Wednesday, May 22, 2013

I hope you're not getting tired

of all the newspaper articles ... I found bunches of them that are new to  us. Some of these answer questions we've had and some are just interesting. I found one from 1888 about Viola Gilbert. We mention her twice in our upcoming book. It's brief but adds significantly to the story. As a result we'll move a footnote into main text and elaborate.

These raw, sometimes little bits of newspaper text have furthered our story in huge ways. I hope you enjoy them.I"m focused on articles published before 1910 even though that date is two decades past the cut off date for our next book. We foucus on names, slogans and catch-phrases. The history doesn't stop at 1890, though our book focuses on the years before that. It would be silly to confine ourselves to material before that date.

So ... what you're seeing is material we've just found. It's not exactly surprising, except for a few new names we'll have to track down. But it adds detail. If you think about it, lack of detail has choked the story, turning it into a myth. Our goal is to restore detail so subsequent writers can follow the trails we have and add new research or simply abreviate the story, but accurately.

The advertisement from Salem, Oregon, is especially important because it illustrates what some Watch Tower evangelists did. This is not news to us, but it gives us a usable visual. Without explaining all of the details, Russell was exposed to and part of a religious movement that struggled with names and identity. He was very reluctant to give a name to the organization that grew up around Zion's Watch Tower. We're documenting the many names used by individual groups. The articles we've found recently helps with that.

Something that did surprise me is a series of "Millennial Dawn State Conventions." These were held in the 1890s and into the early 1900s, and while Mr. Schulz did not find this "new," I did. Anyway, I hope I'm not boring you silly by posting these articles.


roberto said...

I'd like to know, how those first congregations called themselves.

You and Bruce always stimulate my curiosity

roberto said...

Apart "Millennial Dawnists", other names? Church of Christ?

Sha'el, Princess of Pixies said...

The list of names is long ...

In 1897 Russell counseled against the name "Restitition Church," so we know some were using that.

Church of the Living God was used for a while.

Believers in the Atoning Blood.

Millennial Dawn Readers.

"Christians" (With no Creed but the Bible) saw a prolonged use.

Sometimes meetings were advertised as "lectures under the direction of the Watch Tower Bible Society."