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HISTORY OF THE PRINTING BUSINESS OF THE O.C.
(Compiled by H.[arriet] A. N.[oyes])
From the time of Mr. Noyes' confession of Christ a savior from sin in February, 1834, a desire possessed him to own a printing press, that he might make known to the world the truths he had found in the Bible concerning salvation by faith, the second coming of Christ, etc. etc.
As he was in no condition then to purchase a printing press, he embraced an opportunity offered him to print his new views in a paper published in New Haven, Conn., edited by James Boyle and called The Perfectionist. He also printed some hand-bills and two or three pamphlets.
When, however, after a few months the editor of the Perfectionist admitted communications which Mr. Noyes could not endorse, he discontinued his contributions.
In the summer of 1837, having business that led him to Central New York, and finding there brethren who were willing to lend him money, and also printers who were friendly, he commenced a paper in Ithaca called the Witness.
When he had printed three numbers, circumstances which it is not necessary to explain here, made a suspension expedient, and providentially receiving money sufficient to settle his bills, he returned to New England.
The next opportunity afforded Mr. Noyes to pursue his cherished wish, was through his marriage with H. A. Holton, by which he obtained means to purchase a printing press and type of his own. He married her in June 1838, and settled in Putney, Vermont. She sympathised with his using the money she brought him, to equip himself for printing, and they recognized the providence of God in their soon finding a press in a neighboring village, which the owners, who were about closing up their business, wished to dispose of at a reduced price. It was a small hand press, inked by old fashioned balls.
To procure the needed type they made a journey to Albany, crossing the Green mountains by stage, as there were no railroads in that region then.
The type was easily obtained, but the job of getting it home was more serious. Impatient of any delays which might happen, Mr. N. packed the most of it himself, working hard till midnight, to get it ready Łor an early stage. But then the driver objected to its weight and swore so furiously that they were afraid they should have to leave it after all. However, the man was finally propitiated by extra pay, and they got safely home with their precious baggage in due season.
For a temporary office they were glad to accept a rough apartment over a saw-mill, placed at their disposal by a sympathetic friend.
The business of printing was wholly new to Mr. Noyes, so he sent G. W. Noyes, then a youth of sixteen, but old enough to enlist heartily and intelligently in his brother's enterprise, to an office in Keene, N. H., for a short apprenticiship of six weeks. In the mean time Mr. N. put his room in order, distributed his type in the cases, and began teaching himself with what instruction he could get from a Printer's Manual.
In the New Haven paper Mr. Noyes' testimony had been placed side by side with that of radicals and fanatics, with whom he had no fellowship, and now as he was to begin publishing independantly he proposed to reprint that testimony in the form of a small book before commencing the continuation of the Witness.
He decided on the size of the pages of his book, and began to set up the first article. His wife and sisters, missing his society much, made frequent calls upon him at the office, and picked out a word or two in advance for him to put in his stick, when he came to it. They became so much interested that they spent hours in this and other ways of helping him, and soon they made it their regular business, and went and came with him day by day.
When Mr. N. had completed his first stickfull he was anxious to take a proof of it. He laid the stick with the type in it on the bed of the press, inked the type, put on his paper, and brought round the arm of the press. Now what? A crash, and behold the face of the type all smashed, and the stick split open. This was not their only blunder, but they learned wisdom by mistakes, and proceeded sufficiently cautiously in some things, never venturing to take the type out of their stick till they had wound a string several times around it.
George was at Keene homesick, so he staid only three weeks, but in that time he had learned enough to criticise the performances of the operators in the new printing office at home. They had not indented at the beginning of new paragraphs, had used n quads for m quads after periods, and spaced too close generally. Many corrections were made, but the first few pages of the little book they printed still show various marks of inexperience.
Mr. Noyes learned how to make up a form by folding a sheet of paper, and numbering the pages, then opening it and placing his pages as they were on the sheet. They printed eight pages at once, and succeeded very well, considering their method of inking. They used a wooden roller, covered with chamois leather, which was recommended as superior to the bales.
After printing they bound the sheets with only what knowledge they could get by taking in pieces another book of the same size. The binding however compares tolerably with that of the common spelling books of that day.
The book was completed in two months. It was an 18 mo. Of 230 pages, and was entitled, "The Way of Holiness".
They were now prepared to commence the printing of the Witness, the fourth no. of which was dated Nov. 21st 1838, a little more than a year after the publication of the third number at Ithaca. The printing of this No. was a trial to Mr. N.'s patience. Either because the roller was worn by use, or because the pages were larger than those of the Way of Holiness, the impression was not nearly as good -in fact it was miserable, and he sat down many times baffled in his attempt to improve it. Then renewing his courage he would try again. But at length he thought it wise to ask counsel of the craft. He went to a Brattleboro printing office, where he got valuable information about rollers. The printers in that office had begun to use rollers made of glue and molasses. They gave him their rule, and he proceeded to make one before printing the next number of the Witness. Mrs. N. assisted him in running his rollers, and they had many an adventure, and many a laugh during the process. Sometimes the proportions of the glue and molasses would not be suitable for the weather, or there would be some difference in the quality of the molasses, and the composition would stick to the mold, and the roller come out broken and spoiled. Then once the stopple at the lower end of the mold came out, and the hot liquid ran over the kitchen floor. At the present time composition can be got all prepared for molding, only needing to be melted for the operation.
The Ithaca subscription book contained about 200 names. The Witness now edited by J. H. and H. A. Noyes was sent to all the old subscribers, for he had promised that "sooner or later he would send them 26 numbers".
The fifth number was printed in two parts for want of paper of a suitable size to print the whole No. The execution of this and the following numbers shows a great improvement, and the company were not ashamed to announce at the end of each paper - "printed by J. H., H. A., H. H., C. A. and G. W. Noyes".
Mr. N's associates in printing soon became writers for the paper also, and occasionally set up their own contributions.
The remaining no's of this volume were published at irregular intervals, six being issued during the winter of 1838-39. A small room for an editor's sanctum was added to the accomodations over the saw mill, and a little pamphlet, called "Hints to Temperance Men," was printed this winter.
Mr. Noyes was chiefly occupied during the summer of 1839 in building himself a house and printing office. One more no. of the Witness was published in Sep., and then on the 3d of Jan. 1840 the eleventh No was printed in the new printing office, and Mr. J. L. Skinner was added to the printing company. He, having had some experience in a printing office, was an efficient helper. For a while the paper was published weekly, and at this time the number of subscribers was 251, an addition of more than fifty since the commencement of its publication in Putney.
Dec. 1840 saw the close of the 1st vol. of the Witness. Mrs. Cragin gives a graphic description of its history, in a Monthly Record kept by the Putney Association, as follows:-
"Three years and six months have elapsed since the promise was made to the readers of the Witness that they should receive twenty-six numbers, and the past month has witnessed its fulfilment. Despite the numerous prophecies to the contrary, the work is accomplished, and the pledge (made under circumstances which to any but the age of faith forbade fulfilment) is fully redeemed. During the period which has intervened no means have been leŁt untried to arrest its progress. "Tobias & Sanballat (?)" have been indefatigable in their efforts to overthrow it - ecclesiastical bodies have voted it down - professed followers of Jesus Christ have misrepresented and maligned it - pretended friends have betrayed its interests - poverty, desertion and contempt have assaulted it. Yet through all opposing forces it has lived and triumphantly fought its way, and is this day a glorious confirmation of the truth that "they that wait upon the Lord shall never be confounded." Dec. 25th 1840.
In October previous a treatise of the Second Coming of Christ was printed filling two sheets about the size of the Witness, or (filling two octavo sheets). Mr. Geo. Cragin, who had joined the Putney Association with his family a month previous rendered valuable assistance in getting out this pamphlet, and in distributing it. Mr. C. had had experience in such business, having been the publishing agent of the Moral Reform society in N. Y. City. Mrs. Cragin subsequently became a valuable contributor to the paper.
Another helper, as compositor, at this time was Caroline Smith, Mr. A. C. Smith's daughter, who came to stay awhile in Mr. Noyes' family, and learned to set type.
Mr. Cragin's accession induced a new move in the publishing line. Mr. Noyes proposed that he become the editor of a paper which should advocate the true views of social morality, in opposition to the loose opinions and practises of some called Perfectionists. That he should be the true successor of McDowall in the cause of Moral Reform. Two numbers of this paper entitled the "Spiritual Moralist" were published early in 1842. It was discontinued for reasons given afterward as follows:-
"We intend to publish, sooner or later, the volume of the SPIRITUAL MORALIST which was commenced last year. At present, however, we think it not expedient to force the discussion of the subject to which that paper is devoted. The terms which were proposed to its subscribers leave us at liberty to defer publication, as we find it necessary. Its subscription list is very small, and very few of its subscribers have paid for it. To those who have paid, we would say - either wait patiently till we think it best to publish, or send us word that you are unwilling to wait, and we will refund the money."
1841. Mr. Skinner took the editorship of the paper with Mr. Noyes, and ten numbers of the 2nd vol. of the Witness were published during the year.
Several tracts or pamphlets were also published, composed of matter first printed in the Witness, and then made up in book form. "Three Letters to an Inquirer," "The Second Birth," and "The Two-fold Nature of the Second Birth," were reproduced in this way.
Two valuable compositors were added to the printing corps this year, Fanny M. White and Harvey Bowles. The first came to live in J. H. N.'s family as a companion and helper to Mrs. N., and learned to set type. Harvey Bowles was introduced to Mr. Noyes by Francis Cook (an interested friend) as a compositor and printer, who wished to be employed in the office part of the time, and have an opportunity to study the remainder. He staid in Mr. N.'s family a little over one year, and then left because he was not in sympathy spiritually.
The publication of the 2nd vol. of the Witness was continued irregularly through the year 1842, and finished Jan. 1843.
Among the pamphlets issued that year was "Law's Address to the Clergy." The reasons for re-publishing this antiquated book will be found in the following notice cut from the Witness:
"In 1835, While Boyle was publishing the Perfectionist at New Haven, an old copy of Law's Address to the Clergy, which had been found among the effects of a deceased clergyman, carefully locked up in a private drawer, fell into the hands of some Perfectionists at Putney. They liked the book so well that it was thought advisable to send it to Boyle and have some of it published. Accordingly Boyle published several extracts from it which were well received among Perfectionists generally. Afterwards, while Boyle was at Newark, and was about closing the publication of the Perfectionist, he found a considerable remnant of an edition of the Address (published at Exeter N.H., in 1831) in sheets thrown aside in a book-store, probably as waste paper. He bought the sheets, folded and stitched them, and sent copies to the subscribers of the Perfectionist, as a substitute for the lacking numbers of the unfinished volume of that paper. To many it was a very acceptable volume, and its influence
was evidently wholesome. Since then, frequent inquiries have been made for it, and we have once or twice been requested to publish an edition of it. Believing that there is still a demand for it, and that it will effectually further the truth at the present time, we propose to publish it in Periodical numbers, as a continuation of our series of 'Tracts for the Times'. It will be printed on four sheets, bearing periodical postage, and when bound will make a duodecimo volume of about one hundred pages. It will be sent to those who apply for it, pay or no pay. Price $3.00 per. dozen copies, $1.00 for four copies, single copies 25 cents."
The "Tracts for the Times" mentioned in this notice were the "Second Birth," & "Two-fold nature of the Second Birth." The title was probably suggested by the Oxford Tracts which were popular at that time, and was adopted to gain the advantage of periodical postage.
Another pamphlet printed this year was a Report of a Convention of Perfectionists held at Newark, N. J., May 12th 1842.
The Wilder Bros. from Central N.Y. added strength to the paper this year, and the following. The two elder brothers, George and David joined the family in Sep. 1841. The youngest, Alexander, Nov. 1842. Not remarkable for their refinement they were all persons of considerable reading and information. The elder, though he worked on the farm, frequently wrote an article for the paper. The youngest learned to set type, and Mr. Noyes encouraged him to exercise himself in writing and invited him to assist in preparing the tract, "Salvation from Sin" for the press.
Caroline Smith returned home in May 1842.
At the close of the second volume of the Witness Mr. Noyes gave notice that the next paper would appear in a new dress. It also appeared with a new name. The following editorial gives the reasons for the change:-
THE PERFECTIONIST February 15, 1843
The Form and Style of our Paper
"Perhaps some of our readers will feel a momentary regret at parting with the quarto form of the Witness. We have been led to prefer, on the whole, the folio form, for the following reasons. 1. It enables us to print considerably more matter on the same size of paper. 2. It saves the reader the inconvenience of stitching and cutting. 3. It materially lessens the labor of the printer and folder.
"Our columns are now of the same width as those of the Spiritual Moralist; so that we can print occasionally our more important articles in the small quarto form, (as we have
lately printed the article from the Witness on "Salvation from Sin,") without changing our type or press furniture.
"We style this Volume (as the reader will see under the title,) Vol. III, because it is a continuation of the Witness, the name only being changed. However, if any one chooses, he may consider it also a continuation of the original Perfectionist, of which the first Volume and part of the second, were published at New Haven in 1834-5.
- - - - - - - - -
"As we are disposed to pay off the old debts of the cause of holiness, we shall be glad to furnish any of the old subscribers to The Perfectionist, who may have felt themselves wronged by the discontinuance of it in the middle of the Volume, with the number of papers due to them."
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Through the summer of 1842 Mr. Noyes had many invitations to preach, of which he accepted. He preached at Belchertown and Hawley, and several other places in central Massachusetts, and at New Haven and Harnden, Conn., and also attended a Perfectionist Convention at Newark, N. J. Speaking publicly as often as once a day, and sometimes three times, wore upon his throat and was the beginning of a disease which has afflicted him ever since. When he returned home he abstained from much talking even in the community for a time, and gave himself more entirely to writing for the paper, as may be seen by the numerous articles signed N. in the 1st vol. of the Perfectionist. These articles and others following were subsequently embodied in "the Berean," a book published in 1847.
The Millerites were at this time in much excitement over the expectation of Christ's Second Coming predicted to take place in 1843, and while Mr. Noyes was in New Haven, on his way to Newark Convention he consulted with friends there about the expediency of publishing his article on the Second Coming, in that city, omitting his name as author. It was thought best to do so, and Mr. James Reynolds, now a member of the Community took an active part in distributing these tracts among the Adventists in that region. A young man by the name of Stephen R. Leonard who was a compositor in the office where this pamphlet was printed became so much interested while setting it up, that he opened communication with Mr. Noyes, and afterward joined his family.
The next pamphlet published was on Salvation from Sin, and we find notices like the following in the early numbers of the Perfectionist:
"We have lately published the article "SALVATION FROM SIN" in an Extra Witness, about two hundred copies of which are now on hand. The expense of publication is about 50 cents per dozen. Friends who wish to obtain the tract for circulation, will give us notice accordingly."
"GEORGE CRAGIN is General Agent for our publications. He will be at the Convention in Hartford, on the 16th inst., and afterwards will travel for a short time in the region about New Haven, furnishing the tract on "Salvation from Sin" to those who have subscribed for it and others who may apply."
This pamphlet was afterward stereotyped and three editions of a thousand copies each were sold or otherwise disposed of within the year.
The following extract from the Perfectionist will show by what means this was done:-
"MAY 15, 1843
"By the liberality of friends in Belchertown and Prospect, we have succeeded in stereotyping the tract on SALVATION FROM SIN, and shall henceforth be able to meet all demands for it permanently. It is printed in duodecimo form- 30 pages, Brevier. It will be furnished to those who order large quantities for circulation, at $3 per hundred, and 50 cents per dozen copies. Packages can be sent by stage, or other conveyances, to any part of the country."
