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FARMING AND AGRICULTURAL BOOKS FEATURED IN A WINDOW
other by cut prices on the same article coming
A TYPICAL INSTANCE OF PRICE-CUTTING.
Take a common case of price cutting. An
It must not be The price of the article must be stated so that the reade of the advertisement may know that it is within his means, but, most important of all, while he is in the notion he must be able to buy the thing at the time he want it at the first He must be made to feel that shop he sees. he can get it at one place as cheaply as another; otherwise he will shop around for a bargain and in the meantime he forgets; the impulse to buy that particular article has evaporated.
Therefore, with national
After the reputation and popularity of a nationally advertised and thoroughly distributed article are established everyone who knows the article knows its retail price. The consumer knows it as well as he knows the A reprice of a dollar bill. tail dealer then, for the purpose of attracting custom to himself, advertises and sells the article at a price conspicuously lower than the established and recognized price. Frequently this price is cost or below, the expectation being that any direct loss sustained will more than be made up by the value of the advertising received and in the sale at enhanced prices of other not known. A articles whose prices are dealer, for example, can well afford to sell for 69 cents a watch which is advertised by its producer as a dollar watch, and which everyone else in his town sells at a dollar, if he can, at the same time, sell for a dollar, a 50-cent chain, or give to the public the impression that he is able to sell everything he deals in 31 cents cheaper than anyone else. The public rushes to buy, not because a watch is advertised at 69 cents, but because a particular watch under a well-known trademark, which is known to be universally sold at a dollar and believed to be worth it, is offered by this particular dealer at 69 cents. In short, it is the utilization by the dealer of the goodwill of the producer that makes the situation possible at all. It is the localized goodwill of the producer in the community in which the retailer does business that makes cutting of prices on the producer's goods worth while. It is the knowledge of the public that the producer's goods are reputable and have the value which the producer has set upon them, by fixing the price that makes One cuttheir sale at cut prices attractive. price sale invariably provokes others in retaliation. Where one dealer cuts the price of a dollar watch to 69 cents his neighbor, not to be outdone, advertises at 59 cents. Another then cuts to less, with the result that
sooner or later, usually sooner, all the dealers in the community are forced to sell this particular watch at a price which yields no profit. The result is that purchasers are persuaded not to buy or to take an unknown article represented to be "just as good." The reputable and popular article is sold under protest or not at all. The local dealer who survives this competition is invariably a department store, or other concern of large resources, which can afford to do business for a time at a loss. The effect of a cut-rate war on the producer, whose well-advertised and reputable product was the subject of the first attack, is disastrous. Through no fault of his own he is deprived of the distribution of his goods in the community. His market
is taken away from him for no reason except that his reputation is good and his products in demand, are of recognized value, and known to be worth the price he asks. His advertising expenditure is wasted because ineffective. Purchasers with the impulse to buy can not gratify it, and it is manifest that such conditions, if at all extensive, will ruin any business. The public are not benefited because, even if for a while they are able to get an article of recognized value at a cut price, soon they can not get it at all or only at great inconvenience.
The first step in this progress of destruction is the utilization, without permission, of the producer's goodwill for another's private gain, resulting in damage. The result is the same as if the producer's goodwill were taken away from him by fraud. The effect is identical as if the element of deception, as in ordinary cases of unfair competition, were present.
TITLE TO COMMODITIES PASS BUT BUSINESS REPUTATION IS ALSO A PROPERTY.
The opponents of efforts to fix and maintain prices invariably contend that where an article is purchased, title passes and control over it by the seller is gone; that it is the property of the purchasing dealer to do with as he pleases. This has long been the favorite argument of those who justify the perpetration of unfair trading by the use of personal names or by the deceptive use of other devices in which no exclusive right can be maintained. A man's name is undeniably his own property, but he is not permitted to use his own property, whether it be his personal name, or anything else he may own, in such a way as unnecessarily to cause damage to his neighbors. Ownership is not a license to injure another. Sixteen String Jack, whose operations on Houndslow Heath have made him immortal, doubtless owned the black mask and pistol which were the necessary tools of his occupation. A man with his own rifle may lawfully shoot at a target. He ought not in all conscience, however, to be permitted to pot his neighbors and defend on the ground that he owns the gun.
REMINISCENCES OF GEORGE HAVEN PUTNAM.
MR. GEORGE HAVEN PUTNAM is planning to bring out in April under the title "Memories
of My Youth," a volume of reminiscences covering the years 1844-65. Advance sheets of the book show that it tells, entertainingly, the story of the author's boyhood and youth, with digressions on certain events of the day that seemed to him especially significant.
The Putnam family, whose earlier name was Puttenham, had its English home in the County of Buckinghamshire-the earliest ancestor of whom Mr. Putnam finds record being Nicholas Puttenham, born in 1523. Among his ancestors Mr. Putnam claims one who took part in the Boston tea-party and the two General Putnams of the American Revolution.
