Tuesday, December 27, 2016

The Miracle Wheat Story - Part 2

The next article is a letter which appeared in:
The Watch Tower, March 3, 1915, page 79
INTERESTING LETTERS
MIRACLE WHEAT TAKES PRIZE
GREATEST WHEAT STATE SENDS MIRACLE WHEAT AS ITS BEST
PRIZE WHEAT TO THE WORLD’S FAIR.
DEAR FRIENDS AND BRETHREN:–
A copy of the Chicago Daily Tribune recently came to my notice containing articles, the object of which was an attack upon the Association and especially upon Pastor Russell. Among other points of attack was Miracle Wheat, and thinking that some information on the subject might be of value to you in meeting this attack, I enclose herewith picture and data relative to a field of Miracle Wheat I grew last year. This picture, among thousands of others of the best fields raised in the State, was sent to the Secretary of the State Board of Agriculture, J. C. Mohler. From this collection was to be chosen the one which would represent the State at the World’s Fair, which convenes February 20th.
Now the judges in this matter did not know that this was Miracle Wheat, hence they had nothing to bias their decision. So Miracle Wheat received the award.
I grew 70 acres of this wheat and planted and cared for it in the regular, ordinary way, and had no trouble in disposing of it to my neighbor wheat-growers last fall for seed, at $2 per bushel.
In this section of the country we have to sow more to the acre than in some localities, hence we could not follow the 20 lb. to the acre rate of seeding, but some we seeded at the rate of 1/2 bu. and some at the rate of 3/4 bu. per acre, and we found the three pecks to be the better. If we were going to sow again we would sow rather more than this.
My field yielded 49 bu. to the acre–more than twice the average yield of wheat in this vicinity and in many instances more than three times as much. If this information is of any value to you or any of the friends who may have charge of the matter of setting these things straight before the public, I am thankful for the opportunity to furnish the same.
With Christian love and best regards, I am
Your brother and fellow-servant,
W. A. JARRETT.
This final article appeared in:
The Watch Tower, July 15, 1915, page 218
PROPER AND IMPROPER ADVERTISING
Question.–Is it showing the spirit of Babylon to solicit advertising contracts from merchants for space on Photo-Drama announcements?
–It would not be proper to say to a merchant, “Advertise with us and thus contribute something to a good cause.” That would not do. It would be begging for the Lord’s cause, a thing we are not authorized to do. But if I were a merchant and had an opportunity to put an advertisement into a Photo-Drama announcement, I would think it would be one of the best chances of advertising I ever had. I would think I was receiving a benefit. If for $1 or $2 I could have my business card circulated all over the neighborhood, I would say, “These little leaflets showing about the Drama will interest the people; and while reading the notes about the pictures, they will also read about my business.” I would think I had good value for my money. If any man thought that he was not getting good value he ought not to put his advertisement in. It is a purely business transaction.
In soliciting the advertisement, one should not mention the religious feature. We do not do this at all. It is purely business, so far as the merchants are concerned; and I would let them advertise all that they choose. The fact that we do not permit advertisements in THE WATCH TOWER does not signify that to do so would be wrong. I see nothing wrong in a merchant’s advertising his wares. If I were publishing a daily newspaper, I would expect to sell advertising space.
A brother who owns a newspaper consulted me a little about his advertising. He said that the merchants in his vicinity were accustomed to advertise, and that some of the best advertisers were dealers in liquor and tobacco. I told him that I would not put any liquor advertisements in. I would put in advertisements of shoes or clothing or groceries or hardware, and would solicit such advertising, if I were running a newspaper. I see nothing wrong in advertisements or in newspapers. I would see nothing wrong in putting six or eight pages of advertisements into THE WATCHTOWER, if the articles advertised were staples that every one wanted to buy. But since THE WATCH TOWER goes into the home and represents me in a special way, I like to have all the space used for religious matter — not, however, because the advertisements would be wrong.
