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Elbert Hubbard of East Aurora 1856-1915

The English Who's Who for 1913 offers the following example of Elbert Hubbard's style:

HUBBARD, Elbert; editor, The Fra and Philistine Magazine; President of the Corporation known as the Roycrofters; b. Bloomington, Ill., U. S., 19 June 1856; father a farmer and country Doctor. Educ.: the University of Hard Knocks. Hon. degree of M. A. from Tufts College, and LL. D. from the Auditorium Annex, Chicago; school-teacher, printer, editor and lecturer; met William Morris in London, 1890, and went home and started the the Roycroft Press at East Aurora, N. Y., on similar lines as the Kelmscott; the Roycrofters Corporation has grown out of this venture - a semi-communal institution giving work to 800 people. Publications: One Day; No Enemy but Himself; Little Journeys; Time and Chance; Life of John Brown; A Message to Garcia, etc., and about ten thousand magazine articles. Recreations: Horseback riding, swimming, rowing, and care of flowers and garden. Address: East Aurora, N. Y.

Elbert Hubbard's business "Credo":

  • I believe in myself.
  • I believe in the goods I sell.
  • I believe in the firm for whom I work.
  • I believe in my colleagues and helpers.
  • I believe in American business methods.
  • I believe in producers, creaters, manufacturers, distributors, and in all industrial workers of the world who have a job, and hold it down.
  • I believe that Truth is an asset.
  • I believe in good cheer and in good health, and I recognize the fact that the first requisite in success is not to achieve the dollar, but to confer a benefit, and that the reward will come automatically, and usually as a matter of course.
  • I believe in sunshine, fresh air, spinach, applesauce, laughter, buttermilk, babies, bombazine and chiffon, always remembering that the greatest word in the English language is "Sufficiency."
  • I believe that when I make a sale I make a friend.
  • And I believe that when I part with a man I must do it in such a way that when he sees me again he will be glad - and so will I.
  • I believe in the hands that work, in the brains that think, and in the hearts that love.
  • Amen, and Amen.

Here is the text version of his famous personal "Credo":

  • I believe in the Motherhood of God.
  • I believe in the Blessed Trinity of Father, Mother and Child.
  • I believe that God is here, and that we are as near Him now as ever we shall be.
  • I do not believe He started this world-a going and went away and left it to run by itself.
  • I believe in the sacredness of the human body, this transient dwelling place of a living soul,
    And so I deem it the duty of every man and every woman to keep his or her body beautiful through right thinking and right living.

  • I believe that the love of man for woman, and the love of woman for man is holy;
    And that this love in all its promptings is as much an emanation of the Divine Spirit as man's love for God, or the most daring hazards of the human mind.

  • I believe in salvation through economic, social, and spiritual freedom.
  • I believe John Ruskin, William Morris, Henry Thoreau, Walt Whitman, and Leo Tolstoy to be Prophets of God, who should rank in mental reach and spiritual insight with Elijah, Hosea, Ezekiel, and Isaiah.
  • I believe that men are inspired to-day as much as ever men were.
  • I believe we are now living in Eternity as much as ever we shall.
  • I believe that the best way to prepare fore for a Future Life is to be kind, live one day at a time, and do the work you can do best, doing it as well as you can.

  • I believe we should remember the Week-day, to keep it holy.
  • I believe there is no devil but fear.
  • I believe that no one can harm you but yourself.
  • I believe in my own divinity - and yours.
  • I believe that we are all sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be.
  • I believe the only way we can reach the Kingdom of Heaven is to have the Kingdom of Heaven in our hearts.
  • I believe in every man minding his own business.
  • I believe in sunshine, fresh air, friendship, calm sleep, beautiful thoughts.
  • I believe in the paradox of success through failure.
  • I believe in the purifying process of sorrow, and I believe that death is a manifestation of life.
  • I believe the Universe is planned for good.
  • I believe it is possible that I shall make other creeds, and change this one, or add to it, from time to time, as new light may come to me.

by Elbert Hubbard

The sea knows all things, for at night when the winds are asleep the stars confide to him their secrets. In his breast are stored away all the elements that go to make up the round world. Beneath his depths lie buried the sunken kingdoms of fable and legend, whose monarchs have long been lost in oblivion. He appropriates and makes his own all that is - dissolving the rocks that seek to stop his passage - forming, transforming, rearranging, never ceasing, tireless. Tireless ever, for he gets his rest in motion. With acute ear he listens along every coast and lies in wait for the spirit of the offshore wind. All rivers run to meet him, carrying tidings from afar, and ever the phosphorescent dust from other spheres glimmers on his surface. It is not to be wondered that men have worshiped the ocean, for in his depths they have seen mirrored the image of Eternity - of Infinity. Here they have seen the symbol of God's great plan of oneness with His creatures, for the sea is the union of all infinite particles, and it takes the whole to make the one. Men have fallen on their faces to worship the sea. Women have thrown him their children to appease his wrath. Savagely yet tenderly has he received the priceless treasure and hidden it away where none could recall. He has heard the dying groans of untold thousands, and drowned their cries for help with his own ceaseless roar; but still his ear has not failed to catch the whisperings of confession that have come from souls about to appear before their Maker. And yet how beautiful and kind is he in his apparent relentless cruelty, for he keeps only the transient part, and gently separates the immortal and wafts the spirit back to God who gave it. And what does the sea do with all these secrets, mysteries, and treasures? Go shrive thyself, and with soul all in tune to the harmonies of the Universe listen to the waves and they shall tell thee the secrets of life.

Hubbard and his wife were lost in the Irish Sea with the Lusitania May 7, 1915

His spirit continues today in East Aurora, N. Y., with The Roycrofters.

It is amazing that these Hubbard writings are nearly a century old!

To learn more about this independently thinking man of the Progressive Era, use:

The Elbert Hubbard Bibliography.

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