Edward William Bok > The Americanization of Edward Bok > Page 130



Edward William Bok (1863–1930). The Americanization of Edward Bok. 1921.

Page 130

the editorial creed some editors learn by sorrowful experience. Bok was, again, fortunate in learning it under the most friendly auspices. He continued to work without sparing himself, but his star remained in the ascendency. Just how far a man’s own efforts and standards keep a friendly star centred over his head is a question. But Edward Bok has always felt that he was materially helped by fortuitous conditions not of his own creation or choice.

He was now to receive his first public baptism of fire. He had published a symposium, through his newspaper syndicate, discussing the question, “Should Clergymen Smoke?” He had induced all the prominent clergymen in the country to contribute their views, and so distinguished was the list that the article created widespread attention.

One of the contributors was the Reverend Richard S. Storrs, D.D., one of the most distinguished of Brooklyn’s coterie of clergy of that day. A few days after the publication of the article, Bok was astounded to read in the Brooklyn Eagle a sensational article, with large headlines, in which Doctor Storrs repudiated his contribution to the symposium, declared that he had never written or signed such a statement, and accused Edward Bok of forgery.

Coming from a man of Doctor Storrs’s prominence, the accusation was, of course, a serious one. Bok realized this at once. He foresaw the damage it might work to the reputation of a young man trying to climb the ladder of success, and wondered why Doctor Storrs had seen fit to accuse him in this public manner instead



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