Once we put into THE WATCH TOWER a notice about Miracle Wheat. Many of you saw it. We believe we did right in putting that notice in. We also put in a notice about some kind of beans and one about some special cotton. Some of the friends were benefited by each of these notices. We also put in a notice recently about a cure for cancer. We have had hundreds of letters come in from Truth friends, and hundreds from others; and a great many have reported good results. To some extent this has helped forward the Truth. People saw that we were not trying to get their money, saw that we were trying to do them good, and became interested.
The following is taken from a booklet entitled:
A Great Battle in the Ecclesiastical Heavens
by J. F. Rutherford, 1915
The first section is from page 20-30:
We are sorry that we do not have the illustration referred to in the text.
MIRACLE WHEAT NOT NAMED BY PASTOR RUSSELL, NOR DID HE EVER REALIZE ANY MONEY FROM IT
Pastor Russell’s enemies charge that he sold a great quantity of ordinary seed wheat under the name of “Miracle Wheat,” at one dollar per pound, or sixty dollars per bushel, and realized therefrom an enormous sum of money which he appropriated to his own use. This is not only an exaggeration, but a glaring falsehood.
In the year 1911 J.A. Bohnet, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Samuel J. Fleming, of Wabash, Indiana, each having a quantity of Miracle Wheat, together presented to the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY the aggregate of about 30 bushels with the proposition on their part that the wheat...
should be sold at $1.00 per pound and all the proceeds arising from the sale thereof should be received by the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY as a donation from them, to be used by said Society in its religious work. The wheat was received and sent out by the Society, and the gross receipts therefrom were about $l,800.
Pastor Russell did not get a penny of this. His connection therewith was this, that he published a statement in his journal, The Watch Tower, giving notice that this wheat had been contributed and could be had for a dollar a pound.
Pastor Russell did not discover the wheat, nor did he name it, nor did he receive any personal benefit therefrom. Nor was the Society of which he is president guilty of the slightest misconduct. Had this same transaction occurred with some Catholic or Protestant church no one would ever have thought of making any fuss about it. But the Preachers’ Union seized upon it as another means of persecuting Pastor Russell.
PREACHERS’ ALLIANCE EMPLOYS BROOKLYN EAGLE FOR SYSTEMATIC ATTACK UPON PASTOR RUSSELL
It is a well-known fact that the Brooklyn Daily Eagle is given to making unwarranted attacks upon others. Its persecution of the late lamented Dr. T. DeWitt Talmage is an instance. It may seem the part of wisdom to divert attention by charging another with wrongdoing. The Eagle has not such a reputation as a good man would desire.
Pastor Russell’s teaching was not interfering with The Eagle, but was enlightening the people and thus interfering with the Preachers’ Unholy Alliance, and some of its members deemed it necessary to do something. The Eagle was employed as an instrument to do the job. The Eagle was willing and ready to begin the attack. Hence, on March 22, 1911, The Eagle published an article ridiculing the religious work in which Pastor Russell was engaged (fol. 936). On the same day it published another article ridiculing “Miracle Wheat” and various persons engaged in growing it. On September 23, 1911, it published an article announcing that the United States Government was about to take up the matter of Miracle Wheat, intimating that the Government Inspector would ask to be furnished with a sample of Miracle Wheat sold at Pastor Russell’s Tabernacle, to be tested, “that the faithful and a waiting world may learn more fully of the astonishing merits of this precious grain” (fol. 981).
As a matter of fact, the Government had been experimenting with Miracle Wheat for more than three years at that time, which shows that The Eagle was trying to mislead its readers and prejudice them against Pastor Russell by inferentially charging that he was selling a fraudulent wheat.
On the same date The Eagle published a libelous cartoon, and words in connection therewith, directed against Pastor Russell and his alleged relationship to Miracle Wheat. Pastor Russell sued The Eagle for damages. The facts given here are taken from the record of the trial of that case in the Supreme Court of Kings County, New York. Figures appearing in parentheses, thus (fol. 774, etc.), refer to folios of the printed record of the case now on file in the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York.
