Complaints — from 1905 Wisconsin — about the Smell of Money

In 1905 A.T. Glaze of Fond du Lac published a history of business in the city from “early times to the present.” In it he issued a scathing attack on an economic problem that he claimed was a burden to “all who handle money.”

His problem? The smell of cash, which he argued was “suggestive of nastiness in the highest degree.”

“Picking up a bill of the paper money of the country,” he began, “imagine, if you can, where that bill may have been, into what sort of places and into the possession of what class of people, since it was issued new and crisp.” Glaze admitted that “you are willing to pocket a package if you can, but you will not bring it to your nose more than once by free consent.” He went on to say that the smell of a one-dollar bill was “suggestive of leprosy, smallpox, itch or other disease.”

Via Wisconsin Historical Society – Odd Wisconsin Archives.

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