"Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of truth." — (Psalm 60:4)
"Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them." — (Isaiah 13:2)
Devoted To The Defense Of The Church Against All Errors And Innovations
Vol.VI No.XIII Pg.31-32
July/August 1944

Attorney Seeks Adjustment

February 20Th, 1935

My dear Dr. Norris:

Your letter of the 18th received in regard to the publication of the Norris-Wallace discussion. It is unfortunate that two leaders of religious thought should have so much difficulty in accomplishing an end to which ordinary people and laymen could have accomplished without any difficulty whatsoever.

It was because of this attitude that I filed an Application for Restraining Order in Federal Court and upon your compliance with the substantial things demanded therein this cause was dismissed upon your written agreement that no part of the Wallace discussion would be published.

We still stand firmly on the proposition that there shall be no publication of the Wallace side of this discussion unless and until Wallace is given a free and full opportunity to examine, correct and revise if needed the notes or purported notes which were taken of his discussion. In addition to that after these notes are corrected and revised so as to be the substance of the debate, then after the notes are transcribed to galley sheets both of you should be permitted to examine and approve the subject matter, form and sequence of the speeches as they are to appear in published form. This is nothing but fair, right and common courtesy. Any other plan would be stupid, unfair and unethical.

As I view the matter each of you has the absolute vested right, legal and moral, to see that your discussion after printed is as exactly as delivered. You have that right and Wallace has that right, and we are insisting upon that right and unless that is done there will be no publication of the Wallace side of this discussion.

In passing, permit me to say that the information that you have relative to Wallace's past is wholly without foundation, and I have written data and information in my possession to this effect. Even if what you say is true it can in no wise change or alter what is right and wrong between you and Wallace nor can it effect the weight of the arguments used in these discussions. I assure you that I have been able to find absolutely nothing in Mr. Wallace's past that would justify any fair man in holding him up to criticism. I am just telling you this for your information so you can be no longer justified in repeating charges that are without foundation.

Now, in regard to Wallace's revising, reviewing and correcting his transcript. We want the debate published exactly as delivered. We want his, speeches printed as delivered and yours printed in substance as delivered, nothing more, nothing less. Now as to how this can be accomplished it is difficult for me to say. I am perfectly willing for Mr. Wallace to review, revise and correct his discussion in the presence of and with Brother J. A. Dickey of the South Side Church of Christ. Wallace's arguments were from notes and because of his authorities and citations it would be necessary for him to have excess [access] to all authorities cited to see that all quotations, citations and authorities are accurate and correct. You are entitled to this and so is he. You have had this opportunity and it has all been in your possession. He has never seen nor been permitted to see even the shorthand notes of this discussion. How could you expect him or me to approve for publication his debate covering six or seven hours of discussion without seeing the transcribed notes? You can not in fairness even condone such practice much less demand it.

We want no right that is not ours, and do not want to deprive you of any right, legal or moral, that is yours. This discussion by two leaders of different lines of religious thought is of intense interest to students in these beliefs, and they should be given the opportunity of yours and Wallace's study, thought and investigation in support of those beliefs.

We are perfectly willing to assure you that the transcribed notes will be returned to you in toto together with the revised and corrected arguments, authorities and citations of Mr. Wallace. Then you could examine same.

It will not be satisfactory for Mr. Wallace to come to your office and make his corrections and revisions, but he will do so here in my office or at the study and with Brother Dickey. In addition to that it will require probably ten days for this work to be done. This would necessitate Mr. Wallace from staying at home and for that reason I would like for it to be here or with Brother Dickey, but in no event would we expect you to come to Mr. Wallace's office to revise your notes and for no reasons would we agree for him to come to your office to revise his and you should not expect it.

We would not agree that the notes as transcribed covers the whole space of this discussion until we could see them. If they do not then they will be corrected as to be full and complete whether it requires one page or one hundred pages. And if you have new matter in your notes we would demand additional space to answer your arguments.

If the debate is finally revised, approved and corrected by both of you then there would have to be a joint copyright so that neither of you could claim or demand exclusive right to the copy-righted material. We are far more interested in the publication exactly as delivered than we are in any profits to be made by the publication of same, and Mr. Wallace's interest is in the truth and not from any profits arising from the debate.

