You have found an item located in the Kentuckiana Digital Library.
Blue-grass blade (Lexington, Ky.): n. Sunday, November 28, 1909. Blue-grass blade (Lexington, Ky.). 400dpi TIFF G4 page images Blade Publishing Co., Lexington, Kentucky 1909 blu1909112801 These pages may be freely searched and displayed. Permission must be received for subsequent distribution in print or electronically. Blue-grass blade (Lexington, Ky.): n. Sunday, November 28, 1909. Blue-grass blade (Lexington, Ky.). Blade Publishing Co., Lexington, Kentucky 1909 $IMLS This electronic text file was created by Optical Character Recognitio n (OCR). No corrections have been made to the OCR-ed text and no editing has be en done to the content of the original document. Encoding has been done through an automated process using the recommendations for Level 1 of the TEI in Librar ies Guidelines. Digital page images are linked to the text file. 1f 4t eltitylk zst rrn- t t BLUE GRASS BLADE t llC1V rVtlume XVIII LEXINGTON KYM NOVEMBER 28 J909C Number s3 DEVOTED TO THE PROPAGANDA OF REEDt 1r Tt ItJronu v By Mrs L j Fckes pjI hear griaF ithshier chantIl Religions varied praises isee him crown her with a crown f iiI priceless worth of great renown j 1 She changed to soul what was a clod She led the manbrute up to god Assured the reign of charity i DAnd founded human sympathy r With flowers crowned the brew of Peace fr1To Justice granted fair increase Curbed the brute passions of the strong i And bade Truth triumph Vanquished Wrong t Made mans soul groveling in the mire Unto the stars of heaven aspire i Gave him the dream of brotherhood- f Exalted Virtue knighted Good Brought forth from out the darkness dense The holy laws men reverence YtGod shining rays that light our wayAi leads us to his perfect day KReligion Knowledge consecrates steps of she waits t f And gives to childhood dignity e Abolishing Fears sovereignty t The dreadful curse of slavery l She leads to progress leads to light Her word dissolves mans moral right y Fair Science waits upon her eer lf The torch of wisdom doth she bear The garb of heavenborn hopes doth wear Faith weak hath made the savage heart Caused man to choose the better part J Hath sheathed the bloody sword that brand Hurling from Massacres dread hand Hath set with her whitehanded train Fair Peace oer humankind to reign Calling from tyrannys miry sod White flowers up with praise for god cifj Ji She takes the sting away from Death The venom draws from Evils breath i right r She stands gods fairest gift to Teaching to man his moral worth Teaching him that he hath a soul Teaching respect and self controllIi i 5aM if 31 t Crowned with white lilies chastely gowned In her all gifts of grace abound The teacher and the guardian she Of sinpursued humanity Through her gods stars alone we see For she is truth and she is love And she is mercy from above Peace virtue charity all good Hath flowed from her is understood In her divine her beauteous name She is gods purifying flame 1 Thus runs the shining praise of him Who would religions beauties limn On ground of gold in rainbow hues But others are who dare accuse I His goddess of all wanton wiles And see in her the wicked smiles Of rampart evilbreeding death lAnd mischief with her lying breath A stumbling block to progress she Held reason in captivity Nay made of it a crime gainst god And smote fair Science with her roil Justice by her was long betrayed Faction gainst faction she arrayed And blind belief did cultivate Till man in mental darkness sate Until he groveled as she bade Before a god whom Fear had made 1WhatShe truly outlines gods great plarif l j From the beginning sin and shame M Benighted ignorance made her name Their own Her origin was base jf r What would we see if we should tracer m H foul career unveil her facet Not the chaste stars the lilies white jfe The glories of the Infinite Nay evils festering cankering blightx V Cruelty ignorance vicewith these appearFrom She was no cresset but a rod Disfiguring and maligning godShe chained the soul kept man clod ianfrancisco California np 1 i 1 t r 1t i l t t I ff f Srr ii t 1 nArq BLUE t GRASS BLADE 1 Ji e i Spobfa in the Crucible Oonclusionof the Columbus Address by the President of tho Materialist Association By Otto Wettstein The medium socalled works for tho dollar For fifty centsnote wellhis spirits will write between two locked slatesa feat no living man can do but for 1000 his spirits could not write a solitary latter on a slate in broad day light ten and in view ofall a fact that every schoolboy can do nk of it Why can spirits do so many things no man or m in the body can do but cannot do the simplest things can do If not circumstantial evidence of fraud what t i mv spirit after I am dead out of my body can ite between two locked slates will some spiritit please explain f iHV my spirit yet in the body and aided by my physical body not do it Writing with a pencil on a slate being a purely liysical or material act tho plea that conditions are not tiavorable is absurd r Why can spirits out of tho grosser body as they call it create pictures flowers laces etc as they claim but cannot m while yet in the body If these claims were based on facts I I think of the wealth they could accumulate materializing all these nothinlt been triedfor centuries only to leave the more ever enwrapped in mystery Now we the laymen the common people all those desirous of solving the problem regardless of personal likes or dislikes those who are determined to find the truth whether it lead directly into a heaven bell or oblivionmust try a new plan adopt more practical methods ignore all pretended authorities theories pre conceived opinions etc tear asunder the vale of mystery cunning priests have woven around our existence then confine our researches strictly to facts to what we know and to what we can rationally infer from what we know then draw our clusions and fashion our belief accordingly Wisdom and learn ing are not needed for this nor grammar or elocutionbuts- imply honest endeavor to discover the truth and an ordinary degree of sense An unknown post beautifully says Vho dares not follow Truth wherever IHer footsteps lead But says Oh guide not there nor there I have not strength to follQw where My feet would bleed But show me worn ways trodden fair By feet more brave Who fears to stand in Truths broad glare What others dared not will not dare Is but a slave And Harictt MiMineaubravo womanover half a century ago when more moral courage was required to utter an unwelcome truth than at the present time said From the moment when a man desires to find the truth on one side rather than on tho other it is all oven with him as a philosopher All of which implies that iri syarehing for facts and truth we must consider the subject upon its own merits analyze its elements as the assayistdocs the mineral regardless of what his wishes may be in the matter u Ii tt If our preferences could become a factor in securing for us eternal bliss hereafter such yearnings of course could become a factor in obtaining for us prolonged youth and existence now To live a hundred years or more in health and happiness all that would be necessary is the desire to so live a century or two in full possession of our robust man pr womanhood and such wishes would forthwith bo granteda species of Christian Science or selfhypnotismbut which we well know is of no availI desire to live a century or more in full possession of health and vigor but what does God or Nature care for an insignificant monad in the infinite immensity of the universe liko myself In a few short years at most I like countless billions before me must make room for another to fight the battle of life in my place And countless others no doubt at this time have the same intense longing to cling to life hero upon this earthto enjoy the fruition of their labors to reap what they have sownalas without response or consideration from either a God or Nature After mature deliberation and years of study and investiga tion of socalled spirit phenomena I have come to the con clusion that the matter of life and death is as plain as a b c if we simply follow our senses and confine our belief to what wo know that death is precisely what it appears to be that there is absolutely no mystery connected with it but that the mystery consists solely in the mysteries and hypotheses with which ignorant men or scheming charlatans have ever invested tho subject These mysteries are indeed profoundly mysterious Why Simply because all is untrue conjecture irrational hypothesis absurd superstition ghosts and spooks The belief has been transmitted to Us from the dark ages of ignorance has been taught us in our childhood as infallible gospel and for reasons before stated has become almost uni versal People have accepted it because it appealed to their selfish nature not because they subjected it to rational analysis If however we confine ourselves strictly to what we know see what our senses recognize and to everyday selfevident facts all mystery with which this subject has been surrounded at once vanishes and the matter is as plain as twice two is four If w6 devour a fowl and a dog devours the bones then it is selfevident that this is the end of that particular fowl Nobody sees any mystery in that No one of sense would predicate continuous life for a turkeygobbler or a hen If however someone otherwise saneshouldaffirm that this masticated gobbler survived this destructive process and were still living minus bones flesh liver gizzard feathers and all yet an exact counter part of the living gobbler then a profound mystery would of course stare us in the face unless indeed We consigned such an idiot to a lunatic asylum Man is an animal simply of a higher ordera purely physical result of purely physical causes The origin and basis of his life and his physical functions are identical with that of the lower species A priest arrogantly will askU do you believn you will die like a brute To use a beastly priestly expres sion for an answer I will ask Were we not born like a brute If tho physical structure is a necessity to the origin of man it must be a necessity to the continuation of man Science knows no mind no human form and functions in the absence of the physical body Where there is thought there must be a thinker and this thinker must be a physical organic structure or it dont exist Body and mind are cause and effectremove J 1 W t 1Lrrf 1 1MIn xt d ks BLUE GRASS BLADE 3 z lX the cause and the effect vanishes Psychical phenomena are the result or product of the total aggregate of the physicalactivities of the living human structure These are the dynamic factors that generate mental activity When the former cease to act life mind and man of necessity cease alsor There is no mystery about it whatever This we know this science teaches We know this to be a n everyday fact This is all we know about it There we mgst stop Beyond this all is conjecture assumption myth and miracle Let us be honest brave base our belief upon knowledge truth and facts and like true mennot slavesbe content to make the most of this life for ourselves and others There are