Charles Taze Russell
(1852-1916)

Died aged c. 64

Charles Taze Russell (February 16, 1852 – October 31, 1916), or Pastor Russell, was an American Christian restorationist minister from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and founder of what is now known as the Bible Student movement. After his death, Jehovah's Witnesses and numerous independent Bible Student groups developed from this base. In July 1879, Russell began publishing a monthly religious magazine, Zion's Watch Tower and Herald of Christ's Presence. In 1881 he co-founded Zion's Watch Tower Tract Society with William Henry Conley as president; in 1884 the corporation was officially registered, with Russell as president. Russell wrote many articles, books, tracts, pamphlets and sermons, totaling approximately 50,000 printed pages. From 1886 to 1904, he published a six-volume Bible study series originally titled Millennial Dawn, later renamed Studies in the Scriptures, nearly 20 million copies of which were printed and distributed around the world in several languages during his lifetime. (A seventh volume was commissioned by his successor as society president, Joseph Rutherford, and published in 1917.) The Watch Tower Society ceased publication of Russell's writings in 1927, though his books are still published by several independent groups. After Russell's death, a crisis arose surrounding Rutherford's leadership of the society, culminating in a movement-wide schism. As many as three-quarters of the approximately 50,000 Bible Students who had been associating in 1917 had left by 1931. This shift resulted in the formation of several groups that retained variations on the name Bible Students. Those who maintained fellowship with the Watch Tower Society adopted the name Jehovah's witnesses in 1931, while those who severed ties with the Society formed their own groups including the Pastoral Bible Institute in 1918, the Laymen's Home Missionary Movement in 1919, and the Dawn Bible Students Association in 1929.

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Commemorated on 1 plaque

Charles Taze Russell (1852-1916). Pastor Russell formed a Bible study group in Allegheny City in the 1870's; developed it into the Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society. It became the legal corporation for Jehovah's Witnesses. He lived in the Bible House nearby, 1894-1909; spoke here at Carnegie Hall.

Allegheny Center, E Commons, at New Hazlett Theater (formerly Carnegie Hall), Pittsburgh, PA, United States where they spoke and lived near