These chapters first appeared in New York, The Magazine of Wall Street. The author is not identified except by the initial "B". However, other sources identify him as "John T. Brand".
He is said to have authored another book a few years earlier. Whether that other book was published or was simply in manuscript form is unclear from the text.
In spite of the obscure origins of this work, it is highly regarded and in use with the Columbia Business School at Columbia University from whence this manuscript was obtained. It is held by 21 university libraries.