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SAVINGS BANKS ASSOCIATION of NEW YORK, News Bulletin, Aug. 21, 1942

                           On the Air
          All of the women commentators who are telling the savings story as participants in the Promotion of Thrift Campaign have taken on the assignment with unusual enthusiasm. Each of these commentators has been discussing economy in the home and ways of preserving what you have, so that now with a specific recommendation as to what to do with the money saved, their comments take on an added punch.
          Indicative of the enthusiasm was Adelaide Hawley's move in inviting Dr. Arthur Corby as her guest on the Women's Page of the Air, Thursday, August 13th. Dr. Corby has the largest and most complete collection of penny banks in the United States, and Miss Hawley's interview with him is reproduced in part herein.
 
INTERVIEW
Introductory Remarks.
          Hawley: Benjamin Franklin is the man who PUBLICIZED thrift more than anyone else long before a certain department store began informing the public it was "wise to be thrifty." I really think that "saving" for some people, is a centuries-old-custom I mean by that that there have always been certain people who squandered all they earned and certain people who SAVED a part of their earnings. And we've a guest in our studio today to PROVE what I've just said, at least about the people who save their money. He's Dr. Arthur E. Corby, a Manhattan dentist who has the largest and most complete collection of penny banks in the United States. When do YOU think man began saving his pennies, Dr. Corby?
          Corby: From an item in my own collection of penny banks I can prove that nineteen hundred some-odd years ago a Roman child saved his or her pennies. This bank I refer to is, of course, the oldest in my collection it's the oldest bank in the world. Mine happens to be a replica the original is in the Yale University collection.
          Hawley: What does it look like?
          Corby: You might compare it to a miniature camel-back trunk a little box HUMPED in the middle and it's only about one and a quarter inches high and two inches wide.
          Hawley: Couldn't have held many pennies, could it?
          Corby: No, not many, but to get back to your "penny saved is a penny earned" remark, if a penny had been taken OUT of that bank, nineteen hundred years ago, and deposited in a REAL bank, drawing interest at three per cent, compounded only once each year until now that penny would have grown to twenty-four sextillion dollars more than forty times the entire wealth of the United States!
          HAWLEY: Let that be a LESSON to you Larry . . . from now on . . . SAVE your pennies . . . in one of the Savings Banks of New York State! Which reminds me . . . I know a man who's very much in favor of our ideas on the subject of saving . . . except that he seems to find it impossible to save at the source . . . that is, save first and then spend what's left. The only way HE can save money is to empty his pockets of all change at the end of the day . . . pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, half-dollars . . . anything that isn't "folding money" goes into a little bank . . . I don't suppose it's as fancy as any of the penny banks in YOUR collection, Dr. Corby . . . but it serves his purpose . . . and then when the bank is full . . . and he says you'd be surprised at how quickly his system FILLS it . . . off it goes for deposit in his savings account. Well, we all have our individual way of saving . . .  That's HIS . . . what's YOURS? Won't you write and tell me about it? And tell me, too, about the ways in which you're adjusting your mode of living in order to be ABLE to save! I'm sure you have some pet economics we ALL could profit by . . . you know, these days, it's really PATRIOTIC to save . . . besides buying War Bonds and stamps. Yes, saving is the civilian's way of saving our Democracy!
          That's ONE of the reasons I asked you to be with us today Dr. Corby . . . that and the fact that you're the world's outstanding collector of penny banks. Just how MANY banks do you have in your collection, including the world's OLDEST penny bank.
          Corby: More than four thousand now.
          Hawley: And HOW and why did you ever get interested in this hobby of penny-bank collecting?
          Corby: It goes back to that word THRIFT again, Mrs. Hawley. It was the ROMANCE of thrift that got me interested in penny-banks, let's say. You know of course that many American fortunes of industries got their start because some little boy had a bank into which he dropped his pennies and I've got a bank in my collection to prove THAT statement, too.
          Hawley: Whose bank was that?
          Corby: J. D. Mott, the founder of the Mott Iron Works a leader in its field for two generations. Mott's penny-bank was a home-made job originally it had been an oval wooden spice box. The boy cut a slot in the lid with his jack-knife and carved his initials and the date on the bottom the initials, J. D. M. the date 1780.
          Hawley: Which banks in your collection, Dr. Corby, usually attract the most interest?
