OK, I've been a little busy and haven't done my homework properly, then I lost my source, my library book, on a nightmare flight the other day, so easy tigers, I will pay that fine.
Frederick Taylor was born around the middle of the nineteenth century into a wealthy, largely Quaker Pennsylvanian family. As far as I recall anyway. His father a non practising lawyer and landowner, his mother a daughter of whaling money, both parents highly literate, father went to Harvard, I think. Father shy but firm, Mother social and political regards slavery, a link between his parents. Frederick had a brother and sister, brother haughty, cant remember a lot of his sister, not sure he had one.
American Civil War in his youth, none of the family directly involved, though suggestions of a black escape route to Canada through his wealthy Pennsylvania community. Strong links between a handful of influential families with the Taylors. Banking and Industry. Family using language like “thee, thou art … etc” biblical, traditional, even for then, I gather.
Frederick takes a long, several years, tour, cultural and educational through Europe, largely central Europe and works real hard at Maths and languages. Rides an early bicycle. There is a story about him and his group finding integrating with European pupils, Germans I think, difficult, antagonistic. Another story about him refusing to make way for a German soldier on the street, collision then Frederick refusing a duel with gusto. Don't really know what to think about that. A story can be so twisted or altered in the way that it is told that this feels like Playdoh.
He returns to Europe and is shortly enrolled into a Harvard feeder school, I think they called it. Does well academically, residing with friends in a boarding house and living an austere academic life. He gets into trouble with his school for taking a book into church, letters from to his father about it. There's no rule against it.
Taylor was bold, I don't think that he always was, but he could be. He's still cited unanimously as THE man to know about, by Management Consultants. I don't know about his later life, I've never read his master work, “Principles of Scientific Management”, and it would be a little interesting to know what Walter Benjamin would have said about how his name is used now. Even after all this time. The book I read gave the impression that he was racked and scarred by union men politicians before his death. But I didn't read that far, wasn't there, and I've lost the book and have to pay the fine soon.
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