Former New York City Mayor Strong and Business Partner Apparently Played Loose with Financial Notes; Banks Refused to Accept Them

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William L. Strong (1827-1900) was the Mayor of New York from 1895 to 1897. He was a Republican, elected by the Republican and anti-Tammany Democrats. Strong was reform minded and established the Board of Education, created small parks and is thought of as being the father of the Department of Corrections. Strong appointed Theodore Roosevelt as Police Commissioner.


Strong was born in Richland County, Ohio and was a dry goods salesman in Wooster, Ohio and later in Manchester, Ohio. In 1853, he went to New York City, where, in 1869, he became the head of his own dry goods firm, William L. Strong & Co., with offices in New York, Philadelphia and Boston.

Shortly after his death, his firm went broke. A newspaper version, published on November 14, 1900, states: "A bank president is quoted as saying that it is rumored on the street that the ex-Mayor was by no means as rich as supposed. He and Mr. Stott had been presenting their notes in sizes all the way from $25,000 to $100,000 so that the leading banks became cautious and then many of us refused to discount their stock. The two dead members (which would include William Strong) of the firm had been doing what we call ?swapping paper.' Mr. Strong endorsed Mr. Stott's notes and Mr. Stott endorsed Mr. Strong's

"The cause of the Strong failure was made public today by Butler, Holman, Joline &Finders, counsel for the firm in the action of the receivership Counsel said that the Strong firm had endorsed more than $300,000 in notes for the Stott Wollen mills " Both Stott and Strong died within three days of each other.

Very nice autograph letter signed W.L. Strong on the firm's stationary, Boston, dated Sept. 5, 1873, to G.W. Olny. Approximately 9 ½" by 5 ¾", the letter has a vertical fold with some browning and one double pin hole at the top, affecting nothing. Very good condition.

"Your Shakers are looking nicely just now. I am about to paper each piece with the same kind of paper that I am lining the cases with I would advise you to paper all of your goods in the future I have ordered a plain stamp for you to stamp on The Paper that goes around each piece of goods so that when the bales are opened the name Waumbeck Co. will be seen on each paper " More about the ordering of various stamps.

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