Saturday, July 30, 2011

Miracle Wheat - A Brief Summary

Charles Taze Russell did not, himself, sell any of the Miracle Wheat at all. Kenneth Stoner (who was NOT associated with Russell or the Bible Students), the discoverer of the wheat, had sold the wheat at $1.25 a pound. Russell did not name the wheat with the name "Miracle Wheat", nor did he originate any claims for Stoner's Miracle Wheat.

In 1910 one of the Bible Students, who had raised some of this wheat, sold it for seed at $1.00 per pound (25 cents less per pound than Stoner had been selling it), and donated the proceeds to the Watch Tower Society. In 1911 the same Bible Student, having raised more seed, asked that THE WATCH TOWER give the benefit of this to its readers at $1.00 a pound post-paid (25 cents less than Stoner had been selling it), and appropriate the net results to the furtherance of its work. Another Bible student, who had some of the same seed, also donated similarly, the total amount being twenty bushels. Russell did not set the price for the wheat; Russell did not originate any claims for the wheat; Russell simply printed the government report as it had appeared in the newspapers, and printed reports from farmers who had used the wheat.

Everything that was said respecting the wheat was fully proven at in the court case of Russell vs. the Eagle by expert witnesses, interested and disinterested, and their testimony was not shaken. It was also shown that farmer Stoner and his business partner, Mr. Knight, made no sales of this wheat under $1.25 per pound until September, 1911; and that they had a written contract between them that none of the wheat was to be sold at any price until the following year — 1912. Suddenly in September, 1911, they changed their plans, considering that they had wheat enough accumulated, put the price down to $5.00 per bushel, about the time that the wheat was announced in the Watch Tower at a dollar a pound. This The Eagle’s attorney claimed was proof of fraud on the part of THE WATCH TOWER — sufficient excuse for the slanderous assaults of The Eagle upon Russell.

In order to win his suit against The Eagle, Russell needed to prove malice on the part of The Eagle. It was in vain that Russell's attorney sought to show the jury The Eagle’s malice — that it really was attacking Russell along religious grounds; that it had set itself as the champion of certain clerical enemies of Russell, and was seeking to destroy Russell's influence and, if possible, to drive Russell from Brooklyn. In the court-room sat about twenty-five who were ready to testify on behalf of Russell, who had come long distances at their own expense to have an opportunity to speak a word in Russell's behalf. Through some intricacies of the Law respecting evidence, these were unable to be heard in Russell's behalf. At any rate, Russell lost the case because of not being allowed to prove malice on the part of The Eagle.

Instead, the Court gave The Eagle’s attorney the privilege of saying all manner of evil against Russell falsely. He was allowed to picture Russell, as The Eagle had done in its cartoon — as a thief and robber, masquerading in the garb of a minister of Christ. He was allowed to ridicule the “Miracle Wheat,” although Russell had nothing whatever to do with it, nor with the naming of it; and notwithstanding the fact that its superiority was proven.

For a more detailed documented report regarding Russell and Miracle Wheat, see:

Charles Taze Russell and the Miracle Wheat Story – Part 1
Charles Taze Russell and the Miracle Wheat Story – Part 2
Charles Taze Russell and the Miracle Wheat Story – Part 3
Charles Taze Russell and the Miracle Wheat Story – Part 4

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