Ragged Dick: Or, Street Life in New York with the Boot Blacks

by

Horatio Alger

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Ragged Dick: Or, Street Life in New York with the Boot Blacks: Chapter 25 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Back home, Dick shows Fosdick the letter. Fosdick suggests that Dick write one in return and even offers to proofread it for him. Dick does this, telling Frank all about his rise in life: how he’s saved money, learned to read and write, and has his own room. He jokingly offers to come to Frank’s school as a teacher, should they need one—so long as the pay is as good as shoe-shining is.
Beyond highlighting his good will and thoughtfulness, Dick’s letter serves as the ultimate marker of how far he’s come—from a boy who could barely sign his name on a bank-book, to a young man able to craft entire letters to his well-off friend.
Themes
The Power of Thrift Theme Icon
Fortune Favors the Industrious Theme Icon
The Value of Education Theme Icon
Related Quotes
On the way to mailing the letter, Dick encounters Johnny Nolan, whose station remains the same as ever. Johnny is amazed to learn that Dick knows how to read and write. Dick tells the boy that he could learn, too, if he weren’t so lazy. Johnny, however, disagrees.
Johnny serves as an example of what Dick would be if he lacked industriousness. Alger insists that’s what was necessary to propel Dick to his success. Education was required but not sufficient on its own to do so.
Themes
Fortune Favors the Industrious Theme Icon
The Value of Education Theme Icon