First Printed Draft

We wish to thank "Barefoot Bill" for the following historic information!

This is the first printed draft of the Big Book, which was mailed to various individuals for their comments and also as a fund raising tool.  It is unclear at what time during the writing of the Big Book "Bill's Story" became chapter one. The language in this draft is in many ways different than the final manuscript. This illustrates the process of having many individuals add their opinions to the contents.

[archivist's note: All pages are 8.5" by 14"; marked text (underlined) means more than one letter was typed over another, or text was crossed out with x though still readable; marked text in red accurately reflects typos in the manuscript or strange language, marked text in brown accurately reflects hard to read areas in the manuscript] 

[handwriting: "Wilson's original story"] 

Page 1. 
1. When I was about ten years old my Father and mother 
2. agreed to disagree and I went to live with my Grandfather, 
3. and Grandmother. He was a retired farmer and lumberman. As I 
4. see him in retrospect, he was a very remarkable man After he 
5. returned from Civil War he settled in the small Vermont 
6. town where I was later to grow up. His original capital con- 
7. sisted of a small, unimproved hillside farm, as sweet and 
8. willing helpmeet, and enormous determination to succeed in 
9. whatever he attempted. He was a man of high native intelli- 
10. gence, a voracious reader, though little educated in the 
11. school sense of the word. There was plenty of financial 
12. sense in his make-up and he was a man of real vision. Under 
13. other conditions he might well have become master of an in- 
14. dustry or railroad empire. 
15. My Grandmother brought into the world three children, 
16. one of whom was my Mother. I can still seem to hear her tell- 
17. ing of the struggle of those early days. Such matters as 
18. cooking for twenty woodchoppers, looking after the diary, 
19. making most of the clothes for the family, long winter rides 
20. at twenty below zero to fetch my Grandfather home over snow- 
21. bound roads, seeing him of long before daylight that he and 
22. the choppers might have their access thawed out so that work 
23. might begin on the mountaintop at daylight- this is the thought 
24. of tradition upon which they nourished me. They finally 
25. achieved their competence and retired late in life to enjoy 
26. a well earned rest and the respect and affection of their 

Page 2. 
27. neighbors. They were the sort of people,I see now, who 
28. really made America. 
29. But I had other ideas - much bigger and better ones 
30. so I thought. I was to be of the war generation which dis- 
31. ipated the homely virtues, the hard earned savings, the 
32. pioneering tradition, and the incredible stamina of your parents 
parents
33. Grandfather and mine. 
34. I too was ambitious - very ambitious, but very un- 
35. disciplined. Inspite of everyone's effort to correct that con- 
36. dition. I had a genius for evading, postponing or shirking 
37. those things which I did not like to do, but when thoroughly 
38. interested, everything I had was thrown into the persuit of 
39. my objective. My will to succeed at special undertakings on 
40. which my heart were set was very great. There was a persis- 
41. tence, a patience, and a dogged obstinacy, that drove me on. 
42. My Grandfather used to love to argue with me with the object 
43. of convincing me of the impossibility of some venture or 
44. another in order to enjoy watching me'tilt at the windmill' 
45. he had erected. One day he said to me - I have just been 
46. reading that no one in the world byt an Australian can make 
47. and throw a boomerang. This spark struck tinder and every- 
48. thing and every activity was instantly laid aside until it 
49. could be demonstrated that he was mistaken. The woodbox was 
50. not filled, no school work was done, nor could I hardly be 
51. persuaded to eat or to go to bed. After a month or more of 
52. this thing a boomerang was constructed which I threw around 

Page 3. 
53. the church steeple. On its return trip it went into trans- 
54. ports of joy because it all but decapitated my Grandfather 
55. who stood near me. 
56. I presently left the country school and fared forth 
57. into the great world I had read about in books. My first 
58. journey took me only five miles to an adjoining town where I 
59. commenced to attend a seminary well known in our section of 
60. the state. Here competition was much more severe and I was 
61. challenged on all sides to do the seemingly impossible. There 
62. was the matter of athletics and I was soon burning with the 
63. ambition to become a great baseball player. This was pretty 
64. discouraging to begin with, as I was tall for my age, quite 
65. awkward, and not very fast on my feed, but I literally worked 
66. at it while others slept or otherwise amused themselves and 
67. in my second year became captain of the team, whereupon my 
68. interest began to languish, for by that time someone had told 
69. me I had no ear for music, which I have since discovered is 
70. almost true. Despite obstacles I managed to appear in a few 
71. song recitals whereupon my interest in singing disappeared 
72. and I got terribly serious about learning to play the violin. 
73. This grew into a real obsession and to the consternation of 
74. my teachers, grew in the last year and everyone else it be- 
75. came the immediate cause of my failing to graduate. This was 
76. my first great catastrophe. By this time I had become Presi- 
77. dent of the class which only made matters worse. As in every 
78. thing else I had even very good in certain courses of study 

Page 4. 
79. which took my fancy, and with others just the opposite, 
80. indolence and indifference, being the rule, So it was that 
81. the legend of infallibility I had built up around myself 
82. collapsed. 
83. In the ensuing summer I was obliged for the first 
84. time to really address myself to the distasteful task of re- 
85. pairing my failure. Although my diploma was now in hand, it 
86. was by no means clear to my grandparents and parents what 
87. theyhad better next try to do with me. Because of my interest 
88. in scientific matters and the liking I had to fussing with 
89. gadgets and chemicals, it had been assumed that I was to be 
90. an engineer, and my own learnings were towards the electrical 
91. branch of the profession. So I went to Boston and took the 
92. entrance examination to one of the leading technical schools 
93. in this country. For obvious reasons I failed utterly. It 
94. was a rather heartbreaking matter for those interested in me 
95. and it gave my self-sufficiency another severe deflation. 
96. Finally an entrance was effected at an excellent 
97. military college where it was hoped I would really be disci- 
98. plined. I attended the University for almost three years 
99. and would have certainly failed to graduate or come anywhere 
100. near qualifying as an engineer, because of my laziness and 
101. weakness mathematics. Particularly Calculus, in this 
102. subject a great number of formulas have to be learned and 
103. the application practiced. I remembered that I absolutely 
104. refused to learn any of them or do any of the work whatever 

Page 5. 
105. until the general principles underlying the subject had 
106. been made clear to me. The instructor was very patient, 
107. but finally through up his hands in disgust as I began to 
108. argue with him and to hint pretty strongly that perhaps he 
109. didn't quite understand them himself. So I commenced an in- 
110. vestigation of the principles underlying Calculus in the 
111. school library and learned something of the conceptions of 
112. the great minds of Leibneitz and Newton whose genius had 
113. made possible this useful and novel mathematical device. 
114. Thus armed I mastered the first problem in the textbook and 
115. commenced a fresh controversy with my teacher, who angrily, 
116. but quite properly, gave me a zero for the course. Fortunate- 
117. ly for my future at the University, I soon enabled to 
118. leave the place gracefully, even heroically, for the 
119. United States of America had gone to war. 
120. Being students of a military academy school 
121. the student boy almost to a man bolted for the first 
122. officers training camp at Plattsburgh. Though a bit under 
123. age, I received a commission a second lieutenant and got 
124. myself assigned to the heavy artillery. Of this I was 
125. secretly ashamed, for when the excitement of the day had 
126. subsided and I lay in my bunk, I had to confess I did not 
127. want to be killed. This bothered me terribly this suspicion 
128. that I might be coward after all. I could not reconcile 
129. it with the truly exalted mood of patriotism and idealism 
130. which possessed me when I hadn't time t o think. It was 

Page 6. 
131. very very damaging to my pride, though most of this damage 
132. was repaired later on when I got under fire and discovered 
133. I was just like other people, scared to death, but willing 
134. to face the music. 
135. After graduating from an army artillery school, 
136. I was sent to a post which was situated near a famous old 
137. town on the New England coast ones famous for its deepxsea 
138. whaling, trading and Yankee seagoing tradition. Here I made 
139. two decisions. The first one, and the best, to marry. Th 
140. second decision was most emphatically the worst I ever mad took up
with 
took up with
141. I made the acquaintance of John Barleycorn and decided that 
142. I liked it him. 
143. My wife to be 
144. Here I set out upon two paths and little did I realize 
145. how much they were diverge. In short I got married 
146. and at about the same time, took my first drink and decided 
147. that I liked it. But for undying loyalty of my wife 
148. and her faith through the years, I should not be alive today. 
149. She was a city bred person and represented a background and 
150. way of life for which I had secretly longed. Her family 
151. spent long summers in our little town. All of them were 
152. highly regarded by the natives. This was most complimentary 
153. for among the countrymen there existed strong and often un- 
154. reasonable prejudices against city folks. For the most 
155. part, I felt differently. Most city people I knew had money, 
156. assurance, and what then seemed to me great sophistication. 

Page 7. 
157. and Most of them had family trees. There were servants, 
158. fine houses, gay dinners,and all of the other things with 
159. which I was wont to associate power and distinction. All 
160. of them, quite unconsciously I am sure, could make me feel 
161. very inadequate and ill at ease. I began to feel woefully 
162. lacking in the matter of poise and polish and worldly know- 
163. ledge. Though very proud of the traditions of my own people, 
164. I sometimes indulged in the envious wish that I had been 
165. born under other circumstances and with some of these advan- 
166. tages. Since then immemorial I suppose the country boyshav 
167. thought and felt as I did have thought and felt as I did. 
168. These feelings of inferiority are I suspect responsible for 
169. the enormous determination many of them have felt to go out 
170. to the cities in quest of what seemed to them like true 
171. success. Though seldom revealed, these were the sentiments 
172. that drove me on from this point. 
173. The war fever ran high in the city near my 
174. post and I soon discovered that young officers were in 
175. great demand at the dinner tables of the first citizens of 
176. the place. Social differences were layed aside and every- 
177. thing was done to make us feel comfortable, happy, and heroic. 
178. A great many things conspired to make me feel that I was im- 
179. portant. I discovered that I had a somewhat unusual power 
180. over men on the drill field and in the barracks. I was about 
181. to fight to save the world for democracy. People whose 
182. station In life I had envied were receiving me as an equal. 

Page 8. 
183. My marriage with a girl who represented all of the best 
184. things the city had to offer,was close at hand, and last, 
185. but not least, I had discovered John Barleycorn, Love, ad- 
186. venture, war, applause of the crowd, moments sublime and 
187. hilarious with intervals hilarious - I was a part of life 
188. at last, and very happy. 
189. The warnings of my people, the contempt 
190. which I had felt for those who drank, were put aside with 
191. surprising alacrity as I discovered what the Bronx cocktail 
192. could really do for a fellow. My imagination soared - my 
193. tongue loosened at last - wonderful vistas opened on all 
194. sides, but best of all my self consciousness - my gaucheries 
195. and my ineptitudes disappeared into thin air. I seemed to 
196. the life of the party. To the dismay of my bride I used to 
197. get pretty drunk when I tried to compete with more ex- 
198. perienced drinkers, but I argued, what did it matter, for 
199. so did everyone else at sometime before daylight. Then 
200. came the day of parting,of a fond leave taking of my brave 
In 
201. wife. Amid that strange atmosphere which was the mixture 
202. of sadness, high purpose, the feeling of elation that pre- 
203. cedes an adventure of the first magnitude. Thus many of us 
204. sailed for'over there' and none of us knew if we shouldre- 
205. turn. For a time, loneliness possessed me, but my new 
206. friend Barleycorn always took care of that. I had, I thought 
207. discovered a missing link in the chain of things that make 
208. life worth while. 

Page 9. 
209. Then w were in dear old England, soon to cross 
210. the channel to the great unknown. I stood in Winchester 
211. Cathedral the day before crossing hand in hand with head 
212. bowed, for something had touched me then I had never felt 
213. before. I had been wondering, in a rare moment of sober 
214. reflection, what sense there could be to killing and 
215. carnage of which I was soon to become an enthusiastic part. 
216. Where could the Deity be - could there be such a thing - 
217. Where now was the God of the preachers, the thought of which 
218. used to make me so uncomfortable when they talked about him. 
219. Here I stood on the abyss edge of the abyss into which 
220. thousands were falling that very day. A feeling of despair 
221. settled down on me - where was He - why did he not come- 
222. and suddenly in that moment of darkness, He was there. I 
223. felt an all enveloping, comforting , powerful presence. 
224. Tears stood in my eyes, and as I looked about, I saw on the 
225. faces of others nearby, that they too had glimpsed the great 
226. reality. Much moved, I walked out into the Cathedral yard, 
227. where I read the following inscription on a tombstone. 'Here 
228. lies a Hampshire Grenadier, Who caught his death drinking 
229. small good beer - A good soldier is ne'er forgot, whether 

230. he dieth by musket or by pot.' The squadron of bombers 
231. swept overhead in the bright sunlight,and I cried to myself 
232. 'Here's to adventure' and the feeling of being in the great 
233. presence disappeared, never to return for many years. 
234. -- 

Page 10. 

235. I was twenty two, and a grisled veteran of foreign wars. 
236. I felt a tremendous assurance about my future, for was not 
237. I the only officer of my regiment save one, who had re- 
238. ceived a token of appreciation from the men. This quality 
239. of leadership, I fancyed, would soon place me at the head 
240. of some great commercial organization which I would manage 
241. with the same constant skill that the pipe organist does 
242. his stops and keys. 
243. The triumphant home coming was short lived. The 
244. best that could be done was to secure a bookkeeping job in 
245. the insurance department of the one of the large railroads. 
246. I proved to be a wretched and rebellious bookkeeper and could 
247. not stand criticism, nor was I much reconciled to my salary, 
248. which was only half the pay I had received in the army. When 
249. I started to work the railroads were under control of the 
250. government. As soon as they were returned my road was re-
251. turned to its stockholders, I was promptly let out because I
252. could not compete with the other clerks in my office. I was
253. so angry and humiliated at this reverse that I nearly became
254. a socialist to register my defiance of the powers that be, 
255. which was going pretty far for a Vermonter. 
256. To my mortification, my wife went out and got a 
257. position which brought in much more than mine had. Being ab- 
258. surdly sensitive, I imagined that herrelatives an my newly 
259. made city acquaintances were snickering a bit at my predica- 
260. ment. 

Page 11. 
261. Unwillingly, I had to admit, that I was not 
262. really trained to hold even a mediocre position. Though 
263. I said little, the old driving, obstinate determination to 
264. show my mettle asserted itself. Somehow, I would show these 
265. scoffers. To complete my engineering seemed out of the ques- 
of 
266. tion, partly because/my distaste for mathematics, My only 
267. other assets were my war experiences and a huge amount of 
268. ill-assorted reading. The study of law suggested itself,and 
269. I commenced a three year night course with enthusiasm. Mean- 
270. while, employment showed up and I became a criminal investi- 
271. gator for a Surety Company, earning almost as much money as 
272. my wife, who spiritedly backed the new undertaking. My day- 
273. time employment took me about Wall Street and little by 
274. little, I became interested in what I saw going on there. 
275. I began to wonder why a few seemed to be rich and famous 
276. while the rank and file apparently lost money. I began to 
277. study economics and business. 
278. Somewhat to the dismay of our friends, we moved 
279. to very modest quarters where we could save money. When we 
280. had accumulated $1,000.00, most of it was placed in utility 
281. stocks, which were then cheap and unpopular. In a small way, 
282. I began to be successful in speculation. I was intrigued by 
283. the romance of business, industrial and financial leaders be- 
284. came my heroes. I read every scrap of financial history I 
285. could lay hold of. Here I thought was the road to power. 
286. Like the boomerang,episode, I could think of nothing else. 

