C t Russell and jellyfish case
Then he said, "I am like a jellyfish. I float around here and there. I touch this one and that one, and if she responds I take her to me, and if not, I float on to others"; and she wrote that out so that I could remember it for sure when I would speak to him about it. And he confessed that he said those things.
RUSSELL VERSUS RUSSELL
Maria Russell left "Pastor" Russell in 1897 over religious differences. Russell, for example, remained stuck on prophetic date-setting whereas Maria in her book This Gospel of the Kingdom (1906) set no specific dates.
Maria identified Rose Ball as contributing to the marriage breakup. New York's Brooklyn Daily Eagle (October 29, 1911) reported: ___________________________________________________
Pittsburgh, October 27 - The suit for a separation brought by Martha (sic) F. Russell against Charles Taze Russell, her husband, popularly known as Pastor Russell, who has just entered a libel suit against The Brooklyn Eagle, is remembered here as one of the most sensational court proceedings in the history of Allegheny County…
The testimony which elicited the most comment concerned the relations of Pastor Russell with Rose Ball, a young woman stenographer employed by Pastor Russell in the Bible House on Arch Street. This testimony was given by Mrs. Russell on direct examination on Thursday, April 26, 1906. It was ruled out by the court on the ground that the incidents to which reference was made were said to have occurred on a date which precedes the dates mentioned in Mrs. Russell's bill of complaint. Pastor Russell recurred to the incidents when he went on the stand several days later, and gave his version of what had happened. Rose Ball was not called to the stand, as she left for Australia shortly before the case came to trial.
The verbatim record of this testimony taken from the official report of the case on file in the office of the Prothonotary of Allegheny County is as follows:
Q. I want you to tell us what your husband did in company with this woman Rose, in your presence and in your home…
A. One evening he spent the evening downstairs and our library and bedroom were next to each other upstairs on the second floor, and I spent the evening downstairs reading, and I went upstairs about 10 o'clock to my room, and I supposed that: he was either in the library or had retired, and when I went up there I found that he was in neither place, and I stepped out in the hall, and I found that he was in his night robe, sitting beside Miss Ball's bed and she was in bed. On other occasions I found him going in there and I found she called him in and said she wasn't well and wanted him in, and I objected to this, and I said that it was highly improper, and I said: "We have people about the house, and what kind of a name will be attached in this house if you do that sort of thing?" and he got angry…
Q. You state that you found him doing this at other times. How often after that?
A. I found him a number of times; I don't remember how often.
Q. In her room?
A. Yes, sir. And I found him in the servant girl's room as well. And I found him locked in the servant girl's room.
Q. Did he make any explanation why he was in the girl's room?
A. No. He did not; he just got angry.
Q. What did you say to him about this conduct and what did he say.
A. I said to him, "We have a great work on our hands," and I said, "In this work you and I have to walk very circumspectly before the world and if you are going to do things like this, what will happen? Suppose you are all right, don't you suppose people will talk about things like this?" and I said, "I am not satisfied with it," and he said he wasn't going to be ruled by me. But I felt distressed about that.
Q. What did Rose do at the Watch Tower.
A. She attended to the correspondence.
Q. Where was her desk with reference to the desk of Mr. Russell of the Watch Tower Society?
A. It wasn't near his; it was in the office.
Q. When would he go to the Watch Tower, in the morning?
A. I don't remember; he generally went down alone.
Q. Who would return with him?
A. She came with him in the evening and they came about 11 o'clock and the young men that were in the office—she was the only girl, and the young men would go home, and he wouldn't allow her to go home with them, and she must wait and always go with him.
Q. I want the mere fact, did this girl Rose go home with your husband?
A. Yes, Sir.
Q. What year was that?
A. In the fall of 1894…
A. She said one evening when she came home with him, just as she got inside the hall, it was late in the evening, about 11 o'clock, he put his arms around her and kissed her. This was in the vestibule before they entered the hall, and he called her his little wife, but she said "I am not your wife." and he said "I will call you daughter, and a daughter has nearly all the privileges of a wife."
Q. What other terms were used?
A. Then he said, "I am like a jellyfish. I float around here and there. I touch this one and that one, and if she responds I take her to me, and if not, I float on to others"; and she wrote that out so that I could remember it for sure when I would speak to him about it. And he confessed that he said those things.
Q. And the young men came home ahead of them?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. State to the court and jury…what you stated to your husband that Rose had said and his reply to you…
A. …I said, "Rose has told me that you have been intimate with her, that you have been in the habit of hugging and kissing her and having her sit on your knee and fondling each other, and she tells me you bid her under no account to tell me, but she couldn't keep it any longer. She said if I was distressed about it she felt that she would have to come and make a confession to me, and she has done that.
Q. What did he say?
A. He tried to make light of it at first and I said, "Husband, you can't do that. I know the whole thing. She has told me straight and I know it to be true." Well, he said he was sorry; it was true, but he was sorry. He said he didn't mean any harm. I said, "I don't see how you could do an act like that without meaning harm."
JW sources portray Rose Ball as 10 to 15 years old when she lived with the Russells:
Miss Ball came to them in 1889, a child of ten... She was an orphan. (A Great Battle in the Ecclesiastical Heavens, 1915, p18)
Mrs. Russell charged an improper intimacy between her husband and "Rose," who became a member of the Russell household in 1888…
"Rose" was quite childish in appearance, wore short dresses, and looked to Mr Russell to be about 13 years old. He did not know her age, but another who knew her guessed that she was then only 10 years old. She may have been older in 1888…
…it was mutually agreed that "Rose" thereafter should be considered and treated as an adopted daughter…and invited to spend her evenings in the large study and reading room with the Russells. This course was followed; and when "Rose" retired, usually at 9 p.m., Mrs. Russell kissed her good-night and told her to "pass the kiss along" to Mr. R. also… (The Watch Tower 1906, July 15)
During the trial in April 1906, Mrs. Russell testified that a certain Miss Ball told her that C. T. Russell had once said: "I am like a jellyfish. I float around here and there. I touch this one and that one, and if she responds I take her to me, and if not I float on to others."
…The girl in question came to the Russells in 1888 as an orphan about ten years old… Mrs. Russell testified that the alleged incident occurred in 1894, when this girl could not have been more than fifteen years old… Though Miss Ball was then living and Mrs. Russell knew where, she made no attempt to procure her as a witness and presented no statement from her. (Yearbook 1975, p69)
Regarding "no attempt to procure her" the fact is Rose was in Australia, sent there by Russell in 1903 when Maria filed for legal separation. Rose was probably glad to be far away as she never publicly mentioned her life as Russell's "daughter" or the fondling and kissing.
In fact since, the Wacthower moved to New York, the motive was to escape the obligation to pay maintenance to his wife and declared insolvent, flee to another state was the solution according to Russell, but his wife got an extradition order
That is the true story of moving to New York State