Did Russell waste his millions starting the Watchtower?

by Witness 007 19 Replies latest watchtower scandals

  • Witness 007
    Witness 007

    Russell was to inherit a clothing store franchise....he could have been as big as K-Mart today! Instead he created an Organisation known around the world as "the Watchtower Society" which has enslaved 7 million people with it's rules and lies. This organisation owns half of New York and millions of dollars worth of properties, so was it a good or bad investment? The organisation gets richer while Russells dynasy has long since disolved. He had no kids and died penny-less.....but he had created a monster that will never be stopped.

  • viva

    I don't know of any other investment that would be as profitable as starting a religion. The only problem is that it is hard to cash it out.

  • Farkel

    Russell sold his businesses and used some of the money, about $250,000 (not millions) to finance his pet religion. The only reasons he put all of his personal money into Watch Tower assets was to avoid having to pay his wife Maria any alimony. His scam didn't work and the judge in the divorce publicly called him the scumbag that he was.

    He may have died "penniless" on paper, but he controlled all the money in the Watch Tower. so it was a distinction without a difference.


  • rebel8

    Yes, he wasted his money in the sense that donating milliions to the Taliban is a "waste".

  • bob1999

    "Russell sold his businesses and used some of the money, about $250,000 (not millions) to finance his pet religion."

    Not to argue but that would be millions in today's money.


  • OnTheWayOut

    The organization does not own half of NY, it used to own a bunch of Brooklyn Heights, but your point is taken.

    Russell followed his passion. For him, it was worth it. People called him the Faithful Servant (or whatever the
    title was then) and groveled at his feet. He got to spout his passion from the platform all the time everywhere.
    Personal satisfaction could not have been achieved as well in other ways.

    Does anyone know the name of the president of K-Mart or Sears? (without googling)
    Even more FINANCIAL success couldn't compare to the power Russell felt. You'd have to become a Senator
    or a Supreme Court judge to come close to matching that.

    Dying penniless was absolutely meaningless. Rutherford realized more fully the potential of running WTS than
    Russell did. Russell felt the rush and the high of being "followed." Rutherford wanted that and the mansions.

  • diamondiiz

    He made a lot of money from selling books. He was major WT shareholder, no one could question him on anything because of his position in ownership. In fact WT was Russell as someone said. He didn't need any money in his bank account because he did whatever he wanted because in the name of "God" everything was paid from WT funds. In other words if you donated to WT you really donated to Russell.

    His divorce appeal hearing in 1907 revealed interesting company called Solon Society which if I understand correctly sold journal through WT - I don't know too much more about it at present. Russell denied knowing anything about it until three "girls" or WT female workers were called to witness stand and we found about another company called "Logan, Land & Whitehouse". For youe information these were the last names of the three females working there who testified that it was Russell who asked them if their last names could be used for this company which appeared to be a "middleman" or a shell company between wholesalers and Solon Society. How financilly Russell benefited? Not sure but surely he did. This is taken from "The Four Presidents of the Watch Tower Society" by Edmunt Gruss p 19-22

    Brooklyn Eagle law suit revealed a number of companies that Russell was connected to which once again he denied until fact were brought forth.

    Under examination he confessed

    "lie confessed being a stock holder in the Pittsburgh Asphaltum Co.. which afterward became the California Asphaltum Co., the organizer of the Selica Brick Co.. which he entirely managed from the Bible House on Arch street, Pittsburgh, the Brazilian Turpentine Co.. of which he had a controlling interest, a cemetery company located in Pittsburgh, the United States Coal and Coke Co., with a capital stock of $100,000, and the "Watch Tower and Tract Society, of which he is president and owner."" - In The Cult Kingdom by John Elward Brown p50

    JJ Ross who was also unsuccessfully sued by Russell published "Some Fact, &More Facts about the self styled Pastor Russell" and on pages 35-36 he points details about the USI Co. which was a holding company and he provided the articles from it's charter as well provided information that it was active as late as Nov 1912.

    I'm still trying (just started) to get Brooklyn Eagle trial scans as well his divorce hearing transcripts to verify these facts. Obviously if they were false it's more than likely that WT would have sued these individuals. Russell lost his libel suits against JJ Ross as well as against the Brooklyn Eagle newspaper.

    So the point is that he had money under WT and he traveled and enjoyed life under the pretense of being a godly man. Why would he need a big bank account when all his needs were taken care of my WT???? He didn't have kids so he left the society to the next guy to take over and oddly enough Rutherford was the next guy.

  • truthsetsonefree

    But what a waste of money. Starting a bogus religion when it could have gone to actually helping mankind.


  • Farkel


    I correctly said:

    : "Russell sold his businesses and used some of the money, about $250,000 (not millions) to finance his pet religion."

    you, using a classic strawman said:

    :Not to argue but that would be millions in today's money.

    Not to argue, but the title of this thread is "Did Russell waste his millions starting the Watchtower?"

    The title of this thread is NOT "Did Russell spend his $250,000 (which is NOW worth Millions) starting the Watchtower?"

    Answer: No. He had his own stash of money, and that became clear in his divorce with Maria.



  • Homerovah the Almighty
    Homerovah the Almighty

    I don't think he wasted it at all, matter of fact he utilized the company to his own benefit just as Farkel pointed out in regarding

    keeping his assets away from his wife and into the corporation.

    Its almost with certainty that he realized that the proclamation of Jesus returning to earth and establishing an earthly kingdom was

    an important marketing tool and a great instrument in selling and circulating his literature, remember he was a professional salesman by trade

    and was trained as one by his father. Since he knew the majority of the population at the time and in the area was known to be Christian,

    he knew he could grab peoples attention and create a following. What was ingenious on his part was getting people to believe him and incite

    them to buy and sell his literature and this of course laid the foundation of the what the WTS is today.

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