Page 12. 
287. How little did I see that I was fashioning a weapon that 
288. would one day return and cut me to ribbons. 
289. As so many of my heroes commenced as lawyers, 
290. I persisted in the course, thinking it would prove useful. 
291. I also read many success books and did a lot of things that 
292. Horatio Algers's boy heroes were supposed to have done. 
293. Characteristically enough I nearly failed my 
294. law course as I appeared at one of the final examinations 
295. too drunk to think or write. My drinking had not become 
296. continuous at this time, though occasional embarrassing in- 
297. cidents might have suggested that it was getting real hold. 
298. Neither my wife or I had much time for social engagements 
299. and in any event we soon became unpopular as I always got 
300. tight and boasted disagreeably of my plans and my future. 
301. She was becoming very much concerned and fre- 
302. quently we had long talks about the matter. I waived her ob- 
303. jections aside by pointing out that red blooded men almost 
304. always drank and that men of genius frequently conceived 
305. their vast projects while pleasantly intoxicated, adding for 
306. good measure, that the best and most majestic contructions of 
307. philosophical thought were probably so derived. 
308. By the time my law studies were finished, 
309. I was quite sure I did not want to become a lawyer. I know 
310. that somehow I was going to be a part of that then alluring 
311. maelstrom which people call Wall Street. How to get into 
312. business there was the question. When I proposed going out 

Page 13. 
313. on the road to investigate properties, my broker friends 
314. laughed at me. They did not need such a service and pointed 
315. out that I had no experience. I reasoned that I was partly
qualified 
316. /as an engineer and as a lawyer, and that practically speaking 
317. I had acquired very valuable experience as a criminal investi- 
318. gator. I felt certain that these assets could not be capita- 
319. lized. I was sure that people lost money in securities be- 
320. cause they did not know enough about managements, properties, 
321. markets, and ideas at work in a given situation. 
322. Since no one would hire me and remembering that 
323. we now had a few thousand dollars, my wife and I conceived 
324. the hare-brained scheme of going out and doing some of this 
325. work at our own expense, so we each gave up our employment 
326. and set off in a motorcycle and side car, which was loaded 
327. down with a tent, blankets, change of clothes and three 
328. huge volumes of a well known financial reference service. 
329. Some of our friends thought a lunacy commission should be ap- 
330. pointed and I sometimes think they were right. Our first ex- 
331. ploit was fantastic. Among other things, we owned two shares 
332. of General Electric, then selling at about $300.00 a share. 
333. Everyone thought it was too high, but I stoutly maintained 
334. that it would someday sell for five or ten times that figure. 
335. So what could be more logical than to proceed to the main of- 
336. fice of the company in New York and investigate it. Naive 
337. wasn't it? The plan was to interview ohe officials and get 
338. employment there if possible. We drew seventy five dollars 

Page 14. 
339. from our savings as working capital, vowing never to draw 
340. another cent. We arrived at Schenectady, I did talk with 
341. some of the people of the to company and became wildly en- 
342. thusiastic over GE. My attention was drawn to the radio end 
343. of the business and by a strange piece of luck, I learned 
344. much of what the company thought about its future. I was 
345. then able to put a fairly intelligent projection of the 
346. coming radio boom on paper, which I sent to one of my brokers 
347. in town. To replenish our working capital, my wife and I 
348. worked on a farm nearby for two months, she in the kitchen, 
349. and I in the haystack. It was the last honest manual work 
350. that I did for many years. 
351. The cement industry then caught my fancy and we 
352. soon found ourselves looking at a property in the Lehigh 
353. district of Eastern Pennsylvania. An unusual speculative 
354. situation existed which I went to New York and described to 
355. one of my broker friend . This time I drew blood in the 
356. shape of an option on hundred shares of stock which 
357. promptly commenced to soar. Securing a few hundred dollars 
358. advance on this deal, we were freed of the necessity of work, 
359. and during the coming year following year, we travelled all 
360. over the southeast part of the United States, taking in power 
361. projects, an aluminum plant, the Florida boom, the Birmingham 
362. steel district, Muscle Shoals, and what not. By this time 
363. my friends in New York thought it would pay them to really 
364. hire me. At last I had a job in Wall Street. Moreover, I 

Page 15. 
365. had the use of twenty thousand dollars of their money. 
366. For some years the fates tossed horseshoes and golden bricks 
367. into my lap and I made much more money than was good for me. 
368. It was too easy. 
take 
369. By this time drinking had gotten to be a very 
370. important and exhilirating place in my life. What was a 
371. few hundred dollars when you considered it in terms of ex- 
372. citement and important talk in the gilded palaces of jazz up- 
373. town. My natural conservativeness was swept away and I began 
374. to play for heavy stakes. Another legend of infallability 
375. commenced to grow up around me and I began to have what is 
376. called in Wall Street a following which amounted to many 
377. paper millions of dollars. I had arrived, so let the scoffers 
378. scoff and be damned, but of course, they didn't, and I made 
379. a host of fair weather friends. I began to reach for more 
380. power attempting to force myself onto the directorates of 
381. corporations in which I controlled blocks of stock. 
382. By this time, my drinking hsd assumed 
383. serious proportions. The remonstrances of my associates ter- 
384. minated in a bitter row, and I became a lone wolf. Though I 
385. managed to avoid serious scrapes and partly out of loyalty, 
386. extreme drunkenness, I had not become involved with the fair 
it 
387. sex, there were many unhappy scenes in my apartment, which 
388. was a large one, as I had hired two, and had gotten the real 
389. estate people to knock out the walls between them. 

Page 16. 
390. In the spring of 1929 caught the golf fever. This 
391. illness was about the worst yet. I had thought golf was 
392. pretty tepid sport, but I noticed some of my pretty 
393. important friends thought it was a real game and it 
394. presented an excuse for drinking by day as well as by 
395. night. Moreover some one had casually said, they didn't think 
396. I would ver play a good game. This was a spark in a 
397. powder magazine, so my wife and I were instantly off to the 
398. country she to watch while I caught up with Walter Hagen. 
399. Then too it was a fine chance to flaunt my money around 
400. the old home town. And to carom lightly around the exclusive 
401. course, whose selct city membership had inspired so much 
402. awe in me as a boy. So Wall Street was lightly tossed 
403. aside while I acquired drank vast quantities of gin and 
404. acquired the impeccable coat of tan, one sees on the faces 
405. of the well to do. The local banker watched me with an 
406. amused skepticism as I whirled good fat checks in and out 
407. of his bank. 
408. IN October 1929 the whirling movement in my bank 
409. account ceased abruptly, and I commenced to whirl myself. 
410. Then I felt like Stephen Leacock's horseman, it seemed as rapidly 
411. though I were galloping/in all directions at once, for the 
412. great panic was on. First to Montreal, then to New York, to 
413. rally my following in stocks sorely needing support. A few 
414. bold spirits rushed into the breach, but it was of no use. I 
415. shed my own wings as the moth who gets to near to the candle 
416. flame. After one of those days of shrieking inferno on the 
417. stock exchange floor with no information available, I lurched 
from 
418. drunkenly anthe hotel bar to an adjoining brokerage office 
419. there at about 8 oclock in the evening I feverishly searched 
420. a huge pile of ticker tape and tore of about an inch of it. 
421. It bore the inscription P.F.K.32.. The stock had opened at 
422. 52 that morning. I had controlled over one hundred thousand 
423. shares of it, and had a sizable block myself. I knew that I 
424. was finished, and so were a lot of my friends. 
425. I went back into the bar and after a few 
426. drinks, my composure returned. People were beginning to jump 
427. from every story of that great Tower of Babel. That was high 
428. 

