increasing faster in the rural districts than
Sin the cities. And the American farmer and his
^.family are no longer satisfied to exist on the very^m'
barest necessities of life. They are buying lux- -5
uries and. conveniences In large quantities. The'."
a introduction of electricity alone Into farming com
munities is creating a tremendous demand for
electric churns, washers, irons, fans and vacuum
.scleaners. Water system, porcelain sinks, wall
paper, paint and varnish, better house furnish
ings—these are only a few of the things that are
a? selling heavily In the rural districts.
An expert has figured that the American farm.:
market has a wealth of $80,000,000,000. Part of
that market is around you. The chain stores are
spreading out from the cities. The mall order
houses have secured quite a hold on the farmer's
trade. But If you decide to build up a business
in your ^community you need not worry over their
competition. The mail order houses give no bet
ter values than it Is possible for a local merchant
to give. And a man or woman always prefers to
trade with a friend whenever that is possible. The
young man with a capacity for friendship and a
goodly share of brains and energy has every as
surance of success in small town merchandising.
But merchandising Is only one of several fields
In which the small town offers excellent oppor
tunities.
The president of one of our big Pacific coast
banks devotes an unusual amount of time to the
development of his employees. One day he called
two clerks Into his private office.
"1 believe," he said, "that you two young men
are going to make good at banking. Put you need
a little broader experience with banking problems
than your work here affords you. In a big place
like this, you know, you are liable to lose your
sense of perspective.
"I have made arrangements with two of our cor
respondents. There Is a job awaiting each of
you in a country bank. On these jobs you will
be called upon to do a little of everything. You
will become banking factotums. When your edu
cation is completed there Is an executive position
here for each of you. You have a week to think
it over."
The young men thought well of the proposi
tion, and disappeared into the "bushes." But the
president's plans went awry. Neither man re
turned to him. One wrote him a long letter in
wnich he listed some of the advantages of a
small-town
job over a city job—the cheaper living
cost, the more healthful surroundings, and the
chance to make more Ultimate friends. The other
man, in a telegram, quoted Caesar, according to
Longfellow:
"Better be first in a little Iberian
village than second in Borne."
There are something like thirty thousand banks
in the United States. More than three-fourths of
these are situated in towns of less than ten thou
sand population. It is in these small-town banks
that many of our future banking leaders are being
formed, for here a new Idea In banking is being
developed.
As one banker has said. It has been found good
business to take Interest In people as well as from
them. In other words, the bankers of the country
are going out of their ways to help their clients
to grow richer.
couid mention many Instances of the rise of
young men In the banking world because of their
ability In tills direction. But space permits of only
one.
In a certain Eastern farming community there
were, a few years ago, two banks. They were
very strong compeFitors. A young man in one ot
the banks said to the cashier:
"There is just so much money In this community.
Both banks here are falling over each other, try
ing to induce farmers to bring their business to
them. We have a great many good nccounts al
ready. Why not roll up our sleeves and help our
AUDUBON COUNTY JOURNAL
depositors to become richer? If non-deposltora
see us doing this they have the best argument
inutile world for bringing their accounts to us."
The farmers of the community were hard work"
ers, and intelligent. But they had no leader.
Without a single "by your leave" the bank as
.suined the leadership. It, organized a "Farmers'
,-Forum." On the bank's recommendation the farm
.ers employed a "field demonstrator," thoroughly
grounded In the theory and practice of scientific
(.fanning. The federal government paid half the
.expenses of this "soil doctor." He spent his time
traveling from farm to farm, making soil tests
and advising the farmers regarding the products
.best adapted to their acres. The bank purchased
,a carload of purebred cattle, selected by a gov
ernment dairy expert. These w6re sold to the
.farmers at cost.
That was three years ago. Today, that com*
munlty is one of the most prosperous agricultural
districts in the country. There is only one bank.
The business of the competing bank has beeu
taken over by the "live" bank.
The young man is president of the enlarged
bank. He has been offered a vice presidency in
a large city bank, with a salary double that which
he now receives. He prefers to remain in the
"bushes." He, too, would "rather be first In a
little Iberian village than second in Rome."
On a trip last year through one of the richest
agricultural sections of the Middle West, I was
continually hearing the name of one man. I call
him Jim Ingalls because that is not his name.
Five years ago he was an overworked reporter on
a big city daily. His work did not seem to be
getting him anywhere. There were half a dozen
men ahead of him In the line for promotion, and
the best that he could hope for was an assistant
editorship in about ten years.
When his two-weeks' vacation period rolled
around, he made a trip through the rural districts
of liis state. He did not return to the city. For
in a little town he found the subject of many day
dreams—a run-down .country newspaper for sale.
And into it he put every cent that he had managed
to scrape together on his city job.
