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people seem to be temperamentally
shy of full stops and to this cause
their misuse of the above conjunc-
tions may be chiefly ascribed. They
ought to be impressed with the fact
that it is better to have twenty very
short sentences in a row than to re-
lieve the monotony by using either of
the above conjunctions incorrectly.

The Misuse of So.

It is hardly necessary to enlarge on
the Misuse of So. We all have in our
class-rooms our full quota of young
gentlemen who write imaginary
creditors that "we have not received
the check you promised to send us on
the 15th, so if you do not forward it at
once we will place our claim against
you with a lawyer."


"We are forwarding this letter by
special messenger so you will have
time to confer with Mr. Smith before
the office closes."

As the conjunction "so" chiefly
figures in the drawing of logical con-
clusions from the facts or premises
already stated, the ordinary business
letter very rarely affords occasion for
its use. The tendency of the young
student, however, is to employ "so"
whenever he cannot conveniently use
"and" or "but." As a general rule
it is advisable to forbid beginners
the use of the conjunction "so" al-

Loose Construction.

Beginners are very much inclined
to forget the fact that words and
phrases with which they are con-
nected or to which they stand nearest
in the sentence, and they are contin-
ually guilty of the absurdity of actu-
ally stating something which they
have no intention of stating at all.
Of course it is quite true that even
the best writers occasionally make
the mistake also. I take the follow-
ing sentences from letters actually
handed in to me for correction.

1. Perhaps you wish to send the
amount after you receive the goods
by check or money order.

2. We are enclosing statement
amounting to $450 of your account.

3. Kindly allow me to offer myself
as a candidate for a bookkeeper i?i
your store which is now vacant.

The Improper Use of Which.

The Grammars tell us that "the
relative must agree with its antece-
dent in gender and number" or some-
thing equally as illuminating to the
young mind. To revenge itself on
the grammarians, the young mind
proceeds to misuse the relative and
seizing upon which as the easiest ob-
ject of attack, places that inoffensive
pronoun in ridiculous and embarras-
sing situations without number.

1. On Feb. 5th we sent you an or-
der for 50 barrels of sugar which sur-
prises us greatly that you have not
received them.

2. We thank you for your order of
yesterday with remittance of $100,
which unfortunately you omitted to
give sizes of shirts and collars.

3. We have three times requested
you to settle your account on Jan.
1st., Feb. 2, and March 5th — which we
have not heard from you regarding

If, instead of mystifying the stu-
dent with allusions to relatives and
antecedents, we told him that which
must always refer to some word or
words going before and establish a
sensible connection between the said
word or words and the part of the
sentence following; — I mean, if we
were to set ourselves firmly against
the folly of presenting through the
medium of an obscure and difficult
terminology principles which maybe
much more easily and clearly ex-
plained in simple language, the av-
erage boy or girl would not be guilty
of the grammatical absurdities one
so often finds in compositions. "Eng-
lish," says Hartog, "is fortunately
(though some teachers will not have
it so) a language simple in syntax
and grammar. Indeed the grammar
is so simple that much of the time now
spent on teaching it is devoted to obso-
lete forms which the ordinary boy will
nevet meet with and of which a knowl-
edge might well be imparted either inci-
dentally or reserved until the Univer-
sity Standard is reached."

Mr. H. J. Champion of No. 10. S. Congress
Ave., Atlantic City, has been in the habit of visit-
ing the balloon house of Walter Wellman during
the construction ot "America." One day Jack
Irwin, wireless operator, borrowed from him a
pencil and forgot to return it. The other day
Champion received a letter from Irwin contain-
ing the pencil and this note:

"I forgot to return your pencil but I was after
wards glad that I did forget for it was the only
one I had to write messages with on the trip."

Champion wouldn't sell the pencil for fifty
times its value and The Smith Premier Type-
writer Co. is particularly interested in this peu-
cil inasmuch as it was one of the souvenir pen-
cils advertising the Company's Model 10 ma-
chine and was given to Mr. Champion's son at
the recent Car Builders' Convention in Atlanta

^M&^BuA/n&W&du&i&r* &


J. H. M I N I C H ,

Eastman College, Poughkeepsie, N. Y.




