Acres of Diamonds

Acres of Diamonds

By Russell H Conwell

Acres of Diamonds-Our Every-day Opportunities is a self help classic by Russell H. Conwell on the subject of success.

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Book Information

Publisher: Franklin Classics
Publish Date: 10/12/2018
Pages: 194
ISBN-13: 9780342586097
ISBN-10: 0342586092
Language: English

Full Description

Acres of Diamonds-Our Every-day Opportunities is a self help classic by Russell H. Conwell on the subject of success. "Acres of Diamonds" originated as a speech which Conwell delivered over 6,000 times around the world. It was first published in 1890 by the John Y. Huber Company of Philadelphia.

The original inspiration for "Acres of Diamonds", his most famous essay, occurred in 1869 when Conwell was traveling in the Middle East.[7] The work began as a speech, "at first given," wrote Conwell in 1913, "before a reunion of my old comrades of the Forty-sixth Massachusetts Regiment, which served in the Civil War and in which I was captain."[8] It was delivered as a lecture on the Chautauqua circuit prior to his becoming pastor of the Grace Baptist Church in Philadelphia in 1882[9] and was first published in book form in 1890 by the John Y. Huber Company of Philadelphia.[10] Before his death in 1925, Conwell would come to deliver it over 6,152 times around the world.[10] The central idea of the work is that one need not look elsewhere for success, opportunity, achievement, or fortune; the resources to achieve all good things are present in one's own community. This theme is developed by an introductory anecdote, credited by Conwell to an Arab guide, about a man who wanted to find diamonds so badly that he sold his property and went off in futile search for them. The new owner of his home discovered that a rich diamond mine was located right there on the property. Conwell elaborates on the theme through examples of success, genius, service, or other virtues involving ordinary Americans contemporary to his audience: "dig in your own backyard!".

In A People's History of the United States, historian Howard Zinn comments that the message was that anyone could get rich if they tried hard enough, while implying that Conwell held elitist attitudes by selectively quoting the following from his speech: I say that you ought to get rich, and it is your duty to get rich ... The men who get rich may be the most honest men you find in the community. Let me say here clearly ... ninety-eight out of one hundred of the rich men of America are honest. That is why they are rich. That is why they are trusted with money. That is why they carry on great enterprises and find plenty of people to work with them.

About the Author

Russell H. Conwell, the founder of Temple University in Philadelphia, was described by the great John Wanamaker as a student, schoolmaster, lawyer, preacher, organizer, thinker and writer, lecturer, educator, diplomat, and leader of men. Conwell was also the founder and pastor of Baptist Temple, one of the largest Protestant churches in America during his day and time.

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