Not a very promising "baby," you say. But
Jim Ingalls had a vision of possibilities. The
town was In the heart of a prosperous farming
region that was well populated. Most of the
farmers had a big city daily delivered at their
gates. There was a growing community spirit
among the county dwellers. Jim saw the need
for a real community newspaper.
The first thing that lie did was to Improve the
appearance of the paper. Then he toured the
county, and created a chain of correspondents.
Railroad agents, school teachers, doctors, lodge
secretaries, Justices of the peace—everyone in a
position to gather news was supplied with sta
tionery, and given free subscriptions. There were
few who did not consider It a privilege to send
In news items.
lie gave up foreign news entirely, leaving this
to the city dallies. His news policy lias always
been one of Intensive reporting of the affairs of
town and county. His correspondents pour In to
lilni every week a steady stream of the gossip and
chitchat of every hamlet and crossroads village.
If Farmer Porter's wife holds a pie social, she
knows where she will find a full account of it,
and her guests know where they can find their
names in all the glory of print. Farmer Lawler
and his neighbors are interested in the hay, grain
and forage reports from up state. They look In
Jim's paper for them. He keeps close tabs on the
developments at the county experimental farm,
and nothing gets by him at the meetings of the
county agricultural societies.
The paper's circulation Is now nearly four times
what It was when he took It over, and it is recog
nized as a valuable advertising medium. Jim no
longer has to worry over his income. But he has
made more of Ills paper than a mere chatterbox
of the county's gossip. He realizes that, in his
little newspaper, he has. a powerful tool. Anil
he uses it to encourage the dwellers of the county
to carry out the improvements which will add to
the comfort of all, and make every town a better
place in which to live and bring up children.
There are openings for a great many more "Jim
Ingalls'." In the United States there are about
ten thousand centers of population where news
papers are published. There are about twenty
five hundred daily newspapers, and nearly six
times as many country weeklies.
Our smaller communities are beginning to
awaken. There Is increased political activity with
in their boundaries. And they need fearless, in
dependent local papers.
Which brings us to the question of the small
town hoy and politics.
The young man who plans to follow a political
career can do no better than to begin at the bot
toni in his own village, township or county. By
mixing in local aflairs he will learn how to handle
human nature. And lie will learu to be practi
cal.
Let not the young man think that participation
in
small-town
affairs will stunt his growth. If he
is destined for larger things, a few years will find
him as a matter of course, functioning on a larger
scale. And a record of things done—that new
school for Beaver Hollow, the park at Four
Corners, the new municipal lighting plant, or the
new railroad branch—all will sei\e as recommen
dations when he goes before the voters.
*-y*
Ifi&r
r'Trn''C^^tf--3^r
i1
Our palatial Steel Steamchipi, the "Manitou," the "Missouri" and the "Puritan"
will be in constant service during this
season supplying frequent and attractive
sailings between Chicago and Northern-Michigan points. Tourists and owners
of summer cottages will find this the quickest and most direct route to reach
Northern Michigan resorts or connect with all eastern points. Dining service
and food the very best. Special accommodations provided for automobiles on
"Missouri" and "Puritan." Sailings Central Standard time.
The Palatial Steel
S. & "MANiTOU"
TRI-WEEKLY SAILINGS
Between Chicago and Charlevoix,
Petoskay, (Bay View), Harbor
Springs and Mackinac Island
Mondays, 11:30 a. m. Wednes
day", 2 p.m. Fridays, 6:30 p. m.
First Trip Friday, June 24th.
Effective Jane 2nd to June 23rd inclusive, S. 5.
Jo
p*
"o lp.m.for
(Portage Park). Co// or
Chicago. III.
or any Steamship Tourist
When you are tired without good
cause, lack ambition and feel out
of sorts generally, you may be
heading straight for a sick spelL
These symptoms often
show the whole system,
especially the blood, is
disordered.
Don't wait 'till you are
sick in bed. Almost ev
ery ailment can be ward
ed off if attended to in
World-Famous Buildings Occupy
Sacred Sites In the Old "Capital
.'of the World."
"f
Ancient Uome was built on the hills
south of the River Tiber. Tradition
regarded the Palatine as the site of
Romulus' Orbs Quadrata. Excavations
have brought to light remains of
earlier settlement and a pre-historic
necropolis. The capltollne was the
center of republican and imperial
Rome. One of the principal ancient
inouuments Is Hadrian's mausoleum,
which, as the castle of St. Angelo, was
the citadel of medieval Rouie. West
of this stood Caligula's circus, in which
Nero tortured the Christians its site
is now occupied by St. Peter's, the chief
shrine of Roman Catholicism, reputed
to be the largest church in the world,
occupying 18,000 square yards and
measuring 435 feet In its highest part.
