Manuscript Releases, vol. 1 [Nos. 19-96]


Manuscript Releases Volume One [Nos. 19-96]


This volume makes available material formerly unpublished in book form from the Ellen G. White manuscript and letter files. This material has already been released for use in various ways, for example, in sermons, seminary student research papers, doctoral dissertations and review editorials. As it is now given wider circulation in this book, the reader may be interested in some historical backgrounds relating to the resources of the White Estate and the policies by which access is given to them. 1MR 3.1

At the time of Ellen White's death, in 1915, the manuscript and letter files in the Elmshaven vault contained 40,000 pages of E. G. White documents in typewritten form. These files, with their 4 x 6 card index, were used by Ellen White and her staff in routine work as well as in articles and book preparation. From her own statements made as she neared the close of her life, and from her last will and testament which established the Ellen G. White Estate, it was understood that these files would have a place of usefulness as time should continue, particularly to the White Estate in fulfilling its mission. 1MR 3.2

As in the earlier volumes, materials currently available elsewhere in published form have not been included in the present volume. In a few cases materials under consideration and assigned a release number were not processed. And the number was not reassigned. Until 1983, only the excerpts requested for public use were “released.” Starting with manuscript release No. 970, the White Estate began “releasing” entire letters or manuscripts, so far as possible, even if only particular paragraphs were requested. 1MR 3.3

While the total collection of manuscripts and letters is often referred to as “the manuscript file,” the materials are divided into two sections—Ellen G. White manuscripts and Ellen G. White letters. 1MR 3.4

The “Letter” section holds Ellen White letters, whether addressed to General Conference presidents, church members, or her children. These communications are filled with instruction and counsel concerning the conduct of the work of the church; policies which should obtain; the experience of those involved in church work (at times with words of correction and reproof); instruction to leaders in institutional and evangelistic work; personal testimonies (often confidential in nature), perhaps dealing with matters known only to the individual and God; and newsy family letters. 1MR 4.1