On Persistence

Former President Coolidge with Mrs. Coolidge, joined by the owners, operators and designers of Lakeside Inn in the 1930s. L to R: Mrs. F. W. Wentworth, architect Fred W. Wentworth, the Coolidges, Archie Hurlburt, manager of Lakeside, and Mr. and Mrs. Charles Edgerton. The Coolidges stayed in Mount Dora at the Inn from January to February 1930.

Former President Coolidge with Mrs. Coolidge, joined by the owners, operators and designers of Mount Dora’s Lakeside Inn in Florida during the 1930s. L to R: Mrs. F. W. Wentworth, architect Fred W. Wentworth, the Coolidges, Archie Hurlburt, manager of Lakeside, and Mr. and Mrs. Charles Edgerton. The Coolidges stayed in Mount Dora at the Inn from January to February 1930.

The quote featured below by Design Doctor was attributed to Calvin Coolidge for many years, and some still think he authored it. This is likely because it sounds like him, resembling his crisp, one could almost “machine-gun style” of expression. It was even attributed to McDonald’s founder, Ray Kroc, by “Dear Abby” in the 1990s.

The quote originally appeared in the 1910s as recurring filler for magazines and various publications. It is likely there that a young lawyer-legislator named Calvin Coolidge first saw it in print and from there saw it again in New York Life Insurance Company pamphlets, where he served on the Board, during the early 1930s. As for Mr. Kroc, who was but a young boy at that time, likely saw the old quote during any of his many jobs from Red Cross ambulance driver during the Great War to radio disc jockey for WGES. Whether these men ever saw the quote at all is immaterial. They lived its truth. They imbibed its power and turned its incisive observations into very real success. Coolidge would reach the pinnacle of world power in public office before he was sixty. Kroc, on the other hand, would not realize the extraordinary world-wide potential of McDonald’s until after his fiftieth birthday. Yet, both men understand and still exemplify the immense relevance of this statement.

Press On!

Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence.

Talent will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.

Genius will not; the world is full of educated derelicts.

Persistence and Determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan “Press On” has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.

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