"Two classes of believers, "- "Origin of Evil" and "The Sabbath," were printed as Extra Perfectionists the latter part of the year.
The two elder Wilders returned to their home in Central N. Y. during the winter of this year, on account of family necessities. They left Mr. Noyes with friendly feelings, as will be seen by the following notices appearing in the paper at the time:
"DAVID WILDER has taken the Agency of the Perfectionist, and our other publications, and proposes to devote himself for the present to the business of disseminating the doctrine of holiness, by lecturing, etc., wherever his services are desired. His present place of address in, Verona, Oneida Co. N.Y."
- - - - - - - - -
"Our friends in the state of New York can obtain copies or packages of the tract on "Salvation from Sin," by applying to DAVID WILDER, Verona, Oneida Co. N.Y."
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The same day (March 8) that Geo. Wilder left Putney, S. R. Leonard arrived; he was well versed in the art of printing, and also an earnest believer in the truths advocated by Mr. Noyes, and was a welcome assistant in the printing office. He relieved Mr. Noyes entirely from the care of the press work etc. etc.
This was the first year that the paper was published regularly - the following was the heading:
Published on the first and fifteenth of
J. H. NOYES & J. L. SKINNER, EDITORS
"Twenty four numbers will constitute a volume, - the nominal price of which is one dollar. The paper, however, will be sent to all who apply for it."
Of the financial state of the printing business Mr. Noyes gives the following statement at the commencement of this volume:-
"A WORD ABOUT OUR FINANCES
"On examination of our accounts, we find that the two Volumes of the Witness have cost at least fifteen hundred dollars. We have received from subscribers not more than four hundred dollars. Our friends will perceive, that with such a balance against us, we cannot go on forever. We have made up our minds to publish only the present Volume, unless the paper, within a year, can be made to support itself. This will require one thousand paying subscribers. We have no reason or disposition to complain of these facts. But we think it right to lay them before our readers, that all who are able to help us, may see our position, and share with us the responsibility of continuing the paper."
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To obtain more subscribers, and so be able to continue the paper, he wrote a Prospectus of the Perfectionist, asking subscribers to use their influence to have it put in papers in their vicinity. Eight papers printed it. The "New Haven Palladium," "Hartford Courant," "Newark Daily Advertizer," "Hampshire Gazette," "Sentinel of Freedom," Massachusetts Spy," "Quincy Patriot" and "Columbia Republican," (Hudson, N.Y.)
Towards the end of the volume Mr. Noyes says:-
"The prospect is that THE PERFECTIONIST will be discontinued, (for a time at least) at the end of the present volume. We have not the means of publishing it longer at our own expense; and there is no probability that it will be supported by its subscribers. It costs not less than a thousand dollars per volume; and we have received thus far for the present volume, in payments, gifts, etc., only $15O... a little more than the cost of the paper. Individual subscribers have helped us liberally, but the balance is large against us. We have given our labor and money cheerfully,...and now make no complaint. God is our employer. He has provided the means of publication thus far, and if we are now brought into circumstances which forbid our proceeding farther, we take
it as an indication of his will, and cheerfully stop. The year that is coming will doubtless be a period of much political excitement; and we are very willing to be excused from the attempt to gain a hearing for a despised gospel, amid the din of a Presidential election. The volume will close on the 1st of February next. We shall do what we can, in the five remaining numbers, to 'finish our testimony.' N."
In the following paper he says, the number of subscribers is five hundred and fifty, and two dollars from each would carry the paper through another year, or five dollars from two hundred of them.
The 22nd No. contained letters from several subscribers who promise five dollars each, and Mr. Noyes expresses encouragement that he will be able to go on with his periodical. In the last number of the volume he appeals to its friends as follows:-
"Our year's work is finished, and we have now to decide whether another volume shall be undertaken. The premises of the decision are these:- We are not able longer to bear the expenses of publication ourselves, our subscription list is small, and the income that has heretofore been received from it, is still smaller. But on the other hand, our appeal to the friends of the paper - made after the hope of its continuance had once been given up --has met with a response more favorable than we expected. We have thrown upon them the responsibility of deciding whether we shall stop or advance, and they say with one voice, so far as they have yet spoken: 'Go forward.' Their collective pledges have not yet reached, by several hundred dollars, the lowest sum which on the most economical plan of operations, we shall need for the expenses of the paper. About four hundred dollars is all that has yet been subscribed. But this sum is pledged by only about eighty out of our five hundred and fifty subscribers. We have not yet heard from several who have undertaken voluntary agencies, nor from many subscribers, who, we are confident, are as liberal and as much interested in the paper, as those who have already answered our appeal. Every mail brings new pledges, t">and new expressions of strong desire for a continuation. We cannot but think there is a reasonable prospect that the friends of the paper, when they have all considered long enough, and sent in their conclusions, will be found able and willing to 'lift the load.' Our decision and present intention, therefore, is to publish another Volume. We shall however allow ourselves and fellow-laborers a vacation of a few weeks; and, if at the end of that period, there should not be a sufficient increase of the sum pledged, to fairly warrant us in proceeding, we shall then give notice of the discontinuance, and discharge the pledges. Those who have promised money, of course, will not send it till we issue the first number of the contemplated Volume. In the mean time, we trust those who are interested in the success of the present effort, (and according to the assurances we are receiving by every mail, they are many,) will use their best exertions, by undertaking
voluntary agencies, and otherwise, to increase the amount pledged, as well as the number of subscribers. We have strong confidence that the victory will be won."
The heading of the 2nd vol. of the Perfectionist was varied as follows:
Published Every Other Saturday
Twenty-four numbers will constitute a volume, -the nominal price of which is one dollar. The paper however, will be sent to all who apply for it.
J. H. NOYES & J. L. SKINNER, EDITORS
S. R. LEONARD, PRINTER"
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"Theocratic Watchman" was added to the title, of which Mr. Noyes says:-
"We have added the words 'THEOCRATIC WATCHMAN,' to the superscription of our paper. Our readers may regard it, if they please, as filling the place of a motto, rather than as an addition to the old title. Its significance will be perceived on reading the article and remarks with which the paper commences. 'We adopt it as a standing avowal that the revelation and acknowledged establishment of the kingdom of the Son of man, is the object of our political desires and expectations. N."
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In this volume Mr. Noyes began his Religious History, which was continued from paper to paper a little more than a year.
In Feb. of this year (1844) Alexander Wilder left Mr. N's family, having become dissatisfied.
The number of subscribers was increased to six hundred and upward. Most of the pledges had been received promptly. The cost of the paper and ink was $720. The receipts from subscribers $550, a better balance than in any year before, so that Mr. N. was encouraged to go on with another volume.
Beside the money received, the Belchertown believers presented the Putney family with a wagon. We give their letter of presentation.
"Belchertown, May 16, 1844
Dear Br. Noyes:
We the undersigned, feeling a desire to aid you in the
furtherance of the gospel, present you by Brother Cragin with a THOROUGHLY BUILT WAGON. God has blessed us in the making of it. To him be the praise.--We send it to you freely, and with cheerful hearts, rejoicing that we can do something for you in return for the good you have done to us.
C. Olds, 0. Smith,
H. J. Chandler, C. H. Dwight,
Wm. Woolworth, J. E. Howard,
J. Longley, P. Bridgman,
D. F. Rice, F. Dickinson,
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An extra quantity of the last No. of this vol. was printed as a specimen, for circulation.
In the second number of the third year of the Perfectionist (1848) we find the following notice:
"If our readers observe any unusual imperfections in the typography of this No., they may attribute them to the absence of the printer, who has left town for a few days on business indicated in the following notice:
"MARRIED, in Brattleboro, on the 3d inst., by L. G. Mead, Esq., Stephen R. Leonard, to Fanny M. White, both of Putney."
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In the fifth number Mr. Noyes proposed to publish a book called "The Compendium." He gives his reasons as follows:-
"The five volumes of these papers (including the volume published at New Haven) contain a large amount of matter which ought to be accessible in a convenient form to all the disciples of holiness, and especially to all new converts and inquirers. It seems hardly necessary or desirable that we should be continually going over, in the present discussions of the paper, ground that has been previously traversed, repeating arguments on the elementary principles of our doctrines which are familiar to all the earlier disciples, and answering again objections which have long ago been effectually answered. And yet we must take such a course in order to meet the wants and expectations of new subscribers, unless we can put into their hands a work comprising the substance of our previous publications. We want a comprehensive book of reference, which, being in the hands of all our readers, will leave us at liberty to assume truths which have been already established, and go on to 'the things which are before.' And we apprehend that all who are heartily interested in the views advocated in our paper, have frequent occasion to recur to past discussions, and to refresh their minds with elementary truths. We doubt not that they frequently feel the need of such a compendium as we propose,
in order to meet the inquiries of strangers and the objections of enemies to our faith. Their files of the paper are in many cases imperfect, or scattered, and at the best inconvenient for reference. Our edition of the Way of Holiness, and our stock of occasional tracts, (with which we have heretofore attempted partially to supply the want of which we speak,) are exhausted. In view of these facts we are led to believe that a condensed summary of the principal matter of the Witness and Perfectionist, printed in book form, will be acceptable to many, and serviceable to the cause."
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We extract from the eighth number, a statement of the financial situation of the printing business, and Mr. N.'s purposes for the future:-
"OUR POSITION, PURPOSES, AND HOPES.
"It is right that those who are interested in the cause to which this paper is devoted, should be informed from time to time in relation to its means of support. For this purpose we will make a few frank statements.
"The company which sustains the paper has a considerable amount of property--enough, if managed in the usual way with a view to accumulation, to give the members a competency.--This property they have thrown into joint-stock, and have devoted it to the propagation of the gospel. They do not feel bound to dispose of it in such a way as to deprive themselves of the means of a decent living, because they consider themselves the property of the Lord, and their living a part of the agency by which the gospel is to be propagated. They have families to provide for; but they have no ambition to provide for their WORLDLY promotion. Their purpose is to maintain and educate their children only for the service of Christ.
"When we commenced our enterprise in this place we had less property than we have now; a large outlay for buildings, printing apparatus, etc., was necessary; several of us devoted ourselves principally to the paper, and of course added little to the common stock; the remittances from subscribers were next to nothing. Of course we sunk a portion of our capital. This we expected. Our minds were made up, from the beginning, to go to the verge (not over the brink) of bankruptcy, rather than stop the press. Like a beleaguered fortress, we determined to hold out as long as our provisions lasted, and hoped for succor in the time of final necessity. One year our books showed a loss of seven hundred dollars;--and this too after our first expenses were past, and when we had become established in business. That seven hundred dollars was just about the outlay for the paper. Some of the last years we sunk less, and probably some of the first years we sunk more. In this way we reduced our capital so much, that at last we dared go no further, and at the close of the 3d volume of our paper we found that help must come from some quarter, or we must stop. This was the time of our necessity, and the succor
came. All appeal to our subscribers was promptly and liberally answered, and we received from them in the course of the last year nearly enough to cover the expenses of the printing office. Our business operations at the same time were more successful than formerly, so that our expenses on the whole probably did not exceed our income. In the course of the last year, also, we received a considerable addition to our property, by the decease of a relative. The paper has therefore now a better basis of support than it has ever had before.
"But there is still room for the improvement of our position. Supposing it possible for us to go on with the paper as it is, without loss on the whole, (which is yet doubtful,) yet the want of means of ENLARGING our operations is pressing upon us. We really need double our present amount of type, and another hand in the office, so that we may be enabled to print tracts and books without interfering with the paper. We could very profitably employ a large amount of means in this way and in agencies for distributing publications, and procuring subscribers.--But with our present capital it is not prudent for us to attempt more than we are now doing. Our receipts from subscribers this year have been small--not more than a third of what they were last year at this time. This however indicates no falling off of interest, because the early remittances last year were made in fulfilment of pledges of extra assistance. We have received more this year than in any former year at this time, except the last. But the amount is still small, not enough to authorize the expectation that the printing office will pay its way. It must probably lean on our other resources, for a considerable part of its expenses. We are not therefore in condition to enlarge.
"We shall go on with our work. We feel that God has called us to it by his Spirit and by many Providences. The paper already has generous-hearted friends who feel that the work to which it is devoted is theirs as well as ours. We trust their numbers will increase. ~ have no desire of FORCING the zeal and liberality of believers, by exciting exhortations and appeals. Forced growth is unhealthy and short-lived. Conviction of the truth and value of the gospel of holiness--a feeling that it is a privilege to live or die for it--a hearty devotion, not of an occasional gratuity, but of body, soul, and spirit, strength, property, and influence to the kingdom of heaven--these are the springs of healthy and permanent liberality; and these must have time to work themselves out from the faith of the inner man, into activity and system. We wait patiently for the NATURAL fruits of the Spirit, assured that if they ripen slowly, they will be rich and abundant at last."
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The subscriptions for "The Compendium" were published in every number until at the twenty-second, they had reached the sum of $436. In this number Mr. Noyes gives the following plan for publishing the book:-
"PLANS OF PUBLISHING
"We have decided to enter upon the work of preparing and publishing the Compendium. Our subscription-list is not so large as was wished, but we hope it will yet be doubled; and we have so much evidence that the work is needed and will do good, that we are determined to venture on the undertaking at all events. Our purpose is to devote labor enough to the preparation to thoroughly work over the materials we have, and reduce them, by alterations, additions, and proper arrangement, to unity and compactness. A review of the five volumes of the paper has satisfied us that in this way a very valuable book may be made.
"On full consideration of the ways and means of publishing, we have come to the conclusion that it is best to do the work at this office. We find that we can buy a new font of type for printing the book, (which will be useful to us afterwards,) and yet incur less cash outlay by several hundred dollars, if we do the job ourselves, than would be required if we were to hire it done at New York. And then the trouble and expense of going abroad to superintend the publication will be saved, and we shall be at liberty to take our own time for the work, and so do it well.
"The next question is --- What is to become of the paper? Our plan is this, viz: to issue the paper once a month, instead of once in two weeks, and so devote half of our time to the Compendium till it is finished. In this way we can print the book in six or eight months, and shall have ample time to prepare it satisfactorily. In the meantime the paper will be issued as often as it was at New Haven--as often as the 'tree of life bears its fruit.' The nominal price will be fifty cents for twelve numbers. We intend to alter the form of the paper at the commencement of the next volume. The present form is not good for binding. The Compendium will post the past accounts, and we shall commence a new series in MAGAZINE form--large octavo, sixteen pages. Perhaps by taking more time to think and select, we shall be able to furnish nearly as much matter that will be permanently valuable by monthly issues, as we do at present.
"Brethren, our plans are before you. How do you like them? If you have any objections to them, speak quick; for we have sent for the new type, and the fifth volume of the paper is nearly out, so that we shall soon be at work on the book. If you have no objections, and fill disposed to help us, get all the subscribers for us you can, and invest as much money in the concern as you can spare,--for we shall need a great deal of your cooperation in these ways if we are to get through this undertaking without heavy loss.
"N.B. According to our present calculations, the Compendium will be a larger book than was first proposed--probably it will contain more than five hundred pages, large octavo. Such books are sold usually at prices varying from $1.50 to $2.O0. The Compendium will be cheap at $1.50, AND THAT T WILL BE THE PRICE OF IT TO THOSE WHO DO NOT SUBSCRIBE BEFORE IT IS PUBLISHED. We shall abide by the terms originally proposed, viz., $1.00 per copy, in the case of subscribers.
