ALL OFFICES AND STORES. New York, June 6th, 1916.
My last letter ended rather suddenly and brought us back to good old New York. There are a great many things that happened on our trip, which we will not forget for a long time and some things that we will never forget,
In going over the general details of our trip, the following things stand out in our memory, while other things may he forgotten.
When we arrived in Morristown, Tenn. and took our automobile trip to Tate Springs, a distance of twelve miles, we should not forget the ferry that took us across the river on a little slender wire. My brother who resides in Scranton gave me the laugh and told me that that was just an ordinary ferry and he had seen a good many of them in the State of Pennsylvania. I must admit, however, this was my first experience in crossing a ferry of that kind, although I lived in the State of Pennsylvania seven years, and if that is the kind of ferries they have in the State of Pennsylvania, it shows that they are pretty far back in the middle ages.
We shall not forget the impression that the Tate Springs Hotel had on us and how it took us ten minutes to count over our cash to see if we had money enough to go to California. When we found we had money enough, we decided at once to make the trip farther west.
We shall not forget the station agent at Morristown that sold us the four tickets to San Francisco and took a lot of our good cash. He afterwards said it was the biggest amount of money he had ever taken on four tickets.
We shall not forget how we surprised Mr. Walter Smith, manager of our St. Louis Office, the morning we arrived in St. Louis. There were no flowers there to greet us but there was no doubt there would have been flowers and a good many other things, had Mr. Smith known we were to arrive in St. Louis.
We shall not forget the nice luncheon we had at the Planters Hotel in St. Louis and the dinner we had at night out at the Country Club, and how we were entertained in our one day stay in St. Louis without any preparations being made for our entertainment.
We shall not forget visiting our Kansas City Store, one of the finest stores we have in the country.
We shall not forget stopping at Albuquerque, N. Mex. and visiting our store there and how the youngmanager of the store was so anxious to see us and statedthat notwithstanding the fact that many eastern people went through Albuquerque and the train stops for a half hour, he had had very few visits from eastern people.
We shall not forget the surprise that Mr. Rand gave us at Pasadena, when we got off the train and the pleasant ten days we spent in Pasadena, visiting Los Angeles, Long Beach, Venice, Emona, Riverside and several other places near Pasadena.
One thing I did forget, however, was our visit to the Pasadena Store. It was so close to our hotel, we did not visit it until the day before we left, and I must say the store was in fine condition
EXECUTIVE OFFICE 6-7-16 2.
ALL OFFICES AND STORES. New York, June 6th, 1916
and the manager is up to date and sales are increasing all the time.
We shall not forget the luncheon that the managers of our stores in Southern California gave us in Los Angeles, through Mr. Rand’s efforts.
In my letter I said nothing to you about earthquakes in California at six thirty in the morning when we left Pasadena, there was a distinct shock of earthquake that frightened a good many people. This was certainly unexpected. The Los Angeles paper the next day, however, had four lines in regard to the earthquake. Now, if an earthquake like that bad happened anywhere in the east, you would have seen very big head lines and a column in nearly every paper in the east, but they are trying to keep out of the newspapers, all the bad things that happen in California.
Another earthquake occurred near Butte, Mont. a few hours after our train passed over that section and this was quite a severe shock,
When we were in Bakersfield, Fresno and San Francisco, we noticed candles placed in all of the rooms, so as to be ready to light in case an earthquake should come and put out the electric lights. Yet, nothing is ever said about this here.
We shall not forget our automobile ride from Pasadena to San Francisco and the terrible heat we had to pass. through, especially just before we arrived at Bakersfield, when it was over 100 in the shade. When we arrived in Bakersfield, the thermometer registered 90 at 5:30 in the afternoon and the proprietor of the hotel told us he thought it was over 100 in the middle of the day, yet, there was nothing mentioned in the paper about the heat.
The same thing occurred at Fresno, where the heat was so great. I have heard since, that we were not the only people that suffered with heat visiting California. A gentleman just told me that in the latter part of September, going from Portland Oregon to San Francisco, over the Shasta route, he never suffered so with the heat before in his life. The thermometer registered 105 in the train,
I only mention these facts, to show you we do not hear all the bad things that they have in California.
