*** w55 4/15 p. 237 Part 8—International Attempt to Destroy Society Fails ***
On May 7, 1918, warrants were issued by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York to arrest eight brothers connected with the Society’s management and editorial committee. They were J. F. Rutherford, W. E. Van Amburgh, A. H. Macmillan, R. J. Martin, C. J. Woodworth, G. H. Fisher, F. H. Robison and G. DeCecca. The next day, May 8, those warrants were served at Bethel by United States Marshal Power. Shortly after their arrest the eight were arraigned in the federal court, Judge Garvin presiding, and all were met with an indictment previously returned by the grand jury, charging that the eight above named—
“unlawfully and feloniously did conspire, combine, confederate and agree together, and with divers other persons to the said Grand Jurors unknown, to commit a certain offense against the United States of America, to wit: the offense of unlawfully, feloniously and wilfully causing insubordination, disloyalty and refusal of duty in the military and naval forces of the United States of America when the United States was at war . . . by personal solicitations, letters, public speeches, distributing and publicly circulating throughout the United States of America a certain book called Volume VII Bible Studies The Finished Mystery, and distributing and publicly circulating throughout the United States certain articles printed in pamphlets called Bible Students Monthly, Watch Tower, Kingdom News and other pamphlets not named.”
*** yb75 pp. 122-123 Part 2—United States of America ***
THOSE PUZZLING LETTERS “GA”
As soon as conventioners arrived in Cedar Point they noted something very intriguing. Ursula C. Serenco recalls: “We observed a large banner across the hall above the speaker’s platform with two capital letters, ‘GA.’ We all were in expectation all week, guessing the meaning of those two initials. Brother Macmillan came on the stage and in his usual way told the audience that he too had been puzzling all week as to the meaning of those two letters, ‘GA.’ He had come to one conclusion: ‘Friends, I have concluded that it means “Guess Again.”’ Well, the audience responded in laughter.”
For relief from nagging curiosity, the assembly delegates had to wait till Friday, September 5—“Colaborers’ Day.” Imagine yourself among those happy throngs as J. F. Rutherford gave the address “Announcing the Kingdom.” In it he announced the publication of a new magazine, The Golden Age.
The mystery was over. Those letters “GA” stood for Golden Age. Brother Rutherford was followed on the program by R. J. Martin, who outlined methods for a new work of obtaining subscriptions for The Golden Age. Published every other week, this thirty-two-page magazine would carry much religious matter explaining present-day events in the light of divine prophecy. Its first issue, dated October 1, 1919, contained material on such topics as labor and economics, manufacturing and mining, finance, commerce and transportation, agriculture and husbandry, science and invention and religion, including a Scripturally based article entitled “Talking with the Dead?”
As its editor The Golden Age had one of the brothers who had been imprisoned with Brother Rutherford. He was Clayton J. Woodworth. His son, C. James Woodworth, fills in these interesting details: “My father reestablished a home for us in Scranton [Pennsylvania], and when, in 1919, The Golden Age was begun as a companion magazine to The Watch Tower, the Society appointed him its editor. It was necessary for him to spend a large part of his time actually in Brooklyn, so the Society kindly made an arrangement whereby he worked for two weeks in Brooklyn and two weeks at home—an arrangement that went on for quite a few years. I well remember my dads typewriter going busily at five o’clock many mornings—as he wrote or edited material for The Golden Age and sent it to Brooklyn by early mail.”
Clayton J. Woodworth faithfully served as editor of The Golden Age and its successor Consolation (published from October 6, 1937, through July 31, 1946, inclusive). Because of advancing years, he was relieved of this work when the new journal Awake! replaced Consolation, with the issue of August 22, 1946. However, Brother Woodworth remained faithful at other duties in God’s service until death, on December 18, 1951, at eighty-one years of age.