Over the past 50 odd years, an article that was published in a New York City newspaper in 1914 has been quoted several times in Watchtower publications. This article was published in the August 30, 1914 World about Pastor C.T. Russell's predictions for 1914. Modern Watchtower publications omit the facts from that article that show that Russell's predictions for 1914 do not match the Watchtower Society's current understanding of 1914 as a "marked year." For example, the April 1, 1984 Watchtower, page 5:
1914 a Marked Year—Why?
WHERE were you in the year 1914? Would you answer: ‘I was not born’? But a few million people today can still remember the year 1914.
In 1914 Mary was completing her last year in high school, learning German and anticipating a rewarding career as a schoolteacher. That summer, before going off to college, she was out in the fields of her father’s farm on the northeastern coast of the United States picking worms off the shiny skins of ripening tomatoes when halfway around the world, in Sarajevo, an assassin’s bullet cut short the life of an Austrian archduke. It sparked the explosion of World War I. When news of the war reached Mary, she thought: ‘It has come true! Just what the Bible Students were saying has come true; 1914 is going to be a marked year!’
Mary was not the only one who felt that way about world events. On August 30, 1914, the arresting headline “End of All Kingdoms in 1914” blazed across page 4 of the Sunday magazine section of The World, a leading New York newspaper. “The terrific war outbreak in Europe has fulfilled an extraordinary prophecy,” stated this feature article. “For a quarter of a century past, through preachers and through press, the ‘International Bible Students [Jehovah’s Witnesses],’ best known as ‘Millennial Dawners,’ have been proclaiming to the world that the Day of Wrath prophesied in the Bible would dawn in 1914. ‘Look out for 1914!’ has been the cry of the hundreds of traveling evangelists who, representing this strange creed, have gone up and down the country enunciating the doctrine that ‘the Kingdom of God is at hand.’”
Actually, the World newspaper article did note that the year 1914 had been predicted by Russell and the Bible Students. But, not as merely a "marked year." Instead, the newspaper article noted what was predicted in 1914 was "the date of the downfall of the Kingdoms of earth."
I have been able to obtain a scan of the first full-page article from the August 30, 1914 World magazine. It's from a microfilm and the quality isn't the best, but it's readable. Hopefully, the material from page 17 can be obtained later to be added to the file. But, as it is, the material in this PDF shows the misuse of the World article by the Watchtower Society.
For those interested, the file (under 2 MB) can be downloaded from this filesharing site: