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measure to our improved banking system under Federal control.

Our material welfare now exceeds that of any generation before us, but the soul starves. The foundations of faith are shaken. Readers of the creed deny its teachings. We carry criticism too far, and the analytic spirit is rampant. We are like children who dissect that which makes them happy until the sawdust pours from the doll. The age is merciless to its idols and the revered things of the past.

My ninety-two years from 1834 to 1926 have no parallel in recorded time. The inventions, discoveries and achievements of these nine decades have reconstructed the world. But the one work which marks the age above all others is emancipation. In no other period of history have there been such contributions to freedom. When Christ undertook His mission more than half the world was held in bondage. In the last ninety years emancipation has been extended to almost every remaining slave. Freedom in the United States has released a whole race; millions of serfs were redeemed in Russia. But the greatest benefit of emancipation has been the growth of democratic governments. Divine right has disappeared, and with it the inherited tyranny of the Romanovs, the Habsburgs, the Hohenzollerns and Bourbons.

The next ninety years of human progress will witness changes that may well make the events of my lifetime seem of slight consequence by comparison. I am not disturbed by the religious controversy that shakes the land, or by the great powers of capital and labor. I believe that the ninety years to come will bring wide peace among nations, a spirit of mutual helpfulness, a growth of industry and commerce beyond previous conceptions. I hope that the world will depart in some measure from the present slavish tendencies to make mechanical things the rule of life; that it may pause for a bit of real joy and understanding.

Often I am asked to explain the rule of long life and happiness. I have found it simple enough. As a boy I remember that my grandfather and my own father were given to worry; I might say that worry killed them, and in my youth this destroying spirit of worry aggravated my peace. Then

I resolved to worry no more, to live each day of life as it dawned before me, but to put forth my best efforts that the one following might be bet ter. I never sought riches, and twice lost my fortune. Neither have I avoided riches, endeavoring at all times to raise a bulwark of independence against the troubles of life.

When the temptation to rest comes upon me, I defeat it by rising and stirring. I find as keen a pleasure in life as ever. I do not indulge the inclination of age to look backward and live in the past. Upon the contrary, I cultivate an interest in every new thing and read the daily papers with care; they always offer something new to the mind. I make friends with the young, who bring me the impulses of youth, the desires of ambition. Some of my best friends are the sons and grandsons of men with whom I went to college.

It is one of the dangers of age to seek isolation, to avoid new faces and new things. Persons of advanced years who fall into this groove soon think of the past alone. Their minds stagnate, and every fresh thought is rejected. No man ever grew old until · his mind became weary and surfeited. Age is really not so much a matter of years as of the spirit, and I am determined to keep step with the times. When I was fifty my friends and other well-wishers began advising me to rest and take life easily, but I never yielded to that advice. About my only concession to rest is a ten-minute nap in the afternoon. I am confident of living to complete a century of life. After that I shall leave the rest to Providence.



We Should Be Ashamed to Be Ill

Condensed fom Hearst's International-Cosmopolitan (April '26)
Gerald Stanley Lee

HERE are several ways people can
take when a man is not well.

One way is to laugh at him and get him to see that he is a ridiculous object. If 10,000 men in New York would agree tomorrow publicly to make fun of fat men in the streets, so that only people in taxis could afford to be fat in New York, everybody knows what would happen.

Another way is to rouse up his intolerance, start him up into being ashamed of himself.

It sounds extreme but when one comes, as one does in Samuel Butler's Erewhon, on a whole society regarding a man's being sick an act of aggression, it is astonishing how sensible it seems.

People can already be arrested for spitting and very soon people with colds will be sent home to breathe, or be put in jail for doing public breathing.

People already feel there ought to be a law enacted to have a man arrested in a street-car for spraying a cold at them.

Even a stomachache, though it is not showy, is quite as much an act of aggression on civilization as a cold. When a man takes the liberty of beFing a father, who is an addict of a stomachache, a chronic or confirmed colic-he is committing an act of ag'gression on a nation. He transmits a complex of, habits to his children, and to others.

It is an insult to the next thousand years to be chronically not well. And society is getting to be as intolerant toward a man who compels his stomach to ache, as his stomach is.

The man who is loose about his own health, or other people's health, finds he is as intolerable to people as the man who is loose about his own money or about other people's money.

People are beginning to look on ill health in the way they already look upon a bad cough in an audience. People look around and say, "Why did you come?" and the time is not far off when ushers will step up to people coughing in a theater and say:

"This audience and the players are asking you to go home. These seats you have paid for will be reserved for you if you want them two weeks later."

