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This report is taken from PN Review 28, Volume 9 Number 2, November - December 1982.

Charlotte Chapel, the Pittsburgh Draft Board, and 'Some Americans' Gael Turnbull

I hope there may be some interest in tracing the curious sequence of events which led the General Editor of PNR to write to me, a General Practitioner in Worcestershire: 'Charles Tomlinson, in his book Some Americans, refers continually to your services to him which he suggests were almost of an institutional nature . . .'

The references are only two and brief at that. But they do help to explain how the book came to be written. The story goes back to a visiting American Evangelist in Scotland in 1914 and the peculiarities of American Selective Service Law in 1952.

My father grew up in Edinburgh. His parents were deeply religious and had connections at various times with Presbyterian, Episcopalian and Baptist Churches in the city. In 1914, at the age of thirteen, he became 'converted' during an evangelical crusade. This was under the ministry of a visiting American Presbyterian, Wilbur Chapman, working in association with the well-known Scottish preacher, Alexander Whyte. Even then, my father had a premonition that he might some day go to America.

Shortly after this, with his parents, he came under the influence of Dr Graham Scroggie at Charlotte Chapel in Edinburgh where his father sang in the choir. From 1914 to 1921, he worked for a farm fertiliser and feed firm in Leith and, under Scroggie, began the systematic Bible and Theological study which has continued for the rest of his life. He also saved every ...


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