George Haven Putnam was born in 1844, three years after his father, George Palmer Putnam, had migrated from the United States to London and established in Paternoster Row a branch of Wiley & Putnam. In 1848 the family (by this time consisting of five) returned to New York. Consequently, as Mr. Putnam writes, he was not old enough to even remember the interesting group of publishers with whom his father was associated, including John Murray the second, John the third (Johns fourth and fifth became personal friends of Mr. Putnam), Richard Bentley, "publisher to Her Majesty, Francis Rivington, Thomas Longmans, Edward Moxon, first publisher of Tennyson, Henry George Bohn, George Smith, Nicholas Trübner and Daniel Macmillan.
The return to the United States was brought about by a dissolution of the partnership between George Palmer Putnam and Mr. Wiley. Mr. Putnam believed there was a great opportunity for an American publisher to introduce the younger English authors to the American public, while Mr. Wiley held that in the existing state of the copyright laws any money spent in paying English authors and advertising their books would be wasted, since the "pirates" with their unauthorized editions might easily secure the larger share of the returns.
The first American home for the Putnam family was at Stapleton, Staten Island, then a place of sparsely settled, very beautiful woodland. Among the guests who were brought to the Putnam house during those early years Mr. Putnam recalls Miss Bremer, the Swedish authoress, Susan Warner, author of "The Wide, Wide World," Wendell Phillips, and Mr. Fabens, who published a little later, through the Putnam house, a book on the Isthmus of Panama, but who became fixed in the mind of the autobiographer not for this contribution to literature, but because he brought with him a small alligator, which became a pet of the Putnam family and the envy of the neighborhood. But one fine night friend alligator escaped from his washtub home and made for the open bay, where according to the awesome imaginings of the little Putnams, he no doubt grew big, forgot his early moral training and preyed upon sailormen and commuters. However, his reappearance was never chronicled in the morning papers, and by this time the waters about Staten Island are no doubt comparatively safe.
NOTES FROM PARIS
His own career as a publisher is not touched on in this volume, Mr. Putnam planning to a volume continue his autobiography in Memories of a Pubwhich will be entitled
lisher," but here and there in the early part of the present book are glimpses of his father's relations with writers who have taken honorable place in American literature. He recalls at one of his father's receptions the burly figure and broad face of Thackeray, and on the same evening remembers meeting "Louis XVII," who believed himself to be, and probably was, the son of Louis XVI. The evidence to this effect was the subject of a book published by the Putnams under the title "The Lost Prince."
When the family moved to Yonkers such people as Beecher, Curtis and Hale were The home of often guests at their home. Washington Irving, a few miles north of the Mr. Putnam cottage was frequently visited. Putnam recalls what Irving told him, one Sunday afternoon, of his own childhood, and of his meeting with General Washington.
At his father's office, where he was occasionally permitted to go between school days, George Haven Putnam secured at least an outside impression of some of the details of the publishing business, and obtained glimpses of such people as Cooper, Bayard Taylor and He remembers hearing in Mrs. Kirkland. 1852 some talk between his father, Mr. Bryant, Irenæus Prince and other leaders of the Copyright League in regard to a copyright treaty then in train in Washington. It was forty years, however, before an international copyright arrangement was made.
In 1857 came business troubles for the country at large and for the Putnam firm. The family moved to a cottage at Morrisania -a change which proved anything but disastrous to the children.
Studies were kept
up, and George Haven Putnam was able to come in to New York for school every day and incidentally to earn $300 toward his first student term at Göttingen.
Mr. Putnam writes entertainingly of daily happenings (such as the story of the alligator's career), and of more generally significant events a chance meeting with Lincoln, or a visit to the great London exhibition of 1851. He tells of early voyages in sailing vessels, of travel on the Continent and of student days in Paris and Germany. The latter part of the book-perhaps half of it-tells of his Civil War days, describing the Red River Campaign, Shenandoah Valley, the Battle of Cedar Creek and prison experiences in Virginia. The volume is one that should attract the general reader as well as those the publishing particularly interested in world.
Mr. Putnam has already a long list of
Special correspondence to the London Bookseller and the
THE professional patriot is not regarded
"He was but flesh, and flesh is grass;
At any rate, the remark was not true of Paul
His verses were popular with a certain section of the public, and, as always happens after the death of a well-known man, have been republished; also a life by Jerome et Jean Tharaud (Em. Paul), and a volume of what may be described as autobiographical and collected by H. Galli (Plon-Nourrit).
Another death I have to record is that of Hector Fleischmann. He poured forth volumes of no great size, it is true-with astonishing rapidity, but he dealt with the seamy side of history; one does not know how much is fact and how much fiction in his stories of the love affairs of illustrious men.
Mr. Victor Giraud has written a couple of volumes of essays on the chief literary men of the day in "Les Maîtres de l'heure" (Hachette). They include studies on Loti, Brunetiere, E. Faguet, de Vogue, Lemaître, Ed. Rod, and Anatole France, and the effect of those writers on what is called "the French Renaissance," of which we heard a good deal
a couple of years ago, but which appears to have been lying low for some time past.
