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    THE publishing work of the S. D. Adventists has grown to strength and great efficiency from a small and humble commencement. The first volume of the Review was printed upon an ordinary hand-press, at Paris, Maine, in the year 1850. Patrons were then so few that no subscription price was given, the paper being supported by donations from the friends of the cause, who were generally poor. The most rigid economy was necessary that it might maintain an existence.LIFSK 347.1

    The second volume was printed at Saratoga Springs, N. Y. The growth of the cause was slow. That which was gained in numbers was accomplished by great sacrifices and incessant toil. The accession of two or three preachers, and writers, and a corresponding increase of patrons, improved the condition of things; but up to this time the terms for the Review were gratis, the paper still being supported by donations.LIFSK 347.2

    May 6, 1852, the first number of volume three was printed at Rochester, N. Y., with material donated by our people. The cost of hand-press and types was seven hundred dollars. The present terms of the Review, two dollars per year in advance, were first made in June, 1855. By this time the paper was self-sustaining. The office remained at Rochester until October, 1855, when it was moved to its present location, Battle Creek, Michigan.LIFSK 348.1

    From this point the especial blessing of God attended the work, and as men were raised up in all parts of the field to proclaim the message of present truth, there was a more rapid increase of supporters; and it was soon seen that the hand-press was insufficient to supply the demand for our publications.LIFSK 348.2

    In 1857 a very encouraging change took place in the publishing department of our work. Twenty-five men were found in our feeble ranks, who cheerfully donated one hundred dollars each, for the purchase of a power-press and engine, which were put in successful operation in our wooden building, erected in 1855, the limited dimensions of which were 22 by 30 feet. This printing machine was then regarded the best for fine work. The excellent service it has done the past twenty-three years has contributed much to the reputation which the Review Office has earned of turning out the best printing done in the State.LIFSK 348.3


    Printing by steam was an important event in the history of our publishing work. The circulation of the Review and Youth’s Instructor increased rapidly, new works were published, and new editions of those in print were issued. The building then occupied, which at first, before the introduction of the steam-press, seemed extravagantly large, soon proving to be too small for the work, an adjoining building was rented as a store-room of our publications and printers’ stock. The pressing need of more room, and the inconveniences of the rooms then occupied, led to the conception of the plan, and the erection of the
    first brick building, two stories high, in the form of a Greek cross, the main portion 26x66, the transverse section 26x44, as here represented. This building was located on the site of the first, at the south-east corner of Washington and West Main Streets. The plan of the building was not copied from any other. It was originated for the work to which it is so admirably adapted, the light pouring in through its ample windows on all sides of editors, compositors, pressmen, folders, and binders.

    Up to this time we had been the legal proprietor of the publishing house, and sole manager of the work. We enjoyed the confidence of the active friends in the cause, who trusted to our care the means which they donated from time to time, as the growing cause demanded, to build up the publishing enterprise. And although the statement was frequently repeated through the Review, that the publishing house was virtually the property of the church, yet as we were the only legal manager, our enemies took advantage of the situation, and, under the cry of speculation, did all in their power to injure us, and to retard the progress of the cause. Under these circumstances we introduced the matter of organization, which resulted in the incorporation of the S. D. Adventist Publishing Association, according to the laws of Michigan, in the spring of 1861.LIFSK 350.1

    But there were those among us who did not take in the situation, and realize the embarrassing circumstances under which we were placed. Neither did they see the importance of order and organization in the church of God. And in their mistaken zeal, fearing that the S. D. Adventists were joining their hands with the world in forming a legally incorporated association, they gave their influence against the efforts which we were making to shift the financial responsibilities of the publishing house from our weary shoulders into the hands of an organized body. For a time this had its influence; but our good people soon saw the necessity and importance of an association to manage the rapidly increasing publishing work. And they came promptly and nobly to the rescue with their means, and immediately took stock to the amount of nearly $30,000.LIFSK 350.2