many mysteries in nature but the greatest mystery of all is the inscrutable infinite being which man himself has created or conjectured to explain these mysteries All intel ligence lies prostrate at the feet of this infinite spook whereas if we simply reject this socalled omnipresent ghostwho is nowhere and continue our researches in the field of every science we will soon progress to greater wisdom The theistic hypothesis vastly increasing existing mysteries not alone leaving their God enshrouded in inscrutable taystery but more especially the overwhelming mystery of his hand workor mode of operationmust therefore be peremptorily reasons we must reject the mysteries woven around mans life and death If a theory offered in explanation of existing mysteries increases the problem or complicates thot subject it was designed to explain then of course It is our duty to reject it All we know of the operations of nature is caused by the material constituting and surrounding the phe nomena we see All we know of mans talents and functions is produced by his physical body Science knows absolute nothing of a God and disembodied men and women There are no eternal forms of matter All forms are transient begin and end their constituents alone are eternal Nature is like a huge kaleidoscope in perpetual motionspecial forms ever changing the scope ever the same The rosebush the oak the seed the butterfly etc hayo been suggested as symbols of immortality but cremate these forms and where are they All begin in time all must end in time All shed their seed to perpetuate the species but indi vidual forms vanish forever and vain man is no exception Immortal souls or spirits Itwe are told are the counter part of man or men women and children without physical structure If not this they do not conform to the popular con ception of these transcendent beings and all it implies If the dead husband wife or child are not identical in outline form and functions with their characteristics during life how could the ardent hope of spiritists to meet again their belovcdvdead in spiritland ever be realized If spirits are not organic forms but composed simply of greater or lesser aggregations of gaseous or etherial forms of inorganic matter what satisfaction would it be to us to be reunited to such formS of breath II air ether etc f Furthermore how could these imponderable gases- possibly constitute or even resemble the human form But whatever our disappointments are on this score is of not so much importanc as to obtain if possible while yet in this life an intelligent idea of what constitutes a spirit or in other words what souls or spirits are made of What produces their human outline form and functions What is the basis or underlying entity and what are tho constituents of disemi bodied souls or spirits It must be something tangible real something that science can recognize or it is selfevident that they exist in name and imagination onlyphantasmagoria in the image of man It has been suggested in answer to this that science knows nothing of the constituents of other electricity etc yet recognizes them as potential entities But this argument explodes ft S i HtLr f t41nkl r 1 o i when we consider that living beings like wives husbands etc necessitate organic structure and these the gases and fluids of nature can never supply =there is absolutely no analogy between tho two Organic forms are transient products ofand are caused by 1special aggregations ofjniatter temporarily assuming such forms of organic cannot appear in the absence oficoncrete substance which constitutes such forms When the sap ceases to flow in tree or flower they die when the blood circulating in mansveins ceases to flow he must diehence the necessity organic structure to make this circulating process possible Without respiration without heart action no life says science How then can spirits live without them What constitutes man His anatomical structuretwo hun dred bonesfleshmuscle organs nervous system brainec In the absenceof flesh mans noble form shrivels to the sem blance a In the absence of the latter he could not even stand erect walk much less exist In the absence of r his nervous system and brain he could not be a conscious in telligent being In the absence of eyes he could not see Ifs necessity tojinan now how can he exist during eternity without them spiritists believe that in the absence of all thesf1y things man can exist during eternity as well as with them Iftt not what is itIf a man loses a limb the outline of this limb vanishes If his teeth and hair fall out cavities and bald headare the inevitable result What reproduces them in spiritlife f All k theso T aterial things are a necessity to these formS and the perfect man and it is absolutelyunthinkable 7 how ilie forms of teeth hair eyes fingers flesh and blood eau tcontinue to appear when the material which originally consti forms has been transformed into ashes dust soil vegetation gases etc f Ninety per cent of our beautiful women have false teeth judging of course from the limited knowledge I have in that j Are false teeth immortal If not how can eternal existence be a heaven and all it implies to a womanat one time beautiful by means of the dental artbut hereafter doomed to live eternally without her teeth h Spiritists must tell us what are the constituents of spirit flesh blood bone teeth hair etc If they cannot do this it is time to call upon the spirits themselves ynth whom they claim communion to impart trhe needed information If they cannot so inform us if all theso constituent elements are absent in tho dualspiritman it becomes evident that these misty brings exist in name and imagination only and consequently are nothing spooks bred and born of superstition and the sooner they are relegated to spookland the better for humanity- A blind faith founded upon error and falsehood cannot possibly be conducive to a true and noble manhood and a happy life Says Dr Carus in The Open Court Inquire into truth and truth will guide you Accept the truth and live it for the truth is always good If the truth appears evil to you or sad dening know that you have either misunderstood itor that you have not as yet fully made it your own The truth must become the very essence of your being it must bo your own soul and your inmost self Errors are a comfort to the erring only and not to the truth loving to him alone whose mind hankers after error does truth appear stern Surrender the errors that seem a comfort tpyo ulT give up errors is no loss but a gain But to learn the even though it appear sad to you at first that is a real gain There is no consolation in errors genuine consolation can be found in truth only Trustrin tho truth for there is no other savior Herbert Spencer speaking of those who some years o rejected the theory of Evolution said They seem quite Jo forget that their own theory tlie meelianicalprocess of erratum j t 0 tih l n Y iS i Ayj n r i tJ t r BLUEiGRA88 BLADE in the garden of Eden is supported by no facts at all Like the majority of men who are born to a given belief they demand ft most vigorous proof of au adverse belief but assume that their own needs none This has even been the arrogant attitude of the church and spiritists They absolutely refuse to subject the underlying basis of their respective beliefs to a rigid analysis and critical investigation This is why the church has ever opposed free J discussion They explain f phenomena by taking the exist ence of a God for granteda being they admit is utterly in scrutable and which they do not pretend to explain ignoring the fact that of all mysteries an omnipresent God who is no where visible and men and women made of nothing are abso lutely unthinkable- There is no spirit phenomena there never was There is phe nomena produced by men and women some of which may as yet be unexplainable but none is ever produced in the absence of a human being Whenever we catch these pretended spirits they are invariably lusty men or women in pretty coats or trousers o It is not my desire to dispute or deny any claims that living men or women may make of the remarkable and many things they can do and powers they may possess such as clairvoyance mindreading magnetic healing conversing with the man in the moon visiting the inhabitants psychically on the antipodes of our earth etc whether I understand their modes of procedure or not I grant that manthis subtle complex really wonder ful crowning work of Naturemay be endowed with powers and capacities even far more wonderful than any manifest at the present time I deny and dispute nothing of the kind all I oppose is the preposterous claim that the dead or men and women made of nothing who do not now exist can do these things To attribute them the spirits dues not explain any thing unless indeed spirits are defined proved and scientifically ex plained first Until then we must seek a more rational solution If we can exist during eternity made of nothing or like without this complex physical form why has nature endowed- us with this Crowning work for a few paltry years Why not create us immortal souls in the first place If Gods desire is that humanity shall eventually all live in eternal bliss why has he peopled this vale of tears with countless millions to struggle and suffer and finally damn a vast Jtmajority to eternal perdition Why not create this heaven for 1 all his children in the beginning t If a God designed us to be immortal hereafter why has he 1made death and the end of every organic form the paramount fact of our daily experience and from which we well know there is no escape Why are we sentenced to death even before birth If God cruelly ignores our yearning to live a hundred or a thousand years in youthful health and vigor during this life upon this earth what folly to hope that he will respond to our cravings by granting us eternal life after we are dead t After due consideration I have come to the conclusion that all those clamoring for eternal life do not realize all the dread 5possibilities it implies and that if a fact it might indeed even in the absence of a literal hell become an appalling tragedy and an actual condition of eternal torment Im mortalitynote wellimplies not voluntary eternal existence twhich can be ended at option in a few thousand or millions of years by sickness age poison shot shell or dynamite Oh no It implies absolute compulsory eternal existence regard lees of our volition or desires It implies that the sentence is deemed over us Thou are doomed to live live live live eternally Though existence after thousands or millions of years may become monotonous nay a burden not even the li blessed consolation of eventual relief by death will be ours we must still live live live for countless millions of years and then the first round of the ladder of eternity will not yet lf1j v 1 if I have been climbed It implies that after we have hovered around the throne or around our surviving friends for count less generations played harps daily for ten thousand or ten thousand millions of years and progressed intellectually until all the mysteries of the universe are as plain as ABC and conscious