DESPITE his Cripple Creek mining and gambling experience and his one trip to St. Louis on the sleeper, Baruch really knew very little about the United States at this time except what could be learned from books and reports. Henry C. Davis, a breezy westerner who knew this country as a farmer knows his fields but who cared nothing about anything overseas, became connected with A. A. Housman & Co. as a sort of scout to look over situations and developments in that strange country west of the Hudson River.
He persuaded Baruch to make a swing around the circle with him, during which he explained all sorts of things that most New Yorkers didn't understand about western farmers, businessmen, political upheavals, and the demagogues who took advantage of them. He was fond of quoting James G. Blaine, whom Grover Cleveland had defeated for the presidency, and especially valued Blaine's remarks about gold. When a heckler in Minnesota defied Blaine to say who had determined that gold should be the only money, Blaine had replied, solemnly: "The Lord God Almighty." Then he had quoted the Bible about gold, somewhat to the surprise of the heckler.
Baruch was impressed with the advantages of seeing the various sections of the country at first hand. From that time on, every year until 1917, he made a trip around the country, studying