Page 17. 
429. that I was not so weak. I realized that I had been care- 
430. less, especially with other peoples money. I had not paid 
431. attention to business and I deserved to be hurt. After a few 
432. some more whiskey, my confidence returned again, and with it 
433. an almost terrifying determination to somehow capitalize this 
434. mess and pay everybody off. I reflected that it was just 
435. another worthwhile lesson and that there were a lot of 
436. reasons why people lost money in Wall Street that I had not 
437. thought of before. 
438. My wife took it all like the great person she is. 
439. I think she rather welcomed it the situation thinking it 
440. might bring me to my senses. Next morning, I woke early, 
441. shaking badly from excitement and a terrific hangover. A 
442. half bottle of Gin quickly took care of that momentary weak- 
as
443. ness and I soon as business places were open I called a 
444. friend in Montreal and said -"Well Dick, they have nailed my 
445. hide to the barn door" - said he "The hell they have, come 
we 
446. on up". That is all he said and up W went. 
447. I shall never forget the kindness and generosity 
448. of this friend. Moreover I must still have carried one 
449. horseshoe with me, for by the spring of 1930, we were living 
450. in our accustomed style and I had a very comfortable credit 
451. balance on the very security in which I had taken the 
452. heaviest licking, with plenty of champaigne and sound 
453. canadian whiskey, I began to feel like Napolean returning 
454. Melba. Infallible again. No St Helena for me. Accustomed 
455. as they were to the ravages of fire water in Canada in those 
456. days, I soon began to outdistance most of my countrymen both 
457. as a serious and a frivolous drinker. 
458. Then the depression bore down in earnest.and 
459.I, having become worse than useless, had to be reluctantly 
459. Though I had become manager of one of the departments of my 
460. friend's business, my drinking and nonchalant cocksureness, 
461. had rendered me worse than useless, so he reluctantly let me 
462. go. We were stony broke again, and even our furniture 
463. looked like it was gone, for I could not even pay next months 
464. rent on our swank apartment. 
465. We wonder to this day how we ever got out of 
466. Montreal. But we did, and then I had to eat humble pie. We 

Page 18. 
467. went to live with my Father and Mother-in-law where we 
468. happily found never failing help and sympathy. I got a 
469. job at what seemed to be a mere pittance of one hundred 
470. dollars a week, but a brawl with a taxi driver , who got 
471. very badly hurt, put an end to that . Mercifully, no one 
472. knew it, but I was not to have steady employment for five 
473. years, nor was I to draw a sober breath if I could help it. 
474. Great was my humiliation when my poor wife was 
475. obliged to go to work in a department store, coming home ex- 
476. hausted night after night to find me drunk again. I became 
477. a hanger-on at brokerage shops, but was less and less wel- 
478. come as my drinking increased. Even then opportunities to 
479. make money pursued me, but I passed up the best of them by 
480. getting drunk at exactly the wrong time. Liquor had ceased 
481. to be a luxury; It had become a necessity. What few 
482. dollars I did make were devoted to keeping my credit good at 
483. the bars. To keep out of the hands of the police and for 
484. reasons of economy, I began to buy bathtub gin, usually two 
485. bottles a day, and sometimes three if I did a real workman- 
486. like job. This went on endlessly and I presently began to 
487. awake real early in the morning shaking violently. Nothing 
488. would seem to stop it but a water tumbler full of raw liquor. 
489. If I could steal out of the house and get five or six 
490. glasses of beer, I could sometimes eat a little breakfast. 
491. Curiously enough I still thought I could control the situation 
the 
492. and there were periods of sobriety which would revive a flag- 
493. ging hope of my wife and her parents. But as time wore on 
494. matters got worse. My mother-inlaw died and my wife's health 
495. became poor, as did that of my Father-in-law. The house in 
496. which we lived was taken over by the mortgage holder. Still 
497. I persisted and still I fancied that fortune would again shine 
498. upon me. As late 1932 I engaged the confidence of a man 
499. who had friends with money. In the spring and summer of that 
500. year we raised one hundred thousand dollars to buy securities 
501. at what proved to be an all time low point in the New York 
502. stock exchange. I was to participate generously in the 
503. profits, and sensed that a great opportunitywas at hand. So 
504. ???? 

Page 19. 
505. prodigous bender a few days before the deal was to be 
506. closed. 
507. In a measure thsi did bring me to senses. 
508. Many times before I had promised my wife that I had stopped 
509. forever. I had written her sweet notes and had inscribed 
510. the fly leaves of all the bibles in the house with to that 
511. effect. Not that the bible meant so much, but after all 
512. it was the book you put your hand on when you were sworn in 
513. at court. I now see, however, that I had no sustained de- 
514. sire to stop drinking until this last debacle. It was only 
515. then that I realized it must stop and forever. I had come 
516. to fully appreciate that once the first drink was taken, 
517. there was no control Why then take this one? That was it- 
518. never was alcohol to cross my lips again in any form. There 
519. was, I thought, absolute finality in this decision. I had 
520. been very wrong, I was utterly miserable and almost ruined. 
521. This decision brought a great sense of relief, for I knew 
522. that I really wanted to stop. It would not be easy, I was 
523. sure of that, for I had begun to sense the power and cunning 
524. of my master - John Barleycorn. The old fierce determination 
525. to win out settled down on me - nothing, I still thought, 
526. could overcome that aroused as it was. Again I dreamed 
527. of my wife smiling happily, as I went out to slay the dragon. 
528. I would resume my place in the business world and recapture 
529. the lost regard of my fiends and associates. It would take 
530. a long time, but I could be patient. The picture of myself 
531. as a reformed drunkard rising to fresh heights of achive- 
532. ment, quite carried me away with happy enthusiasm. My wife 
533. caught the spirit for she saw at last that I really meant 
534. business. 
535. But in a short while I came in drunk. I could 
536. give no real explanation for it. The thought of my new re- 
537. solve had scarcely occurred to me as I began. There had 
538. been no fight - someone had offered me a drink, and I had 
539. taken it, casually, remarking to myself that one or two 
540. would not harm a man of my capacity. What had become of my 
541. giant determination? How about all of that self searching I 
542. had done? Why had not the thought of my past failures and 
543. my new ambitions come into my mind? What of the intense de- 