that absolutely nothing more of interest is in store for us during all eternityand vainly longing for re incarnation and another earthlife its changes charms hopes and possibilities all however vanished forever it implies that when this inevitable and terrible state of immortal life finally overtakes uswhen we have nothing more to live and hope for when nothing but ennui and deprivations stare us in the face that then the only consolation in store for us decreed by cruel fate is Live live live Thou art damned to live forever And to appeal And though yearning for relief and death this precious boon is eternally denied us Think of it my spiritistic friend What but eventual wretchednessnay madness and a literal hellis in store for all of us if continuous eternal life and all it were true Would not all sane men and women emphatically prefer death in the duo course of nature to a fate liable to culminate as deeply tragical as this DEATH Here lurks nb treason here no envy swells Here grow no damned grudges hero are no storms No noise but silence and eternal sleep Sbaftspeare When rest can become a condition of grief peace a condition of horror and sleep an appalling tragedy then but not till then may mortals fear that which is in fact the greatest boon vouchsafed to mandeath Tragedies horrors pain can only overtake the livingnever the dead Death is simply non existence negation naught and can not possibly be a condition of grief or joy sorrow or gladness tragedy or comedy If it can be compared at all with human conditions it is simply rest sleep peace thats alII If nonexistence after death is an appalling tragedy non existence before birth must be the same The eternity succeed ing mans life is precisely the same as the eternity preceding his birth As conditions of horror cannot exist for those who do not exist the folly of postulating tragedies for the dead must be apparent The present condition of the dead and the unborn is identical Then if deathnonexistence in the futureis n calamity not being born nonexistence in the present and past must be a like calamity This implies that conditions of hor ror can exist independent of beings because man oxitjts not before birth nor after death As well lament over an appalling tragedy before existence as to lament over non existence after are wrong says Socrates to fear death as it is our greatest possession on earth and Seneca adds that it is the best of the inventions of life while Montesquieu concludes that we should shedtears for men whey they are born and not when they t The tired man sings with Longfellow Rest rest Oh give me but rest and pence The thought of life that never shall cease Has something in it like despair A weight I am too weak to bear Sweeter to this afflicted breast The thought of neverending rest Sweeter the undisturbed and deep Tranquility of endless sleep Ignorance is vory often powerful but there has never been a time in nil history when it was not cru especially religious ignorance f 11 i i BLUE GRASS BLADE I The Rationalist Association of America FORECAST OF PROPAGANDA WORKAN Ar PEAL FOR FUNDS AND MEMBERSHIP FIFST OFFICIAL COMMUNICATION FROM THE PRESIDENT Aro you a member of tho Rationalist Association of America i If not why not Thore must be some reason The Blade columns are open for any criticism of its organic law its principles and its propaganda By fair criticism we may learn of any defect and take the steps necessary to effect a remedy With the number of Freethinkers there are now in America the membership of this Association ought to be swelled not to thousands merely but into the hundreds of thousands The greater tho membership the stronger must become ih requirements are not onerous NoUhor docs it became a financial burden With a membership of proper numerical strength tho officers of tho Association will be ablo to carry on a campaign of education that wire u1t m far greater proportions and givp tho association that f Iid strength that always carries conviction and command spectful attention from all If you have read and can urcl with tho principles and propaganda of tho Association it is your duty and it sliould bo your pleasure to become a member For tho sake of convenience the following sug gestiong are given Write to the Secretary D W Sanders Covington Ind Give your full name and postoffice address Enclose two dollars annual membership dues Say in your letter that you approve of the principles of tho Association and that you are willing to aid jn its pro paganda to tho extent at least of your becoming a member Dont delay doing this as it is necessary to begin active work by tho 1st of next January Every dollar subscribed to the Association or donated will be accounted for An itemized report of receipts and expenditures will be printed and every member will receive a copy of this statement whether at the next convention or not There will bo two funds carried as the Constitution of the Association provides These will be a General Fund and a Propaganda Fund The latter is most important Should donations be made to the Association independent of mem bership dues it will be presumed that it is intended for tlc Propaganda Fund and it will be so applied Tho General Fund will bo used for defraying the cost of management such as stationery stamps and necessary office exponsis There is but one officer to be paid namely the Secretary Treasurer and his compensation is left to the Board of Directors to determine according to the amount of in the fund and the value of his work to the Ashcintion- If at the end of the term any money is loft in the General Fund it goes into the Propaganda Fund but none from the latter into tho former All money in tho Propaganda Fund must be used for Propaganda purposes only and it can bt used in no other way By tho action of the convention the books of the Association are to bo kept open until January 1st 1910 and rill persons joining on or before that date are to be enrolled r charter members These will receive a special certificate so indicating The officers desire to enroll at least 2000 charter members by tho date given We propose by united effort to carry the membership to 5000 during 1910 Your help is needed however to that end Get in as a charter member and your name so enrolled will be handed down to posterity as ono of the promoters of the Association PLAN OF CAMPAIGN With tho assurance of a full and implicit confidence on the part of American Freethinkers the officers of the Association now ask for a guarantee to the Propaganda Fund of not less than 5000 for the year 1910 and by securing pledges and contributions in the sum named work can begin immediately and the campaign opened without unnecessary delay Some may desire to know tho purposes to which this stun will bo applied or what tho Associations officers proposes to do with it- Onohalf of that sum is to be spent by putting two conr potent and capable lecturers in the field It ia proposed to pay them a salary of 100 per month Livturers 1nIJstrlive By paying them for their services they rare of tho means of and localities whore thy lectors and workare therebyrelieved of paying fees for their services i Lecturers are not to be put out on tho old plan They must spend at least one week in each place they visit lecture each night bring the Freethinkers together and organize them into local societies Theso now societies are to be supplied with books papers and literature and an outline of a plan for keeping up weekly or biweekly meetings Other lec turers can then bo secured and help to keep up enthusiasm and interest Tho cost of keeping up this propaganda bo less expensive than tho present system and far wil1Ieffective For example Through tho Secretary a number appointments made in a certain State Lot us say these number 10 on an average Suppose tho total cost of transportation in thattState amounts to 3000 Tho Freethinkers at each where the lecturer stops will only bo required to pay a pro rata of tho railroad faro or 300 each and to entertain tho lecturer while he is in their city This latter cost can bo reduced by having some friend entertain him The lec turers salary being paid by the Association a burden is Jifted off tho Freethinkers and tho lecturer is not componedI to keep an eye upon the business end to the neglect of his propaganda work As to the lecturers it may bo well to refer here to the provisions of the laws of the Association that no person will be allowed to lecture in its name or under its auspices un i i t J1 f c i k 6f BLUE GRASS BLADE less he bears a commission for that purpose from the Board of Directors which sits as an examining body In fact all lecture appointments must be made through the Secretary and the lecturers are sent through the President whenever a list has been made up This method guarantees the qual ity and competency of our field workers and enables them to keep up a high standard representatives The Association has now two lecturers in VIQW for a trial Nothing has been said to them on the subject When tho guarantee and the fund has been secured work will begin and at the next convention we confidently hope to report an enormous membership and a goodly number of locals cieties in active operation under the auspices of the Asso ciation CAMPAIGN LITERATURE In order to carry our principles and our propaganda in localities where a lecturer may be unable to reach wo must use a quantity of good literature This literature will have to be now It must be created and made expressive of our principles Good literature capable of effective work is at a premium Writers should be encouraged by offering them some compensation for their labors and skill The Board of Directors is authorized to proceed along these lines Then comes the cost of publication followed by the cost of distribution After paying the two lecturers the balance of the Propaganda Fund can be used in the pub lication and distribution of such campaign literature as the Directors may deem suitable for propaganda In addition to this a quantity of practical leaflets and programs for in outline will be needed the societies we are able to organizeEThere is in view a quantity of such literature and forms leaflets and meeting programs are now in course 06 1r J t Letters Cheer Hope f tSent to the St Louis Oonvention by Friends jWho Were Unable to Attend Webster City Iowa Nov 10 1009 4ToThe Freethinkers in Convention MoJall to bo with of ganization will be successfully and I trust that the platform may be a iJbroad and progressive one After years of labor we have made tho t names of Infidel and Atheist to be respected and have the consideration i of religious freedom so if we are to con tinue to represent progress we should net 1ib dismayed by other unpopular epithets by the orthodox to economics or so 4f k JJ i IBOARD OF DIRECTORS Having several matters I wish to submit to the consider ation of the Board of Directors I shall call them together in the near future and at that meeting I hope a full and definite plan ofcampaign will be developed It would be a great help to thp active officers and the Directors if they could know positively that the sum asked for had been or would