In contributing an article, or a
series of articles, to The Business
Educator, the writer has the satis-
faction of knowing that what he
writes will fall into the hands of in-
telligent readers. This fact alone
should inspire him with a desire to
write something worth reading.
When the subject is one of great im-
portance the desire to write some-
thing worth while, should become all
the stronger. My subject, arithmetic,
is a most important one; for without
a knowledge of the science of num-
bers the transaction of busineas
would be well nigh impossible.

In this series of articles, it is my
desire to make each one of interest
and real worth to the readers of The
Business Educator. I do not even
presume to be able to say anything
that most of the teachers who may
read the articles do not already know;
but I do hope to be able to emphasize
the importance of a thorough and ac-
curate knowledge of the fundamen-
tal, and other important operations
of arithmetic; and to present methods
of teaching them, that shall be help-
ful to at least the younger and less
experienced teachers.

In th'; methods which I shall
present, I shall not overlook the
qualifications of the average com-
mercial student as we find him, or
the very poorly equipped, student
who in some way happens to find
us, and wishes to take a business
course. It is well known that in a
business school are to be found stu-
dents of all grades of knowledge,
from the literary college graduate
down to the student who knows noth-
ing about a higher education and very
little about anything else. Indeed
verv many of our students came poor-
ly prepared in arithmetic. It may
seem strange that such is the case;
but there is a reason for it. Arith-
metic has been given less prominence
in the last fifteen years than was
formerly accorded it. Other branch-
es have been introduced into the pub-
lic schools and given too prominent
a place in the schedule of recitations.

Too much time is devoted to them,
and too little to arithmetic. Indeed,
the same is true of secondary schools.
The branch of all branches to give
keenness of perception, accuracy of
judgment, and which more than
any other, tends to develop the
reasoning powers of the mind, has
had a "set back." And what is the
result? There can be but one result
to the outcome of such conditions-
pupils poor in arithmetic.

Without a good foundation in arith-
metic, the student who prepares to
enter a college of liberal arts, finds
algebra difficult, geometry terrible,
when in college and the higher math-
ematics "horrid." About this time,
too, the student begins to find him-
self. He finds that he has gone over
a lot of "stuff," as he calls it, that he
knows nothing about; and that he,
himself, is a poor mathematician.
In fact, the probability is that he
finds himself not very strong in any
other branch of the college curricu-
lum. He looks for the cause of his
failure to make good in his studies;
and he finds it away back in his earli-
er school life. He had never been
grounded in mental and in written
arithmetic; never been trained to the
habits of close attention, clear and
logical reasoning, and hard continu-
ous thinking and study.

But how about the young man who
instead of having prepared in an
academy, or a high school, or even in
a grammar school, comes to us to
take a business course? Well, if he
realizes that he has almost no educa-
tion, he can easily be started at the
most fitting place for him to begin,
and by careful attention and encour-
agement, he will likely improve rap-
idly and make a successful student.
But if, on the other hand, the student
does not know that he does not know,
then we have a different proposition
on our hands. Here is an opportun-
ity for the teacher to exercise his
tact, skill, and patience in trying to
bring this youth to a true estimate of
his knowledge and ability. This is
labor; for the poor misguided youth
must have his building of false no-
tions all torn down; and in its place
must be erected a structure of sound
material in which to grow and store
knowledge and develop good sense.

