William Farnsworth and the Chewing of Tobacco

23 December 1867

Monday, December 23, the meeting was held during the daylight hours in the William Farnsworth home. Farnsworth was the man who in 1844 had risen to his feet in the Washington, New Hampshire, church and declared that he was going to keep God's Sabbath. Others followed him in his decision.

Sitting in the group was 19-year-old Eugene Farnsworth, one of William's 22 children. As he heard Ellen White addressing one and then another with messages indicating that she had insights others did not have, an idea came to him. He said in his heart, I wish she would tackle my dad. He knew what most others did not knowóthat his father had slipped back to the use of tobacco. Their farm was quite isolated, and William did his chewing of tobacco on the sly, but Eugene had seen him spit tobacco juice into the snow and quickly scuff it out of sight with his boot. As these thoughts were forming in Eugene's head Ellen White turned and addressed William:

"I saw that this brother is a slave to tobacco. But the worst of the matter is that he is acting the part of a hypocrite, trying to deceive his brethren into thinking that he has discarded it, as he promised to do when he united with the church" (WCW, in RH, Feb. 11, 1937).

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