Joseph Hardcastle was one of the foremost authorities on subjects connected with the mathematics of finance and other topics in accounting in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. As a teacher, author, and leader in the profession, he figured prominently in the elevation of accountancy. Hardcastle is relatively unknown in the literature except for having the distinction of scoring the highest grades on the first CPA exam in New York in 1896. However, he was well respected during his time as one of the premier theorists in accounting and was awarded an honorary degree of Master of Letters by New York University. Because of his prolific writings, his teaching of future accountants, and his interactions with members of the Institute of Accounts, he had a strong impact on the “science of accounts,” the dominant accounting theory in the U.S. at the turn of the century.

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