Then we have another type of stu-
dents worthy perhaps of a word of
comment or illustration. We now
have before us a rather dashing
young fellow, whose manner indi-

cates that already in the past upon
one or more occasions, he may have
been notified "to appear before the
faculty" to give an account of him-
self. Of course, this young man is
not slow to tell us that he has at-
tended a high school and, perhaps,
an academy or a normal school, a
college, or even a university. He
may possibly venture to tell us that
he is a college graduate. He is ner-
vous and restless, and the more he
tells us the more suspicious we are of
him. Almost before he enters the
class room we are convinced that he
is a bluffer and that his record will
not bear investigation. He proves to
be a big chunk of nothing in the form
of a human being. My fellow teach-
ers, make a man out of a vanishing
quantity if you can; but as for me, 1
prefer to have something to work up-
on in my efforts to instruct, and to
develop hidden powers and manly

I am glad to be able to say that, for
the most part, in every school there
is good material, and that it is great-
ly in excess of the poor. Much of it
may be crude, but it is good ma-
terial; and more than a lifeless
thing, more than a block of fine mar-
ble to be wrought upon. It is ma-
terial with a spark of the Divine in
it; a personality that may be ap-
pealed to, and whose hidden powers
may be found and awakened and
stimulated to activity; and whose
whole being electrified by the mag-
netic influence of a noble and earnest
teacher, burst forth into healthy
growth and development.

The satisfaction of being instru-
mental in imparting knowledge, and
in helping the student to lift himself
above himself, is the true reward that
comes to the faithful teacher; and
this makes teaching worth while.

Commercial Law — Continued from
page 23.

in the office of the clerk of a specified
court, or a suit be brought to secure
the collection of the debt. When such
buildings are sold the liens are gener-
ally paid pro rata. In most states the
benefit of these laws extends only to
the original contractor and it is nec-
essary that the material furnished or
services rendered are of a specified

When a debt supoorting a lien re-
mains unpaid, the remedies to enforce
payment vary in different jurisdic-
tions. In some it is by a scire facias
on the lien itself; in some the subject
is subject to foreclosure the same as
a mortgage; in others, a court must
order a sale. As the manner of pro-
cedure, in case a suit becomes neces-
sary, shoutd be left entirely to the at-
torney in charge of the case, the na-
ture of the action to be brought is of
interest only to the practitioner.

<2ffie&ud/ned^<2dtu&&r % &


Commercial Law

Chicago, Illinois.


The subject of liens, which again
and again claims the attention of our
courts, but which for some reason or
other has not been deemed to be of
sufficient importance to the authors
of many, otherwise excellent texts
on commercial law, to merit more
than a passing mention, should be
properly understood by every busi-
ness man, no matter in what line he
may be engaged.

A Lien has been defined as a right
which a person has to retain posses-
sion of a chattelbelonging to another
as a security for the payment of a par-
ticular sum of money due on such
chattel, or for any general balance
which may remain due on other
transactions in the same business.
In a broader sense the term includes
all cases where personal or real prop-
erty is charged with the payment of
any debt or duty. While a lien con-
fers an interest in the thing held,
such interest does not imply an es-
tate, being a mere right to detain the
possession and does not vest the title
in the lienor.

This right usually arises by opera-
tion of law, though in some cases it
may be created by an txpress con-
tract, as will be explained more in de-

Legal writers broadly classify liens
as of two kinds, i. e., general and

General liens were unknown to the
common lasv, but are now generally
recognized in this country, where
they exist by virtue of special stat-
utes enacted by the different states.
They may arise either by an agree-
ment of the parties or by a general or
particular usage of thetrade in which
the parties are engaged, and may be
enforced for debts owing on other
transactions arising from the article
itself. It rests solely upon the right
to detain the property of the person
against whom a claim is sought to be
enforced and is immediately lost by
a voluntary surrender or abandon-
ment of the possession of che chat-
tel so detained.

Particular liens may also arise out
of an express contract or by a legal
relation existing between the parties.
A pledge or pawn is an example of a
lien arising from an express con-

tract, and where it arises from a gen-
eral or particular usage of trade of
which the courts take judicial notice,
it may be said to be founded upon an
implied contract. The legal relation
of the parties creates a lien in those
cases where the law has placed an
obligation upon a person to do a par-
ticular act, such as it has placed upon
innkeepers and common carriers, in
return for which obligation he is
given a particular lien to secure the
payment of his charges. The same
is true where chattels have been de-
livered to an artisan or tradesman for
the purpose of having labor or services
bestowed upon them, such person is
entitled to detain the chattels until
he has received payment for the labor
performed or services rendered. He
also has a lien for any necessary ex-
penses which he may have incurred
on account of the chattel.

