19 July 2017 - LearnOutLoud

A Message to Garcia by Elbert Hubbard

A Message to Garcia is a best-selling inspirational essay by Elbert Hubbard, originally published in 1899. Until the middle of the 20th century, the essay became ...

a message to Garcia by Elbert Hubbard if

you work for a man in heaven's name work for him if he pays wages that supply you your bread and butter work for him speak well of him think well of him and stand by him and stand by the institution he represents I think if I worked for a man I would work for him I would not work for him a part of his time but all of his time I would give an undivided service or none if put to the pinch an ounce of loyalty is worth a pound of cleverness if you must vilify condemn and eternally disparage why resign your position and when you are outside damn to your heart's content but I pray you so long as you are a part of an institution do not condemn it not that you will injure the institution not that but when you disparage the concern of which you are a part you disparage yourself and don't forget I forgot won't do in business this literary trifle a message to Garcia was written one evening after supper in a single hour it was on the 22nd to February 1899 Washington's birthday and we were just going to press with the March Philistine the thing leaped top from my heart written after a trying day when I had been endeavoring to train

some rather delinquent villagers to observe a comatose state and get radioactive the immediate suggestion though came from a little argument over the teacups when my boy Bert suggested that Rowan was the real hero of the Cuban war Rowan had gone alone and done the thing carried the message to Garcia it came to me like a flash yes the boy is right the hero is the man who does his work who carries the message to Garcia I got up from the table and wrote a message to Garcia I thought so little of it that we ran it in the magazine without a heading the edition went out and soon orders began to come for extra copies of the March Philistine a dozen fifty a hundred and when the American news company ordered a thousand I asked one of my helpers which article it was that had stirred up the cosmic dust it's the stuff about Garcia he said the next day a telegram came from George H Daniels of the New York Central Railroad thus give price on 100,000 Rouen articles in pamphlet form Empire State Express advertisement on back also how soon can

ship I replied giving price and stated we could supply the pamphlets in two years our facilities were small and two hundred thousand booklets looked like an awful undertaking the result was that I gave mr. Daniels permission to reprint the article in his own way he issued it in booklet form in editions of half a million two or three of these half-million Lots were sent out by mr. Daniels and in addition the article was reprinted in over 200 magazines and newspapers it had been translated into all written languages at the time mr. Daniels was distributing the message to Garcia Prince Ellicott director of Russian Railways was in this country he was the guest of the New York Central and made a tour of the country under the personal direction of mr. Daniels the print saw the little book and was interested in it more because mr. Daniels was putting it out in such big numbers probably than otherwise in any event when he got home he had the matter translated into Russian and a copy of the booklet given to every railroad employee in Russia other countries then took it up and from Russia passed into Germany France Spain

Turkey Hindustan and China during the war between Russia and Japan every Russian soldier who went to the front was given a copy of the message to Garcia the Japanese finding the booklets in possession of the Russian prisoners concluded that it must be a good thing and accordingly translated it into Japanese and on an order of The Mikado a copy was given to every man in the employ of the Japanese government soldier or civilian over 40 million copies of a message to Garcia have been printed this is said to be a larger circulation than any other literary venture has ever attained during the lifetime of the author in all history thanks to a series of Lucky accidents as the cold of snow in the time of harvest so is a faithful messenger to them that sent him for he refreshes the soul of his master's proverbs 2513 in all this cuban business there is one man stands out on the horizon of my memory like Mars at perihelion when war broke out between Spain and the United States it was very necessary to communicate quickly with the leader of the insurgents Garcia was

somewhere in the mountain fastness of Cuba no one knew where no mail or telegraph message could reach him the President must secure his cooperation and quickly what to do someone said to the president there is a fellow by the name of Rowland will find Garcia for you if anybody can Rowan was sent for and was given a letter to be delivered to Garcia how the fellow by the name of Rowan took the letter sealed it up in an oilskin pouch strapped it over his heart in four days landed by night off the coast of Cuba from an open boat disappeared into the jungle and in three weeks came out on the other side of the island having traversed a hostile country on foot and delivered his letter to Garcia are things I have no special desire now to tell in detail the point that I wish to make is this McKinley gave Rowan a letter to be delivered to Garcia Rowan took the letter and did not ask where is he at by the eternal there is a man whose form should be cast in deathless bronze and the statue placed in every College of the land it is not book-learning young men need nor instruction about this net but a

stiffening of the vertebrae which will cause them to be loyal to a trust to act promptly concentrate their energies do the thing carry a message to Garcia general Garcia is dead now but there are other Garcia's no man who has endeavored to carry out an enterprise where many hands were needed but has been well nigh appalled at times by the imbecility of the average man the inability or unwillingness to concentrate on a thing and do it slipshod assistance foolish inattention doughty indifference and half-hearted work seemed the rule and no man succeeds unless by hook or crook or threat he forces or bribes other men to assist him or mayhap God and His goodness performs a miracle and sends him an angel of light for an assistant you reader put this matter to a test you're sitting now in your office 6 clerks are within call summon anyone and make this request please look in the encyclopedia and make a brief memorandum for me concerning the life of Corey G Oh will the clerk quietly say yes sir and go do the task on your life he will not he will look at you out of the fishy eye and ask one or more of the following questions who is