This reminds me that the number of "Immortals" had fallen from the proper number of forty to thirty-six, owing to deaths, and last week three new members were elected, so that now the only arm-chair vacant is that of the much-regretted Jules Claretie. The three new Academicians are a dramatist, a philosopher, and a historian. M. Alfred Capus is the author of several well-known comedies distinguished for smart dialogue and acute observation of character. He is rather optimistic in tone, with that slight dash of cynicism which is inherent in the French character, and is seldom absent from any comedy of modern life. M. Henri Bergson has written several philosophic works, and his lectures at the Sorbonne attract many aristocratic hearers, who possibly do not understand half they hear: but it is an unwritten law that fashionable Paris shall always have its pet lecturer. M. Pierre de la Gorce has written the "History of the Second Republic" and the "History of the Second Empire"-monumental which took up fifteen years of his life. He is now engaged on a "Religious History of the Revolution," and, though it might appear to the profane that there was very little to be said on that subject, he has already issued two portly volumes, and has two others on the stocks. To the general public his works are practically unknown, but he has done good work in his own line, and "Il n'y a pas de sots métiers."
That portion of a current French proverb has been adopted by M. Raymond Hesse as the title of a book, published by Ollendorff, on some of the out-of-the-way callings by which people make their living in Paris. The subject is an interesting one, and if it be true, as another proverb states, that one half the world does not know how the other half lives, M. Hesse's book ought to find plenty of readers. The proverb in full says, "There is no such thing as a foolish calling, but there are fools in every calling." If Mr. Hesse, or another, would write a book about the latter half of the proverb, what an immense field would be open to him.
Amongst the new novels there are two which, by their treatment of a rather original subject, merit some attention. "Le Baptême de Pauline Ardel," by Emile Baumann (Grasset), is the story of a young girl who has been brought up as a free-thinker, or, at least, has no religious training. As a matter of course, she falls in love with a young man who is an ardent believer, and the problem is which will convert, or pervert, the other. Domestic trials and her own reflections work a blessed change in her character, and eventually she "gets religion," is received into the Church, and finds a happiness which she did not discover in agnostic principles. There is not much in the story, but it is neatly told, and, at any rate, forms a change from the almost inevitable trio found in so many French novels.
"Gogo et Cie" is a very amusing story of snobbish bourgeois who think themselves pioneers of progress, preternaturally clever, and perfectly free from all prejudices. It is
hardly necessary to say that they fall an easy prey to sharp but seedy adventurers and adventuresses, and their intended social reforms result in a heavy loss of money and prestige. M. Henry Rabusson, the author, seems to have studied his types from life, and he would not be badly advised to get some skilled dramatist to turn the book into a comedy.
Epinal is a town at the foot of the Vosges Mountains, and, though it has important manufacturers of cotton, machinery, and paper, is more celebrated for its "images than anything else. They are not graven images, in the ordinary acceptation of that term, but are what used to be called broadsheets that is to say, fly-sheets with one side covered with very roughly executed colored cuts. Generally there are twenty to thirty of these small blocks, each about the size of a couple of postage stamps, illustrating some highly moral story or nursery tale, with about three or four lines of text under each block to explain the artist's meaning. These images used to be very popular, but French children of the present day require something more artistic, and, though these fly-sheets may still be procured in Paris, it is very much to be doubted whether there is an extensive sale for them in towns or cities, though they may still have a fascination for the children of peasants in the rural districts. They are, however, not without interest to the historian, for they oftentimes, in bygone days, illustrated some now forgotten event or incident. M. René Perrout has been making researches amongst the printing-offices at Epinal, and has discovered some seventy-five sets of old blocks, some of them dating back to the beginning of last century. Whether the collection will have historical value remains to be seen when the volume is publishd-which will be in a few days' time-but, at all events, if it is of no use to paterfamilias, it will amuse the children.
LITERARY AND DRAMATIC FASHIONS. WHAT does the ordinary American, confident in his prejudices, suppose to be the ideas most often encountered just now in the pages of leading French novelists? They are, in fact, not at all, what we have been in the habit of attributing to the witty but wicked contemporary literature of France. A great reaction has set in, as Miss Winifred Stevens explains in detail in the Sociological Review. It is a revolt against both the old rationalism and the old looseness. Nature, virtue, religion-these are the words now coming into vogue. As one French writer puts it, God is "furiously in fashion" at this moment in France. By men like Charles Maurras and Maurice Barrès, all the talk is of Frenchmen getting rid of their irreligion, reverting to their
origins," whatever that may mean, becoming again "regional" instead of cosmopolitan, and gaining new courage, hope, and faith. And the minor writers are echoing the cry. Simple virtues and the observance of religious practices, with or without religious belief, have suddenly become the ". mouvement" in France.
It would be pleasant, says a recent issue of
At the same time, it is a great relief, for
take the place which brothels and white
Pascal observed that moral standards
months. Their work has been offensive to
We hope that no reader will imagine that it
DEATH KNELL OF SEX LITERATURE.
"THE public is getting tired of having
We'll keep the muck-rake behind the door,
has been aroused to the need of many reforms,
"America is immeasurably ahead of Eng-
"Poetry is in a state of decadence in this
"The magazine field is overcrowded at