From the first chapter of The Pit, it is very obvious that Curtis Jadwin will be a central figure in the novel. Jadwin's instant interest for Laura and Laura's almost immediate attraction for Jadwin confirm that there is more to see of these two characters. Norris, the author, characterizes Curtis Jadwin as a flawless, impeccable man who revered by everyone. Throughout the first five chapters of the novel Curtis Jadwin is characterized as a man devoted primarily to money, business and interested only in attaining all that he wishes. He is a man who wants to win in all aspects especially in money and challenges. Through the readings, it becomes apparent that Jadwin sees his Sunday school and Laura, not as something that he loves, but something that he wishes to attain to prove how strong he is.
Very detailed attention was focused on Jadwin from the very first moment that he was introduced into the story. The introduction of Jadwin began when Laura Dearborn approached him when he was a stranger to her. When Laura approached Jadwin he became suspicious of her, but then he became interested and fascinated by her because she was the first woman that he had met that seemed so dominant and sure of herself in front of a man. The beauty that the young Laura possessed also attracted Jadwin. Jadwin thought,
"Who was she, then this tall and pretty young woman, with the serious, unsmiling face, who was so perfectly at ease, and who hustled him about and made him feel as though he were to blame for the Cresslers' non-appearance? She had a great air with her" (15).
From this passage we could tell that Jadwin will play in important role not only in Laura's life, but also as a central figure in the novel. The effect that Jadwin caused upon Laura was also a clue that Jadwin would be seen again in the novel as a main character. Laura had at first disliked Jadwin for the suspicion that she had seen in his eyes when she approached him, but as she talked to him more, she began to feel herself attracted to his manliness:
"With Jadwin it had been different. She had felt his manhood more than her womanhood, her sex side. And between them it was more than a give-and-take affair, more equality, more companionship...Jadwin made her feel- or rather she made herself feel when he talked to her- that she had a head as well as a heart" (34).
As mentioned before, Jadwins' main interest always appeared to be business and money. He was a strict capitalist and wheat speculator. He was owner of great real estate in Chicago, which he managed all by himself. ."..he nevertheless at very long intervals took part in a deal in wheat, or corn, or provisions...He had influence, was well known to all Chicago people, what he said carried weight, financers consulted him, promoters sought his friendship, his name on the board of directors of a company was an all-sufficient endorsement. (13) Jadwin was revered as a businessman. His frequent speculations had allowed him to...