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At the close of the volume the subscriptions for "the Compendium" were $50O. The money received for the paper was about $300, something less than half the cost; and there were 675 subscribers. A specimen of the new type was presented in an article in the paper.
One or two Extras had been printed in the course of the year.
The plan for 1846 was carried out, a sheet of the book being printed between each number of the paper, 1000 copies. The name of the book, and the paper also, were changed, as will be seen by the notices we insert, which were printed at the close of each paper
"THE SPIRITUAL MAGAZINE
is published by the Association of Perfectionists at Putney, Vt., on the 15th of every month. The price of it, as determined by its cost, is fifty cents for the yearly volume, or one dollar for twenty-four numbers. Subscribers, however, will be left to judge for themselves what amount of remuneration agrees with its value and with their ability. It is offered FREELY to all who are interested in its doctrines.
Communications may be addressed to the "PUBLISHERS OF THE SPIRITUAL MAGAZINE, PUTNEY, VT."
S. R. LEONARD, PRINTER"
- - - - -
A manual for the help of those who seek the faith of the Primitive Church.
"An octavo volume of 500 pages, with the above title, containing the principal articles which have appeared in the Perfectionist and Witness since 1834, and presenting a Compendium of the doctrines held by the advocates of perfect holiness, will be published at this office, in the course of the present year. Subscription price $1.00."
In November we find this statement in the magazine:" In consequence of having but little help in our office the past summer, we have not been able to advance so fast with the work on the Berean as we expected. We have now made arrangements, however, to hasten its progress; and we think we can engage that it shall be completed in the course of the next spring."
To fulfil this engagement they delayed the publishment of the paper, at the close of the first volume, for three months. At this time the subscription for the Berean was $604.
The character of the paper was somewhat different from the previous volumes. Mr. Noyes says:-
"The doctrine of perfect holiness, which has been the most prominent topic of our past discussions, and has given its name to several volumes of the paper which we have published, is but a limited department of the entire body of spiritual truth which the Bible offers us and which we need to know. We have devoted ourselves to this and some neighboring subjects (such as the Second Coming) somewhat exclusively, because it was through them that we found entrance into the temple of life and love, and because these were the subjects which, in the present state of Christendom, seemed most to need demonstration and propagation. We now feel that our testimony on these special topics is in a certain sense finished. What we have written in relation to them seems to us sufficiently comprehensive and convincing. At all events we do not expect to improve it by repetition.--It will be our object hereafter to review, correct and circulate, rather than to re-write the fundamentals to which the Perfectionist and the Witness have been devoted. The files of those papers are in many hands, and we expect to publish the most important matter contained in them in book form within the present year; so that we may assume that what we have written is or will soon be accessible to all. We consider ourselves therefore at liberty to leave the work which has been done, and advance. With this view we commence the new series of our paper with a title somewhat more generic than that of the past volumes. Without pledging ourselves to any precise course, (for we cannot foresee very definitely the travels of our own minds) and without excluding ourselves from any discussions of former topics which from time to time may seem necessary, we nevertheless expect to extend our excursions freely hereafter beyond the province of Perfectionism into other and all regions of spiritual science; and we hope that our minds will be led to investigations which shall prepare the way for the practical organized embodiment of the truths which have been brought to light."
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The date of the first number of the 2nd vol. of the Spiritual magazine was May 15th - 1847. George W. Noyes, Editor. Published semi-monthly - price $1.00 for twenty-four numbers.
The Berean had been bound at Brattleboro, and was now ready for circulation. Mr. Cragin spent most of the summer in distributing it to subscribers. It was advertised for sale by booksellers in Boston, New Haven, New York City and Brattleboro, and friends took the agency in many cities and villages.
The Series of numbered Home Talks were commenced in this volume of the paper.
Twelve numbers of the Magazine were printed quite regularly, when it was interrupted by the persecution which drove the Association out of Putney, and the press remained idle for nine months, a Home Talk being kept in type during that time.
The thirteenth number was printed on the 5th of August, 1848, at Oneida Reserve, N.Y., in a rough board shantee, built for a temporary shelter while the Association were building a a house. This number was published in explanation of the long interruption, and to assure subscribers of the continuance of the paper when circumstances would admit. This was not till another year had elapsed. Meanwhile an expose of our social principles seemed to be called for and this was given in the First Annual Report of the Association, printed in Jan. 1849.
Mr. Noyes' Religious History was reprinted in pamphlet form while the shantee was used for a printing office, several of the young people who had joined the Association within the year, learning to set type, in the process. But the First Report was printed in a room of the new house, where the Press remained until Dec. of the same year, when we find the following notice in the 22nd No. of the Magazine:-
"This No. of the Magazine is issued from our new Printing Office. It occupies part of a large building which was erected the past fall, near the principal Mansion, and which includes also the Association's Store and Shoe Shop. The building is throughout neat and convenient, and we find our Office all that could be desired."
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This volume closed with the following:-
"NOTICE TO SUBSCRIBERS
"The second volume of the Magazine is advancing to completion, and with it terminate all business obligations between its publishers and the public. We shall take the opportunity thus afforded to reform our subscription list. We wish, in entering upon the new volume, to have a new and clear understanding with those to whom we send. Our subscription account is now of a long standing; and the liberality of our terms has led us to continue the paper to all who ever applied for it, so long as we were not otherwise ordered. There are some who have taken it for years,
of whom we know nothing either by letter or otherwise. Others to whom we send, are probably indifferent, and a few perhaps unfriendly to the publications of our school. We propose now to close up the old account, and to open for the coming volume, a new list of such only as notify us of their wish to receive it. By this measure, we shall hear directly from many friends in all parts of the country, (and the occasion in this respect will be well worth the trouble,) and we shall relieve our gratuitous list of such persons (if there are any,) as are not interested in the matters that we discuss. The terms of the paper will continue as heretofore."
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The next volume (1850) was continued in the same form with a change of name. We give the editor's reasons for the change:-
"CHANGE OF NAME"
"We would introduce to the acquaintances of the "Spiritual Magazine," the spirit and substance of their former visitor, under the new form of 'FREE CHURCH CIRCULAR.' This is to be taken as little other than a nominal alteration. We consider it as in fact a continuation of the Spiritual Magazine, and, as will be seen in the imprint, count the volume now commencing as Vol. 3d of the series.
"We may glance at some of the reasons which recommend this change in the title of the paper.
"There is not the same occasion now, as formerly, that we should make the paper a public and professed champion TO THE WORLD, of the doctrine of holiness, and the first principles of Christianity. So long as circumstances required it, that was done by our press, faithfully. In the several Volumes of the Witness and Perfectionist, and finally in the Berean, the truth of full salvation by Christ was produced, and still remains in a permanent form testifying to the world. This work will not be done over again. But further than this, those doctrines and truths are now EMBODIED IN ACTUAL LIFE, stand out in their concrete form, and live, never to perish, in an organized society and church. God is producing a FACT of unity--a living epistle, which is ready to be 'known and read of all men,' and which is now holding up the truth of salvation more effectually, than any mere preaching or printing could do. Our paper has been gradually withdrawn from the position of direct operation on the world, just in proportion as this subjective movement has advanced, and has been turned into a medium of spiritual criticism and self-improvement. It has consequently assumed more and more a private application and interest, i.e. so far as the public of the world, and even worldly Perfectionists are concerned. It is properly a Circular for BELIEVERS IN THE KINGDOM OF GOD. The word Circular has a limited signification; it means a missive designed for a certain limited circle. Our friends we think will agree that this corresponds with the nature of the paper. We do not publish for the world, but for the circle of believers.
"The introduction of the name 'FREE CHURCH' into our title will give the religious claim to our school which, as it is rightful, seems also to be needed. As it has grown up and taken its associative form during the hot prevalence of socialism, it has appeared to careless observers, and been pronounced in the public prints as an offspring of that unhappy philosophy. It has again been confounded more or less with the herd of ill bred spiritualisms, which in late years have sprung up like FUNGI from the decaying trunk of the old church. These circumstances, the involuntary associations of the infancy of our movement, have perhaps affected our own consciousness with temptations of doubt and self-depreciation.
"It is time now that we ascend out of the chaos of socialisms and spiritualisms, into the dignity of a church. Our friends, we are confident, will heartily embrace the appellation which is selected in our title. There have appeared to us many reasons for wishing that we may win the name of the FREE Church. 1. Perfectionism came out of the Free Church of old times, and is the true heir of the spiritual wealth of that church. The parent is dead, and the child has a right to assume its name without the addition of junior. 2. We ARE a Free Church, in a far higher sense than the parent church was -- free from sin, free from law, free from the ordinances and institutions of the world, free from death, etc. etc. 3. We claim connection with the church in the heavens, and that is expressly and emphatically named by the apostle, FREE. Is not that a better epithet for the heavenly church than 'Primitive,' the one we have been accustomed to use? May we not close up our connection with them, by laying time out of account and calling the whole church of God, celestial and terrestial, THE FREE CHURCH?
"There could not be a more expressive motto, if we take in the whole meaning of it, than the one selected to accompany the new title; 'The truth shall make you free.' In the same discourse where it occurs, Jesus repeats and intensifies the idea thus; 'If the Son therefore shall make you free, YE SHALL BE FREE INDEED.' Let us give ourselves up for this purpose, that God may again present the sublime idea fully realized on earth, of a FREE CHURCH."
The Second Annual Report of the Oneida Community was printed early in the year 1850, (1000 copies) and in May of that year, Mr. Cragin published in New York City, a pamphlet entitled "Faith Facts;" 1300 copies of which were subsequently printed by the Community from the stereotype plates procured by Mr. Cragin in New York.
In June, Mr. Wm. R. Inslee, of Newark, N. J. presented the Community with an Adams power press costing $300. To make this present Mr. I. sold his piano, notwithstanding he cherished it much as a memento of his deceased wife. This was the second
piano sold for the purpose of sustaining the paper, as Mrs. H. A. Noyes had done the same, at the time the Perfectionist was in danger of stopping for the want of pecuniary means.
In August the publications of the Community were advertised for sale at their station in Brooklyn, and also the Second Annual Report at Fowler and Wells, N. Y. City.
G. W. Noyes at this time made a visit at Brooklyn. Mrs. H. H. Skinner taking his place on the paper. His stay was prolonged beyond his expectations, and at length the following editorial appeared:
"THE FREE CHURCH CIRCULAR
Harriet H. Skinner, Editress
Oneida Reserve, Dec. 2, 1850
- - -
"If the readers of the Circular notice a new name above, and enquire what it means, H. H. S. makes this reply:-
"I have been the happy associate of my brothers and sisters in the Printing Office, from the time of the first establishment of the Press in Putney, when 'J.H., H.A., H.H., C.A., and G. W. Noyes, learned the printer's art, without any apprenticeship to the craft. Setting type, reading proof, folding and mailing our paper, I have fallen into writing for it too, and grown up a natural contributor and interested partner in all its concerns, until circumstances and official invitation have now introduced me to the editorship.
"I accept the office, with the feelings of pleasure I should have in waiting upon my friends to a repast--a very select company, I know; but the resources provided me, forbid me any concern for the attractiveness of my table."
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A small tract "Slavery and Marriage" was published this year (1850).
At the commencement of the next vol. (1851) it was promised weekly. The editress says:-
"We expect to publish the present volume of the Circular in WEEKLY numbers, but prefer, with our predecessors, not to promise exact regularity. We grow more and more in love with the extempore principle of publishing adopted in this office--not altogether for the personal freedom it gives us, but for its good effect upon the character of our paper. We never have to fill it up with indifferent matter, or 'lead it out,' (in printers' phrase,) in order to meet the engagement of periodical issue. It suits us to ~ave the time to Providence, and be in a position where we can double our expedition, or our interval of delay, as the Spirit and God's occasion may invite.
"It pleases us to be able to say that we have received only one notice of discontinuance."
The Third Annual Report which was printed at the beginning of the year, contains statistics of the Printing business from which we copy the following:-
"The income of the Printing Office for the year ending Jan. 1, 1851, was $460. Of this about one half was for subscriptions to the Circular, and from the sale of publications, and the remainder was from job printing, for the vicinity. The facilities for printing and publishing have been increased the past year, by an addition to this department of an Adams' power press, a book bindery, and a stereotype foundry, at an expense of about $600. We have also bought within the year, $260 worth of new type of various kinds, and expended upwards of $60 for stereotype plates.
"Our paper, the Free Church Circular, has been printed, 720 copies semi-monthly. From the date of this Report, it is expected to publish it weekly. Of our own publications, besides the Circular, we have printed 1000 copies of the last Annual Report, 2000 copies of Salvation from Sin, and 1300 copies of Faith Facts--besides a variety of printing for home convenience."
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The book bindery, mentioned above was an attempt made by Charles Hamilton, with very meagre machinery, to bind books for the Community, and it answered very well for this purpose.
The stereotype foundry was gotten up under the Super-intendance of Mr. Isaac Seymour.
At the date of this writing, the Oneida and Wallingford Communities have machinery for electrotyping and binding books, and their printing and binding bear comparison with any in the country. It is now interesting to look back upon our first attempt at these arts, and notice that they had a death and resurrection. The fate that overtook them will be better described by inserting here an Extra Circular, published immediately after the occurrance, than anything that could be written now.
"THE FREE CHURCH CIRCULAR
Oneida Reserve, July 15, 1851
"TO THE SUBSCRIBERS OF THE CIRCULAR.
"We take the first convenient opportunity to inform our subscribers of the suspension (for the present) of our printing operations, including the Circular, and the reason why. The building which was used for our printing-office, store, shoeshop, stereotype-foundery, etc., was destroyed by fire on Saturday evening, July 5th, and with it both our presses, a large share of the type, and all the publications on hand, with the exception of the Bereans. For facilities to make the present communication, we are indebted to the politeness of Mr. Howlett, of the Central N. Y. Journal office, Vernon.
"As our readers may have a natural desire to know the particulars of this occurrence, we will not omit to give a brief sketch.
"On the evening above mentioned, the Association were all, as usual, in general assembly. It was about nine o'clock -- we had been talking about individual inspiration, and had just passed a resolution that we would every one rely on interior direction for the guidance of our conduct the coming week. The subject was concluded, and conversation rested; a member requested to have the 13th chapter of Romans read, and the Bible was just opened, when we were suddenly started to our feet by an indefinite alarm. Upon the first rush forward, some one said, 'QUIET: ' -- moderation was restored, and the egress from the room was free and still. There was a simultaneous gush of gratitude, we believe, from all hearts, when it appeared that it was only the store that was in peril, and not our home buildings. A proud column of flame was already issuing from the roof, which defied to begin with, all the resistance that could be made, without an engine. An attempt was made however, and for a few minutes, the virtue of all the water that could be brought, was vigorously applied. It was vain; the rescue was soon abandoned, and all turned their exertions to removing the contents of the doomed structure.