          Corby: Among NON-collectors? I'd say it's the mechanical banks they always DO something when they "take in" the penny.
          Hawley: Just what does THAT mean?
          Corby: Just that some mechanical action takes place before the coin falls into the receptacle. For instance, in the case of the dentist's bank which I have brought with me . . . see . . . the dentist is working on the patient . . . you put the money in the dentist's pocket, here, and press the lever. See? The dentist falls back, with the patient's tooth in the forceps the MAN falls out of the dentist's chair and the PENNY drops into the old-time dentist's gas-bag.
          Hawley: That's very funny you get a SHOW with every penny you save, apparently. A penny saved buy's a penny's worth of FUN in this case.
          Corby: That was the idea it was invented as an incentive to saving. In order to see the bank work, the child had to deposit money in it.
          Hawley: Have you many more of those MECHANICAL banks, Dr. Corby?
          Corby: Hundreds . . . got another one right here . . . Jonah and the whale. The whale opens its mouth to come after Jonah, but when you press the lever, Jonah surprises the whale gulps and swallows it. The really remarkable thing about Jonah and the whale is the excellent TIMING that the inventor has put into the mechanism.
          Hawley: I suppose it's the mechanical banks which most collectors concentrate on when they're attempting to follow in your footsteps, Dr. Corby. Is that right?
          Corby: In the main, yes and of course they are very amusing and entertaining.
          Hawley: But not YOUR favorite?
          Corby: I like ALL my banks, of course, but I like the VARIETY of designs and materials represent, too. I've banks made of porcelain, of pottery, or wood, leather, tin, iron, GLASS . . .
          Hawley: Glass?
          Corby:  Oh yes . . . one of my most treasured pieces or penny bank, rather is a bottle bank. It was made in Cambridge, in New England, about 1850 maybe earlier. The coin container rests on a triple-knobbed stem and a wide circular foot. Above are crown-like interesting arches, sort of supporting the container. It's delicate and beautiful, of course, though not very utilitarian.
          Hawley: How about a penny-bank that can really hold a LOT of pennies? Got any of those?
          Corby: Oh yes one is a little wooden keg bank by actual count, it accommodates 4,152 pennies
          Hawley: Sounds like a HEFTY amount of coppers.
          Corby:  Thirty-one and a half POUNDS to be exact. And by the way, some of my banks are "talking banks" complete with sayings and mottoes . . . for instance, one of the banks made in Philadelphia is a pottery bank with the inscription "A penny a day keeps the poor-house away." Another one . . .  a solid silver BARREL has THIS to say to its owner . . . "The time to save is in the morning of life."
          Hawley: If you'll forgive the PERSONAL question, Dr. Corby . . .  has your collection of penny banks inspired YOU to save your pennies?
          Corby: AND my dollars the collection proves that, Mrs. Hawley . . . for I don't pick up my collector's items . . . for PEANUTS.
          Hawley: Well, it's such an interesting collection and such a fascinating hobby you have, Dr. Corby. And we're delighted to have you as a guest on the Woman's Page of the Air. For, if penny-saving is a virtue we all like to see in our children and that's why we give them penny-banks to this very day, it's the WOMEN of the country, who really do most of the SAVING, wouldn't you say?
          Corby: I know they SPEND most of the money in the world but I guess they are responsible for saving MOST of what is saved, too.
          Hawley: Neatly put . . . But seriously, even the most extravagant of women are SAVERS today at least I hope they are saving everything from MONEY to kitchen-fats, to scrap iron and tin cans. And speaking of tin cans, I hope that none of our listeners, those who live in communities where tin-can collections are made, have STOPPED saving every tin they CAN. No substitutes have been found for either TIN or steel and BOTH metals are more and more in demand by our war industries. Don't be too busy today to get your tin cans ready for the collection that may take place TOMORROW, Wash every tin can well remove the top and bottom and flatten the can with your foot, leaving a slight space between the two flattened sides. There was a collection of tin cans throughout New York City yesterday there'll be others . . . SAVE your tin cans for THOSE, too. Never throw a tin can away it MAY mean that because you failed to save for salvage you sent one of your own boys to his death. Every tank needs tin every bomber needs tin every ship needs tin. Please save YOURS for your country. And now I want to thank Dr. Arthur E. Corby, world's most famous collector of penny banks, for being our guest this morning. I hope we all remember what Dr. Corby's collection of banks teaches us that to HAVE we must SAVE what we have.


Web note: Newspaper clipping (below) was found inside of the publication
that included the interview with Dr. Corby (above).


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