More intriguing history from the Dos Passos biography written by Virginia Spencer Carr.
“Dodd, Mead had proposed another book they wanted Dos Passos to write, but he said that it would take an advance of at least twenty-five thousand dollars for him to research and write it. The book was to be a broad study of the situation of the American working man, for which Dos Passos made an extensive outline. It was to have covered the events that had shaped his thoughts, behavior, and feelings as a working man in terms of the ‘two governments which controlled his life most directly: management and the union.’…such a hefty advance was out of the question, Edward H. Dodd proposed approaching several philanthropic foundations…but no one offered any money. Dos Passos was forced to scrap the project as far as Dodd, Mead & Company was concerned, but much of what he researched in the process went into his later fiction.” (Carr, Dos Passos: A Life, Page 508, paperback version)