    While the discussion of the subject of organization was going on, the faithful friends of the cause, who gave us their confidence and sympathy, urged money into our hands in advance, to be invested in the stock of the Association, when it should be incorporated. This money we deposited with two brokers at Battle Creek, who were then paying ten per cent interest on deposits. In the advancement of the cause of the last message, God’s providential care for the means consecrated to his cause by his trusting people has been manifested all the way. We give one marked case, with which we were connected.LIFSK 351.1

    While on a western tour in the autumn of 1860, we stopped at the house of Brother H. Patch, of Markesan, Wis., for the night. And while at family prayer we had a presentiment that our babe, then six weeks old, was sick. He appeared lying in his mother’s lap, with head and face terribly swollen and inflamed. We immediately wrote to Mrs. W. that all was not well with the child. When she received the letter, three days later, and read it with the apparently healthy child on her lap, she stated to those around her, that if husband were there he would not have faith in his presentiment. But that night the bed was dressed with damp sheets, and the next morning the child was sick with erysipelas, affecting first the head and face.LIFSK 351.2

    Now we will go back in this narrative to the house of Brother Patch of Wisconsin. That night we dreamed that the brokers with whom we had deposited the money for the Office, were selling shop-worn shoes in an inferior store. And as we saw them we exclaimed, They have come down! These words awoke us, and for a moment we felt a little concerned for the Lord’s money which was in their hands. But soon both the dream and the presentiment passed from our mind.LIFSK 351.3

    We had an appointment for a two-days’ meeting at Monroe, Wis., and one the following week at Clyde, Ill. We filled the appointment at Monroe the next week, and then passed on to Clyde, and put up at the house of Brother Wicks. As we entered the house, Brother R. F. Andrews, who has since entered the ministry, handed us a telegram from Mrs. W. stating that the child was at the point of death, and requesting us to return home immediately. We then stated to those present that we were prepared to receive the news, that God had shown us the sickness of the child while at the house of Brother Patch. We were so confident in this matter that we told Sister Wicks that she would hear from us that the child’s disease was in its head and face.LIFSK 352.1

    When we returned home we found the child lying in its mother’s arms, in the same posture and condition in which it passed before our mind while bowed before the Lord at the house of Brother Patch at Markesan, Wis. The child lived four weeks. The funeral was in the forenoon. In the afternoon we went to the Review Office, and as we stepped over the threshold, the presentiment and the dream flashed before our mind. We immediately called those with whom we were associated in the publishing work, and related to them the dream and the presentiment, and stated that God had shown us in a figure that the money in the hands of the brokers was not safe, and that we should immediately draw it, which we did to purchase stone, brick, and lumber for the new building.LIFSK 352.2

    The first of July we made a tour east, stopping at Roosevelt and Buck’s Bridge, N. Y. The day before we left we drew what remained of the principal and interest. When we reached the place of our second appointment we put up at the house of Elder Byington, where we received a note from his son, a printer in the Review Office, that the day after we left Battle Creek, these brokers both made an assignment. At that time not less than fifty thousand dollars from the citizens of Battle Creek and vicinity was in their hands on deposit, and no dividend whatever has been paid them.LIFSK 352.3

    Many at Battle Creek knew that we had deposited with these men, and they supposed that we had lost as others had done. And on our return from the east the question was frequently asked us, “How much did you lose by these men?” We had the pleasure of responding, “Not one dollar.” “Well, you were lucky,” was the frequent remark. The providence of God had cared for this investment that had been solemnly dedicated to the cause. And as we often related the foregoing facts, we felt justified in making the statement, that God sent his angel to warn us in season to secure the means which had been devoted to his work.LIFSK 353.1

    In 1871 a second building of the same size and form as illustrated on page 349, was erected to meet the wants of the increasing business.LIFSK 353.2

    And in 1873 a third building of the same kind was built for the same reason. These all stand, side by side, opposite the public square and the tabernacle, on the corners of Washington and West Main Streets.LIFSK 353.3

    In 1878 the first and third buildings were united by a four-story building, as shown on the following page. In the last-named building is located the bindery, furnished with modern machinery to do all branches of book-binding. In these buildings we have an aggregateLIFSK 354.1

    PICTURE. of twenty-seven thousand square feet of floor space, which is occupied in the various branches of editing, printing, folding, book-binding, electrotyping, stereotyping, mailing, and shipping. Including all departments, it is the best equipped printing office in the State of Michigan.

