Skip to content

America’s first female tycoon.

Why, hello!

As you may (or may not) have noticed, Jim and I took a brief holiday. But we’re back! And we come bearing fresh, juicy personal-finance stories from assorted corners of the web.

First up, it’s a profile of “the witch of Wall Street”, Hetty Green. (We could simply post this link today, and it would be enough.)

The fascinating (and forgotten) story of America’s first female tycoon. [Avenue] — “She eschewed living in grand style in a mansion on Fifth Avenue’s Millionaire’s Row (though she owned property there), and instead chose to lodge in inexpensive rooming houses across the river in Hoboken, New Jersey, or in Brooklyn, often under assumed names. Hetty famously made her rounds of New York banks using public transportation, and once stepped off a public coach lugging a parcel containing $200,000 in negotiable bonds.”

Self-directed, project-based learning. [Seth Godin] — “From the age of five, many kids are capable of self-directed, project-based learning if we’re willing to turn off the TV and accept that the process won’t immediately lead to sought-after standardized test results. We can create a pattern of teaching people to be curious because curiosity is an engine for learning…” [I found this especially interesting because I recently decided to learn Japanese…for no particular reason other than curiosity.]

What to do with “extra” money. [Surviving and Thriving] — “Some things you can’t control – for example, the pandemic taking your job or cutting your hours way back. Or maybe the fact that your adult offspring had to move back home because their jobs vanished/shrank. But while you can’t change certain things, you can change the way you react to them. Taking any ‘extra’ money and putting it toward a goal is one of the things you can change.”

Let’s end things today with a video (as we often do). Generally speaking, I hate vertical video. It’s awful. And, in fact, I hate the fact that the video I’m about to share with you is shot in vertical mode because that means we’re missing so much visual information we might otherwise have. But this one is so good that I’m willing to forgive its verticality.

Here’s a five-minute video of a man hand-crafting a teapot from scratch. I love it. (True story: We own a teapot that’s nearly identical to this. What if this man made our teapot?)

Okay, that’s all for today. I’ll be back tomorrow with more links and videos and fun.