be guaranteed None of them can workwithout money It will be useless planning without it Steps have been taken to have the first meeting of the Board of Directors held at Indianapolis December 4th and 6th during the Convention of the Indiana Secular Associ ation They will help each other and aid in working up a greater enthusiasm WHAT TO DO Send your names and guarantees to the SecretaryTreas urer Make all orders drafts and checks payable to D W San ders at Indiana DO not send any money or drafts to the President if you can avoid itas to do so will only require that it be for warded to the proper officer Read Our plan of propaganda and if you can consistently join the Association do so at once by sending name ad dress and annual dues to the Secretary This is the first appeal made inthe name of the new Association Give it a hearty response Come friends now is the accepted time The Association means business If you will give it your can show results even in the first JOHN R CHARM SWORTH- President R Aof A 11 of and accomplished accomplished Covington supportive cial or political pioneers Religious freedom is but ono of the lines along which we travel and finally merges into the broader life and individual liberty So recommend that you build your platform planks of generous proportions and also permit a broad interpretation of its tenetsYours for Liberty and Justice HARRIET M CLOSZ 526 Bank St Lexington Ky Noy 12 1009 To The Friends of Freethought In 1 Convention at St Louis Mo Greeting During the of this day I have been thinking about the coming Cbnvention especially while reading the proof sheets of the Blade andI have thought how I would ii5rIicl o1 like to be with you to meet with you and help you in the work but my husband will be all we can spare at this time while 1 lookafter the paper and take care of the younger veneration of the Charleuwortb family We have a number of them here in Old Kentucky and I express a fond hope that they will be like their father over ready to work and fight for the uplift ing of humanity for freedom of thought and do their full share when they assume their part in lifes great battle Since my husband has been away I have received and answered a largo number of letters asking about the Convention Many of these letters are from strangers others from friends and not a few of the latter sayII I will be there so I judge from this that success will be yours and tho ble men and women attending the Conven tion will not have labored in vain I want to send three rousing cheers for the new religion of humanity Dont give r riiJf 1r f t t BLUE GRASS BLADE up the old ship Form a goodorganization and make its power felt by the churches and its clergy Fraternally yours ISIS B CHARLESWORTH Kanawha Falls W Va Nov 6 1909 To The Friends of Freethought In Convention at St Louis Mo I notice my name among those calling the meeting of Freethinkers and liberal minded folks to be held at Saint Louis on the 14th instant I regret that business and official duties Iam a postmaster ren der it inconvenient if not impossible to be there but I trust and believe the meeting will be largely attended and by those much better qualified than myself to participate in such a meeting and effect the proposed organization i It is not my understanding that it is the purpose of this movement either to parage or supplant or to supercedo exist ing antiorthodox organizations or societies but rather to unite these into 1 national body for better and more effective coop eration What we want is national state and local organization on a working basis under a constitution and bylaws the pur pose being to promote and encourage Free thought and the right of free speech and publication of honest views to promote morality and humanitarianism to educate the public in real truth and to discourage must be broad enough to take in and welcome all who claim the right of private judgment to think for them selves on any and all subjects and who do not believe in prosecution and ostracism of those who differ from them We want to keep alive the doctrine that civil government is ft secular affair and that there is no connection between churchand state that religion is a personal and indi vidual matter that men are answerable to their own conscience and not to somebody else for their belief and practices whero their conduct and practices do not injure- or interfere with their fellow citizens and are not contrary to the civil law Let us all belong to the national organ ization but to as many independent local societies as we wish I send you a dollar to assist in defraying incidental expenses or for what ever other purposes you think proper to apply it Hoping tho meeting may be harmonious and result in something of lasting good I beg to remain J C WATKINS 736 Lincoln Ave Alameda California November 1 1909 You are assembled here for a great and noble purpose to promote the dissemination of ideas which form the basis of civiliza tion because they enable man to act in j manner most conducive to his welfare and happiness I regret deeply that circumstances pre vent no from attending a gathering of men whose intellect and character place them in the foremost ranks of good citizens and among whom I would meet sympathetic spirits and comrades at arms of tho frre sistably conquering army of progress If good wishes were of any benefit the success of your meeting wotild be assured and I hope that those whose indefatigableefforts have started the work organization may see its realization as a well merited reward Having been a believer in nature which means truth all my life and having pro mulgated the new ideas to the extent of my laas too limited opportunities I do not think it presuming if I desire to offer a few suggestions in regard to the subject that has brought you here hoping they may be useful in devising plans for carry ing out the great work we have undertaken The question it how to convey the now truth about man and nature which has caused such wonderful improvement of mans existence within a brief historical period to that part of our fellow citizen which still clings to the old erroneous creed of religion and in this ignorance remains in a state of barbarism little above and sometimes even below the intellectual plnne of the animal There are two ways of doing this First by example1k Second by teaching either through the written or spoken word Concerning the first method it would be casting reflections upon those present even to doubt that their endeavors in this direction were not beyond reproach It can not be said however that this flattering as sumption applies to all Freethinkers with out exception there are some who prove that a person may be free from all religious prejudice and yet entertain others that are nearly as badbut they are not here In regard to tho second method of spread ing the gospel it must be remembered that it means the application of human energy in a certain direction and since this is effected in our complicated system of di vision of labor by means of money success depends upon the procuring of this indis pensable factor first and next on its proper use There exists a peculiar reticence in respect to this vital question in connection with endeavors that have for an object tho uplifting of mans intellect and morals While considered selfevident that all efforts to enhance the glory of an assumed deity supposed to be almighty requires money to direct the energy of his humble creature to this unnecessary purpose while immense sums are expended for worthless enterprises and demoralizing pastimes it is almost impossible to obtain a pittance for the useful task of promulgating the achieve 0 J vv rments of science This reluctance to con tribute directly to the propagation of rational views instead of indirectly by subsidizing science must be attributed tor10 the indifference ofa great many people against everything not directly connected with the gain of money who find it more convenient in all other matters to follow i 2 f the majority Many of these people who t principally belong to the class generally called business men might be reached by a literature not exclusively confined to the discussion of abstract philosophical and religious topics treating matters of common interest in a manner insinuating the de sired deductions It is impossible to write literature to suit everybody unless it con sist of common everyday matter or plati tudes which appeal tq sentiment that body possesses and not to discerning reason which is not such a universal attribute the number of people who still believe the crude stories of the bible with their attend and barbarous morals I believe is not so great among the educated classes but they have replaced the convenient belief in a providence by a no less convenient fatalism maintaining that social institutions regulate themselves an easy excuse for cowardly in activity and a cloak for their small individ ual egotism We know that nothing happens by its own initiative that all progress Is the work of man springing from knowledge- of nature and the unalterable convictionce which truth engenders in the human mind t Such work consists in selecting from the great mass of facts established by science the main principles and demonstrating how they apply to our affairs Its value should be estimated by the extent to which it fulfills this useful mission but there iatendency to devote too much time and energy to speculations on obstruse theo retical questions whose solution is either impossible or could not be of the slightest benefit cf mankind Some of the Free thought publications I believe are occupied too much with the pursuit of scientific willothewisps and dead issues of the past and for this reason fail to attract the public attention which opinion seems to be corroborated by recent literary events At the beginning of this year there appeared in a magazine a number of articles giving the opinions of teachers at higher educa tional institutions about the orthodox tenets of the Christian religion which attracted general attention and were discussed in theRdaily press as something new andradical and yet they contained nothing that had not been published and discussed for years by the liberal press This passed unnoticed because the same subject has been discussed so long that many people lost interest in it I make these statements because I re ceived this impression from observation and believe S1Continued 7 wI J i 8 BLwE GRASS BLADE BLUE GRASS BLADE Published weekly at Lexington Ky Founded by Charles Chilian Moore In and edited by him until hU death February 111 JAMES E HUGHES t Publisher and Manager JOHN CHARLB8WORTH Editor ISfS N Limestone Street Lexington Ky P O Box SUBSCRIPTION RATES By mall It per year in advance Five new yearl7 subscribers at ono remittance 110 each Five trial subscriptions sent In with one remittance for six months II cents each Trial subscriptions II cents per month Foreign subscriptions postpaid SM per year ADVERTISING RATES One Inch single column Insertion II cents one month or four Insertions flll six months one year 1111 Quarter column 1 Insertion 110 one month 1411 vix