Edward William Bok > The Americanization of Edward Bok > Page 73



Edward William Bok (1863–1930). The Americanization of Edward Bok. 1921.

Page 73

Furthermore, Edward decided to leave the Western Union. The longer he remained, the less he liked its atmosphere. And the closer his contact with Jay Gould the more doubtful he became of the wisdom of such an association and perhaps its unconscious influence upon his own life in its formative period.

In fact, it was an experience with Mr. Gould that definitely fixed Edward’s determination. The financier decided one Saturday to leave on a railroad inspection tour on the following Monday. It was necessary that a special meeting of one of his railroad interests should be held before his departure, and he fixed the meeting for Sunday at eleven-thirty at his residence on Fifth Avenue. He asked Edward to be there to take the notes of the meeting.

The meeting was protracted, and at one o’clock Mr. Gould suggested an adjournment for luncheon, the meeting to reconvene at two. Turning to Edward, the financier said: “You may go out to luncheon and return in an hour.” So, on Sunday afternoon, with the Windsor Hotel on the opposite corner as the only visible place to get something to eat, but where he could not afford to go, Edward, with just fifteen cents in his pocket, was turned out to find a luncheon place.

He bought three apples for five cents—all that he could afford to spend, and even this meant that he must walk home from the ferry to his house in Brooklyn—and these he ate as he walked up and down Fifth Avenue until his hour was over. When the meeting ended at three o’clock, Mr. Gould said that, as he was leaving for the West early next morning, he would like Edward



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