Ellen G. White: The Australian Years: 1891-1900 (vol. 4)


Settlement of the Walling Lawsuit

On July 9, 1896, Ellen White conveyed in a letter to her niece Mary Watson what was good and bad news. The lawsuit Mr. Will Walling instituted against Ellen White in 1891, for the alienation of the affection of his two daughters whom Ellen White had taken at his request and reared and educated, was finally brought to a close. But it cost her money hard to spare, $1,500 for a settlement and $2,000 for attorney's fees. Those familiar with the matter felt certain that if the case had been brought to court, Walling would have lost. In the July 9 letter, she explains why it was not handled that way: 4BIO 268.5

I could have decided to go into court, but this would have brought the children where they would have been obliged to testify on oath against their father, and would have led to endless trouble. The mother would have been brought into court, and you would probably [have] had to act a part. There is no knowing what lies might have been sworn to, or how much disgrace might have been brought upon us all.—Letter 128, 1896. 4BIO 269.1