Itimonths 1111 one 1111 Half column whole column or larger advertisements ate special rates upon application The publisher has the right to reject any and all advertisements offered GENERAL BUSINESS RULES SUBSCRIPTIONS to the Blade will be discontinued at the expiration of the term for which the subscription has been paid up In advance The address slip on the paper will show scribers the date of expiration of subscription Back numbers or numbers emitted will be sent If asked for upon renewal Ir case of dlsclntlnuance SHOULD ANT SUBSCRIBER change his or her address advise tht omen giving both old and Jew address as desired THK OFFICE of publication of the Blade Is at Illlit Nerth stone Street Lexington Kentucky to which all Freethinker will be given a hearty welcome THE BLADE Is enter at the Pontofflce at Lexington Kentucky as sertflndolaea mailing Matter DRK8ft ALL COMMUNICATIONS TO THE BLUE GRASS BLADE P Box Lexington Ky jt RATIONALIST ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA It is with feelings of pride pleasure and gratification that I have been able through the columns of the Blade to announce the successful labors of the St Louis convention and the organization of tho Rationalist Association of Amer ica with platform and principles broad enough and liberal enough to take under its banners all who are ready to operate with it in rendering some practical service to hu manity So far the Blade readers have been given but an outline of the work withconstitution and bylaws and list I of officers elected both active and honorary and it is but natural that a morn graphic pen picture of the convention and its work would be desired In this article I shall attempt to describe the proceedings in detail Being still on the wingas it wore and haying none of the records before me I am therefore writing from memory but I shall endeavor to given full outline of the convention as it impressedme All Freethinkers must realize that owing to immense distances that had to be travelled the expense thereof being an individual matter but a limited attendance could bo expected and yet as far as numbers were concerned the convention was a greater success than I had anticipated it would be Friends who had attended tho caucus held on Saturday night counted 38 present The convention boasted tdouble that number but there was a large local element 1 ft bySt Louis Many I knew by name only VSovv Jl tt 1 ri T1III m Pi I JJlil h oral of the old standbys were on hand But the most pleas ing feature was that a number of young bright active people were with us meaning an infusion of new bloodand brains into our movement St Louis papers estimated the attendance ajt about 100 Tho names of those present being in the hands of Secretary Sanders I am unable to speakof them at this time and I do not wish to give a partial list only Suffice to say I was satisfied The importance of the gathering may be inferred from the fact that the follow ing States were well represented Pennsylvania West Vir ginia Virginia Ohio Kentucky Tennessee Indiana Illi nois Iowa Minnesota Missouri and Arkansna The work of the caucus was brief as it merely pertained to routine work At the caucus I was elected temporary chairman without opposition an honor I appreciatedand with Atwood Culbertson of Pittsburg as temporary sec retary the necessary committees were speedily appointed their respective duties outlined and the caucus adjourned It was 10 oclock Sunday morning when the convention was called to order This delay was caused by some of tho committees not being present still discussing the report to be submitted Meanwhile the time was spent bya few short speeches from Parker H Seroombe and others from the floor Several of the committees were now ready to report and these were read and adopted and the convention proceeded with its work Upon reaching the Committee on Constitution and ByLaws it was not prepared to make a report and the recess was taken until 2 oclock in order to give this committee further time At the hour named the report was made and upon this report a contest of no mean proportions developed For more than five hours the convention struggled On the one side was a group of Socialists resident in St Louis who taking advantage of the open invitntion extended to all men and women of Liberal mind to take part harangued the convention for hours in an effort to engraft Socialism upon the organic law of the Association The Freethinkers who had met for a vastly different pur pose under tho callseemed almost nonplussed for a time As chairman I felt it but equitable to grant free rein to the discussion which I did until they had expended their energy and calling Dr Lindsey Morrison of West Point Ky to the chair I took the floor and fought for the su premacy of Freothought principles alone This had the effect of swinging back the convention to its original pur pose and after terming me a Czar the Socialists desisted in their fight and the Rationalist Association was organized upon a constitution that stands for Freothought alone Twice the vote upon Socialistic amendments wore close Ono vote resulted in a majorityof ono only against the amendment Another time the vote was a tie and as chairman I gave tho deciding vote against an amendment thereby defeating it Owing to the prolonged debate wo were called upon to pay additional charges for hall rent and not ono of those Socialists who had caused it contributed a cent to the extra cost nor did they join the Association It might be added at this point that the Socialists did succeed in getting into the Constitution a provision for the l n i iIII t BLUE GRASS BIDADE i9 initiative referendum and recallas applied to the official management of the Association but not as a part of its propaganda elements This concession the Freethinkers made on the plea of insuring good government but when an effort was made to insert a provision that no officer could be reelected at the end of his term or servo the Association an a other office for a period ofone year tHe Freethinkersvoted solidly against it The most intense struggle came upon the clause provid ing for membership eligibility The committee had reported as follows All persons of good moral character and honorable deportment who are in full accordwith the principles of this organization and who shall in writing signify a willingness to accept its organic law approve its declaration of principles and bo willing to aid in its propaganda are eligible to membership in this Association The contest was precipitated upon the prerequisite of goodmoral character and honorable deportment This was led by Parker H Sercombe of Chicago and Sheridan Webster the latter being a lawyer and an advocate of Socialism residing in St Louis Mrs Helen M Lucas of Marietta Ohio myself and others made a fight for its retention The argument waxed long and warm The question was ethical All persons who think are well able to see and know that from a purely ethical viewpoint morality is upon an ever shifting axis and that there can be no fixed standards Still every organization under the sun must have aright to pass upon and prescribe for the eligibility of its membership If the new society was ever to command attention and respect its membership must be drawn from the very best each community affords Local respect begets national respect In order to win the people to our side we must have the means of showing that we have something not the equal of but superior to anything the church can offer We must demand and insist upon culture and refinement So it was that along these lines the battle waged The opposing faction Von on the final vote and the section was amended to readas follows All persons who are in accord with the principles of this organization and willing to aid in its propaganda aro eligible to membership True the provision is simple It may be allsufficient Like Mrs Lucas I wish the other could have been kept in It did not injure anyone It could have done no possible harm It could have done somegood But it went out oh a vote of the convention The St Louis GlobeDemocrat and the St Louis Times both discussed the problem in their editorial columns The former agreed with the action of the convention Tho latter criticized it Wo have some cause for consolation in this fact alone for if editorial writers on the great dailies are unable to agree upon the very ethical question of moral requirements to membership 1n an organization of this character the IVembers of this convention are less subect to criticjsm for their inability to agree Editorial i ii writers on daily papers are usually men of varied experience Versed in worldly matters there are however some r subjects upon which they are as densely ignorant as theyveriest slums The greatest compliment was paid to tho r Association by the editor of the Globe Democrat who pri vately stated that it was just ono century in advance of has been discussed here constitutes the features of the conventions work I am happy to know and to be able to report that Freethought won the contest andwe have now a National Association based upon cure Free thought principles without entangling alliances of isms foreign to our purpose and mission in the world The declaration of principles and propaganda offer a wide field for our operations and scope for thoughtful work These I will undertake to discuss later As I write this I am still on the road and prefer the quiet of home in order to prepare what I wish to say Just a few words upon the officers of the Association t Of myself I have no wish to speak Feeling hpnored beyond measure at being named by the unanimous vote of the convention as President of the Association I simply promise to do my whole duty to work for its triumph and a dissemination of its principles William H Maple editor of the Ingersoll Memorial Beacon of Chicago has been selected as first VicePresident He needs no commendation from me Ho has commended himself by con stant toil in the interest of our cause and has long been an advocate of just such an institution as tho one wo have now organized He has had a vast experience in tho work He is resourceful and fearless As a member of tho board of directors his experiences will be of great value It was felt that the honor was duo to Ijim of making him the second highest officer of tho Association As concerns Dr J B Wilson the second vicepresident but little need bersaid in these columns He is young brave and vigorous z Withal he is a man of practical experience In 1900 he t was elected president of an organization that has practically a gone into oblivion It was not his fault Later on he was placed at the headof a new organization the National r Liberal Party which bid fair to make for good progress until domestic troubles afflicted him and ho was compelled to abandon the work With such men as these at the helm the Rationalist Association has much to hope for and the membership may know that its best interests will be sub servedIn tho person of David W Sanders of Covington Ind the Association has secureda secretarytreasurer of unusual merit A man of probity and ability ho commands respect and confidence