A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry forthcoming—B.P. (5/27)
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Entry from July 05, 2015
“One right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness”

"The right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness” has been cited in print since at least 1917. Authorship of the saying is unknown.

The saying was seldom cited in print for many years. “One right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness” was cited in Forbes magazine in 1973, when it was credited to American author and publisher William Feather (1889-1981). The saying has had renewed popularity and Feather is almost always credited, although it’s uncertain if or when Feather said it.


Wikipedia: William Feather
William A. Feather (August 25, 1889 - January 7, 1981) was an American publisher and author, based in Cleveland, Ohio.

Born in Jamestown, New York, Feather relocated with his family to Cleveland in 1903. After earning a degree from Western Reserve University in 1910, he began working as a reporter for the Cleveland Press. In 1916, he established the William Feather Magazine. In addition to writing for and publishing that magazine, and writing for other magazines as H.L. Mencken’s The American Mercury, he ran a successful printing business, and wrote several books. 

Google Books
Hathi Trust Digital Library
The Tonearm
Columbia Graphophone Company (U.S.)
Volume 1
October 1917
Pg. 25:
The right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness.

Old Fulton NY Post Cards
17 July 1919, Whitesville (NY) News, pg. 1, col. 5:
The right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness.

Google Books
Forbes
Volume 112, Issues 7-12
1973
Pg. 90:
One right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness.
WILLIAM FEATHER

Google Books
Born to Build:
The Story of the Gene B. Glick Company

By Gene Glick
Carmel, IN: Guild Press of Indiana
1997
Pg. 249:
One right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness.
-- William Feather

Google Books
International Business:
Managing Globalization

By John S. Hill
Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.
2009
Pg. 409:
One right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness.
William Feather, U.S. publisher and author

New Zealand Herald
Graham McGregor: The high value of Centres of Influence
9:30 AM Tuesday Oct 2, 2012
(...)
‘One right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness’.
William Feather

Twitter
SocialBuzz
‏@SocialBuzz_org
‘One right and honest definition of business is mutual helpfulness.
- William Feather @forbesthoughts http://onforb.es/VgtWcY
3:09 PM - 6 Jul 2015

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityWork/Businesses • Sunday, July 05, 2015 • Permalink