When it is considered by everyone unnecessary and shiftless to be ill, it will be bad manners to ask about a man's health. The weak, kind person who meets a really well, chronically robust man in the morning by saying "How's your health?" will get his head taken off for it.

The whole clinging idea, even now, among women-the idea of pitying weakness and deferring to it-has changed. With the modern girl, a young man who offers to help her over a fence, or around a puddle, takes a chance. She waves him aside. She wants to be treated politely-treated as if she knew how to handle herself as well as he does.

The present spectacle of civilization, of thousands of contented men bent with work, pampering themselves in parlors, rolling around in limousines with their insides burning up, is not much longer going to be before our eyes. With our modern knowledge people are getting too unsentimental.

Millions of us are seeing the thing as it is and are acting on it. The taboos, styles and customs of society are turning the other way. A stampede

for wholesomeness sweeps us along.

Now the most powerful of all lures in making health catching is the lure of money.

Samuel Vauclain, the President of the Baldwin Locomotive Works, whose time at the office is rated as being worth $500 a day, has his office time contracted for with his doctor. He pays his doctor a salary of so much a year for keeping him well and gets a rebate every day he is sick.


Health is being treated in big business in America reverently, money. Health is money.

Anyone can see what is happening. When a natural and reasonable arrangement like Mr. Vauclain's becomes general among large employers it logically leads to the large employer's wanting some similar arrangement for his executives. He wants the men he has to work with as fit as he is.

This arrangement for executives logically leads, as anyone can see, to some similar arrangement for all labor about the place. It is just a matter of working out details, and working men all over the country-union men and non-union men-will soon be taking their doctors as seriously 9.8 Vauclain does, regarding doctors as belonging to a really great and serious profession and letting their doctors, as Vauclain does, finish their job.

If working men don't do this, firms will. Labor turnover will make them. No big company very much longer is going to be caught spending three years in educating a sick, unguaranteed man-a man they will lose or as good as lose in a few years-when with the same time and the same money, they can educate for the same job a man they could keep 40 or 50 years.

However the technique may be

worked out, every man who knows anything about business or human nature knows that, next to his job, it is the personal habit a man has from day to day that makes or un makes his value to the factory. The business concerns which first find a decent way to do something about setting up in each man they employ the daily habits that keep him fit, are going to have on their rolls everywhere the pick of the labor and the pick of the executives of the country.

In the Dennison Manufacturing Company the health of the executives is made as definite a part of the man's contract as his salary. A man's health comes in as the first part of his job.

When Mr. Vauclain's idea is car ried through to its logical conclusion people will expect to pay a rebate for being bilious on company time. It is as unpractical in a business way for a saleswoman to have a headache-to take 30 per cent from her power o please customers and make sales all day and draw pay for it-as it is to leave the counter at three o'clock and go and sit down at the movies and draw pay for it.

The general recognition of a new standard of health as part of common honesty in business is taking shape all around us, and the arrangement Mr. Vauclain has made with his doc tor is really a typical, standard, ra tional arrangement that all of usemployees and employers would make if we could.

Each man should have his own pri vate appetite for health, which makes itself catching to others.

There should be a public conception of the duty and obligation of health.

There should be a personal technique for keeping one's health which one knows and is ashamed not to use. Each man of us can always be sure what he must do, and what he must not do, in order to avoid illness.

Let each one of us be ashamed to be ill!


The Strangling of Our Theater

Condensed from Vanity Fair (April '26)

Walter Prichard Eaíon

HE American theater today presents a curious paradox. On the one hand, in New York City are more playhouses than in any other world capital. On the other hand, outside of New York City, in practically all cities of less than 100,000 people, the theater la dead, is non-existent and in most cities up to 1,000,000 population, is rapidly dying.

Thirty or 40 years ago actors like Edwin Booth played in towns like Scranton and Bridgeport. There was a whole year of profitable business for a star of a successful play in the onenight stands alone. The local manager knew the tastes of his audience; - he came to New York, saw all the plays, and then booked the ones ne thought his people would most enjoy. There were no motor cars then, no radios, no golf clubs, no motion pictures. The spoken drama was the chief form of entertainment for everybody. In the '90's, however, with the formation of the Theatrical Syndicate, local managers were reduced to janitors; they had to take any and all plays sent out from New York (often with second-rate companies). Then in the 20th Century, came motor cars, motion pictures, radios, and jazz dances.