The chief issue raised by the pleadings in this case was whether or not the wheat in question was superior to ordinary wheat. Eleven witnesses testified to its superior quality over other wheat. Following are the names and addresses of the witnesses: Kent B. Stoner, Fincastle, Virginia; Joseph I. Knight, Sr., 1067 38th Street, BrookIyn, New York; Isaac L. Frey, Lower Mt. Bethel, Pennsylvania; Frederick Widener, Belvidere, N.J.; Henry D. Ayre, Cleveland, Tennessee; William Pray, Mansfield, N.J.; William I. Tomlinson, Kirkwood, N.J.; Edward W. Hunt, Stratford, N.J.; Dr. Joseph A. Carlton, Palmetto, Georgia; J.A. Bohnet, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Samuel J. Fleming, Wabash, Indiana.
The eight first named never heard of Pastor Russell or his religious teachings prior to the trial of this case, but had been experimenting with Miracle Wheat and found it far superior to any other wheat.
ORIGINAL PLANT OF MIRACLE WHEAT HAD 142 STALKS
The testimony showed that in the year 1904 Mr. K. B. Stoner noticed growing in his garden in Fincastle, Virginia, an unusual plant, which at first he mistook for a kind of grass known as parlor grass, but which, upon further observation, proved to be wheat. The plant had one hundred and forty-two stalks, each stalk bearing a head of fully matured wheat.
Mr. Stoner had never prior to that time seen a wheat plant bearing more than five heads.
The unusual yield from this single plant prompted him to save the grain, which he planted the following Fall (fols. 7375). For several seasons he continued producing this grain, and in 1906, about two years after discovering it, because of its remarkable producing qualities, he named it Miracle Wheat (fol. 81).
In 1908 or 1909 Mr. Stoner called the attention of the witness, J.I. Knight, to the unusual qualities of the wheat.
The above is a photograph of One Stool of Miracle Wheat grown in 1912 in the garden of Mr. K.B. Stoner, Fincastle, Va., within two feet of the identical spot where the original stalk of Miracle Wheat was discovered. It is grown from one grain and was six feet tall at the time this photograph was taken and was not then fully grown
Price of Miracle Wheat
and it was arranged that they should grow the wheat on shares and market it after accumulating a sufficient supply (fols. 86, 127, 129). Mr. Knight received a forty-five per cent (45%) interest in the wheat. They agreed to withhold the wheat from the market until 1912 (fol. 128), but subsequently decided to sell in August, 1911 (fols. 128, 125).
MIRACLE WHEAT SOLD BY OTHERS AT $1.25 PER POUND
After making his arrangement with Mr. Stoner Mr. Knight went to Europe and exhibited the wheat in the agricultural departments of various countries (fols. 129-131). Neither Mr. Knight nor Mr. Stoner had ever corresponded with Pastor Russell, nor had any acquaintance with him or with any of his associates prior to the time of the trial (fols. 82, 154). Prior to his meeting Mr. Knight, Mr. Stoner had sold some of the wheat, always at $1.25 a pound (fols. 80, 83). In 1908 he sold four pounds at $1.25 a pound to Joseph A. Carlton, a dentist of Palmetto, Georgia, the owner of a 256-acre farm (fol. 162). In 1909 he sold two pounds to Frederick S. Widener, of Belvidere, N.J., for from somewhere between two and five dollars (fol. 396). Mr. Widener gave some of this to Isaac L. Frey, a farmer of Lower Mt. Bethel. Neither he nor Mr. Frey had any connection with Pastor Russell’s work (fols. 395, 387, 383).
William I. Tomlinson and Edward Hunt, farmers of New Jersey, also experimented with this wheat.
All of these persons who thus bought their wheat directly or indirectly from Stoner, the discoverer of the wheat, or from Knight, his partner, found it to have remarkable reproducing qualities (fols. 385-392, 396, 470, 1, 478-480).