Page 20- 
544. sire to make my wife happy? Why hadn't these things - these 
545. powerful incentives arisen in my mind to stay my hand as I 
546. reached out to take that first drink? Was I crazy? I hated 
547. to think so, but I had to admit that a condition of mind re- 
548. sulting in such an appalling lack of perspective came pretty 
549. near to being just that. 
550. Then things were better for a time. I was 
551. constantly on guard. After two or three weeks of sobriety 
552. I began to think I was alright. Presently this quiet con- 
553. fidence was replaced by cocksureness. I would walk past my 
554. old haunts with a feeling of elation - I now fully realized 
555. the danger that lurked there. The tide had turned at last - 
556. and now I was really through. One afternoon on my way home 
557. I walked into a bar room to make a telephone call, suddenly 
558. I turned to the bartender and said "Four isrish whiskies - 
559. water on the side" - As he poured them out with a surprised 
560. look, I can only remember thinking to myself - "I shouldn't 
561. be doing this, but here's how to the last time". As I 
562. gulped down the fourth one, I beat on the bar with my fist 
563. and said for"God's sake, why have I done this again?" Where 
564. had been my realization of only this morning as I had 
565. passed this very place, that I was never going to drink again 
566. I could give no answer, mortification and the feeling of 
567. utter defeat swept over me. The thought that perhaps I 
568. could never stop crushed me. Then as the cheering warmth 
569. of these first drinks spread over me, I said - "Next time 
570. I shall manage better, butwhile I am about it, I may as 
571. well get good and drunk". And I did exactly that. 
572. I shall never forget the remorse, the horror 
573. the utter hopelessness of the next morning. The courage to 
574. rise and do battle was simply not there . Before daylight 
575. I had stolen out of the house, my brain raced uncontrollably. 
576. There was a terrible feeling of impending calamity. 
577. feared even to cross a street, less I collapse and be run 
578. over by an early morning truck. Was there no bar open? Ah, 
579. yes, there was the all night place which sold beer - though 
580. it was before the legal opening hour, I persuaded the man be- 
581. hind the food counter that I must have a drink or perhaps die 

Page 21. 
582. on the spot. Cold as the morning was, I must have drunk 
583. a dozen bottles of ale in rapid succession. My writhing 
584. nerves were stilled at last and I walked to the next corner 
585. and bought a paper. It told me that the stock market had 
586. gone to hell again - "What difference did it make anyway, 
587. the market would get better, it always did, but I'm in hell 
588. to stay - no more rising markets for me. Down for the count- 
589. what a blow to one so proud. I might kill myself, but no - 
590. not now," These were some of my thoughts - then I felt 
591. dazed - I groped in a mental fog - mere liquor would fix 
592. that - then two more bottles of cheap gin. Oblivion. 
593. The human mind and body is a marvelous 
594. mechanism, for mine withstood this sort of thing for yet 
595. another two years. There was little money, but I could al- 
596. ways drink. Sometimes I stole from my wife's slender purse 
597. when the early morning terror of madness was upon me. There 
598. were terrible scenes and though not often violent, I would 
599. sometimes do such things as to throw a sewing machine, or 
600. kick the panels out of every door in the house. There were 
601. moments when I swayed weakly before an open window or the 
602. medicine chest in which there was poison - and cursed my- 
603. self for a weakling. There were flights from the city to 
604. the country when my wife could bear with me no longer at 
605. home Sometimes there would be several weeks and hope would 
606. return, especially for her, as I had not let her know how 
607. defeated I really was, but there was always the return to 
the 
608. conditions still worse. Then came a night I when the physi- 
609. cal and mental torture was so hellish that I feared I would 
610. take a flying leap through my bedroom window sash and all 
611. and somehow managed to drag my mattress down to the kitchen 
612. floor which was at the ground level. I had stopped drinking 
613. a few hours before and hung grimly to my determination that 
614. I could have no more that night if it killed me. That very 
615. nearly happened, but I was finally rescued by a doctor who 
616. prescribed chloral hydrate, a powerful sedative. This reliev- 
617. ed me so much that next day found me drinking apparently 
618. without the usual penalty, if I took some sedative occasion- 
619. ally. In the early spring of 1934 it became evident to 

Page 22. 
620. everyone concerned that something had to be done and 
621. that very quickly. I was thirty pounds underweight, as I 
622. could eat nothing when drinking, which was most of the 
623. time. People had begun to fear for my sanity and I fre- 
624. quently had the feeling myself that I was becoming deranged. 
625. With the help of my brother-in-law, who is a 
626. physician I was placed in a well known institution for the 
627. bodily and mental rehabilitation of alcoholics. It was 
628. thought that if I were thoroughly cleared of alcohol and 
629. the brain irritation which accompanies it were reduced, I 
630. might have a chance. I went to the place desperatly hoping 
631. and expecting to be cured. The so-called bella donna 
632. treatment given in that place helped a great deal. My mind 
633. cleared and my appetite returned. Alternate periods of 
634. hydro-therapy, mild exercise and relaxation did wonders for 
635. me. Best of all I found a great friend in the doctor who 
636. was head of the staff. He went far beyond his routine duty 
637. and I shall always be grateful for those long talks in which 
638. explained that when I drank I became physically ill and that 
639. this bodily condition was usually accompanied by a mental 
640. state such that the defense one should have against alcohol 
641. became greatly weakened, though in no way mitigating my 
642. early foolishness and selfishness about drink, I was greatly 
643. relieved to discover that I had really been ill perhaps for 
644. several years. Moreover I felt that the understanding and 
645. fine physical start I was getting would assure my recovery, 
646. Though some of the inmates of the place who had been there 
647. many times seemed to smile at that idea. I noticed however 
648. that most of them had no intention of quitting; they merely 
649. came there to get reconditioned so that they could start in 
650. again. I, on the contrary, desperately wanted to stop and 
651. strange to say I still felt that I was a person of much more 
652. determination and substance than they, so I left there in 
653. high hope and for three or four months the goose hung high. 
654. In a small way I began to make some progress in business. 
655. Then came the terrible day when I drank again 
656. and could not explain why I started. The curve of my de- 
657. clining moral and bodily health fell of like a ski jump. 
658. After a hectic period of drinking, I found myself again in 

[archivist's note: the typewritten manuscript text continues correctly
with 
page 23, but line numbers 659 - 679 remain unknown ] 

Page 23. 
680. Everyone became resigned to the certainty that I 
681. would have to be confined somewhere ore else stumble 
682. along to a miserable end, but there was soon to be 
683. proof that indeed it is often darkest before dawn, 
684. for this proved to be my last drinking bout, and I am 
685. supremely confident that my present happy state is to be 
686. for all time. 
687. Late one afternoon near the end of that 
688. month of November I sat alone in the kitchen of my home. 
689. As usual, I was half drunk and enough so that the keen 
690. edge of my remorse was blunted. With a certain satis- 
691. faction I was thinking that there was enough gin se- 
692. creted about the house to keep me fairly comfortable 
693. that night and the next day. My wife was at work and I 
694. resolved not to be in too bad shape when she got home. 
695. My mind reverted to the hidden bottles and at I carefully 
696. considered where each one was hidden. These things must 
697. be firmly in my mind to escape the early morning tragedy 
698. of not being able to find at least a water tumbler full 
699. of liquor. Just as I was trying to decide whether to risk 
700. concealing one of the full ones within easy reach of my 
701. side of the bed, the phone rang. 
702. At the other end of the line Over the 
703. wire came the voice of an old school friend and drinking 
704. companion of boom times. By the time we had exchanged 
705. greetings, I sensed that he was sober. This seemed 
706. strange, for it was years since anyone could remember his 
707. coming to New York in that condition. I had come to think 
708. of him as another hopeless devoteeof Bacchus. Current 
709. rumor had it that he had been committedto a state institu- 
710. tion for alcoholic insanity. I wondered if perhaps he had 
711. not just escaped. Of course he would come over right away 
712. and take dinner with us. A fine idea that, for I then 
713. would have an excuse to drink openly with him. Yes,we 
714. would try to recapture the spirit of other days and per- 
715. haps my wife could be persuaded to join in, which in self 
716. defense she sometimes would. I did not even think of the 
717. harm I might do him. There was to be a pleasant, and I 

