Just a note to acknowledge that this blog has not been updated for three (!) years. I’m seeing about reviving it in a modest way, but no promises. I’m not (big surprise) very good at blogging. But the sequel to Moonshine, Wicked City, is coming out in April and I thought I might have a few posts in me on the subject of writing and marketing and figuring out what to do when your books don’t end up selling very well. An experience I’m pretty sure many writers can relate to! So, we’ll see. And if you’re even reading this, color me shocked.
Headlines from the New York Times Index, October 1929
(A Whimsical Selection)*
C A Dice predicts high level will be constant for several yrs, O 13 II, 7:2
C E Mitchell says he sees no signs of predicted slump, O 16, 41:4
Cleveland Trust Co bulletin repts 14% decline from 1st of Sept through 1st wk in Oct; says a few high stocks have concealed bear market, O 16, 47:1
Fisher predicts rise will be permanent; says realized and prospective earnings justify current heights; disagrees with R W Babson’s prediction of 50-60% point drop, O 1, 8:4
Powerful bear pool reptd operating in Wall St, O 19, 32:2
Fall 2 to 10 points for active stocks and as much as 145 for inactive stocks; 2-day drop attributed to readjustment of prices to level more commensurate with earnings, unanswered margin calls, foreign liquidation, hammering by bears and terror among shareholders, O 22, 1:5
I T Fisher says even at current high levels stocks are not up to true value; dismisses decline as "shaking out lunatic fringe that attempts to speculate on margin," O 22, 24:1
C E Mitchell says decline has carried several below real value, O 23, 16:1
I T Fisher says fears that they will go to 1923 level are not justified by present economic conditions, O 24, 2:1
Decline continues through most disastrous day in Wall St’s history; 4-14 point rally at close of trading, O 30, 1:8
Mayor Walker urges moving picture exhibitors not to show gloomy pictures of break, O 30, 3:2 [Jimmy Walker is a character in my novel, so this was particularly funny]
M W Harrison predicts recovery and says business justifies increasing values; H G Aron calls crash unnecessary, O 30, 4:2
Sen Tydings says Repubs must take blame for crash, O 30, 4:2
Stocks lrs sent out by brokers to clients indicate bottom level of liquidation is reached, in their opinion, O 30, 4:4
D Rockefeller says current business status does not warrant severe declines; says he and son are buying heavily, O 31, 1:6
Irving Fisher really stuck his foot in his mouth didn’t he? I’m not even quoting half of his bottom calls. Note to self: regard famous economists who say calming things about the economy during unprecedented financial turmoil with healthy skepticism.
Even more fun to be had in November:
Soviet writers use crash to point moral that capitalism is hollow and fictitious; attribute crash to over-production, N 10, III, 6:1
J L Livermore says leading stocks are selling too low, N 13, 2:2
Decline continues; Stock Exch calls for lists of stocks borrowed and lent and for whom in effort to discourage bear selling; 21 issues closed day with gains, N 14: 1:5
We of this modern age recently banned short-sales, too (the ban expired a few days ago).
La plus ca change.
* This exercise in possibly unfounded historical analogy brought to you by the letter P (for procrastination), and the Columbia University Library, where I happened to sit before the so tantalizing New York Times indexes.
The Observer responded to my question about donations to the Nigerian farm helping the refugee children. As promised, here’s the info:
Stepping Stones Nigeria
On the Phone: 01524 542762
And via e-mail: Info@steppingstonesnigeria.org
Their website also has all their information: steppingstonesnigeria.org