Download Thrift: The History of an American Cultural Movement. by Andrew L. Yarrow PDF

By Andrew L. Yarrow

During this full of life and interesting ebook, Andrew L. Yarrow tells the tale of a countrywide move that promoted an amalgam of values and practices starting from strength of will, funds administration, and potency to conservation, generosity, and making plans for the future—all below the rubric of “thrift.” rising in tandem and in stress with the 1st flowerings of buyer society, the thrift flow flourished throughout the 1910s and Twenties after which lingered at the outskirts of yankee tradition from the melancholy to the filthy rich mid-twentieth century.

The move introduced jointly a various array of social actors with broadly divergent agendas—the YMCA, the Boy and woman Scouts, temperance crusaders, and others trying to enhance the ethical fiber of city younger males and boys specifically, and to damp down the charm of radicalism. It additionally attracted credits union and different revolutionary activists desirous to empower the operating type economically, bankers aspiring to expand their buyer base, conservationists and potency proponents denouncing “waste,” and govt leaders, tuition academics, and economists who believed that encouraging saving was once within the fiscal pursuits of either contributors and the nation.

A post–World struggle II tradition that based on spending and delight made the early-twentieth-century thrift messages look outmoded. still, echoes of thrift are available in at the moment renowned principles of “sustainability,” “stewardship,” and “simplicity” and in efforts to curtail private and non-private debt.

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H. Reeve of the National Congress of Mothers and Parent-Teacher Associations called for parental involvement through “systematic businesslike management in the home” and the creation of home gardens. ”22 The years just before and during World War I marked the entry of yet another major institutional player in the thrift movement—the A ­ merican Bankers Association. The ABA, which had established a Savings Bank Section in 1902, created a thrift department in 1912 and devised a thrift campaign in 1913, which gathered momentum with the 1916 centennial of the founding of America’s first savings banks.

During the second half of the nineteenth ­century, 200 million acres of forests in the East and Midwest were cut down. ­Although some thought that America’s forests, and other natural resources, were inexhaustible, others were deeply disturbed. George Perkins Marsh warned that deforestation had far-reaching, dangerous consequences in Man and Nature (1864). John Muir’s newly formed Sierra Club also warned of the loss of beauty that resulted from destroying the forests. Following Marsh’s ideas, New York State created the Adirondack Forest Reserve in 1885, and Congress passed the Forest Reserve Act in 1891.

Indd 29 10/16/2014 10:04:50 AM 3 Thrift’s Heyday, 1910s–1930 “Thrift is essential to well-ordered living,” wrote John D. Rockefeller Jr. These words, etched in marble in Rockefeller Center when the complex was built in the late 1920s and early 1930s, are evidence of just how much ideas of thrift were in the air in early twentieth-century America. Beginning during the mid-1910s, efforts to promote thrift, develop a philosophy of thrift, and advance thrift institutions coalesced into a broadbased national movement.

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