Page 24. 
718. hoped an exciting interlude in what had become a 
round
719. dreary waste of loneliness. Another drink stirred my 
720. fancy; this would be an oasis in the dreary waste. That 
721. was it - an oasis. Drinkers are like that. 
722. The door opened and there he stood, very 
723. erect and glowing. His deep voice boomed out cheerily - 
724. the cast of his features - his eyes - the freshness of 
725. his complexion - this was my friend of schooldays. There 
726. was a subtle something or other instantly apparent even to 
727. my befuddled perception. Yes - there was certainly some- 
728. thing more - he was inexplicably different - what had 
729. happened to him? 
730. We sat at the table and I pushed a 
731. lusty glass of gin flavored with pineapple juice in his 
732. direction. I thought if my wife came in, she would be re- 
733. lieved to find that we were not taking it straight - 
734. "Not now", he said. I was a little crest 
735. fallen at this, though I was glad to know that someone 
736. could refuse a drink at that moment - I knew I couldn't. 
737. "On the wagon?" - I asked. He shook his head and looked 
738. at me with an impish grin . 
739. "Aren't you going to have anything?"- 
740. I ventured presently. 
741. "Just as much obliged, but not tonight" 
742. I was disappointed, but curious. What had got into the 
743. fellow - he wasn't himself. 
744. "No, he's not himself - he's somebody 
is 
745. else - not just that either - he was his old self, plus 
746. something more, and maybe minus something". I couldn't put 
747. my finger on it - his whole bearing almost shouted that 
748. something of great import had taken place. 
749. "Come now, what's this all about", I 
750. asked. Smilingly, yet seriously, he looked straight at me 
751. and said "I've got religion". 
752. So that was it. Last summer an alco 
753. alcoholic crackpot - this fall, washed in the blood of the 
754. Lamb. heavens, that might be even worse. I was thunder- 
755. struck, and he, of all people. What on earth could one 

Page 25. 
756. say to the poor fellow. 
757. So I finally blurted out "That's 
758. fine", and sat back waiting for a sizzling blast on sal- 
759. vation and the relation of the Cross, the Holy Ghost, and 
760. the Devil thereto. Yes, he did have that starry edy 
761. eyed look, the old boy was on fire all right. Well, bless 
762. his heart, let him rant . It was nice that he was sober 
763. after all. I could stand it anyway, for there was plenty 
764. of gin and I took a little comfort that tomorrow's ration 
765. wouldn't have to be used up right then. 
766. Old memories of Sunday School - the profit 
767. temperance pledge, which I never signed - the sound of the 
768. preacher's voice which could be heard on still Sunday 
769. mornings way over on the hillside beyond the railroad 
770. tracks,- My grandfather's quite scorn of things some 
771. church people did to him - his fair minded attitude that 
772. I should make up my mind about these things myself - his 
spheres 
773. convictions that the fears really had their mooxx music - 
774. but his denial of the right of preachers to tell him how 
775. he should listen - his perfect lack of fear when he men- 
776. tioned these things just before his death - these memories 
777. surged up out of my childhood as I listened to my friend. 
778. My own gorge rose for a moment to an all time high as my 
779. anti-preacher - anti-church folk sentiment welled up in- 
780. side me. These feelings soon gave way to respectful at- 
781. tention as my former drinking companion rattled on. 
782. Without knowing it, I stood at the great turning point of 
783. my life - I was on the threshold of a fourth dimension 
784. of existence that I had doubtfully heard some people des 
785. describe and others pretend to have. 
786. He went on to lay before me a simple 
787. proposal. It was so simple and so little 
788. complicated with the theology and dogma 
789. I had associated with religion that by 
790. degrees I became astonished and delighted. 
791. I was astonished because a thing so simple 
792. could accomplish the profound result I now 
793. beheld in the person of my friend. To say that 
794. I was delighted is putting it mildly , for I 
795. relized that I could go for his program also. 
796. Like all but a few u human beings I had truele 
797. believed in the existence of a power greater 
798. than myself true athiests are really very scarce. 
799. It always seemed to me more difficult and ilogical 
800. to be an athiest than to believe there is a 
801. certain amount of law and order and purpose 
802. underlying the universe. The faith of an athiest 
803. in his convictions is far more blind then that 
804. of the religionist for it leads inevitably to 
805. the absurd conclusion that the vast and ever 
806. changing cosmos originally grew out of a cipher, 
807. and now has arrived at its present state thru 
808. a series of haphazard accidents, one of which 
809. is man himself. My liking for things scientific 
810. had encouraged to look into such matters as 
811. a theory of evolutionthe nature of matter itself 
812. as seen thru the eyes of the great chemists 
813. physicists and astronomers and I had pondered 
814. much on the question of the meaning of life itself. 
815. The chemist had shown me that material matter 
816. is not all what it appears to be. His studies 
817. point to the conclusion that the eliments and there 
818. meriad combinations are but in the last last 
819. analysis nothing but different arrangements 
820. of that universal something which they are pleased 
821. to call the electron. The physist and the 
822. astronomer had shown me that our universe . 
823. moves and evolves according to many precise 
824. and well understood laws. They tell me to the 
825. last second when the sun will be next eclipsed 
826. at the place I am now standing, or the very day 
827. several decades from now When Hallyes comet 
828. will make its turn about the sun. Much to my 
829. x interest I learned from these men that great 
830. cosmic accidents occur bringing about conditions 
831. which are not exceptions to the law so much 
832. as they result in new and unexpected developements 
833. which arise logically enough once the so called 
834. accident has occured. It is highly probable for 
835. example-that our earth is the only planet in the 
836. solar system upon which man could evolve - and it 
837. is claimed by some astronomers that the chance 
838. that similar planets exist elsewhere in the universe 
839. is rather small. There would have to be a vast 
840. number of coincidences to bring about the exact 
841. conditions of light,warmth, food supply, etc. 
842. to support life as we know it here. But I used to 
843. ask myself why regard the earth as an accident 
844. in a system which evidences in so many respects the 
845. greatest law and order' If If all of this law 
846. existed then could there be so much law and no 
847. intelligence? And if there was an intelligence 
848. great enough to materialize and keep a universe in 
849. order it must necessarily have the power to create 
850. accidents and make exceptions. 
851. The evolutionist brought great logic to bear 
852. on the proposition that life on this planet began 
853. with the lowly omebia , which was a simple cell 
854. residing in the oceons of Eons past. Thru countless 
855. & strange combinations of logic and accident man 
856. and all other kinds of life evolved but man possessed 
857. a consciousness of self, a power to reason and to 
858. choose , and a small still voice which told him the 
859. difference between right and wrongand man became 
860. increasingly able to fashion with his hands and 
861. with his tools the creations of his own brain . 
862. He could give direction and purpose to natural laws 
apparently 
863. and so he,created new things for himself and of 
864. [line number skipped in the typewritten manuscript] 
865. and do he apparently created new things for himself an 
866. [line number skipped in the typewritten manuscript] 
867. out of a tissue composed of his past experience 
868. and his new ideas. Therefore man tho' resembling 
869. other forms of life in many ways seems to me 
870. very different. It was obvious that in a limited 
871. fashion he could play at being a God himself . 
872. Such was the picture I had of myself and the 
873. world in which I lived, that there was a mighty 
874. rythm, intelligence and purpose behind it all 
875. despite inconsistencies. I had rather strongly 
876. believed. 
877. But this was as far as I had ever got toward 
878. the realization of God and my personal relationship 
879. to Him. My thoughts of God were academic and 
880. speculative when I had them, which for some years 
881. past had not been often. That God was an inteligence 
882. power and love upon which I could absolutely rely 
883. as an individual had not seriously occured to me. 
884. Of course I knew in a general way what theologians 
885. claimed but I could not see that religous persons 
886. as a class demonstrated any more power, love and 
887. intelligence than those who claimed no special 
888. dispensation from God tho' I grant de that 
889. christianity ought to be a wonderful influence 
890. I was annoyed,irked and confused by the attitudes 
891. they took, the beliefs they held and the things 
892. they had done in the name of Christ,. People like 
893. myself had been burned and whole population put 
894. to fire and sword on the pretext they did not 
895. believe as christians did. History taught that 
896. christians were not the only offenders in this 
897. respect. It seemed to me that on the whole 
898. it made little difference whether you were 
899. Mohamadem, Catholic, Jew, Protesant or Hotentot. 
900. You were supposed to look askance at the other 
901. fellews approach to God. Nobody could be saved 
902. unless they fell in with your ideas. I had a 
903. great admiration for Christ as a man, He practised 
904. what he preached and set a marvelous example. 
905. It was not hard to agree in Principle with 
906. His moral teachings bit like most people, I perfered 
907. to live up to some moral standard but not to others. 
908. At any rate I thought I understood as well as any 
909. one what good morals were and with the exceptions 
910. of my drinking I felt superior to most christians 
911. I knew. I might be week in some respects but at 
912. least I was not hypocritical, So my interest in 
913. christianity other than its teaching of moral 
914. principles and the good I hoped it did on 
915. balance was slight. 
916. Sometimes I wished that I had been religiously 
917. trained from early childhood that I might have the 
918. comfortable assurance about so many things I found 
919. it impossible to have any definate convictions 
920. upon. The question of the hereafter, the many 
921. theological abstractions and seeming contradictions 
922. - these things were puzzling and finally annoying 
923. for religious people told me I must believe 
924. a great many seemingly impossible things to be one 
925. [line number skipped] 
926. of them. This insistance on their part plus a 
927. powerful desire to posess the things of this life 
928. while there was yet time had crowded the idea of 
929. the personal God more and more out of my mind as the 
930. years went by. Neither were my convictions strengthea 
931. by my own misfortunes. The great war and its 
932. aftermath seemed to more certainly demonstrate the 
933. omnipotence of the devil than the loving care of 
934. an all powerful God 
935. Nevertheless here I was sitting opposite a 
936. man who talked about a personal God who told me 
937. how hw had found Him, who described to me how I 
938. might do the same thing and who convinced me 
939. utterly that something had come into his life 
940. which had accomplished a miracle. The man was 
941. trasformed ; there was no denying he had been re- 
942. born. He was radiant of something which soothed 
943. my troubled spirit as tho the fresh clean wind of 
944. mountain top blowing thru and thru me I saw and 
945. felt and in a great surge of joy I realized 
946. that the great presence which had made itself felt 
947. to me that war time day in Winchester Cathedral 
948. had again returned. 
949. As he continued I com menced to see myself as in 
950. as in an unearthly mirror. I saw how ridiculous and 
951. futile the whole basis of my life had been. Standing in 
952. the middle of the stage of my lifes setting I had been 
953. feverishly trying to arrange ideas and things and people 
954. and even God, to my own liking, to my own ends and to 
955. promote what I had thought to be true happiness. It was 
956. truly a sudden and breath taking illumination. Then the 
957. idea came - " The tragic thing about you is, that you 
958. have been playing God." That was it. Playing God. Then 
959. the humor of the situation burst upon me, here was I a 
960. tiny grain of sand of the infinite shores of Gods great 
961. universe and the little grain of sand, had been trying 
962. to play God. He really thought he could arrange all of 
963. the other little grains about him just to suit himself. 
964. And when his little hour was run out, people would 
965. weep and say in awed tones-' How wonderful'. 
966. So then came the question - If I were no 
967. longer to be God than was I to find and perfect 
968. the new relationship with my creator - with the Father 
969. of Lights who presides over all ? My friend laid down 
970. to me the terms and conditions which were simple but 
971. not easy, drastic yet broad and acceptable to honest 
972. men everywhere, of whatever faith or lack thereof. He did not 
973. tell me that these were the only t erms - he merely said that 
974. they were terms that had worked in his case. They were spiritual 
975. principles and rules of practice he thought common to all of the 
976. worthwhile religions and philosophies of mankind. He regarded them 
977. as stepping stones to a better understanding of our relation to the