The old-time theater found itself confronted with an unprecedented situation, because a large proportion of its former patrons, who had known no other place to go, now had plenty of other places, and places where they could find entertainment really much closer to their mental capacities, find an art that was created for them, indeed. Meanwhile, a smaller proportion of the theater's patrons had already been alienated by syndicate methods which had been cheapening and dishonest. The theater was left high and dry.

The most picturesque happening in our theater in recent months has been the foundation of a closed shop among the dramatists, as a direct result of conditions caused by the movies. Nearly 200 dramatists have banded together, drawn up a new contract which lodges with them, not the producer, all motion picture rights in their plays, and sworn a mighty oath to have no traffic with any manager who isn't willing to sign on the dotted line.

The matter came to a head when certain motion picture producers began to furnish to play producers the coin with which to mount the play, and expected in return the screen rights if such rights seemed worth purchasing. This cut out competitive bidding for the rights, and frequently resulted in great potential loss to the authors.

It is a well known fact that FamousPlayers controls the so-called Charles Frohman Company of play producers. It is admitted that Fox and other motion picture magnates have furnished financial sinews to Sam Harris, Al Woods, the Selwyns, and others. The consequences are so serious, that a good deal of alarm is justified. If a man is putting up $50,000 to produce a play which he hopes will make him a good motion picture later, he isn't likely to put it up for plays of a kind experience has shown will not screen.

Consider, then, the average motion picture, and ask yourself if this doesn't constitute a possible menace to true drama, the drama of spiritual values, social criticism, poetic elevation.

How far the ruck of playwrights have for some time written with one eye on the screen, and hence cheapened their product, nobody of course can say. I think considerably, just as many of our second-grade novelists have. Of course you cannot serve both

God and the Movies; you cannot write for the approval of the intelligent minority and for the pennies of Moronia.


What the motion pictures have done to the theater by way of reducing its patronage has been inevitable, a part of our democratic, social, and economic evolution. It has been to separate the public into layers that hitherto were potential, but largely unrealized. has sorted out the vast army of morons or child-adults, in this democracy of ours, given them their own art, their own playhouses. It has been to show us (which we ought to have known) that the true theater, the true spoken drama, is an intellectual and spiritual aristocrat; that true plays are written and produced-like true music and sculpture and poetry-for the intelligent minority, and that only by consolidating, organizing, and consistently appealing to this intelligent minority can the spoken drama now survive. It used to do that, because the majority, having no other place to go, followed the lead of the minority into the theaters. But they are quite out of hand now. The "movies" have got


The theater of commerce has answered the challenge of the movies by producing well-nigh as much hokum, slush and flap-doodle as they have, by making no effort throughout the country to consolidate its theaters to a number that the intelligent minority might support, to give those theaters only the best, the real plays. In city after city you find a Shubert house and an Erlanger house, competing against each other, when perhaps one theater, well conducted, managed by intelligent local people, might survive and enable the drama to survive. Nothing is done to get school children into the theater, and let them feel something of the thrill of real drama. The next generation is left worse off than the present.

As usual, G. B. Shaw has put his finger on the solution. The existing commercial and syndicated theater,

now so nearly dead outside of New York,. must die everywhere, and the sooner the better. On its ruins the intelligent minority must rear the traffic new theater, which holds no with Moronia, which is true to itself and the age-old ideals of spoken drama, which is an aristocrat of the arts, which, in time, will bring thousands of people up to its level, attracted by its sincerity and the spiritual nourishment it affords.

Already such theaters are coming. We have no less than four of them in New York. Boston has a new theater which has been made tax-exempt, which is starting a school of the theater arts, and which has played this winter Sheridan, Ibsen, Shaw and Shakespeare, in addition to lighter works, and with matinees crowded with school children brought sometimes from as far away as Nashua, N. H.

All across the continent, north and south, Little Theaters and Community Theaters are springing up. Mostly they are amateur, and will be for some time; but already a whole new profession has opened-the profession of paid director for such theaters.

Some day a dramatist of skill and power, with something real to say, will find that he can place his drama in 40 Community Theaters across the Continent, for a week's run or more in each. He will not have to consider the Broadway managers, nor write

with one eye cocked at the "screen possibilities." He will write solely for the inspiration and approval of the intelligent minority of his countrymen, living their normal lives in their home towns, and thus he will produce real drama, and we shall have a real theater. In time, we may be so proud of it that we'll build for it lovely playhouses on our civic squares, and over the portals carve the name of Shakespeare instead of Shubert or Erlanger, and into its portals lead our children to hear once more the mighty music of our English speech.

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