Tuesday, August 14, 2012


(An extremely rare and important work on the dangers of excessive speculation and inside manipulation of the Grain Exchanges circa 1929) 

by L. (Lysius) Gough

Book Description: Lysius Gough (Amarillos Printing Co.), Amarillo, TX, U.S.A., 1929. Soft cover. 1st Edition. 8vo - over 7¾ - 9¾" tall. Softcover, Brown leatherette card wrappers with gilt border and title to cover, assumed First Edition, 1929 (no date, page 94 confirms year written and several other sources confirm 1929 publication date), 5.5" x 8", 101 pp., author signature to flyleaf (likely a printed signature)

Book Condition: Good, covers rubbed, scuffed and soiled, wrappers detached but intact, corners bumped, spine bumped, moderate wear to edges with a few small tears to edges, pages lightly tanned otherwise clean and unmarked.

Content: Foreword, I. What It Costs the Farmer and the Public to Support the Exchanges, II. Future Trading and Private Wires, III. How Wheat and Cotton Prices are Made and Who Makes Them, IV. The Crime of Deflation, V. Hedging - The Cause of More Grief, VI. Manipulation - Fleecing the Farmer and Public, VII. Gambling, VIII. Gossip, IX. False Teaching, X. Legislative Activity of the Chicago Board of Trade and Other Exchanges, XI. Stable and Unstable, XII. How Exchange Gambling and Lobbying Affects the Farm Home -- end. 101 pp.,

About the Author: GOUGH, LYSIUS (1862-1940). Lysius Gough, farmer, businessman, and author, one of ten children of Asher and Elizabeth Gough, was born in Lamar County, Texas, on July 29, 1862. His father, a minister in the First Christian Church, owned a 160-acre farm on which Gough developed an early interest in cattle raising.

In 1876, at the age of fourteen, he ran away from home and got his first job as a cowboy for B. L. Murphy, who ran cattle in Hopkins and Hunt counties. During the next five years Gough participated in several overland drives to Kansas. In 1882 Jule Gunter hired him to work for the T Anchor Ranch. Because he never swore, Gough's fellow cowhands gave him the nickname "Parson." He remained with the T Anchor until 1884, when he decided to complete his education.

He entered Pilot Point Institute, finished high school at the age of twenty-six, obtained a teaching certificate, and was hired to be principal of the institute. While he was there, Gough published his first collection of cowboy verse, Western Travels and Other Rhymes (1886). He also studied law and qualified for the legal profession. In 1888 he married Ida Russell, a former pupil of his at Pilot Point, and they settled on a farm south of Dimmitt. They had ten children, six of whom lived to adulthood.

 In 1891 Gough taught the county's first school in Dimmitt. Later that year he assisted in the organization of the county and was elected the first county judge. In October 1898 the Goughs moved to Hereford, where he engaged in the real estate business and was for a time in partnership with C. G. Witherspoon.

In 1910 Gough was involved with D. L. McDonald in the drilling of irrigation test wells and was among the first to drill his own irrigation well. In 1911 he entered into a contract with the C. B. Livestock Company of Crosby County and conducted experimental work on 10,000 acres to determine what crops and seed types would be most profitable in the county. His detailed weekly reports are in the archives of the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum. After 1914 Gough began large-scale farming for himself. He was president of the Texas Wheat Growers Association from 1923 until 1928.

In 1929 he published a book entitled Crime, in which he denounced the activities of speculators in the Grain Exchange and their effects on prices paid to farmers. He began lecturing on farm subjects and was known throughout the Great Depression as a champion of farmers' rights. Summary: EXTREMELY SCARCE AND IMPORTANT DEPRESSION ERA TITLE on the Grain Trade and what the author views as the dangers brought forth by excessive speculation and shady Board of Exchange practices. HIGHLY COLLECTIBLE.

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