978. spirit of the universe and as a practical set of directions setting

979. forth how the spirit could work in and through us that we might 
980. become spearheads and more effective agents for the promotion 
981. of Gods Will for our lives and for our fellows. The great thing 
982. about it all was its simplicity and scope, no really religious 
983. persons belief would be interferred with no matter what his
training , 
984. For the man on the street who just wondered about such things, it
ws 
985. Was a providential approach, for with a small beginning of faith 
986. and a very large dose of action along spiritual lines he could be 
987. sure to demonstrate the Power and Love of God as a practical 
988. workable twenty four hour a day design for living. 
989. This is what my friend suggested I do. One: Turn my face 
990. to God as I understand Him and say to Him with earnestness -
complete 
991. honesty and abandon- that I henceforth place my life at His 
992. disposal and direction forever. TWO: that I do this in the presence

993. of another person, who should be one in whom I have confidence and
if 
994. I be a member of a religious organization, then with an appropiate 
995. member of that body. TWO: Having taken this first step, I should 
996. next prepare myself for Gods Company by taking a thorough and ruth-

997. less inventory of my moral defects and derelictions. This I should 
998. do without any reference to other people and their real or fancied 
999. part in my shortcomings should be rigorously excluded-" Where have

1000. failed-is the prime question. I was to go over my life from the 
1001. beginning and ascertain in the light of my own present
understanding 
1002. where I had failed as a completely moral person. Above all things
in 
1003. making this appraisal I must be entirely honest with myself. As an

1004. aid to thoroughness and as something to look at when I got through

1005. I might use pencil and paper.First take the question of honesty. 
1006. Where, how and with whom had I ever been dishonest? With respect
to 
1007. anything. What attitudes and actions did I still have which were
not 
1008. completely honest with God with myself or with the other fellow. I
ws 
1009. was warned that no one can say that he is a completely honest 
1010. person. That would be superhjman and peiple aren't that way. 
1011. Nor should I be misled by the thought of how honest I am in 
1012. some particulars. I was too ruthlessly tear out of the past all 
1013. of my dishonesty and list them in writing. Next I was to explore 
1014. another area somewhat related to the first and commonly a very 
1015. defective one in most people. I was to examine my sex conduct 
1016. since infancy and rigorously compare it with what I thought that 
1017. conduct should have been. My friend explained to me that peoples 
1018. ideas throughout the world on what constitutes perfect sex conduct

1019. vary greatly Consequently, I was not to measure my defects in this

1020. particular by adopting any standard of easy virtue as a measuring 
1021. stick, I was merely to ask God to show me the difference between 
1022. right and wrong in this regard and ask for help and strength and 
1023. honesty in cataloguing my defects according to the true dictates 
1024. of my own conscience. Then I might take up the related questions 
1025. of greed and selfishness and thoughtlessness. How far and in what 
1026. connection had I strayed and was I straying in these particulars? 
1027. I was assured I could make a good long list if I got honest enough

1028. and vigorous enough. Then there was the question of real love for 
1029. all of my fellows including my family, my friends and my enemies 
1030. Had I been completely loving toward all of these at all times 
1031. and places. If not, down in the book it must go and of course 
1032. everyone could put plenty down along that line. 

(Resntments, self pity,fear,pride.) 