"The fire took in the garret, from some unknown cause. Our printing office was on the second floor, and was invaded by the destroyer, before its doors were opened. A large hole was burned through the plastering, just over the power press. The progress of the fire was rapid, but orderly and graceful--sweeping clean in its descent from the roof to the foundations. You could imagine it an altar of sacrifice; in which the sacrifice, and then the altar was consumed. For some time the upper story was like a censer of flames, on the altar of the stories below. The evening was remarkably still -- the fleecy clouds around the moon were motionless. There was helpfulness and energy on all sides, without distracting excitement. Every thing in the store and shoe-shop was got out and carried to a place of safety, before the light of the fire was dim on our walks. In less than three hours we were re-assembled, with the exception of a few sentinels, in the room we had left, congratulating each other on the general good luck, and inquiring for God's meaning. The event has afforded us many profitable reflections, but it suffices for the present to say that we take it as 'conservative fire;' and are sure of profiting by this criticism of God's providence. Those of our friends who are acquainted with our history in the past, will not be disturbed by an irregularity in the publication of our paper, which is something it is well known we have never been over-scrupulous to avoid. If they reason as we do, they will assuredly anticipate a resurrection from the ashes of this fire, in an auspicious time, not very distant, and haply in a new and improved form. Perhaps we cannot better conclude, than by quoting the last paragraph of a Home-Talk received since the occurrence.
" 'This event will naturally operate as an appeal to our friends, and open their hearts and purses. It will give us an opportunity to say to them what I have contemplated saying to them for some time, and that is, that we are able to support ourselves, and ask no favors of them in this respect; but publishing, and especially publishing GRATUITOUS PAPERS, must be a national enterprise,--and we are ready, whenever the nation is ready, for that enterprise. We will do what belongs to us to do, and then wait on God--not push open doors that he has not opened.'
"The pecuniary loss by this fire is probably about $3000.
For the Publishers"
The anticipations expressed in the foregoing Circular were realized in less than four months from the fire. On Nov. 6, 1851, the first number of the first volume of "The Circular," (change of name will be noticed) was issued at Brooklyn, N.Y., edited by J. H. Noyes, the same size as "the Perfectionist." Particulars are given in Mr. Noyes' first editorial:-
"The editor simply begs leave to observe by way of personal introduction, that he returns to his post, after an interval of five years devoted to labors in the details of practical Association, with a consciousness of improved qualifications, and with fresh attraction and devotion to his old calling.
"The fire which destroyed the printing-office and press at Oneida, and thus abruptly terminated the Free Church Circular, spared the greater part of our type -- sufficient for the use of this paper -- and made occasion for the transfer of the printing department to Brooklyn. We have since built a printing office in the rear of our dwelling, procured a power-press, and made all arrangements necessary for efficient and permanent service in the work before us. We now commence a weekly paper at the center of communication, (for Brooklyn is a part of New York,) surrounded by radiating lines of railroads, steamers, telegraphs and expresses. Our working company of writers, reporters and printers, is stronger than ever before, and ready as one man for any amount of service that the times may demand.--Thus our enterprise is in good condition at the outset, and may grow."
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He proposed that the subscription for the Circular should be given in the following manner :-
"We propose, then,to those who wish to enlist with us as reliable supporters of this press, a plan founded on the suggestion of Paul and the practice of the primitive church. 'Let every man lay by in store,' from time to time, either a fixed sum, 'according as he has purposed in his heart,' or a certain proportion of his income, 'as God hath prospered him,' and ON THE FIRST OF EVERY MONTH remit to us by letter. In this way our supplies will be systematic and seasonable, and our constituents having a definite and elevating purpose, will
pursue their calling with happier hearts. Many a man will find that he can send us a dollar or more, once a month, quite as easily as he can pay a dollar's subscription once a year. And then the monthly letter will be a valuable medium of systematic interchange with us, and of reports and communications for the paper. Will our friends give us their views of this proposal?"
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That this proposal was a success may be seen from an editorial in the last number of the Volume, which we copy.
"To meet the expenses of the Volume, we have received in subscriptions and donations from persons outside of the Community about $1,000. This we account a successful and satisfactory result; more so probably, than we have been able to show in any previous publishing year. The plan of monthly contributions has called out a degree of liberality in many friends which is highly encouraging. There have been some instances of forwardness and large-hearted devotion in support of the paper that we should like to name; we at least assure these friends that their generous contributions have not been forgotten."
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This was a political year--a year of presidential election--and Mr. Noyes placed at the head of his paper, "Devoted to the sovereignity of Jesus Christ." The burden of the paper was that Christ was king of nations and conqueror of death and Hades.
On the anniversary of the fire, the Circular says:
"The paper which was so suddenly suspended by the fire, has emerged, phoenix-like, in a new situation, with improved advantages, and a stronger hold upon life and prosperity than ever before. It went down as a semi-monthly, only to reappear as a weekly, and with a vigorous leaning towards advancement."
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A good description of setting up the paper and printing it, is given in the Circular by H. H. Skinner:
"A FAMILY PRESS."
"We have been interested in the fact that while the Circular is offered freely to the public, so there is no paid labor in its production; from the Editor without a salary, to the little hands that claim a share in the last manipulations of folding it for the mail. It goes forth from the bosom of a family, who find their happiness and reward in the service. The Editor's sanctum is in the most sociable corner of the sitting-room; a pencil and book cover serve for his ESCRITOIR. The compositors' work is 'up stairs,' and is reckoned in the programme of family arrangements as much as the cooking. Two or three have regular work there, but all our women, and the children not too young, are learning; and alternate between the different departments of domestic care, and setting type. And they count the last as the cream of their work. In this way more than twenty have a share in getting out the paper. The press-room is in the backyard, but a step from the hall door--a building erected on
purpose. Convenient to this is the door of our dining-room, where there is a long stationary table: and here it is we fold the Circular of a Saturday afternoon for the mail. So we serve our reader from the dinner board which God spreads for us day by day. Much pains have been taken to make this room a place of worship and elevated associations, and we consider this among others, a consecrating ordinance.
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An extra quantity of Nos 4 and 8 of this volume were printed as specimens of the paper, to be distributed gratuitously. They described the doctrines and practices of the Community, and were illustrated by a wood-cut of the Community buildings, engraved by E. H. De Latre, a young man of the Community who was studying engraving.
At the usual time of publishing the Annual Report the printing was delayed on account of a purpose to make it a longer work than usual, by re-publishing the Social Theory contained in the First Annual Report. Speaking of some persons opposed to the Community, who had published its Social Theory Mr. Noyes says:
"These repeated piracies, fairly require us, as conservatives, to publish a new edition of the Bible Argument; and we hereby announce that the fourth Annual Report of the Oneida Association, now in course of preparation, will contain that argument, revised and enlarged; together with a full historical sketch of the community, and an exposition of the RELIGIOUS theory on which its Social Theory is based. We shall make this publication as comprehensive an answer as possible, to the inquiries which are flowing in upon us from all quarters, respecting the Oneida Community."
The frequent occurrance of the signature "G.." in the editorial column shows that Geo. W. Noyes was an assistant editor with Mr. Noyes. In the month of August the Circular says - "Mr. Noyes the editor of the Circular, is spending a few weeks in the country," and G.W.N. supplies his place.
For several years Mr. Noyes and the Community had indulged the idea of sometime publishing a daily paper, and as an approach to it they printed the 2nd vol. of the Circular, semi-weekly. J. H. and G. W. Noyes were editors. They say in the first number:-
"BROOKLYN, NOV. 17, 1852"
"The Semi-Weekly Circular.
"We are again at home and happy to greet our readers with the commencement of a New Volume.--Our short vacation has been pleasantly spent, and it is with improved prospects and renewed enthusiasm that we return to the Circular. The forward impulse is strong and bright in regard to the paper, and we are assured that it will every where meet in its readers the same spirit
of readiness to advance in the truth and unity of the kingdom of God.
"We wish the object and character of THE CIRCULAR to be distinctly understood. It is not an ordinary miscellaneous newspaper like those which are bought and sold in the market, but is the offspring and servant of private IMPROVEMENT. We publish from principles of affection and not for money.--Loving truth and improvement ourselves, we also like to distribute what we receive among our friends and to offer them a similar medium of communication. We have done a good deal towards this object by manuscript writing; there is a constant circulation of correspondence between our different Associations. But as our need enlarges, the press offers better facilities for this interchange than the pen: and hence the establishment of the Circular, and our design of making it, at last, a daily medium. It is not at all intended for purposes of propagation, or as a channel of public controversy, but simply as a medium of edification and improvement, first to our associated friends, and then to whoever likes it.--It is thus a family organ--a home letter to Communists; and as such, we have no occasion either to solicit subscribers or to put a price on the paper. It is read and sustained by brothers and sisters, and not by patrons. See the Terms at the head of the first column."
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The Circular is published by Communists, and for Communists. Its main object is to help the education of several confederated Associations, who are practically devoted to the Pentecost principle of community of property. Nearly all of its readers outside of those Associations are Communists in principle. It is supported almost entirely by the free contributions of this Communist constituency. A Paper with such objects and such resources, cannot properly be offered for sale.--Freely we receive, and we freely give. Whoever wishes to read The Circular, can have it WITHOUT PAYING, OR PROMISING TO PAY, by applying through the mail, or at 43, Willow Place, Brooklyn. If any one chooses to pay, he may send TWO DOLLARS for the yearly volume; but he must not require us to keep his accounts. We rely on the free gifts of the Family Circle for which we labor.
"Communications should be addressed to-- "The Circular, Brooklyn, N.Y.
"S. R. LEONARD & COMPANY, PRINTERS."
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The Brooklyn family numbered twenty-seven, and almost every member participated in the work on the Circular, the housework being distributed in a way to allow that privilege to all.
The various signatures show that there were many capable of contributing, making the idea of a daily in which they encouraged themselves, not entirely absurd. There was also much interesting correspondence from the other communities.
May 7th, 1853, the paper appeared in new type. Mr. Alfred Barron who had recently joined the Community, and became a member of the Circular corps, gave 193 dollars toward the purchase. The disposition of the old type is described in the following extract :-
"THE ONEIDA FAMILY-PRESS. -- The brethren of the Newark Community have just finished building a PRINTING PRESS for the family at Oneida. It is the invention of Mr. Josiah Warren, and we think is a unique contrivance for a 'family press'--it being cheap, simple, easily portable, and we believe as well adapted to doing GOOD WORK as any other hand press. We contribute the type and other printing materials from this office, and shall ship them to-morrow, with the press, for the Oneida station. We shall expect our friends there to report themselves through the CIRCULAR, after completing their arrangements for a printing office.--This information will help our readers to account for the NEW DRESS lately put on by the CIRCULAR.
"The object of having a Press at Oneida is, that the Community may have the means of printing family notices, circulars, and other job work, such as occasional pamphlets; and also that the children and others may be in training for printers.
"It is one of our notions about 'the good time coming,' that every Community will have a Family-Press, and that such Presses will cost less, and be more useful and entertaining than Family-Pianos."
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The new type contained Tobitt's combinations, which were adopted in our office we believe, first of any office after that of the inventors. They were very popular with us for several years, but have been thrown out more recently on account of their wearing faster than the rest of the fount and so marring the impression.
A little incident described in the Circular is an instance of the spirit in which the paper was printed:-
"WORKING FROM ATTRACTION"
"It is not thought immodest for those who have invented some useful machine, or discovered some valuable art, to advertise its merits and present the beauty of its principle in every possible light. On similar grounds we ought not to be thought vain-glorious when in giving credit to the principle of Communism, we have to praise our own folks. We wish to praise our printing-office hands a little--not on their account, but to glorify the system under which they work, and so to glorify the Pentecostal spirit, which, descending from heaven, has developed this system.
"When the last Wednesday's paper was getting out, one delay after another, not from any fault in the hands, brought it late to the press. It was midnight before the form was corrected,
ready for the striking-off. As the day's work had been rather hard, and it was so late, the Editors proposed that for once the time should go by, and the printing be put off till morning. But the mere proposal raised such a buzzing in the office, that it looked more like a STRIKE than any thing we have seen. No--they were not tired--they had been nearly as late a good many times--nothing would do but to finish. So the strike begun, sure enough; and the paper was printed and mailed, and the brothers who carried it to the New-York Post-Office, returned by the grey light of the morning.
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From the last No of this volume we make two cuttings of considerable length relating to the Circular, its principles and object, its past work and future prospects. The first is a kind of prospectus--the second an editorial address to the subscribers.
"Is a paper issued twice a week, (Wednesdays and Saturdays,) by Communists, and adherents of the Kingdom of God, as founded in the Primitive Church. Its primary interest is the
SOVEREIGNTY OF JESUS CHRIST,
and the improvement of character in the things which are 'unseen and eternal.' Subordinately, it will give attention to every thing that is passing, and offer a free commentary on the prominent facts and opinions of the time. It employs in its preparation
NO HIRELING SERVICE WHATEVER,
but is edited and printed by the family of the Brooklyn Commune, and is offered to all who desire it, (as the gospel is,)
FREE OF CHARGE:
trusting its support to the cause it advocates, and the VOLUNTARY RETURN CONTRIBUTIONS (monthly or otherwise,) of its readers. With the prospect of growing to a DAILY ISSUE, our Press seeks for the full cooperation, literary and editorial, as well as pecuniary, of all who sympathize with its objects. Every Communist is interested and invited to become its correspondent for the locality in which he lives; and thus by the natural progress of its principles, the CIRCULAR will gradually combine an editorial body of correspondents, reporters, etc., that will make it a superior medium of information from all parts of the country and world.
"Those who wish us to state a definite price for the paper, choosing to PAY for it, may send TWO DOLLARS for the yearly volume.
"Address--"The Circular, Brooklyn, N. Y."
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"AFFAIRS OF THE CIRCULAR"
"In publishing the volume which is now closing, we have done three things which, so far as we know, have never been done before.
"1. We have published for an entire year, a religious SEMI-WEEKLY paper; thus breaking the old rule that religion must speak only once a week, and taking one good step toward the establishment of a religious DAILY.
"2. We have published a FREE PAPER, sending it to all applicants without price; and thus have begun to bring the press into cooperation with free churches and free schools, in the service of free education.
"3. We have gone through the year WITHOUT ONCE DUNNING OR BEGGING OR EXHORTING ANY BODY TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE SUPPORT OF
THE PAPER; and thus have put the principle of free contribution to a rigidly fair test.
"The paper has been mainly supported by the six Associations with which it is connected. This was expected, and indeed is not to be complained of: since the main object of the CIRCULAR has been avowedly to help the education of those Associations. Nevertheless, it is a matter of interest, with reference to the prospects of the voluntary system which we have put to experiment, to look into the statistics of the subscriptions and receipts from the circle outside of our Associations. With this in view, we publish in another column our book-keeper's report.
"The substance of the account is that with 475 outside subscribers, we have received in free contributions, without dunning, 829 dollars; or deducting, as we ought to do, recent subscriptions, and calling the average number of subscribers during the year 400, we have received somewhat more than we should have done, if we had charged a subscription-price of two dollars, and collected it in the usual way of religious and reform papers, by devoting a good share of each paper to dunning and begging.
"This result, though by no means sufficient of course to support the paper, is certainly promising; for by a summary calculation we judge that with the same proportion of receipts to subscriptions, if we had 2000 outside subscribers, the paper would support itself without leaning on the Associations.
"We are satisfied from the tone of our correspondence and other tokens, as well as from the nature of the case, that there are at this moment more than two thousand persons in this country who would gladly become readers of the CIRCULAR, and help us according to their ability, if they could be found and made to know what we are doing. So that a sufficient foundation for a free press exists, though some time may be required to bring it to light and get possession of it.
"Our advertising faculty has but just begun to develop itself. But we are learning something every day. Perhaps we,
and also our readers will find out by and by that we have been over-modest and scrupulous in respect to ways and means of extending the circulation of the paper. When a new correspondent tells us, (as it often happens,) how he met with a stray CIRCULAR by some curious chance, and how well it suited him, and how eager he was to send for more, we sometimes have a twinge of conscience-querying, as to whether the duty of finding out such hungry souls ought not to prevail over our aversion to proselyting obtrusiveness.
