As we know, Mr. Ford had little formal schooling. Perhaps because of this fact, the Chicago Tribune, which took exception to some of his views on war, called him an ignoramus. Mr. Ford brought suit, charging the newspaper with libel.
When the attorneys for the Tribune had Mr. Ford on the witness stand they cross-examined him in an attempt to prove their statement was true.
One question they asked was: “How many soldiers did the British send over to subdue the rebellion in the colonies in 1776?”
With a dry grin, Ford replied: “I don’t know just how many, but I have heard it was a lot more than ever went back.”
There was laughter from the court, the jury, the spectators, and even from the frustrated lawyer who had asked the question.
Ford kept calm through an hour or more of similar questioning on “schoolbook” topics. At length, in reply to a question which was particularly obnoxious to him, the industrialist let off some steam. He observed that he had a row of electric push-buttons hanging over his desk, and that when he wanted a question answered, he place his finger on the right button and called in the right man to answer that question. He wanted to know why he should burden his mind with a lot of useless details when he had able men around him who could supply him with all the information he needed.
Source: Grow Rich With Peace of Mind. Napoleon Hill. Ballantine Books. 1996. Pgs. 134-134.