72 Religious Tracts from the Union Gospel Press, circa 1970
Cleveland, OH: Union Gospel Press, . Tthe extant mailing envelope, addressed to the Rogers Hgts Gospel Tabernacle in Big Rapids, Michigan, is dated Sept. 24, 1970). 72 different tracts, 3.5” x 5.5”, 2 to 28 pp. each, includes small “sample pack” slip. Multiple authors including Walter B. Knight, Frances Ridley Havergal, Margaret Howard, Elzena A. Scott, et al. Overall VG+, a few with minor wrinkling and light wear (including one with a closed tear), a very faint musty odor, and occasional soiling.
The Union Gospel Press of Cleveland, Ohio, has been publishing Sunday school and religious literature since the beginning of the twentieth century, and their “Christian Life Series” offered illustrated take-home papers on the Scriptures for family consumption. The goal of this “publishing ministry” was to bring the Christian word into the home (www.uniongospelpress.com), but the larger purpose was to evangelize through print—on the verso of one tract, the author asks, “Has this message helped you? Do you wish to help others…Pass them on prayerfully. Please keep them in circulation.” This sample pack of 72 tracts, originally intended for the Rogers Heights churchgoers, would certainly have found their way outdoors and into the community, with their captivating graphics (including 1960s inspired art) and titles that served as didactic scare tactics like “Death at the Controls,” “Too Late!” “125-Pound Hailstones are Coming,” “If Jesus Had Not Come,” and “Don’t Trust It!” Many of the tracts begin with gospel verse or weave a narrative that ends in a series of questions to the reader.
A scarce surviving sample pack, with none identified in OCLC or in commerce. Item #542