The Industrial Worker, 1840-1860

Immigrant Life in New York City 1825-1863
The Road to Mountain Park
The Road to Mountain Park.
Near the Reservoir
Near the Reservoir.
The Lower Pond
The Lower Pond.
The Reservoir
The Reservoir.
        It is a disadvantage to you what you have so much leisure. Many of you get the idea that the staple of life is play; your heads are so full of it that you cannot do justice to your studies; any task becomes irksome to you; and you lose the power of application and the habit of persistence. The abundance of amusements within reach of a city boy whose parents are in fair circumstances is a great obstacle in his way. Such amusements, indulged in to the extent that they are by the majority of boys of this class, debilitate the mind instead of refreshing it, and unfit the boy for the serious business of life. The free access to the city libraries and the circulating libraries is, I fear, a great disadvantage to many of you. It need not be if you make the right use of them; but if you read almost wholly for amusement, as many of you do—if you read only novels and sensational tales of travel—then your reading has exactly the same effect upon your mind that other amusements have. The result of it is that you lose your mental grip, and find yourselves unable to do any patient, vigorous mental work.
        Another of your disadvantages is that you have too much money to spend— or, if you have not much, that which you have comes easily—with little or no effort or sacrifice on your part. You have not much chance in learning the cost of money. Money costs work, and any large amount of it costs prudence and frugality. That is the rule, to which there are few exceptions. You are not likely to prove exceptions to the rule when you go out into the world, and it is a pity that you should seem to be exceptions now. You think, perhaps, that your fathers get considerable money without seeming to work very hard; but you forget that it was by years of hard work, with small earnings and small savings that your fathers, most of them, gained the power, and the knowledge, and the credit, and the capital that enable them to now reap large rewards with comparative ease. You are not going to do offhand what it has cost them a lifetime to learn how to do. And it is a great misfortune to you that your money, be it much or little, is so easily gotten; you do not realize the price that must be paid for money, and you throw it away in a reckless fashion; as the wise man says, it comes lightly and is soon diminished.
Woodland Lake
Woodland Lake.
Winter In Mountain Park
Winter In Mountain Park.

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