AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF JOHN FRITZ 185
The Board meeting was held monthly, and so it happened, as I remember, that it was some ten days or two weeks before a meeting would take place. In the meantime, there was much talk between the directors, singly and myself, but it seemed to have but Uttle if any efi'ect. At length the time of the regular Board meeting came, but what they said I did not know. After the meeting was over I talked with the directors singly again. Some of them thought the Lieutenant was bright but young and inexperienced and not a safe adviser, as he knew notlflng in regard to the practical worldng of such a plant; they said it was so dif¬ ferent from what we were doing that we would have to teach aU new men, which would be very costly, and they coifld not see where the work to keep such a vast plant as I wanted to build was to be secured, and did not know where the money was to come from to build it, and the chances were, it would be a faflure and the whole plant would get into the hands of the sheriS or assignee, or some other ghostly bugaboo.
But I was favorably impressed with what Mr. Jaques told me about the plant, what Whitworth's works were doing, and how kindly the Gun Foundry Board had been treated by the people connected with those works, and with the fact that Mr. Jaques had a contract giving him permission and aU necessary infonnation to build a plant in the Umted States. This was more than I ever expected could be gotten from the Whitworth people, as their policy up to that time had been to keep everything secret. As there seemed some doubt in the minds of some of the directors as to Lieutenant Jaques' being able to form a correct opinion of what he had seen, I proposed to our President and General Manager to let me go over to Wlfltworth's and investigate the whole subject thoroughly; but they did not seem to take any interest whatever in the matter, saying the project