BICYCLER HAS POCKETS FULL OF GOLD
In the “forenoon,” he ran a rural mail route. When the road conditions permitted, he rode his bicycle on the route.
In the afternoons, he did farm work...but that was before April 1906.
In 1906, he was offered a job at the local bank keeping books in the afternoon. He accepted the job...the pay was right...for the banker anyway.
He still ran his rural mail route in the mornings and was not eligible to receive salary from the so long as he continued his mail run.
One day, the bank ran short of currency, and the cashier thought a neighboring bank could supply the needed cash. The neighboring bank was only 12 miles away, which wasn’t far unless it was 1906 and there was no public transportation and no automobiles.
Knowing his own horse and boggy would travel at only horse-and-buggy speed, the cashier knew he would never be able to travel the distance and return before the bank closed.
Then he remembered the young mail carrier and part-time janitor and bookkeeper’s bicycle, and asked the young man if he would run an errand. The young man agreed.
Dressed in his dirty farm overalls and a broad straw hat, he pedaled the twelve miles to exchanged the $2,000 for currency. When he arrived at the neighboring bank, he was informed that they, too, were running short on currency and the best they could do would be furnish the $2,000 in gold.
The young decided that gold would do alright, and asked if the gold could be put in two packages. That way, he could carry one package of $1,000 in each side pocket of his overalls. Now it was time for the 12 mile trip back to the local bank. Just outside of the neighboring town, his front tire went flat. The young man didn’t have any patching with him, so he had to push the wheel back to the public square for repairs and was delayed.
Even though the young man did not return to the bank until 4:30 and the bank had closed for the day, all was not lost. The gold took care of the bank’s needs for the remainder of the week.
In January of 1907, the young man resigned from the rural mail route and began working at the bank full time. He advanced quickly in his job, and soon the young bank janitor and bookkeeper became president and owner of the bank.
The young man was U. N. Clary, President of the Prosper State Bank from 1929 until 1965. NOTE: The information used in this story was taken from an account written by Clary in a 1961 edition of “Texas Bankers Record”. In the account, Clary’s determined and hard working attitude was obvious but did not appear to be anything out of the ordinary so far as he was concerned but it was.
Clary gave only a brief description of the trip back from the neighboring bank in McKinney that day in 1906, saying merely that no one suspected the farm boy on the bicycle had gold in his pockets.
Perhaps Clary’s quiet and reserved personality was reflected by his brief description of the incident, but one has to wonder what might have been on the minds of those who encountered the farm boy on the bicycle that afternoon, had they known the overall pockets were full of gold.