"But our enterprise is slowly advertising itself by its fruits, which after all is the surest and best way. Our faith is confirmed by the past year's experience, and by present tokens, that a free paper honestly and earnestly devoted to the sovereignty of Jesus Christ, to Practical Christianity, to Communism and Victory over Sin and Death, must in the end secure a free and bountiful support.
"So much of sunshine is upon us. Now for the shady side. The paper has thus far, as we have said, leaned chiefly on the resources of our Associations. Those resources are not unlimited, and at this particular time, in consequence of unexpected demands on the one hand, and unexpected withholdments on the other, our friends at Oneida and the other Communes are enjoying their share of the embarrassments of the times. We have not consulted them in respect to proceeding with the paper, and they, we know, are willing that we should go on, and fully expect at the moment while we write, to carry the load which the expenses of the CIRCULAR impose upon them, right along as they have done. But after mature deliberation we have decided, that as men who are determined to live honestly and owe no man anything, we are not authorized to issue the CIRCULAR longer, at least for the present, at their expense.
"We have intended, and we still intend, in the coming volume, to make the CIRCULAR a Tri-weekly. This of course will increase our outlay. But at the very juncture of this proposed advance, a combination of circumstances has straitened the affairs of those on whom we have relied, so that our demands on them ought to be and must be lightened. We take this as a signal, that the paper must either stop for the present, or must find resources outside of the Associations.
"The paper will go on sooner or later. A Tri-weekly, and at last a Daily CIRCULAR, we are persuaded, are predestined. But if we cannot NOW make headway through the pack of our North West passage, we must wait till the ice thaws out and then try again.
"We will go on now if our friends outside say the word. Any rich man among them who has a few thousand dollars to dispose of, can command us in this matter. If we stop the engine it will be only because we are short of coal. The ship and men and machinery, are all in good order, and will be kept so; and the engine will start again the moment the coal arrives.
"The course that plainly opens before us is this. We shall suspend the publication of the CIRCULAR after the present number, till about the first of December. Before that date there will be time to hear from all our fellow-laborers. Let all who wish the continuance of the CIRCULAR, tell us how much they would rather give than see it stop, and how much we may rely upon for the coming year. We will then tell them whether we can go on.
"If the decision is to stop, we shall fall back on our old method of mail correspondence, as a substitute for the paper, and set all hands at work to lay a broader and deeper financial foundation for the CIRCULAR, by paying the debts, and increasing the capital of our Associations.
During the suspension of three weeks, a pamphlet entitled "Bible Communism," was published the contents of which are indicated in the following notice taken from the introduction of the pamphlet.
"The head-waiters of the Brooklyn Commune and purveyors of THE CIRCULAR, being under a pledge of some two years' standing to issue the Fourth Annual Report of the Oneida Association, which pledge they have not hitherto had time and means to fulfill, and being subject, in their official position, to many calls for the First Report of that Institution, which they cannot answer, (the original edition having been long ago exhausted,) propose in this work to combine the substance of the three past Reports, with such other matter from THE CIRCULAR as will be necessary to make it a summary substitute for all the Annual Reports; and so acquit themselves of further obligation in the premises."
The first number of the 3d volume of the Circular was commenced Dec. 6th-1853. It was edited by the Community, and published tri-weekly. It is interesting to notice that the prospect of its death was succeeded by a resurrection in an enlarged form. Mr. Noyes says of the prospects of the new volume:- "The embarrassments which induced us, three weeks ago to suspend the publication of the Circular, have so far passed away that we find ourselves free to go on. Our brethren at Oneida and the other Communes objected, as we expected they would to our stopping in order to relieve them; and insisted that they could meet all our demands. At the same time new activity and prosperity in business of various kinds commenced among them, and promised funds that had previously been withheld began to flow in, so that the affairs of the Associations have assumed a more cheerful aspect than ever; and now we can fairly see our way through another volume without fear or bankruptcy. These favorable changes within the Associations have been echoed by the voices of many friends without, regretting the discontinuance of the paper, hoping for its progress, and promising more help.
"Thus encouraged by friends, and invited by Providence, we shall most gladly give ourselves again to the work of the
paper, and expect to send our readers 'something good' three times a week for a year to come."
Of Bible Communism he says, "The company employed on the Circular have not been altogether idle during their vacation of three weeks. We have as the nett result of our play-spell, one thousand pamphlets, well printed and bound, and ready to go where they are called for. It will be noticed that we attach a price to this new book, as also to other like publications. We do not mean by this to preclude ourselves from giving them away. But the late embarrassments of the Circular have led us to cast about for some method of 'making one hand wash the other'; and the plan has occurred to us, of selling books and pamphlets, that we may have the means of sending forth the Circular free. Possibly this office, in that way, will be able sometime to support a free paper, without asking for help. A prompt disposal of our new pamphlets at 50 cts apiece, would give us a good lift for the expenses of the coming volume of the Circular."
We notice in this volume (1854) much about a daily paper, as if the consummation of that cherished idea might be at hand. But a policy of concentration, commended by circumstances and inspiration induced the Community to leave Brooklyn at the close of the year, and return to Oneida, and thus the daily paper was delayed. During this year additions were made to the conveniences of the printing business. March 28th the Circular says:-
"We are about extending our printing operations by the addition of a Job department. The Newark friends have made us two new presses, and we are procuring new type for the purpose. We are about commencing also a new branch of manufacture in our family, which will afford diversion and variety of employment to all the members. We expect gradually to surround our Press here with a circle of trades and business-operations that will not only support it as a Tri-weekly, but will afford a permanent basis for a DAILY. We believe enthusiastically in the primitive apostolic plan of self-support while preaching the word of God."
From that time the Circular advertised Job-printing in its establishment. One of these presses was of the same pattern as the one made for Oneida the year previous, which was an invention of Mr. Josiah Warren, the founder of Modern Times on Long Island. This press cost $50 or $75. The other press was a proof-press for taking proofs of the type on galleys Price, $40. The Newark Commune made also a press for pressing paper and books, prized at $60. Engravings of these presses were made by the young artist H. E. De Latre, and printed in the Circular.
One of the "hands" give the following lively sketch of the tri-weekly routine.
"TWO DAYS OF OFFICE WORK."
"FIRST DAY.--Last night we got out a paper--today we start on another. The FORM of the last paper, (that is, the type in pages and columns, wedged tightly into a frame called a CHASE,) is taken off the press and put on a stand in the type-room. The stand is firm, and has a heavy marble top. Now the wedges are loosened, the type wet, and distributing commences. It is much quicker work to distribute than to set up type, as one can take as many letters as he can hold between finger and thumb, and knowing what they spell, drop them into their boxes as fast as he can think where they belong; while in setting, every letter has to first be found and then carried from its box to the composing stick, and there set right end up with the NICKS out. The types are notched on one side, in order to save your looking at the face of the letter to get it rightside up--a point quite as important as to get it right end up.
"Now Typos be careful to put the letters each in its right box. It is very vexatious in setting to have FOUL boxes. Foul boxes make a foul proof. Do not distribute the italics in the Roman boxes; or mix the thin-spaces with the common-spaces. Take up your handful carefully and not PI it -- you can distribute letters in words three times as fast, as letters in pi. This type is not wet enough; it won't slip -- sponge it a little. Here, some one has missed the COMBINATIONS -- it is E., a new-beginner -- we must instruct her about it, because it puts us out in distributing -- we expect to put IN in the in box, but the i and n begin to fall apart, and then we have to make a dodge to get them into their separate boxes. Now the cases are full and the stone is clean. Is there any copy in the box? Not much--we resolve ourselves into a committee of the whole to find some. After noon scraps begin to drop in. There is some setting done before the industrial bee in the parlor at 3 o'clock; and some more after supper. Perhaps we have ten columns, including the first page, set up the first night.
"SECOND DAY.--Now the setting and preparing of copy commences in earnest--and the office of editor and typo is perfectly interchangeable in the CIRCULAR rooms; those who write, often setting their own pieces, and any one being gladly dismissed from the type case who feels an inspiration for writing. What admirable copy this is -- written so plainly and punctuated too: Some pieces we have to study out word for word, and make all the stops beside; but it affords us a good exercise in elementary knowledge. Is this sentence in my copy grammatical? If not, make it 50, -- never set up any thing which does not make good grammar, and good sense, whether it is after copy or not. Now mind your Ps and Qs, and don't put a u for an n, or a c for an e. Here are several GALLEYS ready for PROOF. Read the proof by copy, -- if it is editorial give it to the one who wrote it for correction. Then take tweezers and make the type on the galleys like the corrected proofs, -- happy if they do not too much disagree,
if there is only an occasional letter to reverse or comma to insert. If you have omitted a word in setting, or the writer chooses to insert a word in the middle of a paragraph, you may have to run over several lines, spacing thinner between the words, before you can make room for it. Now if the galleys are corrected we can begin to 'make up.' The first page is standing on the stone. Here is a LONG PRIMER piece for the first column of the second page, solid and solemn generally. Then comes the editorial superscription, a repetition of the name of the paper, place and date. And what shall we have for the EDITORIAL? Under this sign is expected something fresh from the editor's mint. It is very convenient if we have an article suitable for a 'leader.' Sometimes we do have one, at other times the foreman is left to take his choice in a variety of articles more or less UNsuitable. As we are entirely original in our system of editorship, not having any special editor, it can hardly be expected we should follow common newspaper fashions very rigidly.
"Next the News, leaving a little place for the 'latest' from the evening paper, if there should be any worth giving. Then the 'Matters of Mention' if there are any--then Correspondence of the CIRCULAR, Communications, extracts from papers, etc., to the end. Now JUSTIFY the pages -- that is, make the columns even, putting in a lead where a column is short, or taking out a lead where a column is long. Now lock up, plane down the type, ink it with a hand roller, and take a proof. Let all concerned made their last corrections now. Transfer them to the type, lock up the form again, and stout shoulders bear it to the press, and lay it on its bed. Soon the wheel begins to revolve, the paper is laid on the frisket, passes under the press, and comes out the CIRCULAR. Now girls, lay the papers on carefully, so they will not wrinkle, and brothers, do not turn the wheel too fast. When you have a third struck off, let the rest of us begin to fold and paste, so that we may all get done together. Put them in the bag. By the time Pilgrim takes them on his back for the post-office it is usually 9 o'clock at night."
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A sketch of the past history of the printing business is given in the Circular of Aug. l0th-1854.
In November notice of the proposed removal was given.
About this time Mr. Leonard F. Dunn, a member of the Community, presented the Printing office with a small card press of his own invention, having made it in the machine shop at Newark. By means of this press, the family earned money to pay their travelling expenses to Oneida.
The last number of this volume of the Circular gives an idea of Mr. Noyes' views upon the change that was to take place, and also of the financial state of the business:
"THE VOLUME CLOSED -- CHANGES."
"Last year, we occupied the short interval of suspension that followed the close of the volume, in preparing and printing BIBLE COMMUNISM. -- This year we shall employ a similar short vacation in removing our Press and printing materials to Oneida, where, after a few weeks, we expect to resume our regular issues. We have no very definite plan for the future, but we expect that God's plans concerning us will develop as fast as is necessary. We are well assured that our present move is the right one. In leaving the city, we seem to hear a voice like that of old -- 'Come out of her my people'--and all the signs that are open to our discernment indicate a gathering storm of trouble and wrath hanging over the nation, and particularly these great city centres of its iniquity. Never in the history of the country has there been such a development of commercial and financial corruption as during the past year. The money world is evidently coming to be but a quaking bog, covered over with but the thinnest semblance of solid honesty. The great financiers and public agents have proved the greatest cheats. There is no knowing who will go down next. Socially there is an inflammatory state of the elements. -- Discord approaching to war between the natives and the Irish, between the North and South, and between the nation and its neighbors. These things may blow over for the present without any serious crisis, but it seems more probable that they will grow into increased disturbance before there is any better change. Je see no ground for dissatisfaction in this, but only a cause of hope; and at the same time, we count it desirable to withdraw ourselves as much as convenient from the spiritual influences that are likely to be abroad at such a time.
"While the world and its institutions are being torn by treachery, defalcations, and war, we shall endeavor to kindle a back fire of the opposites, social confidence, faithfulness, and peace. In face of the separation and discord around, we concentrate. Oneida, at least, will set an example of two hundred persons, seeking not to destroy each other, either physically with gunpowder, or morally with selfish competition and money-power, but to help each other in the direction of heavenly things. We shall endeavor to make our readers participate as far as possible in all the progress which the Community may make in this spirit. Our wealth is love and not money, and this we trust to be able to distribute with a liberal hand through the CIRCULAR to the scattered children of faith. We hope for an increase of correspondence and edifying matter in our new position, making the paper more fruitful and inspired as an organ of the Primitive church, and a medium of communication between believers. Our next No. will be issued from Oneida, and till then we bid our readers a friendly ADIEU."
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"The volume of the CIRCULAR which now closes is the first instance, we believe, of any attempt to publish a tri-weekly religious periodical. Our movement of issuing the CIRCULAR Semi-Weekly during last year, was followed for a time by the FREEMAN'S JOURNAL, a Catholic paper, but was soon abandoned as being too heavy a tax on the editorial department. No religious paper that we know of, except the CIRCULAR, is now in advance of the old-fashioned weekly issue. What may be our future course, whether we shall go forward to a daily, or back temporarily to a less frequent issue, remains to be determined. We are perfectly satisfied that the movement sooner or later must be forward--that Bible Communism will both demand a daily paper, and develop the means of sustaining it."
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"THE FINANCIAL YEAR."
"We have received in subscriptions to the CIRCULAR during the present year $803.55, in cash, and presents of other things to the amount of about $25. This is nearly the same as our income from the paper last year--rather more than that in the cash account--and every thing considered, is quite satisfactory. It has come to us free and unsolicited, and as the offering of friends whose hearts are with us has had a double value. If we printed a paper devoted to this world as it is, we might probably enlist a larger support; but our object is a revolutionary one, and the masses do not care to pay for being disturbed and having their notions turned up-side down. The more we try it, the better we like our method of offering the paper free, and relying on the unsolicited donations of those who are interested in the cause, and willing to join in a mutual partnership of effort with us and with each other for its support.
"The cost of paper and ink for the present volume has been $500. With the help received from subscribers together with our Community industry in the carpet-bag manufacture, Job Printing, etc., we have got through the year, we dare say, as successfully, and with less careful anxiety than many a MILLIONAIRE. We have heretofore mentioned the assistance received from two or three friends in starting our manufacturing department. We have also received bountifully of various kinds of provisions from the other Communes. On the whole, we can rejoice in God's unfailing goodness, and close up our affairs here with love to him and to all men, unstained by any thought of evil."
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For nine years after the removal from Brooklyn to Oneida, there was no very great change in the printing business. The Circular was published weekly--nominal price one dollar for a year.
Mr. Noyes returning to Oneida after several years absence gave much attention to the spiritual state of the family, and finding it for his health and pleasure to engage in manual labor more, and in mental labor less, he left the Circular to the management of others. Mrs. Skinner had the care of it the first year, and it was under her superintendance that the "Oneida Journal" was commenced, a part of the paper which has ever since continued to be interesting to our subscribers.