North of St. Peter's is the Vatican
palace, which covers 13% acres and
comprises over 1,000 halls, chapels and
rooms. The pantheon, built by Agrlp
pa in 27 B. C. and restored by Hadrian,
is said to be the bost-preserveU aucient
building In {he city.
Proud of Her Daddy.
Helen was playing out in front of
her house Flag day and evidently had
noticed the flags that were out In many
of the homes. This same dny hap
pened to be her dad's birthday but
she was not aware of It until she had
benn let in on the big secret of a sur
prise that was in store for her dad
when he came home for the evenln
meal and that she was not to tell any
one about It.
When given this Information she
exclaimed, "Is today daddy's birth
day?"
When told that It was, she re
marked quite decidedly, her big eyes
getting larger, "Oh now I know why
all the flags are out." ww*
Details Desired.
"He pressed his cheelc to hers,
eolor left her cheek."
"You mean he rubbed it off?"
mmmniiinmmnm
The. Palatial Steel
S. S. "PURITAN"
Regular Summer Schedule
Effective Jane 27th. Leaves Chi*
ctgo Mondays, Thursdays and Sat*
urdays at 6 p. m, for Ludington,
Manistee, Onekaint, (Portage Park), aad
Frankfort. Direct Service on Monday
Sailings to Glen Haven* Traverse City
and all Bay ports.
While.the popularity of oar steamers secures for them liberal patronage*
liinrn It uniinllT mom for urUlltlonal pnwciinrriis on nvnrf tiljx
S. S. "MISSOURI"
Special Spring Schedule
MMlssottri"
Saturday at6 all ports as far as Mackinac Island inclusive,and every Thursday •.•StatyW
will leave Chicago every
Liidington, Manistee and Frankfort, stopping on return at Onekama
Writ* for Folder and FuU Information
Michigan Transit Company
J. C. CONLEY, GENERAL TRAFFIC MANAGER mt
«»?27J!CI?ET 2"?^ B. J. KENNEDY. Gen. Pass. A«t.
103 Waatjackson Boulevard Docks, Municipal Pier (3. W. End)
Chicago, 111.
Bsrwa
or R. R. Ticket Office
"That Tired Feeling" Often
Forecasts Sickness
time. Any doctor will tell you that.
Start at once to drive impurities
from your system and help enrich
your circulation with famous S.S.S.,
the vegetable blood tonic
of fifty years' standing.
S.S.S
Get S.S.S. from your
druggist today, and write
about your condition to
Chief Medical Advisor,
847 Swift Laboratory,
Atlanta, Georgia.
Ill
ANCIENT AND MODERN ROME FOUND SILENCE ONLY REFUGE
The
Under the Circumstanoes, It Woult
Seem, Mrs. Paula's Friend Had
Made Wise Decision.
Let This Food
Help"Vbu to Health
Sound nourishment for body and brain
with no overloading and no tax upon the
digestion, is secured from
Grape=Nuts
It embodies the nutrition of the field
grains, and it makes for better health
and bodily efficiency.
Ready to serve—an ideal break
fast or There's a Reason*
I-.
Now, everybody in town knows that 9^4
Mrs. PaulA Piatt was talking of mak
ing a visit to tier married daughter
in Ohio. She had been talkiug about
it for two years, but age and the nat
ural timidity of woman long a widows :a.Ksj
had postponed the great event from
month to month, until the neighbors
began to wonder whether it would ever
come to pass.
So one morning when Uncle Tom a.
Flitters met a friend of Mrs. Paula's,
there was a twinkle In his. eyes as he
asked:
'When is Mrs. Paula goin' out to isp
Ohio?"
'Don't ask me," said the other.
don't know nothln' about it. If I tell
her to go, she says we all want to
get rid of her and if I tell her to stay
at home, she says I am mean. 1 ain't fcfesj
sayin' a word!"—Philadelphia Ledger.
Knew What He Wanted.
He is a bright little patron of the
branch library and knows well the sa
books suitable to his age and grade.
However, the more difficult and un-igt
familiar titles of the high school read
ing lists for which he Is frequently
sent sometimes stump him.
"1 want the three mosquiters," he\-§
announced hurriedly on his last visit.
"You mean the 'Three Musketeers,'
said the librarian, noting the list from
which he was reading.
"Maybe I do," he agreed promptly.
Then he chuckled good humoredly.
"Anyhow, they're both good drawer*:
of blood," he added.
A Sincere Admirer, "y
"Do you understand the scientist to'
whose lectures you apparently listen
with so much attention?"
"No," replied Senator JSorghum. "I
am interested in him as a man who
makes 'em applaud things they can
not hope to understand. 1 often feel
called upon to attempt the same thing
la my own business."
4~^

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