Mastermind Group: The Vagabonds

ben francia | by Ben Francia |Last Updated: March 5, 2013
ford estate

Ford Estate: The Mastermind Venue of the Vagabonds. Image by Ann Gordon under CC license on Flickr

Mastermind groups have existed long before Napoleon Hill even defined what it is. Back then people didn’t label it as such. For many, it was more of a meeting intended for camaraderie, transcending to a meeting of people who surrounded themselves with inspiring individuals and hopefully learn from them.

An example of this is that of the Vagabonds.

I stumbled upon a story of a farmer driving in an old Model T out in the country and he noticed five men standing by a Lincoln touring car stuck in the mud. He stopped and helped them pull the car out of the mud. One of men shook his hand telling the farmer, “I made the car you’re driving.” “And I’m the man who made those tires,” said the other man in the group. With that he pointed to two of the others, saying, “Meet the man who invented the electric light and the President of the United States.” When the fifth man asked the farmer, “I guess you don’t know me either?” the farmer replied, “No, but if you’re the same kind of liar as these other darn fools, I wouldn’t be surprised if you said you are Santa Claus.

I wouldn’t be surprised on how the farmer reacted and who would have expected a farmer to stumble upon an interesting bunch. The farmer just met Henry Ford, the automobile mogul, Harvey Firestone, founder of the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company, Warren G. Harding, US President, Thomas Edison, famed scientist and inventor, and Luther Burbank, respected agriculturist. This mastermind group was on their way together to a campsite.

Instead of weekly meetings the Vagabonds, as they called themselves, had road trips every summer since 1915 in motor camping caravans. Edison, Firestone, and Ford, along with the naturalist Thomas Burroughs before his death in 1921, invited guests like Burbank and President Calvin Coolidge went state to state to various campsites.

The men would hold impromptu tree chopping and climbing contests, which inspired them to come up with new ideas. The men also spent time around a campfire discussing scientific and business ventures as well as debating various issues. The trips lasted until 1924 when they were cancelled due to Harding’s death and newspaper reporters and photographers swarmed the campsites.

However, this didn’t stop the men from meeting in a den at Henry Ford’s Fair Lane estate.

These men were not just members of a mastermind group, they were friends who came together and discussing all possibilities in business and innovation. They sought the company and inspiration of great minds, creating a mastermind that will help them improve.

Do you want to be part of a mastermind group? Check this link and find out if you have what it takes to join.


PS: I recently started the Digital Entrepreneur Mastermind Club to help Entrepreneurs who want to start an online business how to take advantage the power of a Mastermind. I’ll be facilitating some of the Mastermind meetings and conduct a couple of FREE workshops as well. Check it out when you get the chance ==>>

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