The next volume, (vol. 5) was edited in the manner described in the following paragraph:
"The arrangement by which the CIRCULAR has been carried on for several months is a novelty in editorial management, and for the understanding of its readers may be worth mentioning. The editorship is assumed by six young men in rotation, proceeding alphabetically, viz., Alfred Barren, Geo. Campbell, Wm. A. Hinds, Chas. S. Joslyn, Geo. W. Noyes and Theo. L. Pitt. Each has the charge and responsibility of getting out a number as his turn comes, and is also invited to assist on every number as much as he has time or inclination to do so. Mrs. S. C. Hamilton is a permanent editorial helper. We find the plan works pretty well, and the alternation of editorship ought to give a degree of variety to the successive issues. If our readers discover any differences in the paper from week to week they will ascribe it, with some reason perhaps, to the different idiosyncrasies of those concerned in conducting it."
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During the year 1853 several of the above mentioned persons were drafted into other businesses, and the editorship fell into the hands of Mr. Theo. L. Pitt who retained that responsibility for the five following years.
The printing office was located on the second floor of a building erected for various businesses, carpentry, trap-making, etc., and although not the most quiet place for setting type that could be desired, it gave the advantage of water power to run the press, and those engaged on the paper had an opportunity of exercising their muscles occasionally in the trap shop. On these we quote from the Circular : -
"One interesting part of our Press experience during this year has been the marriage of it with practical hand work. The founder of the paper has spent his time mostly in an iron shop; and the printing office has turned out, all hands, for more than half of the time, in some kind of industrial recreation in the various departments. This is a discipline quite opposite from that of our three years' city sojourn, while publishing the CIRCULAR in Brooklyn. There it was almost all study, and no chance for manly strokes. Here we have, with the privilege of the former,
a fair share of the latter. We recognize in these varied conditions and manipulations, so to speak, which our Press is made to pass through, a design to put into it all useful ingredients, and perfect it at last for a truly representative Press."
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"Not the least among the advantages of our present publishing locality, is the substitution of water instead of man-power as a motor wherewith to drive our printing machinery. Many a weary hour has been spent in our little 'seven-by-nine' press-room at Brooklyn, in doing the labor which our new servant performs without an effort. A touch of a lever, the tightening of a belt, and the cumbrous machine starts into motion as if self inspired. No tiring, no flagging, no pausing for rest or food, night and day incessantly toiling on,--what a faithful servant is water; and in how many ways does it contribute to our comfort and happiness!"
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Here follows a humurous passage between the trap shop and the printing office:-
(N.B. Part of the edge of this clipping is worn away. Missing words are indicated by spaces.)
"MONDAY, JAN. 7.--The human muscle, compelled to hammer iron by main force, has sometimes contrived under the direction of the head to manufacture for itself a wooden arm of colossal size and strength, grasping a hammer, and so connected with power and machinery that it may be made to give stroke upon stroke, at once steady, fast and effective. This contrivance, called a trip-hammer, has lately been introduced into our trap-shop. It is as boisterous as it is ponderous; a kind of George Law in action--it puts its work right through, noise or no noise. To-day when the bell rang for recess, word was circulated through the CIRCULARIUM for all to meet in the printing-office. It was expected of course the printing-office hands had some gratuitous entertainment to offer. While we trap-shoppers were waiting with open mouths for what they had to give, one of them rapped a signal, and the trip-hammer below began to play. Then the way it bandied sound back and forth, and rolled it about our ears, was more like 'a thousand of brick' than half the things this simile has been used to illustrate. The trap folks and printing-office folks looked in each other's faces and laughed. Presently, at another rap, the trip-hammer stopped, just to show the relief of silence, and then began again. The typos and editors said nothing; but it was plain what they wished to have understood. However, they were in the mood of sport, rather than complaint; and there was a good spirit of compromise on the part of the trip-hammer advocates, Though it was allowed to exhibit for show this morning, being just completed, it will not probably be necessary to use it much when the room above is occupied, that being but about half the time. Not long after the above affair, the printing-office received the following
"VOICE FROM THE TRAP-SHOP.--I don't know what the good folks up stairs in the printing-office think of the clatter we make down here; but I take leave to say to them that I for one enjoy it mightily. It suits me in various moods of the imagination. For instance, yesterday, (which was Sunday,) the ring of our six anvils in the morning sounded like the cheerful call bells, and reminded me of the morn we use to hear booming from Trinity . And then today, (Sunday associatio given place to the more chivalrous
week-day enterprise,) I enjoyed in th swinging hammers, and flights of fire, and confusion, the excitement and sublimity of battle. We had the rattle of small hammers at vices for pistol shots, the steady clank of the anvils for the rolling fire of musketry, and now and then the thunder of the trip-hammer for a big battery of cannon. Thank God for a place in the front rank of this work-battle. Have patience with our noise, friends up stairs:
While you are writing for us, we are fighting for you.
"(We printing-office folks take this occasion to say that we heartily sympathize with the movements of our friends down stairs, and specially enjoy the music of their small arms and musketry. We have to confess, however, to a little tremulousness, all round, when our ears and brains are suddenly taken captive by the thunder and jar of their heavy artillery; and feel an involuntary relief always the moment it ceases. Perhaps also the feeling (which haunts us more or less) that our type is in danger of being deluged with the plastering from over our heads, detracts some from our perfect enjoyment of the trip-hammer's music. But we shall hope to overcome all unnecessary weaknesses, and think, now that we have expressed ourselves, we shall feel easier. On the whole we like much our position over the trap-shop and trip-hammer, and are not ready to vote for a change. No editors can be more secure against temptations to 'borrow thunder'--none more blessed with all they need without asking for it, than ourselves. So blaze away! friends down stairs. We have a growing ear for your music. And if you overdo the matter, it will only furnish occasion for us to treat you generously with printers' pi. So shall we' heap coals of fire on your heads.')"
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Several specimen numbers of the Circular were printed in the course of these years containing a picture of the dwelling of the Community, and a digest of information relating to its history, principles, and customs, which answered the purpose that our 'Hand Book does at the present time.
As to the terms of payment, the following notice was Continued, on the first page from year to year:-
"the CIRCULAR is offered to those who wish it, as the gospel is, without money and without price. It is supported at present, first and principally, by the funds of the Oneida Association and its branches; secondly by the free contributions of its friends and a few remittances from those who choose to pay for it. Our expectation, however, is that the idea of a FREE DAILY RELIGIOUS PRESS, as the complement and consummation of Free Schools, Free Churches, and Free Benevolent Societies, will gradually become known, and be appreciated among all spiritually minded religionists, and that thus the CIRCULAR, as the embodiment of that idea, will draw to itself a volunteer constituency, more wholehearted than that which surrounds, for instance, the Bible Society, and endows it annually with a revenue of three hundred thousand dollars."
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In 1855 & 1856 a call for help to buy paper for the Circular, was answered promptly and abundantly; but we find the following statement at the close of the year 1863:
What is now received from the subscribers annually, does not quite pay for the white paper on which it is printed. The labor and all other outlay connected with its publication are furnished by the Community."
- - - - -
The cost for paper had been about $250. per year, but during the war it came up to nearly $400.
The number of subscribers or money paid in, is not always given in the Circular, but in 1857, in answer to an inquiry from a subscriber, it is stated that the number of impressions printed weekly was 672. In 1861 it says $254.50 cents were contributed for the Circular.
At the close of the volume for 1858, a call for help to buy new type was made, but not being responded to, the old type was used until the beginning of 1863, at which time there was a months vacation, the reasons for which will be found in the first editorial of the year:-
"ONEIDA, MARCH 5, 1863"
"OUR NEW TYPE."
"We present the CIRCULAR to our friends this week in an entirely new dress. We have been able during the interval since the close of the last volume to procure a new outfit of type for our office. The type was purchased of Messrs. Farmer, Little & Co., at White's Type Foundry, 63 and 65 Beekman Street, New-York City, who have the reputation of making very superior and durable type, and who have very promptly and satisfactorily filled our order. The fonts we
have selected are Nonpareil, Brevier, Long Primer and Small Pica, naming them in order of their size, beginning with the smallest. Each of them presents, we think, a very beautifully faced letter, pleasant to the eye and well proportioned.
"We will add in this connection, that in purchasing the type we have been very liberally aided by Mr. John Abbott, an outside brother residing at Champion, N. Y., who generously placed $15O at our disposal for that purpose. Another friend has placed at our disposal for this or other purposes $52. We have also received $25 or $30, from other friends and subscribers since the announcement of the intended purchase. Wallingford Community has also contributed both financially and in the services of Mr. Leonard, who has acted as agent and adviser in buying the type. To all of these friends and co-workers we would give our thanks and best wishes."
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Near the close of the year the following address to its readers appeared in the Circular:-
"TO THE SUBSCRIBERS AND READERS OF THE CIRCULAR.--At the close of the present volume of the CIRCULAR we shall remove our printing business to the Wallingford Commune, Wallingford, Conn., and the next volume of the paper will be published there. We need not refer to the various reasons which make this change desirable, further than to say that it is connected with a plan to make the Wallingford branch of the Community more particularly our educational and publishing center.
"In connection with the change, it may be proper to mention, that we intend to purchase a new Printing Press, suitable for printing the CIRCULAR and also for Book printing. This will probably cost $2,000 or upwards. We have also to purchase a stock of paper for the next volume. This will cost $400 more.
"To meet this outlay it seems to us consistent with the principles on which the CIRCULAR is published to invite the cooperation of our subscribers. The CIRCULAR, as all are aware, is published as a FREE PAPER--each subscriber is his own judge as to the amount he may give for its support. It is sent to all who ask for it -- to the poor who simply thank us, as freely as to those who share its burdens by a money return.
"The paper is published not in our own interest as a Community, but in the interest of the Truth -- the gospel of Jesus Christ, as it has been delivered to us. We do not wish to make it the organ of the Oneida Community, but the organ of the TRUTH -- a paper which shall meet the wants of all men every where who are interested in the Truth, and nothing but the Truth. Such men we desire should consider themselves as copartners with us in its publication--sharing its burdens, and contributing in all ways to its interest and effectiveness. In this view we would invite all who are interested in the continuance and prosperity of the CIRCULAR, and who feel able to
do so, to contribute to the purchase of the NEW PRESS."
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In the first No of the Circular printed at Wallingford we find the immediate occasion of the removal stated thus:-
"The Wallingford Community has heretofore been engaged in making chains for steel traps manufactured at Oneida. But as the Oneida business increased, it became quite expedient and even necessary that the chain-making should be carried on in direct connection with the trap-making. At the same time the printing business at Oneida was crowded and embarrassed by the growth and clatter of the trap machinery. It seemed best therefore for both departments that the chain making and the printing should change places. This proved to be very convenient, as each of these businesses requires about the same number of hands, and the chain-shop, by a slight renovation becomes an excellent printing office, while the caloric engine which served the chain business, serves equally well to run the press."
- - - - -
Before the close of the 12 vol. the chain business had been removed to Oneida, and the room in which it had been carried on at W.C. was fitted up for the printing business, so that the removal of the paper was accomplished in less than a month after the plan was announced, and the first number of the New Series of the Circular was issued, March 21st 1864.
The press which we purchased for $900. was made by Mr. A. Campbell, of Brooklyn, N.Y., a description of which may be found in No 24 - 2nd vol. Cir. N.S. Mr. C. disappointed us in not having the press completed at the time promised, and loaned us another of his make until ours was ready.
The old press which was left at Oneida was afterward made into a standing press for pressing paper.
A small Degener(?) press was added to our stock (cost $180..) for Job printing.
The change proved to be very satisfactory. The character of the paper improved, and the facilities for printing were increased. Mr. T. L. Pitt was editor. Alfred Barron began a series of articles called "Foot Notes," which attracted much attention from the literary world, and Mr. Geo.. Cragin wrote the "Story of Life," which many of the subscribers for the paper pronounced exceedingly interesting. In this volume also appeared the history of what is called the "Mills war," which equalled in interest the most exciting fiction. It was written by Mr. Noyes and entitled "a Parasite."
During this year we published a pamphlet called "Oneida Community, a familiar Exposition of its Ideas and Practical Life, in a conversation with a visitor." Price 25 cts., single, $2.00 per doz.
The number of subscribers for the paper were increased about one hundred from last year, being 973 outside the Community.
Vol. 2nd (1865) was edited by G. W. Noyes. In the summer of that year the "Trapper's Guide' was published in a pamphlet form. Price 75 cts. per copy. Also "Salvation from Sin" was stereotyped, and an edition printed. Early in this year a proposition was made to build a new printing office. The small room now used for an office was very much crowded. There was hardly room for the type, and yet the presses and a cutting machine had to have a place.
*Mr. Noyes conceived a plan for raising the needed money, which was quite original as well as successful. He made a promise that any person who would send us fifty dollars should not only be booked as a life subscriber to the Circular, but receive everything the Community should print till the end of time, free of charge.
*Cir - Vol. 2 No 2 contains Mr. Noyes proposal, if not too long an extract, it might be better to put it in, instead of this paragraph.
In August the contributions that were received in answer to this proposition, beside what Oneida promised, were considered sufficient to warrant the commencement of the building. The Circular of Aug. 14th contains the following notice.
"During the week, our new Printing-Office has grown up into a spacious frame, built on the 'balloon' plan, and is nearly ready for covering. Dimensions 50 feet by 36."
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The new building was occupied in November. The Circular of Nov. 13th says:-
"The present number of THE CIRCULAR is issued from our new office. The composing room is about thirty feet square, well lighted, commodious, and looks out in front upon the lawn and flower-garden, and in the rear upon the orchard-covered slope of Mount Tom. The young women who have the care of it, and who set up the types for THE CIRCULAR, think Mrs. Stowe 's expression in the last ATLANTIC, 'DINGY printing office,' is not applicable to this establishment, and they do not intend that it shall be. The Caloric Engine, Printing Press and Job Department will remain in the old building a few feet distant."
At this time the Printing office fund amounted to $1500.
Beside the fifty dollar, or permanent subscribers who were entitled to all our future publications (and who it may be said here have received them so far according to promise) there were contributions of smaller sums for the Printing Office Fund. These continued to come in after the Office was built, indeed into the summer of 1866. In June the Printing Office account stood thus:-
"Cost of Building and fixtures............................................................................................$3566.65
Donations from O.C. and branches.......................................................... .1100.98
Do from outside friends previously acknowledged........................................ 738.10
Andrew Smith. . . . . . . . . . . . . . ................................................................. 100.00
A friend. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ........................................................40.00
Present arrears,............................................................................................................... $1582.57"
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Although Oneida had to bear more of the expense than Mr. Noyes wished at the time, yet the building has been a great accomodation to the family aside from the printing business.
There was not very much change in the affairs of the Circular during 1866 & 1867 except that Alfred Barron had the editorship of the paper for about a year of that time; beginning in the middle of Vol. 3d - and giving place to
G. W. Noyes on his return from an European tour, Sep. 16th 1867.
Letters of inquiry upon the subject of Male Continence were frequently received, and Mr. Noyes thought it expedient to print an answer which he wrote to one inquirer dated July 20th 1866. The letter and the answer covered a sheet of note-paper, convenient to enclose in a common envelope. For this publication there was a great demand. Within a year there were between two and three thousand copies circulated at 5 cts. pr. copy, or 50 cts. per dozen.
Several serials appeared in the Circular this year which may be the foundation of future books, as "Putney Corporation"-"Seed Corn," "Memorial of Mrs. P. P. Noyes, "Community Mother, & "Plot of History"
In May 1867 a Hand book of the O.C. for the use of inquirers was published 72 pages, and in August a new edition of the "Trapper's Guide" which was stereotyped at the "Riverside Press" Cambridge, Mass. The next year this edition was placed in the hands of Oakley & Mason, publishers in N.Y. City, who have since printed several editions.