OVER 80 BUSHELS OF MIRACLE WHEAT TO THE ACRE
The first plant found by Stoner had over 4,000 grains to the stool. In the Fall of 1904 he planted 1,800 grains, and each gram yielded an average of 250 grains. The average return from ordinary wheat in this section was about ten grains for each grain of seed (fols. 75- 78). Mr. Stoner found that a peck to the acre, that is 15 pounds of.Miracle Wheat, produced over forty bushels (fol. 88). He has raised as high as 80 bushels of Miracle Wheat to the acre (fol. 92). Thus it is seen that Miracle Wheat produced twenty-five times as much as ordinary wheat in proportion to the amount sown. Mr. Stoner had experimented with Red Wonder, Fuldz and Old Mediterranean wheats. The productiveness of Miracle Wheat was found to be due to its large stooling qualities (fol. 95). For these stooling qualities it needs more
Merit of Miracle Wheat
room than the average wheat, requiring 16 inches between the rows, and about four times the space of ordinary wheat. If sown like ordinary wheat Miracle was a failure, for room was essential (fols. 97-99, 104). A four by four-inch space, such as the Government allows, is too small to allow for the normal stooling of Miracle Wheat (fol. 104). When he has observed common wheat planted in competition with Miracle, the spaces between Miracle planting have been about four times the space between the other wheat plantings. This was as he recommended (fol. 155). Widener, when he sowed Miracle, counted 22 to 98 stalks to the grain (fols. 396, 397). Mr. Frey raised a bushel and a half of wheat from a quart of grain (fol. 383), and the following year, 1911, raised 108 bushels from 16 to 22 quarts of seed. He seeded about 15 pounds to the acre (fols. 383-392).
MIRACLE WHEAT TAKES FIRST PRIZE AT SEVERAL STATE FAIRS
Mr. Henry A. Ayre, a farmer of Cleveland, Tennessee, with thirty-five years’ experience, bought some Stoner (Miracle) Wheat in the fall of 1909 or 1910. He sowed one-half bushel to a scant seven-eighths of an acre and reaped a little over twenty-six bushels per acre. His is a poor wheat section, where the yield of ordinary wheat is about 8 bushels per acre.
Mr. Ayre found Miracle Wheat hardier than ordinary wheat, standing the winters better and stooling much more than any other wheat he ever saw. It stood a freezing winter where rye had frozen out (fols. 299-402). He had the surrounding farmers raise this wheat for him under contract (fol. 407). He raised as large as 64 stools from one plant of this wheat.
Miracle Wheat took first prize for him in the Fall of 1910 at the Appalachian Exposition, for Tennessee, Georgia and North Carolina, and also took first prize at the State Fair in Tennessee, and at his county fair (fol. 406). He grew Exhibit 6, a stool of Miracle Wheat containing 49 stalks (fols. 408, 943)..
MIRACLE WHEAT STOOLS BETTER
THAN OTHER WHEAT
William Pray, a farmer of Mansfield Township, N.J., who was unacquainted with plaintiff in any way, raised Stoner or Miracle Wheat for three years. He grew Exhibit 30, containing over 80 stalks grown from a single grain. He had been a farmer for twenty-five years. An acre of ordinary wheat which he sowed with two bushels yielded 17 bushels, whereas an adjoining acre which he sowed with a half bushel of Miracle Wheat yielded 25 bushels. He never saw any wheat stool as Miracle
Merit of Miracle Wheat
Wheat did. To this is due its superior producing qualities (fols. 464-466). The usual practice of farmers in his section is to sow two bushels of ordinary wheat to the acre, and he knows of no way of getting better results (fols. 467, 468).
William I. Tomlinson, who had been a farmer for nine years, in Kirkwood, N.J., in 1909 planted Miracle Wheat in competition with ordinary wheat–16 acres with Miracle Wheat at a half bushel to the acre, which yielded 32 bushels to the acre, and 20 acres of ordinary wheat at one and a half bushels to the acre, which yielded 21 bushels to the acre. He is not a follower of Pastor Russell, nor a believer in any of his doctrines (fols. 470, 471).