Now, in regard to some of the good things they have there, will say they raise a tremendous amount of oranges. Of course, they are not quite as good as Florida oranges. They raise enormous quantities of grape for wine and grapes for raisins. We also saw large orchards of olives but the handsomest trees we saw in all Southern California was the Walnut Trees. We saw groves and groves of these wonderful trees and they raise very fine walnuts on them.
There are quantities of other kinds of fruit which they raise in Southern California to great advantage and you cannot blame the people of Southern California for boosting their wonderful climate and country, in fact the people of Southern California should be congratulated on the wonderful things they have accomplished in the last twenty-five to thirty years, as the irrigation has been a wonderful feature in developing
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ALL OFFICES AND STORES. New York, June 6th, 1916.
Southern California. The natives themselves are hustlers and they are always boosting their State. The same also applies to Northern California, San Francisco, Oakland, Oregon and Washington. They are very optimistic and sometimes I think they ate over-optimistic, but like every other climate, it is not all fine, the weather is not always perfect and crops are not always a success, but we only hear the good part, as we pass through this country.
One of the many things that the eastern people long for in Southern California, is the nice green grass which is always found in northern climates, and Southern California does not possess any turf or green grass at all, instead, there is nothing but weeds and sage brush that lives uncultivated in the place of green grass, however, they have the most luxurious alfalfa, with its beautiful dark green, which takes the place of grass.
While we were in Pasadena, Mr. Rand tried to find out which route we expected to return east on, which of course, I did not know at that time, I told him I would not decide until we got to San Francisco, but he took a chance, however, and thought possibly we might go back by the Union Pacific Railway and stop at Salt Lake City. He therefore commenced to warm up the wires between Pasadena and Salt Lake City, as he was very anxious for us to hear the big organ in the Tabernacle at Salt Lake City, which is one of the famous organs in the world. When we arrived in San Francisco, everything was arranged for us to hear the organ, if we went back by way of Salt Lake City.
It seems that the organ was under extensive repairs and through some enterprise of Mr. Rand’s, everything was all arranged that we could hear it on a certain day, as the organ would be finished at that time. Of course, I do not know what expense or trouble Mr., Rand had gone to in securing this privilege, but it only goes to show the enterprise he has. How disappointed he was when he found we were going back Via the Northern Pacific and would not pass through Salt Lake City.
On the other hand, Mr. Rand was very anxious for us to go to Seattle and meet the managers of the stores in that neighborhood, so we decided to go to Seattle instead.
We shall not forget San Francisco. Chicago has the reputation of being the “Windy City” but I think San Francisco is entitled to this too. San Francisco is entitled to be called the “Hilly City” also, as I don’t think there is a city in the world that has so many steep hills as San Francisco.
The natural advantages of San Francisco, however, can never be taken away from her, that is, her wonderful harbor. Oakland on the other hand has a chance to expand and grow much larger than San Francisco, as San Francisco is on a peninsula and tied down on both sides, the same as the lower part of New York City and it cannot expand so very much.
We shall not forget the fine railway route we took from San Francisco to Portland, over the Shasta Route, amid beautiful scenery. We shall not soon forget our ride over the Columbia River Highway, which we took by automobile from Portland.
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ALL OFFICES AND STORES. New York, June 6th,l916,
There seems to be a strife “between Portland and Seattle for supremacy and population apparently. Seattle has the advantage on account of having such a wonderful harbor.
We shall not soon forget the wonderful service they gave us on the Northern Pacific Railway, especially the dining car service.
Taking our entire trip from Kansas City to California, Oregon back to Chicago, we cannot say we saw any wonderful scenery. Of course, we saw the Rocky Mountains, which are well named and we saw plenty of barren country and arid lands, wild deserts and prairie lands. Of course, we realize we did not pass through the finest scenery which they say is on the Western Pacific and Rio Grande Railway and the Canadian Pacific has the best scenery of them all.
I presume a good many people will wonder why we did not visit her places in California. I refer particularly to San Diego, Santa Barbara,, Delmonte, The Yosemite Valley and the Big Trees, and our excuse is, had we taken in those points, it would have taken us a month longer and as we were not on a sight seeing trip particularly, we did not have time to take in these places.