At this time the subscription list of the Circular numbered over 1800, and including those sent to the Communes 2000 were mailed.
While G.W. Noyes was in England he made arrangements with Trubner & Co. London, to sell our Publications and receive subscriptions for the Circular.
The financial report of Jan. 1868 led to a new movement in the Printing Business, that is to the return of the Circular to Oneida. The reasons for this change are stated thus :-
"For the last four years our policy has been that of expansion; expansion in hiring labor, in receiving new members, in establishing outposts, in education, and in borrowing money. This course has had its use. It has brought us into contact with the hireling system of the world so that we see its advantages and defects; we have received valuable addition to our strength among the friends who have joined us; some of our young men have had valuable business experience in New York; some have gained a scientific education in New Haven; and finally we have learned the miseries of borrowing money. We have made an 'out,' and now we are going to get 'back.' Concentration is our watchword. Our plan in general is to contract the smaller Communes and outposts, and to strengthen the center. The paper will be removed to Oneida. Business there will be reorganized. The Community will make the most of its old members, assimilate its new ones, get on to the platform of prepayment, and GET OUT OF DEBT. The details of the change will report themselves as they transpire.
"Our friends will readily see that this is the right movement for the present time. Having by our course of expansion through several years, gained a start in education, art,and business experience, we will not return and pour the results into the lap of the parent that sent us forth. The interest of the CIRCULAR will be promoted by the change. It will have a more central position than it has now, and will become a more direct exponent of the O.C.
"As our job-printing department has steadily increased, and has proved to be a decided convenience to the business men of this vicinity, it will probably not be disturbed by the contemplated removal of the CIRCULAR to Oneida, but will remain here as before."
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"...We have had hired labor in remoter departments, but never any in our kitchen, and never any in our printing-office. The printing-office is too good a school to be given away. Our young people now for twenty years, one set after another, have taken their degree here as printers, and owe to their opportunity in the CIRCULAR office, not a little education. We could muster a corps of fifty type-setters for an emergency, with press-men in proportion, so that we shall not be obliged to hire when we come to print a daily."
A notice was given to the subscribers if they wished the Circular another year, they must write to have their subscription renewed.
Soon after the intended change was made known at Oneida, a room which had been used for drying clothes on the second floor of the building called the Tontine was fitted up for the composing room of the Circular, and another room on the same floor appropriated to the presses. The new composing room was nearly the same size as that at Wallingford, with windows like that on three sides looking east, south and west, so that when the type was transferred, and the same pictures hung in nearly the same situations, it seemed almost a duplicate of the room which was left. The stairs by which it was reached, made a difference, and also the steam hissing below. But as to the steam, the printing business availed itself of that forthwith to run its presses. The removal from Wallingford was described in the Circular - Vol. 5 No. 1 as follows:-
"TUESDAY, MARCH 10.--When the grand packing commenced Saturday we felt that the 'concentration' had really begun. Our teams were going to and from the depot all day with things to be carried to O.C. in a car engaged for the purpose. The printing- and paper-presses were taken in pieces and packed in boxes; the type and cases were carefully secured from injury; the books were boxed up; the paintings and other pictures which have adorned the composing-room were wrapped in folds of cotton and laid in a big black trunk; various kinds of furniture were collected; then, all these things, including private baggage were transported to the depot and stowed away in the car, filling it to the exclusion of any other freight. All this work passed off very quietly, and but for the stripped appearance of the office we could hardly realize that so great a change has taken place as the removal of the CIRCULAR to O.C. Yesterday the first delegation--a company of six--made its exit. The absence of even six persons is distinctly felt in our small family of forty-five members, and vacant chairs are visible in the noon and evening meetings. This morning as a party of eight drove from the door we said 'The grand agony is over.' Yet the railroad can't separate our hearts, we think. We console ourselves with thinking that now we have been weeded out we shall grow a great deal faster--comparing our family to a bed of onions from which the gardener has pulled out nearly every other one with the expectation that the rest will thrive more abundantly. ---- The removal of the CIRCULAR to Oneida, leaves here an office well furnished for Job-Printing. and we are happy to say a prosperous business. The rooms vacated will soon be filled with type, presses, and whatever is necessary for book-printing."
A daily Journal, which had been printed at O.C. for two years, now came to an end. It had been edited for sometime previous by Mrs. E.Y. Joslyn, and printed by Miss Elizabeth Kellogg, who also did some Job printing. This Journal was a little sheet of four pages 3 by 4 1/2 inches in size, giving the local news of the day.
For a few weeks beŁore the Circular left Wallingford Miss T. C. Miller and Miss Mary L. Prindle had conducted the paper, on account of the ill health of G. W. Noyes. They continued their care for the paper after the transfer to Oneida, assisted by H. H. Skinner and T. R. Noyes. After a while these assistants were drawn off into other businesses and Miss Tirzah was responsible editress for more than a year. Miss Augusta Hamilton succeeded her, and filled the place about six months. In the summer of 1870 Wm. A. Hinds graduated from the Yale Scientific School, and took the editorship of the paper. This volume (7th) was cut short 11 numbers in order to begin vol. 8 on the first of Jan. 1871. At this time there was a change in paper, type and price. The paper was fine tinted; the type new and fine being Long Primer instead of Pica, and the price was raised from one dollar to two dollars a volume. Mr. Hinds continued to conduct the Circular for two years, (vol. 8 & 9) when Miss Tirzah C. Miller resumed the charge, and kept it several months. Then circumstances made it necessary for her to resign the post. Miss Harriet M. Worden accepted it, and she has continued in the editorship with various helpers until the present time Sep. 1875, or about two years. F. Wayland Smith has been associate editor for the last year.
The plan of having subscribers renew their subscription every year sifts our list, and reduces its number. It sifts out those who subscribe from curiosity, or because the paper is free, without being interested. We have the satisfaction of knowing that the paper is appreciated by most of our subscribers. Their number has been less the last years than for some time previous, but we hear in various ways that the Circular is read by a large circle of non-subscribers, and that many editors read it more carefully than any other of their exchanges.
Vol. 11 closed with 1100 subscribers.
Four pamphlets have been published at O.C. since the Circular was transferred from Wall d--Male Continence in 1872, 24 pages, Hand Book 187 64 pages, Cook Book in 1873, 50 pages and Scientific Propagation, 1874, 32 pages.
Having traced the history of the Circular to the present time, we will go back to the time the Circular left Wallingford in 1868. During the four years that the Circular was printed at Wallingford, S. R. Leonard assisted by Milford J. Newhouse had had an increasing business there in Job Printing. As has been seen in a foregoing extract, the
room vacated by the Circular, was soon occupied by the Job type and presses. The small Degener, which we had used for several years was moved in there, also the cutting machine, and a hand press which was purchased a few months previous at New Haven for the purpose of printing posters, etc. This was second hand, and cost $50. In addition to these we purchased a large Degener for $500, mainly to print Qneida's fruit labels. This was placed in the old press room to be run by the engine.*
*TO show the superior speed of the new press in this position we cut from the Circular a humurous incident:-
"Mr. Pitt having a job of 20,000 labels, thought he would print it on the press which is run by the engine power. He had corrected it to his mind and had printed three or four, when crack! went something, and the type flew about all over the rollers, the ink-disk and the floor. He found that the chase in which the type was locked was broken. It was supposed to have been cracked, or to have had a flaw in the iron. After meeting, while the girls were inquiring about the affair, Mr. Pitt penned the following:
The Printers had a pi
They boiled the pi in lye,
Then laid it out to dry.
What a pi!
"The 'pi' was reconstructed and Charles printed it on the new press in five hours. It would probably have taken a day and a half, or two days on the smaller press."
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The persons employed in the business mentioned in a letter written from Wall d to Oneida Circular, from which we give the following extract:-
"I will commence this letter by requesting you to inform your readers that the Mount Tom printing-office is fairly under way, and ready for orders for most kinds of job-work from any part of the country. If the public have further curiosity about it they may consult the card which I herewith enclose, to be inserted as an advertisement on your last page.
"I am writing in your former well-known, light, large room, with Wallingford village and the railroad in front, and the hill called Mount Tom backing us in the rear. At the south-west corner of the room is our hand-press. Next to that, where, a month ago, stood the editorial table with its stacks of exchanges, its proofs and manuscripts, stands now a new Degener press, at which we are working off the O.C. fruit labels, in three colors (100,000 of these labels wanted). Next, on the same side, is another Degener press turning off labels for the neighboring manufacturers, of
which Wallingford village has some very flourishing establishments. The remaining sides of the room are occupied with cases, cutting-machine, galley-stands, etc. The force of the establishment at present consists of T. L. Pitt, C. S. Joslyn, J. L. Whiting, G. W. Noyes, H. R. Perry, Arthur Bloom and a caloric engine. In all work like bronzing or trimming labels the sisters of the family lend their very capable aid."
This is the card referred to:
"MOUNT TOM PRINTING-OFFICE,
"Being refitted with new type and press, our establishment is now ready to receive orders for Cards, Circulars, Price-lists, Pamphlets and the lighter kinds of Job Printing. Particular attention paid to Bronze work and Color Printing for Labels. Orders from abroad, should be addressed to
In Sep. 1868, we find in the Circular under the heading, Wallingford the following notice, "Manufacturing business is lively in this vicinity, which gives growing impetus to our job printing enterprise.
The purchase of a new Printing press is announced thus:-
"Wallingford Community, April 29, 1869
"DEAR CIRCULAR:-I hear of tin, silver, golden and other metallic weddings, with presents to match: but what shall we call this nineteenth year of Wallingford and Oneida's union which has been signalized by the present of a $13,000 Factory and a $3,000 Printing Press to this feminine partner of the household? Surely we must have some good friends somewhere. We will call it a water-power wedding; and as the presents come through the hands of the respected 0.C. (Other Companion), we will take it as a pledge that family love between the two Communities is not yet in a decline. However you may feel about it, we can say candidly, with our hand on our heart, that we should not object to several returns of the happy anniversary.
"About this new Press which we have just set up, it is a 'Campbell Trip Cylinder' with all the latest improvements. Mr. Campbell, the inventor and builder, with his son,
accompanied the Press and spent a day here in adjusting and explaining it. Though it operates on the same general principle as your 'Campbell Press,' it includes several improvements which adapt it to nice book and wood-cut printing. Mr. Campbell assures us that it is capable of doing as good work as can be done in this country. It is now printing its first job, which happens to be a lot of 100,000 Parlor Match labels. Light for the house, to be followed we hope, by light for the mind.
"We also had a machinist here from New York, repairing our hot-air engine, so that now it is much increased in efficiency. With our new 'Campbell Cylinder,' our two 'Degeners,' and our 'Wells' hand-press, the Mount Tom printing fraternity feel themselves equipped with a modest outfit for serving the public, and commence the season with thanks to God, to you, to their patrons, and all others concerned, for the encouragement rendered them."
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During this summer the Job Printing received many compliments from the neighboring newspapers. As a specimen, the Meriden Republican of June 28th says:- "We would like to refer to the completeness of the Community's Job printing department, and to the beauty of the work they turn out. We also add a few remarks about the printing at W. made in the Circular at different times:-
"Work in the Job printing-office occupies more and more the free help of the family, both men and women. A call for bronzing, laying on sheets, or type-setting, brings from the house-work, or from unemployed leisure, a dozen nimble and ready hands for an hour's occupation, and relays take their places till the job is finished, which makes it pleasant in an emergency, you know. Mr. Pitt superintends a nice piece of illustrated book work which is going through the new press. Mr. Joslyn manages the general run of other printing. They have for regular assistants, two or three men, and as many women."
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"Our meeting-room should be yclept 'Ye Hall of Industrie;' for step in there at whatever hour you choose, you are sure to find either 'overlaying' of wood cuts, cutting labels, or else the folding, pricking, stitching and covering of pamphlets, going on.
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"At Wallingford, your Job Printing works, after a short practice, are turning out specimens of typography that bear comparison with the best in the country."
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"Sep. 27th - 1869 - ...The Mount Tom Printing Company have lately finished two large price-lists for the two eminent firms of silver-plate manufacturers of this town, Messrs. Simpson, Hall, Miller & Co., and Messrs. Hall, Elton & Co. These specimen books form volumes of over eighty pages quarto each, printed on heavy tinted paper, and are filled with fine engravings of the different articles manufactured by the firms whose names they bear. They have also commenced working off the Book 'American Socialisms' which promises to be a good three months job."
In less than three months this book was in the hands of the publishers.
"O. C., MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 1869
"The Forth-coming History of
"This book is now in the hands of J. B. Lippincott & Co., well known publishers of Philadelphia, and will be for sale in the course of the present week. It is an octavo volume of six hundred and seventy-two pages, well-printed and well-bound. The publisher's price will be four dollars per copy; but we have reserved the right to sell it to our subscribers at three dollars. The postage on it will be about fifty cents."
- - - - -
For this job new type was purchased - Old Style, Small Pica, Long Primer and Brevier.
Another edition of "Salvation from Sin was printed in this year.
"--The business of the Job-office during the month of February was nearly $1 ,000."
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The largest job of 1870 was the "History of Wallingford." The following notices taken from the Circular will give an idea of its size and style:-
Wallingford "PRINTING-OFFICE.--Our principal job now is the printing of a History of Wallingford, including Cheshire and the city of Meriden, which were originally outlying districts of the town. The author is Dr. C.H.S. Davis,
of Meriden. The History contains many original documents relating to the settlement of the town two hundred years ago, the purchase of the land from the Indians, genealogies of several families, etc., and will be embellished with illustrations, and portraits of leading citizens. It is being printed in the general style of 'American Socialisms,' on tinted paper, and with a limited number of large-paper copies. The volume will be issued in September. For prospectus address the author."
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"--Nulla dies sine linea," or, as our printing press translates it, No day without sixteen pages of History on tinted paper--clean print."
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"The printing-office corps are actively engaged at present printing a history of Wallingford; this, with the minor job-printing, makes this a very busy department, the women taking a prominent part. The 'history' will make a volume of nine hundred pages, octavo, with letter-press like American Socialisms. A few more 'forms' will complete the book."
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In the midst of this great work the printing business sustained a very great loss by the death of Mr. G. W. Noyes. He read the proofs every day up to a short time before his death. He kept the accounts of the office, beside having a peculiar penchant for getting up striking and tasty posters. Above all he looked out for the spiritual status of the office, and if he thought there was a "screw loose" anywhere, he would call a meeting and propose sincerity all round.
The Wallingford Journals in the Circular show the usual amount of smaller business. We extract a few items:-
"--Business in the printing-office is very active and furnishes plenty of employment for all volunteer help in folding and stitching pamphlets."
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"Job-printing gives constant employment to a few persons, while extra jobs of bronzing, etc., call for volunteer service from others."
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In 1871 business continued to increase, beside the usual work done in such offices, we printed several illustrated catalogues for the makers of silver plated ware
"One for Hall, Elton & Co., Wallingford; a very large octavo; heavy tinted paper; colored borders, and beveled edges. Another for Manning, Bowman & Co., Middletown; a very large quarto, and in our best style, having over three hundred cuts. Every one of these pictures required more or less 'overlaying' to give it the proper delicacy of shade. One might say that simple business is competing with literature itself to make printing one of the fine arts."
