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The year was 1937, and the Great Depression was ravaging the world.
Things were particularly tough in the United States, where the unemployment rate was as high as 25%, up from an average of 5% before that fateful day in 1929.
So when Napoleon Hill published his book Think and Grow Rich, people ate it up. It gave them hope that they could take control of their financial future by learning and applying his 14 principles.
It sold out its first print run in three weeks, and by the time the Depression was over, it sold more than 1 million copies.
Along with How To Win Friends and Influence People (which was published a year earlier by Dale Carnegie), it became one of the first best-selling personal development books.
To date it has sold over 100 million copies, and is widely considered to be one of the best personal development books ever published.
Let’s dive in to the 14 principles that Hill tells us we need to learn if we want to be rich.