from all For years ho has labored t most assiduously in educative fields He is tho author of a work on Civil Government whichreached a sale of s thousand copies His work has carried him among Teachers Institutes and ho has labored in many fields always for education Above all he is a Freethinker He is bright quick and capable Ever ready to defend his principles f tl J t4 yi 10 BLUE GRASS BLADE I he is capable of breaking a lance with the best The Association may find just cause for pride in having secured his services Possessed of fine business qualities he is tho right man in the right place and I take a sincere pride and pleasure in commending him to the Freethinkers of America Withal he is modest in his pretensions Hp has a winning yet aggressive personality and I am confident the business affairs of the Association have been well placed in his hands Wo neednow a large membership These will be secured by an effective campaign Write to the Secretary Do this at once so that the Association may have member ship and funds to work on by January 1 1910 Plans are being formulated for submission to the Board of Directors and I will speak of these in a subsequent effort Now let there be a rallying to the new standard Let personal jealousies be scattered likes and dislikes be for gotten Let us make a grand united effort and Free thought under the Rationalist Association will move forward with rapidstrides The convention is over the Rationalist Association is hero and now let all get down to work tV NOTES OF MY LECTURE TRIP While our philosophy deals with but one world atn time militant Freethought CPU not be satisfied with but one world otherIIn my last letter I dealt exclusively with Covinarton In diana recounting the splendid outcome of my visit to that city In this letter I shall deal largely with Marshall Illi nois for in this particular instance I have much to relate the reading of which will afford both pleasure and profit The arrangements for my lectures at this point had been made some weeks in advance through J H Schwartz a Blade contributor whom many of our readers will remem berThe lectures were arranged however at Clarksville in the same county and seven miles north of Marshall It is a small town with but one hundred inhabitants but boasting a largo settlement in and about the contiguous ter ritory Clarksville has no hall The only place we could conveniently use was the schoolhouse Two churches are t here the Baptist and the Methodist No sooner had the announcement been made that I was coming to Clarksville iito lecture in the schoolhouse ont Freethought than both began a crusade to have us denied the right to use Jthis building The Baptist Davis by name was the most bitter He drew up a petition which he carried to the fVschool teacher requesting him to sign and to have the ifBcbool children sign it for presentation to the directors asking that they deny us the use of the school The teacher l though not of our side stated to the children that he would- f 3If decline signing the petition leaving it to the children to do os they pleased Two little tots signed it The balance refused and the petition died aborning An appeal was l then made to the County Superintendent but that official r J ri1I t f9 + jb 1 Jlvj 1 simply answered by quoting the Illinois law showing that the Directors were in absolute authority in suchmatters An appeal was made to the Directors that they meet to rescind their former action The Directors met and two voted in our favor the other being orthodox refused to vote at all So we got the schoolhouse and the lectures were given with the result I shall hereafter point out While these preliminary skirmishes were being had Mr Schwartz became so intensely interested half fearful that we might yet be prevented from holding a meeting that ho wrote me two letters which indicate most clearly to my mind the struggle in which ho was engaged This only made me more determined to carry the war into Africa For the pur pOse of offering some idea of the strain which Schwartz underwent I give his letters just as he wrote them He said THE FIRST LETTER Marshall HI Dear Friend Hells apopping It is most equal to Breathitt county in your State A Freethought friend has just phoned me that we are engaged in a most bitter contest for supremacy ever witnessed in this vicinity The Board of School Directors has promised us the schoolhouse for our lectures and both ofour local sky spouters are trying to work up a frenzy among the sheep They declare by their eternal that wo shallnever use it Nothing less than an injunction will prevent us One revival is now in progress and our lectures are the burden of their sermons and their prayers We are a peaceable people so you need not fear any bloodshed But you must come I would not have you fail now for ten times the cost A place will be provided for you Wo may possibly have to use a private dwelling The lectures must be given now at all hazards The audience may not be so large but the good done will far outstrip that ofa larger city The people are awakening Wo hear it on every hand We have asked them to pick out their brainiest preachers to meet yon but they are all afraid They whine back that you are too gifted for a common preacher to tackle Act ually these preachers would not have you speak hero for a thousand dollars You have no idea what a frenzy they are in People have phoned me about the lectures for 20 miles distant Give us the very best you have I am in such a fever of excitement and expectation that I can hardly write legibly J H SCHWARTZ THE SECOND LETTER Marshall HI Dear Friend Have just got home Have seen Directors House is ours Superintendent of Schools hart given an opinion in our favor Everything 0 K ComeJ H SCHWARTZ Friends did you ever feel that way Those who have can appreciate what Mr Schwartz went through Quite naturally I was deeply moved The preachers however kept up their war until the day qf my arrival Revivals were organized Special meetings arranged to keep tho t A l IrBLUE GRASS BtAVFi1t1 people away from the schoolhouse The preachers went for miles in the country making personal visits asking the peoplo to attend church and by the power of their hallelujahs to drown out the infidels voice Meetings with such a dismal failure the Baptist preacher throw up the sponge packed his household effects loaded them into a wagon andmoved out of the little town for good on the very day I went in Now as to the result All this had advertised my coming so well that on the occasion of my first lecture I had the house packed to its limit and men standing at the door and windows The church had but 18 women and 7 men on the first night and while I had a repetition of the crowded at tendance even on the second night the number of women in the church had increased two but the men had been reduced to four The table was again decorated with flowers for my benefit The people cheered and applauded and in this place an amiable happy good feeling prevailed throughout and I can safely say that should I ever visit Olarksville themJwould I care to do so in these columns The people veto satisfied and pleasedand this made me both happy and contented Our friends including Mr Schwartz and his family were do lightedwith the outcome and I left this little Illinois town in splendid shape for future work andsteps have already been taken for the formation of a county organization under the now association to be formed in St Louis These are results worth striving for These triumphs give glory cause and encouragement to the lecturer They con IIstitutc a bid for future labors and offer abundant hope for FREETHINKERS ARE PLENTIFUL Hero again I found the woods literally full of FrI thinkers Miss Natalie Taubeneck and her father Otto Taubeneck drove 18 miles to hear the lectures and I found them to be intelligent and capable Freethinkers Miss Taubeneck is a wellread woman and I judge her to be more than a match for any preacher in Clark county I was pleased to meet with both of them and thoroughly en joyed the opportunity we had for discussion and general talk on the good of the cause D N Evinger and William Biggs drove from Westfield a distance of ten miles to hear the lectures and stated that their little township could boast from forty to fifty Freethinkers who were anxious for an organization and Mr and Mrs Schwartz promised to at tend to the work of bringing it about While hero I also met Mr and Mrs Henry Hornbrook Mr and Mrs M R Schwartz Mr and Mrs John Schwartz Sr Mr and Mrs Sam Schwartz Mr and Mrs Charles Schwartz Mr and Mrs William Maggert and Alfred Graham the latter be ing President of the local society and Mrs Louise Schwartz secretary There were others but it is an impossible task to remember all and I wish a good cheer and a happy life to all The most one could possibly expect was extended to me hero As the guest of Mr and Mrs John H Schwartz r was made to fool as much at homo as under my own vine ij Ii tt5 and fig tree Their bright and happy children seven in x4 number were a delight Friends came in and out some y from a great distance to meet with us and talk during theyday so that I was never permitted an idle moment but iL was enjoyable throughout f AT ST LOUIS My lecture Friday night closed about 830 p m and aw now I had to drive back to Marshall a distance of seven miles in order to catch a train for St Louis Sam Schwartz undertook to get me to my destination which he did in good time in spite of rather bad roads Arriving in Marshall at 10 oclock I slept until 130 a m and at 2 06 I was on board a Vandalia train bound for St Louis the convention city where arrived at 7 oclock Saturday morning 41 Now came a busy day Freethinkers arriving My room at the Laclede was filled with them all day long Here was a pleasure worth traveling miles to enjoy But there was workahead I had no time to devote to pleasure It was work from the moment I arrived until the convention was over Of this however I will speak in a future letter BANQUET AT ST ANSGAR What follows here is being written at Council Bluffs Iowa I am sidetracked and must wait all day for a train to take me to Shenandoah Finding a suitable hotel I lesolved to utilize this spare time by getting caught up with myYewwriting The St Louis convention is over its proceedings have gone into history the officers of the Rationalist Association are now peering into the future plotting planning and designing for work I shall not attempt to inject any of the St Louis proceedings into this letter reserving what ever I may have to say for another time and place This letter being a descriptive account of my lecture I will con fine myself herein to that subject Monday and Tuesday following the convention were busy days as Secretary D W Sanders and myself assisted by J Atwood Oulbertson had to complete reports and Other documents in order to get them to Liberal papers as early as possible Mr Oulbertson loft St Louis Monday night Mr Sanders left Tuesday morning and 7 oclock Tuesday night I boarded a Burlington train for St Ansgar IowatAn eight enhmir ride was necessary to bring me to my destination and going this far north experienced