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"Dixon and his Copyists" was also published in pamphlet form. Added to these was a job of 50,000 sewing machine Price lists, for a firm in Middletown, Conn. We were to print 10,000 at a time. We printed the first instalment in Aug. of this year, and finished them in the winter of 1875.
The additions to conveniences this year were a Hydraulic Press, a ruling machine, costing $150; a counting machine and an arrangement for cutting labels. The latter are described in the Circular thus:-
"--The printing-office has recently purchased a counting-machine. It has five cog-wheels, with ten cogs each, so geared that one revolution of the first wheel moves the next wheel one tooth, and so on. The first wheel indicates units; the second, tens; the third hundreds, and so on to tens of hundreds; the counting capacity of the machine being 100,000. It is attached to our Campbell press, and works to the satisfaction of all. The machine was made by H. T. Hart, of Rochester, N.Y., and cost $15.00. Messrs. Noyes and Inslee have also recently invented and made an accurate counting-machine and attached it to our largest Degener press. It consists of two cog-wheels, with 100 teeth in each, and each cog-wheel carrying a dial graduated into 100 parts. One dial is numbered from 1 to 100, and the other from 100 to 10,000; and the numbers are indicated by a stationary pointer. The machine is so adjusted to the press, that it counts only when an impression is made. Mr. Noyes says that he labored considerably on the idea, but that Mr. Inslee deserves the credit for very skillfully making the machine."
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"AUG. 22.--Mr. Noyes has invented and just put in good working order, a new cutting-arrangement for trimming pamphlets, by which the books are more accurately and rapidly trimmed than ever before. He and W. trimmed 4,000 pamphlets this morning in four hours, and they say that their satisfaction with the new operation arises from its perfect
accuracy; no method that we have formerly practiced has given precise results--and all pamphlets that come to us from abroad are more or less out of true.
"--Our family Hall some of the time looks like a room in a book-bindery. So much is it used for folding, stitching and covering pamphlets, etc., that Mr. N. recently caused to be printed, in large gilt letters, and placed over the arch that spans the center of the room, this legend:
"SCHOOL OF INDUSTRY AND ART."
"He says: 'We are here in a school of art. We are all the time under drill to see how nice and beautiful we can make books--and that is a school of art. You may say it is rather a humble art; but it is cultivating our love of order and beauty quite as much as painting or making statues, or any thing of that kind. I have appreciated very much the education I am getting in it. There is considerable opportunity and demand for discovery of ways to do things exactly right. And there are some departments of the business which afford opportunity to cultivate the imagination, and what may be called design--for instance, the type-setting for posters, headings, title-pages, show-cards, etc., etc. I believe Christ is much more of an artist than a philanthropist--is much more interested in new and improved ways of doing things useful, and doing them exactly right, than he is in any indiscriminate way of doing what philanthropists style 'good works.' "
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Some interesting remarks on the Job printing have been gleaned from this years Circular:-
"The CIRCULAR by its four-year stay at Mt. Tom had lent a literary episode to the life of W.C., and on returning to O.C. left a legacy in the form of a printing-press. Printing was always the favorite Community art, and enthusiasm, faithfulness and diligence were brought to its working. The manufacturers which swarm in Connecticut responded to excellence and cheapness of printing, and now we have a live business, and are full of orders for price-lists, catalogues, bill-heads, cards, envelopes, etc., etc. This business at present claims every unoccupied hand. Setting type, feeding the presses, folding, stitching, cutting, this is the work at W.C."
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"-- Every wheel whirls in the job-office now-a-days. One can hardly run amiss of finding either setting, printing, bronzing, folding, stitching, pasting, or the like, to do. We have no leisure moments. The whole family have turned 'jobbers,' assisting at the office when not otherwise engaged' and often, when nearly all the family have retired to rest, the large press may be heard creaking and rattling, until almost midnight."
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"--Five hundred catalogues were covered in an hour the other morning."
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The great event of interest at the Wallingford Commune in 1872 was the building of a dam across the Quinnipiac, and the removal of our Silk Factory to a site just below the dam.
Our printing machinery was fast outgrowing the capacity of the little hot air engine on which it had depended, and as soon as possible a press room was put up in connection with the new waterpower, and a room was prepared for the type on the first floor of the factory. Meanwhile improvements in the printing office were delayed. Still we had enough to work with, and had plenty of business. The Circular notices two jobs, a catalogue and our own pamphlet "Scientific Propagation."
"--The office corps is engaged on a testimonial catalogue for a manufacturing company in West Meriden."
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"JULY 29th.--Every fine morning lately we have imagined to be the finest we have had; but we think of this morning as the finest of all, with the mercury standing at 90 in the shade. Jobs are pouring into the printing-office faster than we can do them with our present force. J.H.N. (who arrived yesterday from O.C. to look after the printing of his new pamphlet on "Scientific Propagation") is already at work trimming a lot of catalogues--his pantaloons wet with sweat, and the same fluid dropping profusely from his face. While at this business two strangers walked into the office; and one of them mentioning that he was an old printer, J.H.N. took pains to show him how we trimmed books. The gentleman thought it a great improvement on the way he used to do: and said that the first press-work he ever did, was to take all the refuse paper there was in the office and work it up into a "Daboll's Arithmetic," there being several kinds of paper in the book. Then turning to his companion and directing his attention toward Mr. N., he said-- "You may know it is pretty warm weather when a man sweats through his pants like that."
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In January, 1873, the printing business was moved from the old offices at the house, to the new offices near the dam, and commenced business in the name of the Wallingford Printing Co. Here is our advertisement:-
"THE WALLINGFORD PRINTING COMPANY."
"All kinds of Book and Job Printing executed: Manufacturers' Illustrated Catalogues made a specialty: also Bronze and Color Work, and the finer kinds of Card, Circular
and Bill-head Printing. Having enlarged its works and added new motive power, this Company is in renewed condition to meet the wants (of) its patrons with promptness and accuracy."
"P.O. Address, Wallingford, Conn.1"
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Soon after, a large Combination Printing Press was purchased of Mr. Campbell, costing $5,000. Mr. Campbell had taken extra pains with this press, and it had been sent to England as a specimen, in the hope to sell more there. But English workmen did not take to 'new fangled" notions, and so the press was returned, and came direct from England to our office. Perhaps here is a good place to insert a comparison between the old hand press that we used at Putney, and the new presses that we are now using. The following was written by one of our Community men, not one of the craft, however.
"By J. S. Freemant'
"Strolling into the Community Printing-Office recently, and watching the movements of the fine Campbell trip-cylinder press in use there, I was struck with the progress that had been made in printing machinery. I was reminded of the time when, a boy of ten, visiting my uncle's country printing-office, he put me to some good use in setting up pi' and small items of copy clipped from the papers; and on press day, in inking the type. I remembered the old-fashioned hand-press, requiring the strongest man in the office to work it, the pile of white moistened sheets on a table near it, and how the pressman took the sheets one by one, placed them carefully on the 'tympan,' folded down the 'frisket' on the tympan, and the tympan on the bed, rolled the bed under the platen; and then laid out his strength on the bar to secure a 'good impression.' Then he rolled back the bed and raised the tympan and frisket to their places. While he took off the printed sheet and put a blank one in its place, I vigorously plied a heavy inking-roller forward and back over the type. To renew the supply of ink for my roller I kept it in lively motion on an ink-table the rest of the time.
"But what a change: Instead of this slow, laborious process, requiring a man and boy, or perhaps two men, here is a beautiful well-built machine doing five times the work in the same time, and operated by a young lady just in her 'teens.' Standing at a small table, on which is a pile of sheets to be printed, and three pins or gauges to determine the position of the sheet, she takes the sheets from the pile one by one and lays them against the gauges. This done, every movement necessary to the printing of the sheets and
laying them nicely in a pile is accomplished by the automatic movements of the machine. The gauges fly up, the sheet is seized by a row of grippers, carried around on the surface of a revolving cylinder, is pressed between cylinder and type, released by the grippers, led by tapes on to a wooden fork or 'fly,' and deposited on the pile at the end of the machine. Between each impression the type and bed pass under a series of rollers so arranged as to distribute the ink evenly over the surface of the type.
"The peculiar feature of this press, and from which it derives its name of 'trip-cylinder, is an ingenious arrangement by which the operator can permit the machine to run without taking an impression, or, in other words 'trip' for any length of time that may be desired. If a sheet is laid crooked when seized by the grippers, she touches a brass knob and the sheet is laid on the pile as white as when it started. If the work is such as to require an extra rolling, she can 'trip' every other impression, and thus secure a double supply of ink.
"But this great stride from the old-fashioned handpress to the Campbell trip-cylinder press is only half the progress that has been made. A later invention of Mr. Campbell (already noticed in the Circular) marks an advance from the trip-cylinder press fully as great as that between the latter and the old-time hand-press. The grippers and fixtures for guiding and carrying the sheets are more simple and effective, and require no adjustment when changing from one job to another. The facilities for thoroughly inking the type are double those of the trip-cylinder press, and it will do more than five times the work in the same time, and do it better. The 'trip' arrangement is carried to such perfection as to secure for it the title of the 'thinking machine.' If a sheet is laid on crooked the press refuses to print it; the ink declines to come forth from its fountain, and the sheet is thrown off blank."
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Soon after we moved into our new office we obtained a new cutting machine, and about this time Oneida purchased a new printing press called the "Universal Press, VI for O.C. printed its own Bill Heads, Circulars and Price Lists for its different business departments, beside the weekly paper-A description of the "Universal" is in the Circular Vol. 10. No. 40.
Mr. Campbell, wishing to introduce his press among first class printers, gave us a recommendation to Osgood & Co., Boston, and they furnished us with two books to print, promising more if we satisfied them.
We quote again from the Circular some paragraphs which give a picture of the printing business:-
"--It is getting to be a busy time here again, but it does not show so much at the house. Just take a walk down the hill to the factory--carefully, for it is exceedingly slippery. You can peep in at the silk-room door as you pass by. Work there is going on evenly as usual. Then run up stairs and in and out one or two narrow passages and you will come to the press-room (pleasant place); there the three presses are under full headway. Leonora is feeding the Campbell press; two or three girls are bronzing for George Henry, and a company of six are taking out papers from the press and at the same time putting in a new set. Now come into the composing-room, stopping as you go along to speak to E.H.H., who is at work at the cutting-machine. Here in the composing-room you will find Marion and Charlotte at work upon a catalogue; Annie Kelly is over in the corner, and by the case in front of her stands Miss Harriet Allen, who frequently comes up from the silk-room to help. Mrs. Noyes, with a handful of type, is going from case to case distributing. Mr. Skinner, Mr. Campbell and Harley are distributing too. C.S.J. is taking a proof for which a man is waiting outside the door, while Edwin is getting a form ready for the press.
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"--C.S.J. had promised 1800 catalogues to a customer tomorrow and Mrs. N. was anxious to have a grand bee to finish them. There were two sheets of eight pages each, besides an extra leaf to be slipped in at the front, and another to be pasted on at the back. At one 0 'clock we had a fine bee. Mrs. N. organized it well, and the work went off like magic. One set folded, another pasted, another cut the leaves and put in the leaf with the bronzed illustration. One person did all the pricking, and still another set were sewing books. We kept Mrs. N. going busily enough attending to us all. It seemed possible that we might get through by nine o'clock. After dinner we went back again. Twelve hundred books were yet to be sewed. The men helped in various ways. Mrs. N. called out now and then, 'One hundred more done.' And would you believe it, by half-past five those books were ALL sewed, and ready to go to the cutting-machine, and the Hall was in order."
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"SEPT. 4th.--We are the busiest of the busy, both at the house and at the printing-office. A look into the press-room to-day would have discovered the four presses and the ruling-machine all going, every available table piled high with printed matter; six great boxes of sheets nailed up to go to the binders; several men at work on the hydraulic~press-room; Mr. B. taking measurements and making calculations as to the gearing required to run this press, as in a few days a long job of pressing is coming on. In the midst of this bustle comes a telegram from Osgood & Co. saying the paper for the
next edition of 'Twenty thousand Leagues Under the Sea" has been shipped and urging us to 'put it right through.' Later comes a letter in which they write: 'Can you not manage to put it right on and run nights or over time to give us the book? Our stock is reduced to 300 COPIES, and at the very quickest we shall be out of books long before we can get the new edition. We need hardly say this will be MOST DISASTROUS to us and we BEG you to do all you possibly can * * DON'T FAIL US, if you have to run ALL NIGHT on it for a while.' We are thankful for so much business."
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"SEPT. 3OTH. -- Rain has come with cooler weather, making fires acceptable. But with the Printing Co., so far as attention to business is concerned, 'tis all one--rain or shine. Their enthusiasm is damped by no obstacle and knows no failure. They are up at an early hour and off to business; some of them even are away before daylight. Between three o'clock Saturday P.M. and nine o'clock Monday A.M. seven forms--21 ,O00 impressions--of Messrs. Osgood & Co.'s book were thrown off. Seven forms more will finish the job."
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"FRIDAY, OCT. 3.--The printing of Messrs. Osgood & Co.'s book,. 'Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea,' was finished today".
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A Mr. Thompson of New Haven, who was a book binder, and had assisted us in managing our ruling machine, offered to show us something about binding. So we made a beginning, and he showed us how to sew books. We took some of our old Magazines to begin with, and experimented upon them. After we had purchased some necessary machinery, we hired a bookbinder to teach us, occupying some small rooms in the third story of the factory. In the course of the summer of 1874 we bound two small catalogues with cloth, adding to our machinery as necessity required, until at the end of the year we were completely equipped with the following fixtures:-
No 2 Standing Press 80.00
Foot Stabbing Machine 73.62
1 Job Backer 67.00
Smaller tools, benches & tables would probably bring the expense up to $900.00
An extract from the Circular will give some idea of the delicate process of putting on gold leaf on the covers of books:-
"AUG. 21--Another hot day and fully realized by the folks at the bindery. Gold leaf is a very delicate article to handle, and little puffs of air render its management still more difficult. Three hundred sheets of gold leaf must be transferred from the small books containing them to exactly the right spot on the covers of the four hundred books that are to be made ready for embossing; and so, while the mercury stands at 900 in the shade, all doors and windows must be closed to prevent any currents of air reaching those engaged in this work. Soon along comes G. and kindles a smart fire in the forge to heat the irons for the embossing machine. Surely, to-day we earned our bread by the sweat of our brows.' We enjoyed it however and took it kindly if not coolly."
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To equip ourselves completely for book making and as a convenience in other respects, it was concluded to purchase machinery for electrotyping. Accordingly E. P. Inslee and Erastus Ven Velzer were chosen to attend to this business, and having learned the process, they succeeding in electrotyping a volume of Home Talks, published by the Wallingford Printing Co. early in 1875.*
* Cost of electrotyping machinery $2,000.
As our Degener presses were considerably worn, they were exchanged for two new, giving for the exchange $185 for the largest, and $100 for the smallest.
And now our conveniences for book publishing were complete, except that the bindery and electrotyping rooms were very small, which difficulty was obviated in the summer of 1875, by the removal of the silk works which had occupied a part of the chamber, to Oneida.
Thus far we have given mostly an account of the expenses of the business. We will now gather from the yearly accounts of the Wallingford Printing Co. the income of the business from year to year.
Note opposite the above entry: "I have not been able to get the profits of the Wall. Printing Co. from any accounts or Inventories they have at O.C. but will write to C. S. Joslyn. Perhaps he will find out at Walld. and will give you the figures. "