he which encyclopedia where is the encyclopedia was I hired for that don't you mean Bismarck what's the matter with Charlie doing it is he dead is there any hurry shall I bring you the book and let you look it up yourself what do you want to know for and I will lay you ten to one that after you've answered the questions and explained how to find the information and why you want it the clerk will go off and get one of the other clerks to help them try to find Garcia and then come back and tell you there's no such man of course I may lose my bet but according to the law of average I will not now if you are wise you will not bother to explain to your assistant that courage EO is indexed under the sea's not in the case that you will smile very sweetly and say never mind and go look it up yourself and this incapacity for independent action this moral stupidity this infirmity of the way all this unwillingness to cheerfully catch hold and lift these are the things that put pure socialism so far into the future if men will not act for themselves what will they do when the

benefit of their effort is for all a first mate with nodded club seems necessary and the dread of getting the bounce Saturday night holds many a worker to his place advertised for a stenographer and nine out of ten who apply can either spell nor punctuate and do not think it necessary to can such a one write a letter to Garcia you see that bookkeeper to the foremen to me in a large factory yes what about him well he's a fine accountant but if I'd send him up town on an errand he might accomplish the errand all right and on the other hand might stop at four saloons on the way and when he got to Main Street would forget what he'd been sent for can such a man be entrusted to carry a message to Garcia we have recently been hearing much maudlin sympathy expressed for the downtrodden denizens of the sweatshop and the homeless wanderer searching for honest employment and with it all often go many hard words for the men in power nothing is said about the employer who grows old before his time in a vain attempt to get frowsy ne'er-do-wells to do intelligent work and his long patience driving with help that does nothing but loaf when his

back is turned in every store in factory there is a constant weeding out process going on the employer is continually sending away help that have shown their incapacity to further the interests of the business and others are being taken on no matter how good times are this sorting continues only if times are hard and work is scarce the sorting is done finer but out and forever out the incompetent and unworthy go it is the survival of the fittest self-interest prompts every employer to keep the best those who can carry a message to Garcia I know one man of really brilliant parts who has not the ability to manage a business of his own and yet who is absolutely worthless to any one else because he carries with him constantly the insane suspicion that his employer is oppressing or intending to oppress him he cannot give orders and he will not receive them should a message be given him to take to Garcia his answer would probably be take it yourself tonight this man walks the streets looking for work the wind whistling through his threadbare coat no one who knows him dare employ him for he

is a regular firebrand of discontent he is impervious to reason and the only thing that can impress him is the toe of a thick-soled number nine boot of course I know that one so morally deformed is no less to be pitied than a physical cripple but in our pitying let us drop a tear to for the men who are striving to carry on a great enterprise whose working hours are not limited by the whistle and whose hair is fast turning white through the struggle to hold in line Doughty indifference slipshod and facility and the heartless ingratitude which but for their enterprise would be both hungry and homeless have I put the matter too strongly possibly I have but when all the world has gone a slumming I wish to speak a word of sympathy for the man who succeeds the man who against great odds has directed the efforts of others and having succeeded finds there's nothing in it nothing but bare board and clothes I have carried a dinner pail and worked for days wages and I've also been an employer of Labor and I know there is something to be said on both sides there is no excellence per se in poverty rags are no recommendation and all employers

and not rapacious and high-handed any more than all poor men are virtuous my heart goes out to the man who does his work when the boss is away as well as when he is at home and the man who when given a letter for Garcia quietly takes the missive without asking any idiotic questions and with no lurking intention of checking it into the nearest sewer or of doing aught else but deliver it never gets laid off nor has to go on a strike for higher wages civilization is one long anxious search for just such individuals anything such a man asks shall be granted his kind is so rare that no employer can afford to let him go he's wanted in every city town and village in every office shop store and Factory the world cries out for such he is needed and needed badly the man who can carry a message to Garcia to act in absolute freedom and at the same time know that responsibility is the price of freedom is salvation life and abundance the supreme prayer of my heart is not to be learned or good but to be radiant I desire to radiate health cheerfulness sincerity calm courage and goodwill I wish to be simple honest natural Frank

clean and mind and clean and body unaffected ready to say I do not know if so it'd be to meet all men on an absolute equality to face any obstacle and meet every difficulty unafraid and unabashed I wish others to live their lives - up to their highest fullest and best to that end I pray that I may never meddle dictate interfere give advice that is not wanted nor assist when my services are not needed if I can help people I'll do it by giving them a chance to help themselves and if I can uplift or inspire let it be by example inference and suggestion rather than by injunction and dictation that is to say I desire to be radiant to radiate life

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