1033. my friend pointed out that resentment, self-pity, fear, in- 
1034. feriority, pride and egotism, were thingsx attitudes which 
1035. distorted ones perspective suc and usefulness to entertain such 
1036. sentiments and attitudes was to shut oneself off from God and 
1037. people about us. Therefor it would be necessary for me to 
1038. examine myself critically in this respect and write down my 
1039. conclusions. 
1040. Step number three required that I carefully go over my 
1041. personal inventory and definatly arrive at the conclusion that 
1042. I was now willing to rid myself of all these defects moreover 
1043. I was to understand that this would not be accomplished by 
1044. [line number skipped] 
1045. myself alone, therefore I was to humbly ask God that he take 
1046. these handicaps away. To make sure that I had become really 
1047. honest in this desire, I should sit down with whatever person 
1048. I chose and reveal to him without any reservations whatever 
1049. the result of my self appraisel. From this point out I was 
1050. to stop living alone in every particular. Thus was I to ridx keep 
1051. myself free in the future of those things which shut out 
1052. God's power, It was explained that I had been standing in my 
1053. own light, my spiritual interior had been like a room darkened 
1054. by very dirty windows and this was an undertaking to wipe them 
1055. off and keep them kleen. Thus was my housekeeping to be ac- 
1056. complished, it would be difficult to be really honest with my- 
1057. self and God and perhaps to be completely honest with another 
1058. person by telling an other the truth, I could however be ab- 
1059. solutely sure that my self searching had been honest and
effective. 
1060. Moreover I would be taking my first spiritual step towards my 
1061. fellows for something I might say could be helpful in leading 
1062. the person to whom I talked a better understanding of himself. 
1063. In this fashion I would commence to break down the barriers 
1064. which my many forms of self will had erected. Warning was 
1065. given me that I should select a person who would be in ho way 
1066. injured or offended by what I had to say, for I could not expect 
1067. to commence my spiritual growth at the w expense of another. 
1068. My friend told me that this step was complete, I would surely 
1069. feel a tremendous sense of relieve accompaning by the absolute 
1070. conviction that I was on the right t road at last. 
1071.l0 Step number four demanded that I frankly admit that my 
1072.deviations from right thought and action had injured other people 
1073.therefore I must set about undoing the damage to the best of my 
1074.ability. It would be advisable to make a list of all the 
1075.persons I had hurt or with whom I had bad relations. People I 
1076.disliked and those who had injured me should have perfered 
1077.attention, provided I had done them injury or still entertained 
1078.any feeling of resentment towards them . Under no sircumstances 
1079.was I to consider their defects or wrong doing , then I was to 
1080.approach these people telling them I had commenced a way of life 
1081.which required that I be on friendly and helpful terms with every 
1082.body; that I recognized I had been at fault in this particular 
1083.that I was sorry for what I had done or said and had come to set 
1084.matters right insofar as I possibly could. Under no circumstances 
1085.was I to engage in argument or controversy. My own wrong doing 
1086.was to be admitted and set right and that was all. Assurance was 
1087.to be given that I was prepared to go to any length to do the 
1088.right thing. Again I was warned that obviously I could not 
1089.make amends at the expense of other people, that judgement and 
1090.discretion should be used lest others should be hurt. This sort 
1091.of situation could be postponed until such conditions became such 
1092.that the job could be done without harm to anyone. One could 
1093.be contented in the meanwhile by discussing such a matter frankly 
1094.with a third party who would not be involved and of course ona a 
1095.strictly confidential basis. Great was to be taken that one 
1096.did not avoid situations dificult or dangerous to oneself on 
as possible 
1097.such a pretext . The willingness to go the limit a s fast had 
1098.to be at all times present. This principle of making ammends 
1099.was to be continued in the future for only by keeping myself free 
2100.of bad relationships with others could I expect to receive the 
1101.Power and direction so indespensable to my new and larger useful- 
1102.ness . This sort of discipline would hilp me to see others as 
1103.they really are; to recognize that every one is plagued by various 
1104.of self will; that every one is in a sense actually sick with 
1105.some form of self; that when men behave badly they are only dis- 
1106.playing symptoms of spiritual ill health . 
1107. one is not usually angry or critical of another when he 
1108. suffers from some grave bodily illness and I would 
how 
1109. presently see senseless and futile it is to be disturbed 
1110. by those burdened by their own wrong thinking . I was to 
1111. entertain towards everyone a quite new feeling of tolerance 
1112. patience and helpfulness I would recognize more and more 
1113. that when I became critical or resentful I must at all 
1114. costs realize that such things were very wrong in me 
1115. and that in some form otro or other I still had the very 
1116. defects of which I complained in others. Much emphasis 
1117. was placed on the development of this of mind toward others. 
1118. No stone should be left unturned to acheive this end. 
1119. The constant practice of this principle frequently ask- 
1120. ing God for His help in making it work under trying 
112l. circumstances was absolutely imperative . The drunkard 
1122. espicially had to be most rigorous on this point for one 
1125. burst of anger or self pity might so shut him out from his 
1124. new found strength that he would drink again and with us 
1125. that always means calamity and sometimes death. 
1126. This was indeed a program, the thought of some of the 
to 
1127. things I would have admit about myself to other people 
1128. was most distasteful - even appalling. It was only to o 
1129. plain that I had been ruined by my own colosal egotism 
1130. and selfishness, not only in respect to drinking but with 
1131. regard to everything else. Drinking had been a simptom 
1132. of these things. Alcohol had submerged my inferiorities 
1135. and puffed up my self esteem, body had finally rebelled 
1134. and I had some fatally affeated , my thinking and action 
1135. was woefully distorted thru infection frim the mire of 
1136. self pity, resentment, fear and remorse in which I now 
1137. wallowed . The motive behing a certain amount of generosity, 
1138. kindness and the meticulous honesty in some directions 
1139. upon which I had prided myseld was not perhaps not so 
1140. good after all. The motive had been to get personal 
1141. satisfaction for myself, perhaps not entirely but on the 
1142. whole this was true. I had sought the glow which comes 
applause 
1143. with thexflaws and Praise rendered me by others. 
1144. I began to see how actions good in themselves might avail 
1145. little because of wrong motive , I had been like the man 
1146. who feels that all is well after he has condesendingly 
1147. taken turkeys to the poor at Xmas time . How clear it 
1148. suddenly became that all of my thought and action, both 
1149. good and bad, had arisen out of a desire to make myself 
1150. happy and satisfied. I had been self centered instead of 
1151. God centered. It was now easy to understand why the taking 
this 
1152. of a simple childlike attitude toward God plus a drastic 
1153. program of action which would place himx would bring 
1154. results. How evident et became that mere faith in God 
1155. was not enough. Faith had to be demonstrated by works 
1156. and there could be no works or any worth while demonstrations 
1157. until I had fitted myself for the undertaking and had be- 
1158. come a suitable table agent thru which God might express Himself. 
1159. There had to be a tremendous personal housecleaning, a 
1160. sweeping away of the debris of past wilfullness , a restoring 
1161. of broken relationships and a firm resolve to make God's 
1162. will my will . I must stop forcing things , Imust stop 
1163. trying to mold people and situations to my own liking. 
1164. Nearly every one is taught that human willpower and ambition 
1165. if good ends are sought are desirable attributes. I too 
1166. had clung to that conception but I saw that it was not good 
1167. enough, nor big enough , nor powerful enough . My own will had 
1168. failed in many areas of my live. With respect to 
1169. alcohol it had become absolutely inopperative . My ambitions, 
1170. which had seemed worthy at some time,had been frustrated. 
1171. Even had I been successful , the persuit of my desires 
1172. would have perhaps harmed others add their relizationw 
1173. would have added little or nothing to anyones peace, 
1174. happiness or usefulness. I began to see that the clashing 
1175. ambitions and designs of even those who sought what to them 
1176. seemed worthy ends , have filled the world with discord and 
1177. misery . Perhaps people of this sort created more havouqx 
1178. havoc than those confessedly imoral and krucked croocked 
1179. I saw even the most useful people die unhappy and defeated. 
1180. All because some one else had behaved badly or they had 

[archivist's note: the rest of this manuscript is currently missing]


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