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823608

Cyrus H. McCormick, Jr.

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The International Harvester Company Works are . . . running on a very limited schedule owing to the falling off in purchasing by the farmers generally.”

Cyrus Hall McCormick, Jr., 1859-1936.  American businessman; President, 1902-1919, and Chairman of the Board, 1919-1935, International Harvester Corporation.  Typed Letter Signed, Cyrus H. McCormick, one page, quarto, on stationery of International Harvester Company, Chicago, [Illinois], May 23, 1921. 

Mired in the post-World War I Depression of 1920-1921, McCormick tells Wall Street financier S. R. Bertron that the International Harvester Company was operating at far from full production.  In part: “Your letter . . . is received.  The International Harvester Company Works are at the present time running on a very limited schedule owing to the falling off in purchasing by the farmers generally.”  Changing subjects, McCormick adds:  “Mr. Arthur Young has charge of the department which refers to the subjects in which Mr. Percival Dodge would be interested and any time Mr. Dodge comes here he will be most glad to give him all the information he can upon this interesting subject.”

The Depression of 1920-1921 was marked by extremely sharp deflation in the United States.  Estimates place the deflation, the largest one-year percentage decline in 140 years, as high as 18%.  Unemployment rose as high as 11.7%.  Automobile production fell by 60%, and overall industrial production fell by 30%.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 47%.

McCormick likely refers to Henry Percival Dodge (1870-1936), an American diplomat who at the time was United States Ambassador to the Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes.  He also served at various times as the minister to Honduras, Salvador, Morocco, Panama, and Denmark.

McCormick has signed this letter in jet black.  The letter is lightly toned, its edges have been folded over vertically, and there is a faint paper clip stain at the top margin, none of which affects the signature.  Overall the letter is in very good to fine condition.

Unframed.

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