Education: Thrifty Trainman

"Whatever your income, save some of it," said lean, frugal Charles E. Stillings, 81. It seemed a nice homily from an old retired railroadman who lives in a shabby hotel room overlooking the New Haven train tracks at Stamford, Conn. His own income, during all his years as foreman of the New Haven Railroad's power plant at nearby Cos Cob, never reached $100 a week. But laconic Bachelor Stillings practiced just what he preached. He put most of his savings in blue chip common stocks—and held on.

After he retired in 1948, Stillings' hotel room grew more cluttered with company reports and...

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