Mr. Lackland heard my explanation and in an instant said – “Matthews, I will certify your check, and if you are the successful bidder, give us your draft on Blake Brothers & Company and take the bonds in you valise to New York. In that way you can save $1.10 express charges per 1000.” Well, we were the successful bidder, and I did as he suggested, but I would rather pay the express charges than have the anxiety again! Shortly afterward we purchased in the same way a million dollars worth of bonds of the State and made many other similar purchases.
Some may say that this was not good banking, but the great mass of people are honest. A very large volume of business is now done in what is called “Single-name paper.” I believe the most successful bankers are those who psychologic instincts show them whom to trust, or otherwise. They get the business.
Such transactions give a wrong impression to the public, as people generally think we used our own money to make these purchases when in fact we did not use one cent, as our credit did it all.
Another instance; when the Supreme Court of the
State decided a suit against the St. Louis Gas Light Company in its favor,
Matthews & Whitaker held 650 shares of the stock belonging to other
parties. The market price the day before the decision was $75.00 per share.
When the decision became known it jumped to $350.00 per share. Among others,
our name as the holder of 650 shares was published, although we did not
own a single share. It was the cause of numerous letters to us asking
all kinds of assistance, even to paying off a mortgage on a farm in Texas,
as well as all kinds of charity applications.
Your uncle Robert Nisbet of the banking house of Allen, Copp & Nisbet discovered the counterfeit Missouri State Bank bill which was so successfully distributed in California in 1840 to 1851, and caused great loss to those who exchanged gold for them, to save the risk of carrying it, as the Missouri State Bank notes were as good as gold at home. This information is given in the way of caution.