132 AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF lOHN FRITZ
Uncle Sam. We had no electric Ught to work by at night, or even gas when we commenced. AU the Ught we had was made by the use of lamps filled with smoky rosin oil, as it was caUed.
We had no money, and at that time the iron men were looked upon as paupers. The banks would not loan them any money as long as they could get what they caUed first- class commercial paper, and at that time money was not in abundance, as it is to-day; consequently the iron men got but Uttle, and that Uttle only for a short time, the bankers fearing they would faff, as in the early days of rail making they were very likely to do. At the time when we were in the midst of our improvements at Cambria, a banker to whom the company owed twenty thousand doUars came into the rolling miU and asked me what we were doing. I told him we were making some changes and improvements. His reply was that any man that would destroy property and spend money as we were doing was a fool or a madman. I told him that I was doing it and it had never occurred to me that I was either. He took the train that night for Pliiladelphia, and the next morning caUed at the company's office and demanded his money in such an emphatic manner that they had to pay him that day. I might mention many instances showing the distrust of the bankers toward the iron men, and also what they said about myself and about what I was doing. But suffice to say that I passed through a merciless fire of vindictive ridicule to victory, with sim¬ pUcity and becoming dignity, doubtless to the disgust of some of the wiseacres who had made some direful pre¬ dictions.
We started to put on two feed roUers at Cambria, one on the front and one on the rear of the train. The workmen all said, " They are no good." In spite of the prophecies of the workmen, we put them on and they worked satis-