Inspiration really can be found where you least expect it.
Take, for instance, the Babson Boulders in Dogtown, a ghost town in Cape Ann, Massachusetts. These rock carvings were commissioned in the 1930’s by Roger Babson, whose ancestors hailed from Dogtown. Babson was a bit of a Renaissance man–an entrepreneur, writer, one-time presidential candidate and founder of Babson College. He also predicted the stock market crash of 1929.
When the Great Depression hit, as he predicted, Babson did his part to help those in need and spread a little good will. He gave jobs to unemployed stonecutters by having them inscribe some of Dogtown’s boulders with words of encouragement, like “NEVER TRY NEVER WIN,” “TRUTH” and “HELP MOTHER.”
Babson’s family apparently didn’t approve of his little project. But he continued anyway.
“My family says that I am defacing the boulders and disgracing the family with these inscriptions, but the work gives me a lot of satisfaction, fresh air, exercise and sunshine,” Babson wrote. “I am really trying to write a simple book with words carved in stone instead of printed paper.”
Good thing he didn’t listen to his family! The boulders are still standing and now you can even hike alongside their trail of inspiration.
Babson’s boulders prove that we can all add wonder to the world. And you don’t have to be a stonecutter. You can leave a funny note on a co-worker’s desk, hide a letter in a library book or simply compliment a stranger who looks like they need cheering up. Perhaps there’s a little bit of Roger Babson in us all!
What about you? How do you go about spreading wonder in the world?