Bernard Manness Baruch, the sixty-four-year-old financier who was born in South Ca’lina and who achieved the distinction of being dubbed by the notorious anti-Semite William Dudley Pelley, as “our real Presidentâ€”a Jew, the Dictator of America,” has given Wall street the air.
One of the undisputed monarchs of the financial canyons, confidente of every president from Woodrow Wilson to Franklin D. Rooseveltâ€”although one of the first to utter disagreement with some of the latter’s New Deal policiesâ€”the tall, gray-haired, athletic-looking “Barney” on Friday announced his intention of retiring to the shade of that fig tree to which every man, according to the Bible, is entitled and there to spend his remaining years in the writing of his memoirs.
WALL STREET SURPRISED
His retirement took Wall street by surprise and left in the wake of the announcement both regret and considerable puzzlement. In certain quarters of the Street, the retirement was interpreted as holding ominous import for the future of the financial community. Baruch’s intimacy with President Roosevelt and his failure to sway the latter to what the Street would have regarded as more moderate financial legislation, led this group to the belief that Baruch’s exit from the financial arena at this time meant that he saw little hope for Wall street ever emerging from the doldrums in which it now is.
In other circles, the retirement was viewed as presaging appointment by Roosevelt to a high political or diplomatic office. Getting clear of Wall street, those who held to this view contended, was a preliminary to acceptance of some important post.
WHAT HE PLANS TO DO
However, in his announcement, made exclusively to the Associated Press, Baruch did not touch at all on these angles. In his skyscraper office at 120 Broadway, the man who said he preferred to be known as a “speculator, a man who thinks and plans for the futureâ€”and acts before it occurs,” as he long ago informed a Congressional committee, said he’d keep himself from growing rusty by writing on economic and political subjects as well as on his career, and by making a few public addresses.
Before a reporter from the Jewish Daily Bulletin could reach him, to query him on whether he intended to touch on racial or religious topics in his autobiography, the financier who has placed himself in the ex-class, had left for the week-end. In the past he has not been identified as actively interested in Jewish affairs or problems.
TO GO TO EUROPE
Mr. Baruch revealed that late this month he will go to Europe on the Leviathan for a few weeks of rest in Vichy. He will be accompanied on his trip by Frank R. Kent, journalist and numbered among the group of younger professional men who have been identified as Baruchian disciples.
While he is abroad, his offices will be removed to Madison avenue and Fifty-seventh street. When he returns he will embark on his three-fold literary venture. First on his schedule is an autobiography that will depict the life of a son of a Confederate Army surgeon, Simon Baruch, who came to this country from Germany. From his early Civil War days he will carry the story through his New York City college days, and the start of his Wall street career The autobiography will be brought through the days of James J. Hill, George Baker, Morgan the elder, the friendship with Wilson and into the turbulence of the past few years.
GOSPEL AND ANTHROPOLOGY
His second literary effort, he said, would be impersonal in nature and inspirational in character, directed toward the youth of the land. This work he modestly predicted would probably be tossed out by some youngsters as the output of “an old faker.”
The third projected volume he described as concerned with man’s conquest of nature. For this work, he said, he has been studying and making notes for years. It will trace the development of tribes into nations, of barbarism into culture, of society.