The Common Lot

The Common Lot

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The Common Lot by Robert Herrick

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1904

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The Common Lot

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Jackson Hart has studied architecture at an eastern technical school, at Cornell University, and at the Paris Beaux Arts, compliments of his uncle, Powers Jackson, a wealthy Chicago bridge builder. At his uncle's death, he inherits only $10,000 of the vast fortune the old man has accumulated, while the rest of the estate is left in trust to educate the children of local working men. Inspired by anger, Hart joins Chicago's most prominent architectural firm, and appears to have a brilliant career before him. But greed, ambition, and a desire to get away from the common lot soon lead him into unscrupulous practices and threatened legal action. The Common Lot is a thought provoking analysis of the attitudes and methods of Chicago's super rich during the years prior to the turn of the twentieth century. --Book Review Digest, 1905

Book Excerpt

er so momentous to him. They smoked, wrapped in their own thoughts.

"I wonder who was the joker who put up that monstrous Greek temple out there in the cemetery?" Jackson finally observed, in a nervous desire to say something.

"You mean the family mausó-leum?" Everett asked severely, removing his cigar from his lips and spitting carefully out of the half-opened window. "That was done by a fellow named Roly, and it was considered a very fine piece of work. It was built the time aunt Frankie died."

"It's a spooky sort of place to put a man into!"

"I think the funeral was what your uncle would have liked," Hollister remarked, as if to correct this irrelevant talk. "He hated to be eccentric, and yet he despised pretentious ceremonies. Everything was simple and dignified. The parson was good, too, in what he said. And the old men turned out in great numbers. I was glad of that! But I was surprised. It's nearly two years since he gave up the Works, and memories are short between m

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