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P.T. Barnum’s Forgotten Book “The Art of Getting Money” – Ch. 1

Last Friday, in the first of post of this series on The Art of Getting Money, I told you that there’s a movie coming out December 25, 2017, starring Hugh Jackman, called The Greatest Showman.

And I told you that it’s a musical about the life of P.T. Barnum.

I don’t know a lot about the movie yet, but it looks pretty good from what I’ve seen in the trailer…

The Greatest Showman – Official Trailer

P.T. Barnum’s Little-Known Book from 1880

So I told you that I thought it’d be cool to feature his little-known book The Art of Money Getting or Golden Rules for Making Money  (It’s in the public domain, so it’s ok for me to post it on this site)

Barnum is FALSELY known for saying, “There’s a sucker born every minute,” but he actually didn’t say that.

That’s why people might surprised to learn that this book contains some surprisingly practical and helpful advice on how everyday people can better manage their income and increase their wealth.

The book is 137 years old, but much of the advice he gives is still applicable to all of us today.

That’s why I’ve decided to post a new segment of the book once a week here on BayBusinessHelp.com.

Today you will be able to read chapter 1 about choosing your vocation (i.e. what you do for a living).

Reminder of 3 Things Before You Read the Book

1. DISCLAIMER:

I don’t agree with everything that P.T. Barnum did during his life.

I also don’t agree with every single thing he wrote in his book.

I don’t even agree that wealth is, or should be, the primary goal in life. (There are plenty things that are more important than wealth!)

But I DO believe that all of us can benefit from learning how to better handle the money (however small or great) that flows in and out of our hands.

And this book contains some advice that I think you will find both interesting and helpful for you when it comes to how to better handle your money.

2. MY ADVICE TO READERS:

Take the good advice and leave the bad!

3. THE ONLY CHANGES I’VE MADE:

The only changes I’ve made to the text are:

  • I’ve broke many of the paragraphs into smaller chunks of text to make it easier to read.
  • I’ve also bolded or italicized sections of the text to help them stand out to the reader.
  • I also occasionally include a modernized word to help the reader understand an old school word or phrase that Barnum uses.
  • And I’ve also added some headers to the text, made some quotes stand out, and bulleted some of his points to make sections stand out for the reader.

P.T. Barnum, the art of making money

— The Art of Money Getting: Chapter 1: DON’T MISTAKE YOUR VOCATION — 

The safest plan, and the one most sure of success for the young man starting in life, is to select the vocation which is most congenial to his tastes.

Parents and guardians are often quite too negligent in regard to this.

It very common for a father to say, for example: “I have five boys. I will make Billy a clergyman; John a lawyer; Tom a doctor, and Dick a farmer.”

He then goes into town and looks about to see what he will do with Sammy. He returns home and says “Sammy, I see watch-making is a nice genteel business; I think I will make you a goldsmith.”

He does this, regardless of Sam’s natural inclinations, or genius.

We are all, no doubt, born for a wise purpose. There is as much diversity in our brains as in our countenances. Some are born natural mechanics, while some have great aversion to machinery.

Let a dozen boys of ten years get together, and you will soon observe two or three are “whittling” out some ingenious device; working with locks or complicated machinery.

When they were but five years old, their father could find no toy to please them like a puzzle. They are natural mechanics; but the other eight or nine boys have different aptitudes.

I belong to the latter class; I never had the slightest love for mechanism; on the contrary, I have a sort of abhorrence for complicated machinery.

I never had ingenuity enough to whittle a cider tap so it would not leak. I never could make a pen that I could write with, or understand the principle of a steam engine.

If a man was to take such a boy as I was, and attempt to make a watchmaker of him, the boy might, after an apprenticeship of five or seven years, be able to take apart and put together a watch; but all through life he would be working up hill and seizing every excuse for leaving his work and idling away his time.

Watchmaking is repulsive to him.

No Success Without the Right Vocation

PT Barnum Quotes

“Unless a man enters upon the vocation intended for him by nature, and best suited to his peculiar genius, he cannot succeed.”

Unless a man enters upon the vocation intended for him by nature, and best suited to his peculiar genius, he cannot succeed.

I am glad to believe that the majority of persons do find their right vocation.

Yet we see many who have mistaken their calling, from the blacksmith up (or down) to the clergyman.

You will see, for instance, that extraordinary linguist the “learned blacksmith,” who ought to have been a teacher of languages; and you may have seen lawyers, doctors and clergymen who were better fitted by nature for the anvil or the lapstone.

— End of Chapter 1 — The Art of Money Getting 

These words might seem simple and they might sound like advice you’ve heard before.

But you need to remember that they were written in 1880.

And that means that you need to realize that Barnum isn’t the one who copied someone else, but maybe all of the people you’ve heard it from got it from the seed of thought he planted 137 years ago!

Coming Next: Chapter 2 – Select The Right Location

About Scott Aughtmon (1864 Articles)
I’m author of the book 51 Content Marketing Hacks. I am also a regular contributor to ContentMarketingInstitute.com and I am the person behind the popular infographic 21 Types of Content We Crave. I’m a business strategist, consultant, content creation specialist, and speaker. I’ve been studying effective marketing and business methods (both online and offline) since 1999. ===> If you would like to see ways that we could work together, then please click here to learn more.