Edward W. Hunt, a farmer of Stratford, N.J., for many years, who does not know Pastor Russell and was not connected with him in any way, experimented with Miracle Wheat. He first sowed a bushel of seed to an acre and a half, which produced 56 bushels, part of the crop having been destroyed. In 1911 and 1912 he planted Miracle in competition with Amber Wheat. He planted 10 acres with Miracle, three pecks to the acre, and the yield averaged 34 1/2 bushels per acre, or 345 bushels in all. He planted 18 acres with Amber Wheat, a bushel and a half to the acre, and the yield was 325 bushels in all, or a little more than 18 bushels to the acre. Both fields were alike, stood side by side, and the conditions were the same.
EDWARD McCLEERY
Miracle Wheat produced by Edward McCleery, 2493 Wabash Ave., Los Angeles, Cal. Offered as exhibit in Eagle Libel Case (fol. 158).
The original plant of Miracle Wheat, discovered and named by Mr. Stoner, contained 142 heads of well-matured seed, grown from one grain (fol. 74). A bunch of wheat grown near Los Angeles, California, of the same Miracle Wheat was exhibited before the jury and put in evidence (fol. 158). It contained 118 stalks and as many heads of well-developed wheat standing more than six feet tall, all grown from one grain. (See illustration.)
PASTOR RUSSELL’S FIRST KNOWLEDGE OF MIRACLE WHEAT
On November 23, 1907, H.A. Miller, Assistant Agriculturist of the United States Government, filed in the Department of Agriculture at Washington, D.C., a report upon the wheat being grown upon Mr. Stoner’s farm, highly commending said wheat (fols. 1185- 1188). The public press throughout the country at the time took notice of this report. Pastor Russell’s attention was called to it, and on March 15, 1908, he published in his journal, The Watch Tower, some press comments and extracts from the aforementioned Government report. This was Pastor Russell’s first knowledge of Miracle Wheat, which wheat Mr. Stoner and others had been experimenting with for three years or more.
Dr. Joseph A. Carlton, of Palmetto, Georgia, reading in Pastor Russell’s Watch Tower the aforementioned notice, purchased from Mr. Stoner four pounds of this wheat for which he paid Stoner $1.25 per pound, or $75 per bushel (fol. 169). He planted a pound and three-quarters to one-fifth of an acre, took accurate account of the yield, and found that it was eight bushels and 24 pounds, or 504 pounds. Georgia is not a wheat State (fols. 16@, 163). Yield of ordinary wheat in that State is from 5 to 20 bushels to the acre (fol. 164). In 1910 Dr. Carlton reaped 62 1/2 bushels of Miracle Wheat from a little over two acres (fol. 165). From one single grain in his field 71 stalks were grown (fol. 168). Mr. Bohnet got a peck of this wheat from Dr. Carlton. He sowed 14 pounds to one-half an acre and reaped 8 bushels. One-half of this he sent to Mr. Kuesthardt, of Port Clinton, Ohio, editor of the Ottawa Zeitung, a German county newspaper. Samuel J. Fleming, of Wabash, Indiana, got five pounds of seed from Bohnet and 20 pounds from Kuesthardt, and sowed 25 pounds to about one acre of land, and although it was late in the season his yield was 34 bushels. Average yield of ordinary wheat in that section (sowed a bushel and a half to the acre) is about 20 bushels (fol. 234).
MIRACLE WHEAT YIELDS 12 TO 20 TIMES MORE THAN ORDINARY WHEAT
Thus the testimony showed that ordinary wheat sown at the rate of six pecks to the acre produces on an average 20 bushels, whereas Miracle Wheat sown at the rate of one peck to the acre produces from 40 to 80.
FIFTEEN PLANTS
FIFTEEN PLANTS OF MIRACLE WHEAT
EACH GROWN FROM ONE GRAIN
NONE YIELDED LESS THAN 1,000 GRAINS
Eagle’s Lone Witness
bushels to the acre, showing that Miracle Wheat yields from 12 to 20 times more than ordinary wheat.