Where goods have been saved from
the perils of the sea, the law of ad-
miralty gives to the salvor a right to
retain the possession of the goods so
rescued until the amount of the sal-
vage is paid. This is the only in-
stance known to our law where the
finder of lost goods takes a lien upon
them against the owner, and it is not
essential, as in all other cases, that
he retain the actual possession of the
goods so held.

In order to create a valid lien it is
necessary that the party against
whom it is acquired should have the
title or ownership of the chattel in
question and that the party claiming
the lien has the actual or construc-
tive possession of the article detained
with the consent of the party against
whom the lien is made. There are
only a few seeming exceptions to this
rule. It is also essential that the lien
should not rest either upon expressed
or implied agreement, and not for
a limited or specific purpose incon-
sistent with the express terms or clear
intent of the contract, such as when
a lien is claimed entirely foreign
to the contract by virtue the per-
son came into the possession of the
goods. A railroad company would
not have a lien upon goods de-
posited with it for the purpose of
transportation for any general bal-
ance which might be due to the com-
pany from the shipper.

As a general proposition, liens may
attach only on liquidated demands
and not for those which sound only
for damages; the only exception to
this rule is that in the case of an ex-

pressed contract, as where goods are
delivered to be held as an indemnity
against future contingent claims or

The party who asserts the claim
must do so in his own right and it
must be for an amount due from the
identical party against whom the
claim is made.

Like any other right, a lien may be
waived or lost by an act of the lienor
or by an agreement between the par-
ties, by which the same is surren-
dered or becomes inapplicable; with
a very few exceptions, it is always
lost by a voluntary parting with the
possession of goods on which the lien
is claimed. An example of the most
common exception to this rule is
where a factor by a lawful authority
disposes of goods belonging to his
principal, by sale, parting with their
possession, his lien is not lost but at-
taches to the proceeds of such sale in
the hands of the vendee.

As has already been stated, in the
absence of a special statute or a de-
cree from a court of equity, a lienor
has no power to sell or otherwise dis-
pose of the chattel held, his right be-
ing confined to merely retaining pos-
session. However, most of our states
have enacted statutes which enable
the lienor, after a certain stated time,
to dispose of the articles by a judical
sale and to apply the proceeds to pay
the debt due him; if any balance re-
mains, it must be turned over to the

Generally, judgments rendered by a
court of record are considered a lien
upon the real estate of a defendant
against whom the judgment is given.

Liens are also often spoken of as
being either legal or equitable and it
is well for the student to bear this
distinction in mind. Legal liens are
those which are enforced by a suit at
law; equitable liens are recognized
and enforced by courts of equity. A
familiar example of an equitable lien
is that which is enjoyed by the ven-
dor of real estate, who has given
a deed but has not received payment,
for the amount remaining unpaid.

Another class of liens which, by
virtue of special statutes, have in this
country come into special promi-
nence, are those which are popularly
known as mechanics' or material
men's liens. These liens give to me-
chanics or material men who have
furnished labor or material for the
erection of buildings a preferred
claim in the payment of debts for the
buildings so erected which extend, to
a greater or less degree according to
the statutes of the particular state, to
the land upon which such buildings
have been erected.

A mechanics' lien attaches from the

beginning of the work and continues

for a limited period of time, during

which a claim must be filed, usually

{Continued on page 22 . >

<^Me&ud/niM&&u&&r* &


Peoria, Illinois.

Written By Convict No. 999.


This is what MacCormac, the
Knight of the Bertillion Brigade,
said when he took the measurements
of the school solicitor for a striped
suit and an automobile number.
The topic of the article was "School
Soliciting a Crime." He says:

"I do not believe that down in the
heart, a single business college pro-
prietor is in sympathy with the so-
liciting idea. He is soliciting be-
cause the other fellow solicits, and
because as yet he has not developed
sufficient strength within his school
or through his personality to step
out boldly and fight the proposition.

