I've Got a Christmas Present Given by Pastor Russell

by Seeker4 17 Replies latest jw friends

  • Seeker4

    I've got a really good collection of WTS literature that I've been working on since the 1960s. One book I have is a copy of Poems of the Dawn, copyright 1912, leatherbound.

    It's inscribed thus: "Eleanor A. Shires - A gift from Pastor Russell - Xmas 1911"

    The cover is in rough shape, but the pages are perfect. With that inscription, what do you think it might be worth? I've got about 90% of all the WTS's books, including volume 7 of SIS. Trying to decide what I want to do with them. Sell, donate or keep my collection.

    Any suggestions?


  • Scully

    You could scan that inscription for one thing and share it with all of us.

    Wasn't this just a few years prior to the time when he was supposed to have been appointed by Jesus as the Faithful And Discreet Slave?

  • Nathan Natas
    Nathan Natas

    I think that title has been recently reprinted by the fine folks at "Watchtower Farm,"

    http://www.watchtowerfarm.org/servlet/the-Poems-of-Dawn/Categories (scroll down the page)

    but that should have little effect on the value of a signed original copy. If you hold it just a few more years, it will be 100 years old. Maybe if you contacted some of the existing Bible Student groups you could get an idea of its value, since they still follow the Russellite path.

  • knothead34

    is the watchtower farm run by JWs?

  • blondie

    What used to be Watchtower Farms (now more accurately called Wallkill) is owned by the Watchtower Society and staffed by volunteer JWs.


  • skyman

    Keep them. If money is no concern I would donate the collection to someone who would be able to use the material to help other come out of the BORG.

  • Seeker4

    I don't think this "Watchtower Farm" group has anything to do with JWs, though they sort of indicate that. Look at their website. A little too edgy to be faithful dubs. My opinion only. Anyone have any factual info on these people?


    PS Will see about scanning this.

  • stev

    Years ago, I saw an early edition, maybe even the first edition, of this book. The authors of many poems were indicated by name in the index in the back of the book. Maria Russell's name appeared as an author for several. Do these names appear in the 1912 edition? Or were they omitted? Maria Russell played a large role in this book, but 1912 was after their divorce trial.

    There is a poem called "The True Church." It is one of the longest poems. The character is looking for the one true church and asks a Pilgrim ( who is actually Jesus) for the way. The Pilgrim answers,"the one true church is never found." They visit various church buildings, and attend church services, but the Pilgrim points out each church's failings. At the end the searcher recognizes it is Jesus, who tells him instead to seek "the one true Christ, its head."

    This poem reflects the anti-church, anti-organization stance of the Russell period. However, although the seeker perhaps was wrong to look for the one true church, expecting perfection in this life, he yet did not have an answer for what church he should join. This poem is effective, yet leaves me unsatisfied. Certainly there is a middle ground between looking for one true church and communing alone with Christ, and although there might not be one true church, there could many that would be acceptable. I can't help but think that this black/white perspective on churches caused Russell and his followers to be naive about their own dark side. They thought they had left Babylon and lived in freedom apart from all human organizations, yet human society cannot seem to function without the social groups and organizations.


  • stev

    I would like to see a scan of the book also.


  • stev

    I would be interested in knowing more about the Watchtower Farms as well. Although the prices are less than what the originals would cost on Ebay, a few of the books can be purchased for much less money from some of the Bible Student groups. Quite a few of these books can now be viewed online for free.


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