Did you know that J.F. Rutherford was part of the Knights of Pythias? There's PROOF for this!

by ILoveTTATT2 76 Replies latest jw friends

  • ILoveTTATT2
    ILoveTTATT2

    I've made my case.

    In your case there still needs to be proof of what sparky1 said.

    "There is a J. (John) F. Rutherford who was from Missouri and was later in Arkansas who was president of the Bluff City Lumber Company." - Jeffro
    Since you have made this claim, please provide documentation that John F. Rutherford was from Missouri. That would help to confirm your assertion and get the discussion moving in the right direction.
  • Athanasius
    Athanasius

    Hi ILoveTTATT2,

    You are correct that the J. F. Rutherford who was the Knights of Pythias toastmaster mentioned in the Boonville Advertiser of January 13, 1899 was Joseph Franklin Rutherford, future Watchtower President.

    The editors of the local newspapers, Boonville Advertiser, Missouri Democrat, and the Central Missouri Republican, were aware that there would have been confusion if there were two Rutherfords in Boonville with the same initials, and would have taken steps to avoid this by using the person's full name or listing his occupation.

    Moreover JFR was not always referred to in the local papers as J. F. Rutherford. Sometimes as Joe Rutherford, attorney Rutherford, Joe F. Rutherford, and once as "Battling Joe" during the 1892 Presidential campaign.

    I should also mention that in 1900 JFR sought the Democratic nomination for Circuit Judge as the candidate of the progressive wing of the party. Again in a close contest he lost. Though JFR actively campaigned for Democratic Party candidates in the 1900, 1902, and 1904 general elections, I was unable to find any record of him again seeking public office.
  • Jeffro
    Jeffro

    sparky1:

    Since you have made this claim, please provide documentation that John F. Rutherford was from Missouri. That would help to confirm your assertion and get the discussion moving in the right direction.

    I actually realised later that I may have mixed up some sources when I said that, and for that I must apologise. (I thought I read it somewhere, but I cannot find it.) However, since one of the sources said the gatherings represented members from multiple states, it is not at all remarkable to have a visiting speaker. Further, I also stated earlier that even if John F. Rutherford were not the individual involved, that still would not mean that it had to be Joseph. So even if John F. Rutherford could be discounted (which has not been established), it still would not give credence to the assertion that it must have been Joseph.

  • Jeffro
    Jeffro

    Athanasius:

    The editors of the local newspapers, Boonville Advertiser, Missouri Democrat, and the Central Missouri Republican, were aware that there would have been confusion if there were two Rutherfords in Boonville with the same initials, and would have taken steps to avoid this by using the person's full name or listing his occupation.

    That, of course, is just your assumption.

    Moreover JFR was not always referred to in the local papers as J. F. Rutherford. Sometimes as Joe Rutherford, attorney Rutherford, Joe F. Rutherford, and once as "Battling Joe" during the 1892 Presidential campaign.

    The fact that Joseph was sometimes referred to as things other than J. F. Rutherford has no bearing on anything unless one of those more specific references says anything about membership of the Knights of Pythias.

  • slimboyfat
    slimboyfat

    The Boonville Advertiser mentioned Joseph Rutherford often. Therefore it seems likely they are talking about the same person here.

    I can't understand this, "it could just as easily be someone else called John who may be from somewhere else" argument at all. There is a difference between what is possible and what is probable.

    I guess it's remotely possible that it is someone else, or that some other kind of mistake is involved (newspapers are known to make mistakes) but that doesn't make it likely. And there's no such thing as 100% certainty anyway.

    "Burden of proof" rhetoric is thrown around too easily. Another "canon" of proof is that it's impossible to prove a negative. So in a certain sense, to ask for "proof" this isn't another JF Rutherford is to ask for the impossible. The circumstantial evidence indicates it's probably him. If more evidence can be found well and good, but it's a fair conclusion in the meantime.

  • slimboyfat
    slimboyfat

    More to the point it seems to be entirely in character. Young Joseph Rutherford presents as a civically engaged sort of person who was searching around for a role in life. He tried various avenues from education, politics, the law, and ultimately religion. That he should also have explored membership of a society as a means of finding a role, purpose and influence, seems entirely plausible.

  • Jeffro
    Jeffro

    slimboyfat:

    More to the point it seems to be entirely in character.

    Fraternal groups were quite popular at the time, and it if were him (which has not been established), it would be entirely unremarkable.

    It is still not remotely clear why this potential 'discovery' merited multiple 'wows' and other 'excitement' in the initial post and some of the subsequent responses, since early membership of some group does not indicate any allegiance to or affiliation with that group later.

  • Jeffro
    Jeffro

    slimboyfat:

    I guess it's remotely possible that it is someone else, or that some other kind of mistake is involved (newspapers are known to make mistakes) but that doesn't make it likely.

    It is entirely possible that is someone else. There is no basis for asserting that a different J. F. Rutherford visited from elsewhere, not that there were more than one J. F. Rutherford in the town itself. Further, John F. Rutherford was a prominent figure in various lumber companies, being the president of at least two, and those lumber companies had strong ties with, and many members in, the Knights of Pythias. Being a member of both the Knights of Pythias and the Woodmen, it would not be in the slightest bit surprising for him to be both a toastmaster at Knights of Pythias events, nor to speak on behalf of the Woodmen, both as indicated in the available sources.

  • Jeffro
    Jeffro

    Jeffro:

    It is entirely possible that is someone else. There is no basis for asserting that a different J. F. Rutherford visited from elsewhere, not that there were more than one J. F. Rutherford in the town itself.

    Well... those sentences were badly botched, and in a manner that confused the meaning. Sigh. Was in a hurry.

    It is entirely possible that it was someone else. There is no basis for asserting that a different J. F. Rutherford did not visit from elsewhere, or that there could not be more than one J. F. Rutherford in the town itself.

  • Jeffro
    Jeffro

    slimboyfat:

    The Boonville Advertiser mentioned Joseph Rutherford often.

    For example?

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