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The Two Republics, or Rome and the United States of America

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    FIRST CASE. Elder J. W. Scoles

    Elder J. W. Scoles, a Seventh-day Adventist minister, had gone from Michigan to Arkansas in June, 1884, to assist in holding some meetings at Springdale, Washington county. As the result of the meetings, quite a number of persons adopted the faith of that body, and practiced accordingly. A church was organized in that place early in 1885, and the erection of a meeting-house was begun at once. In addition to his subscription to the enterprise, Elder Scoles agreed to paint the house when it should be ready. Further than this, we have the words of Elder Scoles himself, as follows:—TTR 877.2

    “I volunteered to do the painting as my share of the work, in addition to my subscription. I worked away at the church at odd times, sometimes a half day and sometimes more, as I could spare the time. The last Sunday in April, 1885, in order to finish the work so I could be free to go out for the summer’s labor with a tent, and expecting to go the next day twenty miles, I went over to the church, and finished up a small strip of painting on the south side of the house, clear out of sight of all public roads; and here I quietly worked away for perhaps two hours, in which time I finished it, and then went home. It was for this offense that I was indicted.”TTR 877.3

    At the fall term of the Circuit Court held at Fayetteville, Mr. J. A. Armstrong, of Springdale, was summoned before the Grand Jury. He was asked if he knew of any violations of the Sunday law. He said he did.TTR 877.4

    Grand Jury.—“Who are they?”TTR 877.5

    Armstrong.—“The ‘Frisco Railroad is running trains every Sunday.”TTR 877.6

    G. J.—“Do you know of any others?”TTR 877.7

    A.—“Yes; the hotels of this place are open and do a full run of business on Sunday, as on other days.”TTR 878.1

    G. J.—“Do you know of any others?”TTR 878.2

    A.—“Yes, sir; the drug stores and barber shops all keep open, and do business every Sunday.”TTR 878.3

    G. J.—“Do you know of any others?”TTR 878.4

    A.—“Yes; the livery-stables do more business on Sunday than on any other day of the week.”TTR 878.5

    After several repetitions of the same form of question and answer, in relation to other lines of business, this question was reached:—TTR 878.6

    G. J.—“Do you know of any Seventh-day Adventists who ever work on Sunday?”TTR 878.7

    A.—“Yes, sir.”TTR 878.8

    After getting from the witness the names of his brethren, indictments were found against five persons, all of whom were Seventh-day Adventists. Elder Scoles was one of the five. The indictment read as follows:—TTR 878.9

    “STATE OF ARKANSAS
    vs.
    Indictment. J. W. SCOLES.

    “The Grand Jury of Washington county, in the name and by the authority of the State of Arkansas, accuse J. W. Scoles of the crime of Sabbath-breaking, committed as follows; viz., the said J. W. Scoles, on Sunday, the 26th day of April, 1885, in the county and State aforesaid, did unlawfully perform labor other than customary household duties of daily comfort, necessity, or charity, against the peace and dignity of the State of Arkansas.TTR 878.10

    “J. P. HENDERSON, Pros. Att’y.”

    Mr. Scoles was convicted. An appeal was taken to the Supreme Court of the State. October 30, 1886, the judgment of the Circuit Court was affirmed by the Supreme Court. Almost a score of cases essentially the same as the case of Elder Scoles, were held over in the different Circuit Courts of the State, awaiting the decision of the Supreme Court in his case. The history of these cases and others is as follows:—TTR 878.11

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