Pastor Russell having no personal knowledge of the wheat, counsel did not call him as a witness. He was in court, ready and willing to testify, but counsel did not call him for the reason above stated. The Brooklyn Eagle, to offset all this testimony of practical farmers and wheat raisers, produced but a single witness, namely, Mr. Ball, of the Agricultural Department of the United States Government, who was neither a farmer nor wheat raiser. Mr. Ball testified that he was “connected with the U.S. Government with the Department of Agriculture as an Agronomist and Acting Cerealist in charge of cereal investigations” (fol. 732). His imposing title was about his only recommendation. He produced a memoranda of experiments with Miracle Wheat, supposed to have been made at the Government station, by persons whom he was unable to name.
DONATION PROCEEDS KEPT A YEAR
TO REFUND, BUT NO ONE WISHED
MONEY BACK
There was absolutely no testimony in the case showing that Pastor Russell had induced a single person to purchase Miracle Wheat. Not a word tending to show that anyone was defrauded, On the contrary, shortly after the publication of the libel by the Brooklyn Eagle, the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY published broadcast over the country and sent to each purchaser a notice that if anyone was dissatisfied with his purchase he might have his money returned, and the identical money arising from the sale of said wheat was held for a year for the purpose of refunding. Not a single person asked to have his money refunded.
Upon the trial of this case, counsel for the Brooklyn Eagle severely ridiculed the religious teachings of Pastor Russell. The jury, being largely composed of men of strong religious prejudices, and at least one of them an atheist, disregarded the testimony of the 11 practical farmers and wheat raisers, and the several exhibits of Miracle Wheat actually produced and shown to them, and decided the case in favor of the Brooklyn Eagle, upon the unsupported testimony of one Government official who never raised a grain of wheat in his.life. The case was at once appealed and is now pending in the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court. Much ado has been made about the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY, of which Pastor Russell is president, disposing of a small quantity of seed Miracle Wheat at one dollar per pound, which had been donated and the price fixed by the donors, whereas the evidence conclusively shows
Miracle Wheat at World’s Fair
that Messrs. Stoner, Knight, Carlton and others had been selling the same wheat at $1.25 per pound, which was not only considered legitimate, but a very reasonable price in view of the extraordinary quality of the wheat and the small quantity in existence.
It cannot be conceived how anyone can honestly hold up Pastor Russell to ridicule for the connection that he had with Miracle Wheat. Neither he nor the WATCH TOWER BIBLE AND TRACT SOCIETY did anything in the slightest manner reprehensible, but, on the contrary, their conduct was open and aboveboard and proper in every way.
THE HARVEST
Miracle Wheat Grown by W.A. Jarrett, Columbus, Kansas, Represents the State of Kansas at World’s Fair, San Francisco, 1915.
I. B. S. ASS’N.
Dear Friends — A copy of the Chicago Daily Tribune recently came to my notice containing articles, the object of which was an attack upon the Association, and especially upon Pastor Russell. Among other points of attack was Miracle Wheat, and thinking that some information on the subject might be of value to you in meeting this attack, I enclose herewith picture and data relative to field of Miracle Wheat I grew last year. This picture, among thousands of others, of the best fields raised in the State, was sent to the Secretary of the State Board of Agriculture, J.C. Mohler. From this collection was to be chosen the one which would represent the State at the World’s Fair, which convenes the 20th of this month. Now, the judges in this matter did not know that this was Miracle Wheat; hence they had nothing to bias their decision. So Miracle Wheat received the award.
I grew seventy acres of this wheat and planted and cared for it in the regular, ordinary way and had no trouble in disposing of it to my neighbor wheat-growers last fall for seed, at $2 per bushel. In this section of the country we have to sow more to the acre than in some localities; hence we could not follow the twenty pounds to the acre rate of seeding, but some we seeded at the rate of one-half.bushel and some at the rate of three-quarters of a bushel per acre, and we found the three pecks to be the better.
My field yielded forty-nine bushels to the acre, more than twice the average yield of wheat in this vicinity and in many instances more than three times as much. If this information is of any value to you or any of the friends who may have charge of the matter of setting these things straight before the public. I am thankful for the opportunity to furnish the same.
I am your servant,
W.A. JARRETT.
Continued in Part 3 * Part 4

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