    The different periodicals issued by the Association, the titles of which are given below, have an aggregate monthly circulation of 83,534 copies.LIFSK 355.1

    REVIEW AND HERALD (weekly), 6,104
    “ “ (monthly) 1,575
    GOOD HEALTH, 5,000
    German paper, 2,000
    Swedish “ 1,000
    Danish “ (semi-monthly) 1,265

    The S. D. A. Publishing Association issues one hundred and fifty religious publications in English. These vary in size, from a four-page tract up to a volume of 528 pages. Of the smaller works, the Association publishes fourteen in French, twenty-one in German, thirty-nine in Danish, and twenty-three in Swedish. The Association also prints for GOOD HEALTH, twenty-nine health publications.LIFSK 355.2

    Most of these works have been written during the last twenty years by different authors. And it could hardly be expected that these writers, working to no general plan, would produce a line of publications which would cover the whole ground of our faith and duty, without some repetitions. It is now evident that we have too many books, some of which will go out of print, others will be revised and reduced in size, and some new ones will be written.LIFSK 355.3

    The great importance of our publications demands that we should give this branch of the work more attention for time to come than we have been able to do in the past. In consequence of arduous labor at camp-meetings and other general gatherings, we have lost time and strength to do this work, for which we have had an especial burden from the very commencement of our publishing work. This is a mistake on our part, which we number with the many of the past, and hope to have wisdom and grace for the future, to humbly and wisely pursue the work God has given us to do.LIFSK 356.1

    There has been a disposition on the part of some to bring all the pressure possible to bear on the prices of our publications. Yielding to this pressure, prices have been put so low as to seriously cripple our publishing houses. A favorable change, however, took place in December, 1879, since which time there have been greatly increased sales at better prices. The lower the prices, the less sales, has been the experience of the past. Against this ruinous policy of low prices we have pleaded, and have yielded the point for the last time. As a sample of our pleadings on this subject for the past ten years, we clip the following from the Review:-LIFSK 356.2

    “For several years past, our people have felt the importance of giving our publications a wide circulation. And the managers of our houses of publication have seconded the efforts of the people, in publishing largely, and in putting our publications down to very low prices. These efforts on the part of the publishers are praiseworthy, if not carried too far. But the present embarrassed condition of these houses shows that one of the mistakes which has resulted in this embarrassment is the ruinous prices at which our publications have been sold.”LIFSK 356.3

    Sketches of the rise and progress of our publishing work contain liberal statements of our labor in connection with it, which give us more credit than we deserve. It is true that we have labored incessantly, ardently, and unselfishly. This being well understood by the writers of these sketches, has led them to attribute to us the great success of this important branch of the work, which should be shared by able and devoted co-laborers. With pleasure we here mention the names of Elders Andrews, Smith, and Waggoner, whose writings composed a large share of the matter of our earliest books and periodicals. And the glory of all the successes of our united labors should be given to the Guiding Hand which has been with us in all our consecrated efforts.LIFSK 357.1

    Has the writer had strength to labor and to endure? God has given it. Have we had wisdom to organize and to devise new and broader plans for the better prosecution of the work? It came from the Source of wisdom. Our course, especially when moving in our own wisdom and strength, has been marked all the way with imperfections and mistakes. It is the hand of God that has been with us in this great work. He has given it success, and this has given us the confidence of our people. In some degree, we realize our past mistakes, and God’s merciful dealings with us; and that should we accept in our heart the statements now in print that give glory to us, which should be given to God alone, we would commit the greatest mistake of our life, and sin against God.LIFSK 357.2

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