Details about how to download the October 8, 1966 Awake! magazine PDF will appear at the end of this post.
1966 was the first year the Watchtower Society started pushing the 1975 date. The book Life Everlasting in Freedom of the Sons of God published a chart that claimed that 6,000 years of human history would end in 1975. How was this interpreted my rank and file Witnesses? Well, Witnesses distributed tens of millions of the book The Truth That Leads to Eternal Life (published in 1968) and it advertised the Life Everlasting book on page 191 adding that it contained:
A chart of Bible chronology revealing that few years remain for this present wicked system of things.
(I don't know how to imbed a scan of that page into this post...Perhaps someone would like to do that?)
The October 8, 1966 Awake! was a special issue and dealt with the subject: Why Does God Permit Wickedness? Starting on page 13 references to 6,000 years of human history start appearing in the article. The article "How Much Longer Will It Be?" on pages 17-20 make some statements that go way beyond the claim that 6,000 years of human history would run out in 1975. The article asserts that 6,000 years of God's "Rest Day" would also end in 1975. Pages 19 and 20 state:
Does God's rest day parallel the time man has been on earth since his creation? Apparently so. From the most reliable investigations of Bible chronology, harmonizing with many accepted dates of secular history, we find that Adam was created in the autumn of the year 4026 B.C.E. Sometime in that same year Eve could well have been created, directly after which God's rest day commenced. In what year, then, would the first 6,000 years of man's existence and also the first 6,000 years of God's rest day come to an end? The year 1975. This is worthy of notice, particularly in view of the fact that the "last days" began in 1914, and that the physical facts of our day in fulfillment of prophecy mark this as the last generation of this wicked world. So we can expect the immediate future to be filled with thrilling events for those who rest their faith on God and his promises. It means that within relatively few years we will witness the fulfillment of the remaining prophecies that have to do with the "time of the end."
As it became evident that nothing was going to happen in 1975, the Watchtower Society started saying that there was a gap inbetween Adam and Eve's creation and so we could not know when God's rest day would end. But, here in this 1966 Awake! they were saying God's rest day would end in 1975. (This is probably one reason the Watchtower Library CD-ROM does not include Awake! issues before 1970.)
Witnesses who read these statements from that era were ecstatic and zealously preached door-to-door. Witness growth was phenomenal from this time until 1975.
This PDF of the October 8, 1966 Awake! is only 1.3 MB and can be easily sent as an email attachment. It can be downloaded from this filesharing site:
For thos who missed it, the October 8, 1968 Awake! similarly emphasized the 1975 date and that issue can also be downloaded from this site:
Please feel free to share these with anyone who doubts that the Watchtower Society was emphasizing the 1975 date.