a decided change in the temperature Wednesday morning at day light snow was falling A white mantle covered the earth Old Sol came out and temporarily chased the clouds away but it was a battle between King Boreas and Sol with alternating periods of victory Old Sol finally won and the daynow bright and clear was intensely cold for me and snow lay to a depth of eight or nine inches Arriving at St Ansgar I found 0 G W Clausen on hand to welcome me His brother Prof A J Clausen soon came up These two are known for miles around as the most active and aggressive Freethinkers in all Iowa Everysham every fraud every act of injustice they oppose I with stout heart and courageous mind These bachelor brothers live together Their little home is a veritable mine of literature Every wall is covered with shelves and each f iJ X i i ik t 5 Jt- f 12 BLUE GRASS BLADE shelf is weighted with books Men and books are constant companions They know each other This homo is a storehouse of information for here may be found the thoughts of ages These thoughts can never die They are founded truths that are and must be eternal I could havo spent days here to profit and advantage did but time permit Our readers will be somewhat familiar with the work that is being done by Prof Clausen through his Philosophi cal Bible Union and other avenues of labor This Bible Union meets every Sunday Its attendants are quite nat urally few in number for the majority of the race still prefer amusement to instruction The members are adults Frequently some drummer left to spend Sunday in tho town will attend the class In this some good is done The class has been partially suspended for a few weeks on ac count of business demands but it is now in operation again and in good working order My visit here was not so much to give a lecture but to at a banquet arranged for me and given in my honor at the City Hotel The banquet plan proved to be an ex cellent idea Many years ago W S Bell lectured here but there had been no public lectures given since Had we undertaken a public meeting the preachers would have more vigorously assailed it As it was no one could come to the banquet unless a ticket was purchased at the rate of 200 per plate Local church banquets are given for half that sum but Prof Clausen figured thaiFreethoTight was double the value of the church and he raised the price accordingly The plan was successful A comfortable crowd was seated at the banquet table and a splendidrepast was served The dining room was tastefully decoratedand huge vases of choice flowers graced the tables The meal was excellent and admirably served At the close I gave a talk to the assembled guests I did not attempt to give what might be called a speech It was a plain practical talk along lines of work for more successful propaganda I discussed the platform and principles of the Rationalist Association and outlined what had been planned for cam paign purposes Reviewing the scholastic tendencies of the age as indicating an opportune time for cooperative effort upon the part of Freethinkers pledges were given me and assurances made for fitting support in the prosecution of our work I spoke for an hour and closed the program about 10 oclock Now came a strenuous trip Through a slight miscalculation as to distance and train convenience I found it necessary to take a midnight drive after tho banquet of eleven miles in order to catch a train at Lyle in Minnesota to carry we southwest The thermometer registered a few degrees above zeroOJad in the light attire ofa more southern clime it was a serious undertaking Prof Clair son loaned a big buffalo coat Rugs and robes were wrapped around me The roads were unfavorable for buggy riding and the eleven miles were made in a sled As we dashed over the frosty roads whirling past forests of pines and then open prairie under a bright starlight the snow seeming to reflect back the image of every shining orb I could almost 1 imagine myself another Cook engaging in Polar exploration and discovery It was a cold night and a cold drive but I stood the trip far better than I had anticipated thanks to the forethought of my friends Wo arrived at the little Minnesota station shortly before midnight and divesting myself of the great fur coat and wraps I hastily sought the hospitable warmth of a Big stove at the depot I could not bear to think that the young man who had driven mo across that stretch should return at so late an hour which he had intendedso I paid for the stabling of his horses and a bed for himselfurging him to remain until morning before venturing to return By 1 oclock in the morning I was on board a Chicago Great Western train on my journey to Council Bluffs Reaching the western part of Iowa I found that a heavy rainfall followed by snow had preceded me No less than 5y inches of water had fallen in 36 hours making tho ground like a morass with a thin covering of crust from the frost The roadbeds were bad and the train couldnot make fast time Great caution was necessary to avoid dan ger This landed me at Council Bluffs one hour behind schedule time and my train the Wabash for Shenandoah was gone There was no more until 5 oclock I sought a comfortable hotel for the day and managed to get caught up with my writing- St Ansgar is a neat little town near the Minnesota bor der The church exerts a powerful influence upon the public mind The Clausens never fail to be on guard however and one stop too far a halt is called I was glad to meet them We had long corresponded and I seemed to know them long before we met If every community could enjoy such fearless advocates of our principles our growth would be rapid in the extreme Charles Hackbarth presi dent of the local Freethought Society gave me joy encour agement and cheer to labor on for future conquests What might be termed a peculiar coincidence comes to light from newspaper reports of preachers being given a trial preparatory to a call to the pastorate of the Calvary Presbyterian church at Milwaukee Two preachers were tried out These were T H McConnell of Chicago and S Muneke of Mendola Ill They both preached the same sermon at different times and the congregation wore struck with the similarity of the eloquent passages of the sermon on The Church Glorious that both preachedeven to language used and anecdote that tho members at once resolved that the men of god were using a manufactured article and the lord declined to speak unto them The Editor is making preparations to leave on his com ing lecture trip To get away from the office for a month requires much previous labor to insure the publication of the paper While he is away it has to be entrusted to other hands Our readers will excuse any little shortcom ings during that time although there will be slight inter ference with its columns J BLUE GRA BLADE 13 LETTERS OP OHEER AND HOPE Continued from Page 7 Freethought literature must in future reckon with the conditions prevailing at the present age DR A HAUSMAN National Military Home Ohio To The Noble Liberalists and Freethinkers Who Will Meet in Convention at St Louis Nov 14 1909 to age and infirmities I will not be able to be with you personally but in object of purpose am with you heart and hijndf by all means organize on a solid liberal basis with an easy access and the gates standing wide open The harvest is ripe and with the aid of a few honest f energetic laborers such as will meet in St whytf victory won in behalf of Liberty and the betterment of mankind So with many good wishes for your success remember me as one with you in the great effort of organization Yours 1JOELM BERRY Shenandoah Iowa Nov 9th 1909 Mr John R Charlesworth Lexington Ky Dear Sir I am desirous of having my name placed on the record of the organization which is to be started at St Louis Missouri on the 14th and if I do not get there to register I will hereby authorize you to sign my name there if it will be allowed and will you in that event tell those who are present that it is one of the disappointments of my life not being able to be there and help with what I consider one of the greatest movements toward freedom of thought in the time in which I will live However I will be there if I can see my way clear to get there Hoping for the best I am Yours FraternallyC Rutherford Tennessee Mr John R Charlesworth Lexington Ky Dear Sir My attention was attracted by a notice in an old Commercial Appeal of an effort on your part to bring about a meeting of Freethinkers November 14th in St Louis I have tried working with organizations who worked for the glory of god without the enthusiasm necessary to the accomplish ing of any lasting good I should like to try working with an organization whose creed was the universe whose platform id a truth wherever found and whose cry is for humanityIf can bring about such an organi zation humanity will owe you a wonderful debt and humanity in time pays all her debtsI should be glad to receive a copy of your paper and an outline of the proposed plan of organization While it will be impossible I suppose for me to attend there are friends and rela tives of mine in St Louis to whom I should be glad to send notice of time and place of the Freethinkers meeting Nothing would give me more pleasure than to be with the men and women who start this movement for I am starving slowly being bored to death on orthodoxy There are so many things I should gladly do for the sake of humanity but the church will not let one attempt any thing except fof Jesus sake and in our small Southern towns what is one to dot Es pecially when that one is a woman I have studied Christian Science Social ism and Spiritualism without feeling that I really cared to unite with them I want free thinking I want no ism and no creed except the truth as it is found and my sincere apologies for this long letter to a busy man and believe me ready to work for humanity SincerelyMRS JACKSON Chicago Ill Nov 1 1909 John R Charlesworth Lexington Ky Dear Sir Your letter and copy of the 27th was received with thanks Will enclose fifteen cents trial subscription setting forth de tails of the National Convention Sunday November 14th I have for the past fifteen years spent much time and money in an effort to frame up that which would be selfsupporting per petual and everlasting that which will not admit of graft or dishonest practice and that which cannot be attached by heirs or church jugglery- At first for a number of years I enter tained in my own mind the erecting of a suitable building in some large city cen trally located for the publication of liberal ideas To this there are objections It would be subject to theft graft speculation especially soon after the head of the con cern was dead which would be only a short I have a party who stands ready and anxious to relinquish his mortal hold of a few thousand dollars on finding any one who will put a like amount for the purpose of establishing an Assembly Hall in some large city centrally located for r J t suitable national headquarters admittive of no possible chance of any speculation IThere should be one or two rooms independent t of the main Assembly Hall for t ahead 3 office and place