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    Clickable dictation at various speeds is available at the bottom of this page. The transcript of the dictation appears here as well.

    This material isn't exactly easy and it is written in a style we don't see very often today. But when an educated person writes and writes well, this kind of language isn't uncommon. Yes, some of the constructions seem odd today but the letter itself is very well written.

Gregg Speed Building, Gregg Publishing Company, 1932, p. 228-230

Letter by Darwin P. Kingsley (concluded)

          Death has heretofore been a terrible figure because life wasn’t organized against him.  Now life is so organized.  Death will ultimately come to all of us.  Nobody doubts that and nobody can change it.  The terror of Death (I am not now considering any religious considerations) lies in his cruel, remorseful, and uncertain strokes.  In that has been his victory. 
          Life insurance faces Death not as a terror but as a fact and deals with him just as it deals with bonds or real estate mortgages.
          Let me show you how vital those $110 billion are.  Back of these pledged billions lie three great forces.
          First—$19 billion in cash and securities in hand.
          Second—70 million people who have contracted directly or indirectly to pay for the premiums.
          Third—the power of compound interest.
          Together they make that $110 billion the most vital and useful force in all sociology.
          My main point is that you, beginning with your individual needs and obligations, have not only minimized the terrors of Death, Disability, and Old Age, but you have come as a group to be one of the largest holders of useful securities in the world.
          You are the only group that ever had the courage and sanity to rob Death of his terrors by dealing with him as an ultimate fact.    
          As a group, you are not capitalistic yet you have become the greatest of capitalists.
          Following your impulse of self-protection, you have created the greatest of all beneficial institutions.
          Seeking to banish the need of charity from your own household, you have shown how the need of charity may be completely banished from every household.  Very truly yours,


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Instructions for Self-Dictation Practice:
    Copy and paste the above article into a word-processing document, using double or triple spacing and 12- or 14-pitch type.
    As always, be sure to check your shorthand dictionary for correct outlines before "drilling"!

Dictation Practice:
    Note that the material was counted and recorded for dictation at 100; all other speeds were copied from the 100 take and electronically adjusted and may therefore sound unusual.
    PLEASE ALLOW SUFFICIENT TIME FOR THE DICTATION TO LOAD depending upon your internet connection and the size of the dictation file. Slower dictation files are bigger.

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Gregg Shorthand Pitman Shorthand Speedwriting Shorthand