I am told however, that the climate at San Diego is the finest climate in California, as the temperature varies very little the entire year, but the trip from Pasadena is 145 miles and it would have taken u about four days in automobile there and back to Pasadena. We were told however, that the fair which is now being held in San Diego, is nothing wonderful.
Coronado Beach we would have liked to see, which is right near San Diego, but we were told it has nothing but a big hotel on the seashore, so we cut it out.
Santa Barbara, we would have liked to see, but it meant four to five days’ trip from Pasadena and back again and as the automobile roads along the coast are very poor, we could not take it in on that account.
We intended while we were in San Francisco to take a run to Delmonte which they say is the handsomest resort in California, with wonderful golf links of grass turf. This of course, would have taken about five days of our time.
Last but not least, we wished to visit the beautiful Yosemite Valley and visit the big trees of California. This they told us was a very tiresome trip and would take in at least a week’s time, so we returned back to Chicago, having seen the principal parts of the Pacific Coast, with the above exceptions. ”
We shall not soon forget, the wonderful entertainment they gave us in our Chicago Office and the wonderful flowers, the luncheon and last but not least, the souvenirs which were presented to us.
Of course, our trip had a sad -ending when we arrived in Watertown on account of the death of Mr. W. H, Moore, soon after our arrival.
As stated in my previous letter, we arrived in New York, the 20th day of May – Saturday morning and it certainly seemed good to us to be back to good old New York. The weather was delightful and New York never looked as good to us as it did this time.
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ALL OFFICES AND STORES. New York, June 6th, 1916.
In our travels, after being away five weeks and two days, we covered railway travel of about 7500 miles and nearly 2500 miles in automobile, in other words, about 10,000 miles and passed through twenty-five different states and in all of our travels, we did not pass a single city of over 10,000 inhabitants but what we had store located there. We spent 13 nights on sleeping cars, 20 days in travel and about 17 days sight-seeing.
Tracing our trip over a map of the United States, it shows that we had a very extended trip and did not travel over the same road twice.
We left on the Pennsylvania R.R., going south as far as Tennessee, then northeasterly to St, Louis and southwesterly to Los Angeles, then north as far as Seattle and southeasterly to Chicago and New York.
I wish to say, however, that the trains we travelled on were always on time and we never were more than five minutes late. We met no big crowds anywhere on our trip and always had good accommodations at hotels and on trains, and we believe April and May is the best time to travel west on that account. People who go to California in January and February have difficulty in getting accommodations on the trains and at the hotels, on the other hand, California is liable to be rainy in January, February, March and April but May the rainy season is over and the flowers are all in bloom, and we probably saw California at its best. Taking the trip as a whole, however, it gives one a wonderful idea of how large the United States is and makes a person feel proud that they belong to this country which is not yet fully developed and will not be developed for the next hundred years, but the United States is developing very fast and there is plenty of room for it to grow. There is no question in my mind but what in a short space of time, the United States will be the greatest country in the world.
By taking the map of the world, you will find that the location of the United States is the best of any country, as it is located in the temperate zone and yet the lower part of it is semi-tropical and the northern part is cold enough for anyone.
Ihave been told if you take a straight line from New York City and go directly west, the most enterprising people in the world live within 200 miles south of that line and 200 miles north of that line. After one gets 200 miles south of the latitude of New York City, you strike warmer climate, where there is not so much enterprise, on the other hand above the 200 mile limit, directly above New York City, you strike the cold regions, where the enterprise is checked by severe cold climate.
There is one thing the United States lacks, however, which will probably come in due time, and that is a Mercantile Marine. There seems to be no reason why the enterprise of the Americans should not have their own flag upon the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean, and this must come in the future and undoubtedly will, as the United States cannot afford to confine themselves to the United States alone – they must reach out for foreign business.
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ALL OFFICES AND STORES, New York, June 6th, 1916.
There should be a big line of passenger and freight steamers to South America on the east also on the west. A big line of American Steamers from the Pacific Coast to the Orient and a big flotilla of passenger and freight steamers on the Atlantic, and then the supremacy of the United States will be a known fact throughout the world, but time will develop all this enterprise.
I will close this letter, trusting I have not tired you with details.
F. W. WOOLWORTH