"Ordinary People ... are so used to be dazled [sic] with Riches, that they pay as much Deference to the Understanding of a Man of an Estate, as of a Man of Learning; and are very hardly brought to regard any Truth, how important soever it may be, that is preached to them, when they know there are several Men of five hundred a Year who do not believe it."
"A country is strong which consists of wealthy families, every member of whom is interested in defending a common treasure; it is weak when composed of scattered individuals, to whom it matters little whether they obey seven or one, a Russian or a Corsican, so long as each keeps his own plot of land, blind in their wretched egotism, to the fact that the day is coming when this too will be torn from them."
"One learns quite easily to identify the rich person who is making a career out of dangling the carrot; of being fawned on by institutions eager for his (or, more often, her) money. It is not very productive to "cultivate" them. I associated with many, and developed great compassion for rich people who suspect that they are in demand only because they are a potential source of income to some cause or institution. Whether it's true or not, their suspicions isolate them from all save a handful of old and trusted friends, turn them sour, make it difficult for them to accept new friends at face value, and leave them with little attraction other than their money."
"... so large a portion of those who hold much capital, instead of using their various advantages for the greatest good of those around them, employ the chief of them for mere selfish indulgences; thus inflicting as much mischief on themselves, as results to others from their culpable neglect. A great portion of the rich seem to be acting on the principle, that the more God bestows on them, the less are they under obligation to practise any self-denial, in fulfilling his benevolent plan of raising our race to intelligence and holiness."
"When a lady of wealth, is seen roaming about in search of cheaper articles, or trying to beat down a shopkeeper, or making a close bargain with those she employs, the impropriety is glaring to all minds. A person of wealth has no occasion to spend time in looking for extra cheap articles; her time could be more profitably employed in distributing to the wants of others. And the practice of beating down tradespeople, is vulgar and degrading, in any one."
"... most Southerners of my parents' era were raised to feel that it wasn't respectable to be rich. We felt that all patriotic Southerners had lost everything in defense of the South, and sufficient time hadn't elapsed for respectable rebuilding of financial security in a war- impoverished region."
"Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."