of storage of books tracts etc on handyt The national could be held so IfingsA building similar might be incorporated under the Church Incorporation plan or r if otherwise For The Blade To the Freethinkers of the United Yor are most earnestly StatesIattend the convention of Saturday and Sunday December 5th in the beautiful auditorium of the Claypool Hotel ilJwb city of Indianapolis Indiana To preserve the priceless fruits of the labors of the heroes and heroines of history who have died for liberty and to transmit them to those who are to come when we I aro gone is the purpose of our organiza tion and we cordially invite you to come to Indianapolis on December 4th and 5th Francisco Ferrer has been shot to death because he loved libertythe Spanish in quisition has been revived and the priest hood throughout Christendom are now con spiring to fasten their fiendish grip upon the throat of liberty in this great Republic- In view of these appalling facts we confidently appeal to each and to all of you to come and cooperate with us in our efforts to rid the world of the vicars of Christ and the priests of Jehovah- It is a trite but truthful saying that eternal vigilance is the price of liberty and never before in the history of our country was there a more imperative de mand for vigilance than now because its- an open secret that a conspiracy exists among the priests of Christendom to ex tinguish the torch of liberty and remand all the peoples of the earth back to n state of serfdom and vassalage We therefore urge you to come and as sist us in our efforts to derive these enemies of the human race from our beautiful earthT J BOWLES President Indiana Secular Association D W SANDERS Secretary ff oii r t 14 BLUE GRASS BLADE Sure and Subacrlb Per Secular Thought Fortnightly Journal of Rational Criticism In Politics Science and Religion Organ of the CANADIAN SECULAR UNION AND THE TORONTO SECULAR SOCIETY Editor J Spencer Ellis Published at 186 Queen St West To ronto Canada Terms 1 per annum In advance single copies 10 cents All communications for the Editorial 4e partment should be addressed J Spencer Ellis Secular Thought 18614 Queen St West loronto Can All Business communications orders for books printing etc should be addressed C M ELLfs Proprietor and Publisher Secular Thought Toronto Can THE WORLDS BEST WATCHES IThe Worlds Best Watches Mens Regular 18 size Hampden Special Ry 23 Jewels 26 New Ry 23 Jewels 20 Dneber Watch Co 21 Jewels 15 Dueber Grand 17 Jewels450tk A T Premier 17 Jewels 1860 Wheeler or P S Bartlett 17 Jewels nickle 9 Same gilt 7 15 Jewels 6 7 Jewels 5aU in Silverine screw case In 20year Gold case 3or in 25year case 5 more Every Watch fresh from factory prepaid with guarantee Send for prices of Watches not enumerated here or order from any ofmyoId pricelists Chains Fobs Diamonds Jewelry Optical Goods Freethought Badges Ingersoll Spoons Ring Gauge and my great little tractII Theism In the Crucible free OTTO WETTSTEIN La Grange Cook County HL i i i J The Woman and The Prospector Is the title of a romance every man woman and child should read It should be In the hands of all who are opposed to supersti tion and graft as It Is a protest against vaccination vivisection medical legislation and the administration of drugs to human beings at the same time points out the only method for the cure of tho consump tive The booklet is really free but the cost of advertising and postage we figure at 10 cents so if you wish a copy send us 10 cents A M PARKER CANCER ATFLIOTED LISTEN l CURE all external Cancers Tumors Wens Carbuncles Fistulas Felons etc Remove Birthmarks and other unsightly growths that disfigure human beings dan cers a Specialty I use liquid remedies I do not use knife or plasters Cure is absolute unless beyond the power of man If you have a suspicious growth dont wait until one foot is in the grave and the other caving in Please dont cry II Fakir Fraud Graft etc until you investigate Write for free booklet DR H H DOW 858 N Raymond Ave Pasadena Oalif WANTED Men or women to learn the burbers trade or ladies beauty parlor work This is the largest college in the States A 15 tuition includes everything Steady practice wages while learning and position afterwards Write for catalogue PALMER BARBER COLLEGE 305 W Jefferson St Louisville Ky ME PLANETSIS ttcrlptloaolltjlt Murrays Clearance Sale 76c for postpaid Byrons Forbidden Fruit Paul Berts Jesuit Morals Tolstois Root of Evil Sil coxs Sacredness of Man Livingston and the Boers Murrays British Landlord Moses and the Prophets 30 Propositions of a Pagans Religion The Open Challenge Ten Commandments Bible Texts etc etc The total retail price of the Jot comes to 75 cents I will send the whole together postpaid for 30 cents NORMAN MURRAY 248 St James St Montreal Canada lf i L l tjfrif l JUST OUT NAMING SONG AND BURIAL SONG FOR FREETHINKERS Each a Duet and a Concert Piece for Piano Also Variations for Violin Flute er Bells itIbenefit of Freethinkers or men of Common- Sense who do not wsh to insult our Cre ator with Bible rot QUIRIN BACHLERI2277 Fulton St Chicago Ill Give Em Fits Thats what THE SCARLET SHADOW Walter Hurts great ical novel doss to theSforces of bigotry and perstition And the suIular press of the goaded by the lenient li throwing a over It too No other novel of this decade has been so widely and so bitterly denounced by orthodox critics which Is sufficient proof that It Is all right It has ated a tennatlon In con servative circles and aused consternation among the clergy It Is enthuslasticallI endowed by leadinjnFreelthlnkers through out the world You at know how Hurt can write and In this book he at ills best It Is an tiegant volume to ornament the Onset library containing 42i pages printed on heavy eggshell paper and bound in oxblood cloth Price 160 postpaid BLUE GRASS BLADE Lexington Ky ROOKS BOOKS THE MASTERPIECE LIBRARY Cheap reprints of the Masterpieces of the Great Modern Authors on the Christian Superstition published for Missionary pur poses by the Rationalist Press Association of London England The Riddle of the Universe Haeckel EducatlonSpencerThe the Idea of God Grant Allen Origin of Species Darwin Emersons Essays Herbert Spencers Philosophy Creed of Christendom Greg Spencers Essays Ingersolls Lectures and Essays In Age of Reason The above Is only a selection out of 75 Complete list mailed on application Price 25c each postpaid Six copies to one ad dress at one time 121- NORMAN MURRAY 246 St James St Montreal Canada t J 0i 1 rf i Mailmans Orehesti a- k NAUMAN Vlbllu ANNA L NAUMAN Piano OTTO 3 NAUMAN Cornet or Clarinet Other Instruments Added If DeS red Over 600 piece of the best music suitable for any program always on band Phone 128 12 Lock Pox 800 SIGOURNEY IOWA A TRIP t TOROMEBy DR J WILSON work is acknowledged to be one of descriptive literary efforts of the fThill A Freethinkers view of the old and what he saw there Oloth125 postpaid BLUE GRASS BLADE Lexington Ky evolution of the God Idea bytheremarkable books of the century 63000 cirIRationalist Press Asso ciation of London in cheap form and is now offered for 25 cents postpaid by the American Agent of the R P A t NORMAN MURRAY 246 St James St Montreal Canada BILLS VENUEmakes you cheerful and thoughtful It a personal BillOsflN flMRIOrtN WftDONNfVlsaser cal running in the WHEEL byMaryfiction since Grant Allen and Is a beautiful presentation of the essentially modern problem of the Woman In Business THB WHBBL OF LIPSA periodical It deals 011IOINSthe origin of Marriage of Ethics of Religion of Brotherhood of the belief In Immortality It treats broadly of Love of Human Instincts and It takes In the whole Wheel of Life treatlmr all subjects In such aalear plain and splay way that the dust Is shaken out nnd they become as teresting as a novel to even the casual reader Send cents for a six months trial lubjcrlptlon or a quarter for a year CONFESSIONS 0 F rv D RON Medlll Patterson author of A LITTLE BROTHER OF THE KIUH sent without extra charge with a t months trial subscription to the WHEEL OFLIFK Address MFE PUB CO Desk A St Louis Mo iN jit t AFL jJ jr r J I BLUE GRASS BLADE 15 Le SearcHligHt A 20Page Liberalh r i Monthly f I I Published by J D SHAW Waco Texas Price of Subscription 1 a Year Single Copies 10 Cents r Write for a sample copy which will be sent freet THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF Formerly EUGENICSIIThe Pioneer Journalin Modern Times fan old and almost forgotten science tl most important of all sciences a so nee successfully and openly taught and practiced by the ancient Greeks and Egyptians but ignored defeated scorned by all modern nations vizzthe Science of Right Borning the Science of Good Generation The Century Dictionary thus defines EugenicsIIThe doctrine of Progress or Evolution especially in the human race through improved conditions in the rela tions of the sexes Its central thought is freedom of Moth erhood the SelfOwnership of Woman in the Realm of Sex and Reproductionin telligent and responsible Parenthood This much neglected this tabooed dis graced and almost unknown science was named Eugenics by Francis Gallon a cousin ofaud coworker with the grea i fi0 IIli t = 1andThe American Journal of Eugenics is now un its 30th year ol publication sus tained by a long list of able and well known contributors women and men of national and international reputation it ia cow published bimonthlystandard mag azine sizeat Los Angeles Calif price a year postpaid single copy J5c Trial subscribers will receive three back numbers less than a year old also a copy of the booklet Institutional Marriage a lecture by the editorall for 25c in ann ps or coin For sale by newsdealer ir sent postpaid by the editor and pub fisher Moses Harman with lists and deices of standard English and American F genie publications Address 1319 Kel- t lam Ave Los Angeles Calif t k t F 0 froJ tf1l Ii l ft i r 1 f Y Mans t Origin and Destiny lfXi t By Dr A Hausnwn Alameda CaliforniaThi-sis the Greatest Book of modern tit on the theory of Evolution applied to Sociology vrtf t will shortly be issued in book form by the Blue Gras Blade making abook ofnearly 5CO pages The autlioi ns i dedicated it to Prof Ernst Haeckel and tl o reat Jena philosopher has accepted the dedication j- ts 1 J J 2 fiQ i Subscribe Now and Save Money r l All charges of postage will be prepaid upon advance subscriptions INj 1 The J rst chapters are now in the press and publication in book form will immediately follow its serial publication in the blade columns thO j SM ascribe Nfew Subscribe tNW 0 JAMES E HUGHES Lexington Ky 07 1909 19O9 Jt Blue Grass Made Bound volume Containing Fiftytwo Copies of The Blade and all handsomely bound in Blue Buckram with gold letters ii fi 33OO Reduced from last years price 3OO t Subscribe NOW and get your name on the list in timeIc I A STILL BETTER OFFER For i Five New Subscribers For PeNew Subscribers 1l rr We will send ONE COPY of the Bound Volume V Xfry FREE Or COST vTo any person sending us five new subscribers in one club at the regular rates before Dec 3 1 10l- r A THE CLUB IS PREFERABLE GETUP ONE SECURE A COPY FREE d BLUE GRASS BLADE Lexington Kjifl c o1 r1 1 t jtvffige