"Soliciting is in my opinion first a
direct attack on the bulwark of our
national safety. Education is power
and only in proportion as we are able
to give to our boys and girls a strong
foundation in elementary work can
we hope for, a continuation of the
strength of national life. You know
with .me that every boy and every
girl should go to our high school,
(for at least two years)."

Then follows a true description of
the benefit of a good high school
training, and the Knight resumes:

"The teacher makes the school.
This is an adage as true today as
when first uttered. The proprietor,
to a large extent , is compelled to get
business. If he cannot inspire his
pupils to become salesmen for his
course of work or if he is unfortu-
nate enough, as are many, to have
teachers who lack absolutely the
points of salesmanship which are as
essential as is a knowledge of ac-
counts, he is in a desperate need.
His neighbor across the way has
three, ten, or thirty men pounding
back doors, misrepresenting the
course offered by others, also by his
own school, begging tender youth or
ignorant parent to sign a contract,
hence, in awful despair No. 1 inserts
a want ad, gets a broken down book-
agent, a highly polished confidence
man or a dear soul who must make a
living and knows no other way, to
tell him just how he can fill up his
school. Out goes the confidence man
at a salary and commission and after
a while in comes the pupil, often the
rag-tag and the bob-tail, the riff-raff
of the community. In order to get
thjs particular pupil, a term of pay-

ment has been made, unknown in the
old days, and it is yet a very serious
gamble as to whether the boy or girl
will remain in school for any length
of time, but if he does, the money, or
a very large per cent of it — a per cent
variously estimated at from fifteen to
forty-five goes into the pocket of
the solicitor. The remainder is left
to pay rent, taxes, equipment, etc.,
and last the teacher. The teacher is
informed that business is not good
and that salaries must be cut. In his
place (in the solicitor beridden
school) comes an inferior teacher.
With the inferior teacher comes in-
ferior instruction. Inferior instruc-
tion plus inferior pupils equals half-
baked products. RESULT: The
business man is compelled to do
without the service that he should
have or accept a service that can ren-
der to him but from fifty to seventy-
five per cent of the efficiency that
should be his just due. And, as a
further result a financial loss in busi-
ness tothe combined merchants of the
land which would mount into colos-
sal figures, were it possible to gather
them. Soliciting is a menace to gov-
ernment, a menace to commerce, a
menace to the business school pro-
prietor, a menace to the teacher and
a positive crime against the young
man or the young woman who has
been induced at a tender age to enter
a commercial school when they
should have been mastering to "three
R's" or obtaining a general founda-
tion knowledge in our public or pa-
rochial schools !"

I quote the above because it is good
stuff ferninst the bad school solic-
itor, and also because my dollar a
word goes on just the same and a re-
print is easy money.

It is enlightening to observe that
the good Knight published this treat-
ise on criminology as an advertise-
ment and did some school soliciting
with it. Shame on you, Alphonso !
Do you advertise because you "cannot
inspire your pupils to become sales-
men for your course?" Oris it be-
cause advertising can be done at a
less cost than "fifteen to forty-five
per cent of the receipts ?"

How long would the average whole-
sale house last if it did not send out
solicitors and pay them three to ten
thousand dollars a year for the job ?

No good business college man will
deny the proposition that the best ad-

vertisment is good work in the
school-room but why limit the useful-
ness of a school to those students
who find out where and what it is by
divine inspiration ?

The question of school soliciting is
essentially a question of salesman-
ship. There are good solicitors and
bad solicitors, honest men and liars.
Any statement that can be truthfully
made in the office can and should be
made any place with equal propri-
ety. Any statement improper at the
home of the prospective student is im.-
proper in the office. As I see it, the
entire question is not one of geog-
raphy but of morals.

Why do salesmen make misstate-
ments of any kind ? Why, especially,
do business college solicitors lie and
cheat? Is it not for that "fifteen to
forty-five per cent ?" And, reversing
the proposition, does not the school
proprietor pay the fifteen to forty-five
in order to induce the agent to lie
and cheat ? School soliciting results
in misrepresentation only when the

Online LibraryFrank OvertonThe Business Educator (Volume 16) → online text (page 39 of 90)