Sorry, I want to apologize for the mistake I made in one of my posts I made to you yesterday. When I saw you had pasted some text from a Bible Student's website, http://www.biblestudents.com/htdbv5/r3808.htm, I thought the material looked familiar, just like some that I was reading a year or so ago that was put together by the three Bible Students I mentioned in my post, but I was wrong. I was just too tired to go to the website and look at it last night, but I did tonight, and when I saw the beginning of the material, I recognized it immediately as the entire special Zion's Watchtower of July 15, 1906 that C. T. Russell published shortly after the divorce trial in which he endeavors to defend his actions during his matrimonial troubles. Pastor Russell and others are very convincing in this 20-page Watchtower (20 pages in the Reprints) made up of many articles, letters and previously published special material, all combined to make up a masterful defense of his innocence. This "Divorce" issue of the Watchtower is actually the one that started me on my Russell research adventure. I certainly would encourage people to read it and then as other information is posted on JWD or other Internet websites, which attack Russell's defense of himself, things will make more sense.
For those interested in researching this issue of Zion's Watchtower, the name of the lead article of introduction is, "TRUTH IS STRANGER THAN FICTION" A CONFIDENTIAL EXPLANATION BY THE EDITOR OF HIS PECULIAR TRIALS--THE WIDE SPREADING OF UNTRUTH MAKES NECESSARY THIS STATEMENT OF THE TRUTH. It is requested that this issue be not loaned or otherwise publicly circulated.
Thanks for posting the article, Steve.
Charles Russell, Alleged Child Abuser
I have today read through CTR's account of the Rose Ball incident, and also Maria Russell's account, reading in mentally how old she really was, in that year. CTR claims that she was around 13, maybe as young as 10, or older than 13, so he is quite imprecise, but let's say she was 13 in 1888 when she arrived, she would have been age 19 in 1894, when Maria Russell started her Rose Ball incident. However, she was actually around 19 in 1888, and would be 24 years of age in 1894.
Reading CTR's account and putting in her true age at the corresponding year, the story certainly does not fit very well at all, because it is based on her being a child.
I do not find in his account where he explains how a girl around 13 and her brother arrived at his house. It is difficult for me to fathom how he could be ignorant of her age if he thought her a child, and if he wasn't sure, he could have asked her, and how he remained ignorant for 12 years while she lived in his house and worked at his office. Most children are eager to tell their age. If they considered Rose Ball like an adopted daughter, certainly ascertaining her age would be crucial to their care of her, and not to find out seems negligent. So his story as it stands has some credibility problems to begin with.
Let's say that he genuinely mistook her true age and thought she was 10-13 when she was actually 19, which seems incredible or naive. Then they both treated her like a child when she actually was a grown woman, and Rose Ball would have to play the charade and pretend that she was younger than she really was and did this for several years.
These are the most charitable explanations of the age discrepancy in CTR's account. Yet his wife Maria, as I recall, did know her age at the trial as 19 when she first arrived. How could he have been ignorant of this when his wife knew?
Although both accounts have Rose Ball kissing CTR and being on his knee, they are quite inconsistent. One significant fact in Maria's story is that she claimed in 1893 that her husband wanted a separation.
There was only 16-7 years difference in age between Russell and Rose Ball, and Russell made the point more than once that Rose was very young looking.
Maybe the nut didn't fall far from the tree.
When Russell's 64/5 year old father, Joseph, married Maria's younger sister, Emma, she was only 23.
Ok the myth that Russell was a child molester is debunked.
Can anyone see a CO or DO or elder or any brother have a sister who is not his wife sit on his lap and NOT think that was inappropriate?
I'd still like to know what the age of consent was in that State at that time. If he thought her to be ten, when she joined the household, then it still brings into question other aspects of his character.
Further, given the "celibacy" thang, does it put anyone else in mind of a Clintonesque: "I did not have sex with that woman!"?
So the sum of this thread is that Rose was well out of childhood when Russell got intimate with her and the whole issue was created by the WTS who tried to present Rose as a child that Russell innocently kissed goodnight, rather a grown up woman he could have had sex with. IOW if she was a child then Russell, a saintly man, could not possibly do anything with her.
...or she may have looked especially young (as some did, especially back then), as he [thought/was informed] she was ten when she joined the household. If that's the case and the allegations occurred while he still thought her 15, was this below the age of consent at the time?
While it seems clear that he wasn't a child-abuser, in my mind there still remains a doubt over his behaviour with someone he may have considered a girl.
I remember reading about this 15 years ago or so before the net, when we had to read and share this kind of thing on photocopied pages.
Do you recall what the age for consent was in that State?
Kinda pivotal, if someone is going to be accused of Child Abuse, I'd think
LT, back in those days I don't think they really cared whether a girl was of a sexually legal age or fell one year short of it.