Ellen G. White: The Early Elmshaven Years: 1900-1905 (vol. 5)


Visiting Institutions in the South

While negotiations for the Madison property were under way, Ellen White and her party left on Wednesday, June 15, for a week-long tour of several institutions in Tennessee and Alabama. The first was Graysville, where there was a school and a sanitarium. On Sabbath she spoke in the church and noticed that there were in her audience three ministers from other Protestant churches. On Sunday she made a grand tour of the school buildings, the farm—where she discovered peaches and corn and strawberries—and the Sanitarium, where she urged that the pine trees be preserved, for there is healing in the pines. In their travels by carriage they stopped by homes of Adventists and met the families. She wrote of it: “Whole families, father, mother, and children, came out to speak to me, and I shook hands with each one, not forgetting the children.”— Ibid. 5BIO 346.6

Their travels took them west by train to Huntsville, Alabama, to visit the Oakwood school, which had been established for blacks ten years before. They arrived there Monday afternoon at 1:00 P.M. After looking over the farm, she spoke to the few students who were there for the summer. She told them she wanted one hundred students in the school the next year, and urged them to appeal to their friends to come to Oakwood. She told these students how pleased she was that they were training for service. She said she wanted to encourage them because she knew they had a battle to fight and strong prejudice to work against. She pointed out that the church needed them to work in places where racial hostility prevented whites from working. She assured them of God's help and told them if she never saw them again on this earth she hoped to see them in the kingdom of heaven (Manuscript 60, 1904). 5BIO 347.1

On June 22 she returned to Nashville, where she spent another couple of weeks resting, writing, speaking, and encouraging the workers in the area. During this time she went out to take another look at the Madison property. When the work for the new school was organized, Ellen White accepted an invitation to serve on the board of directors—the only time she ever served in such a capacity. She watched the developments at Madison with deep interest. 5BIO 347.2

On Friday night, July 1, she was given the important vision recorded in Testimonies 9, 28, 29, in which she saw great balls of fire falling from the sky. 5BIO 347.3

While in Nashville she also attended the Southern Union Conference session, which began on July 4. 5BIO 347.4