If you mutually agree on the debate and subject matter for publication, and same is jointly copy-righted then you could have all the financial profits of the sale of any publication that you wanted to make, and he could and would have the same rights to publish and sell same for his profits should he desire to do so, then if it is agreed upon the form and subject matter of the debate for publication and you wanted an exclusive copyright it would have to be in line with the demands set forth in my previous communications.

I want it distinctly understood that we do not want to get possession of these notes for copy-right purposes, but only for the purpose of seeing that the debate is published as delivered, and you need have no fear that we contemplate at this time any such thing.

If you prefer you can have Mr. Wallace do his work with Brother C. M. Stubblefield or R. L. Whiteside to assure you of a safe return of the transcript. This in view of the fact that none of our men helped you revise yours and we do not need any of your men to help us in revising ours. The only question apparently now between you is the proper procedure, time and place for Mr. Wallace to revise the discussion. Mr. Wallace has evangelistic engagements which can not be ignored, and his next meeting begins next week, March 3rd., in West Virginia, and if this procedure is followed it must be done immediately or it will have to wait until his return about April 1st.

It would be much less expensive for Wallace if he could make his corrections here because he could stay in my home and save that additional expense, and since his debate was from notes I can't see where he would have any advantage regardless where he may be in revising the debate. As you well know the usual procedure is for each man to take the transcript and at his leisure make changes and then submit the transcript as so changed and revised to the opposite party for approval.

Assuring you of my very keen desire to dispose of this matter for once and for all, and hoping that this plan will meet with your approval, and that I will hear from you immediately in regard thereto, I am,

Yours very truly,

Nolan Queen, NQ-dw


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Feb. 22, 1935

Dear Judge Queen:

Yours 20th instant to hand. I quite agree from your standpoint; a layman's standpoint, it looks as if religious leaders should make agreements. But it is a difficult thing for you lawyers to understand the idiosyncrasies of preachers.

Most certainly I have no intention of publishing Mr. Wallace's side of the debate.

I think you appreciate my frank statement to you of the fact that I do not feel that I can trust Mr. Wallace, and this lack of trust is based on what his own brother ministers have said to me; and furthermore, without going into his record, the reports that I have on his record, and from authoritative source would justify me from withholding confidence in him.

I would not agree to turn his manuscript over to him and a group of his own ministers.

I would agree to turn it over to him, and it be at your house or anywhere else, so long as I had a representative to see that my property was protected, and when I say property I mean the investment I made in having it taken down. He had the right to take his own message down, but he did not see fit to do so. The committee could have had it taken down, but they declined.

I appreciate your word that my rights would be protected, and personally I would leave it with you, and there would be no question, for all that I know of you is that you are a gentleman of the highest order. But lawyers dealing with lawyers is not like preachers dealing with preachers. Therefore anyway that he wants to make his corrections I will be glad to turn over to him his manuscript-at your place or anywhere else - I do not ask him to come to my office, as I do not want to humiliate or embarrass him in any way. But I must have the necessary protection of my own rights, and he can have whoever he wants to assist him.

Bear in mind I am not insisting on him publishing his side of the debate, or even asking him to publish it, for the way I have it planned for mine to be published, mine will be given larger circulation, and my only purpose in writing my offer to give him this opportunity that it might be published is to show to the public I offered him every opportunity.

Yours very truly,

J. Frank Norris. JFN:h

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NOTE: The above letter is printed on page 4, 5, of the Norris book, and below it is the statement: "The above offer was declined." But the following shows that his statement is an absolute falsehood. Here it is - read it.

It will be observed that the "authoritative sources" of Norris' so-called "information" regarding my personal "record" are Neal and the Premillennialists and "Dr. G. C. Brewer." Norris says that it is "very painful" for him to refer to this "information." I imagine that it was about as "painful" to Norris to refer to this slanderous gossip as it was "painful" to G. C. Brewer and Chas. M. Neal to furnish him with it. We can all see their hearts fairly aching, if not breaking with grief over my record! ! -F. E. W. Jr.