239 Days in America

A Social Media Documentary following 'Abdu'l-Bahá in 1912

November 10, 1912
Washington, DC
Storify Feature

‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s Journey So Far: Month Seven

WE HAVE REACHED the end of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s seventh month in America. We’ll take this opportunity to look back at some of the highlights of the past thirty-one days.


We began the month in the middle of a week that was the high point of ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s trip West. At the Open Forum in San Francisco, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá tackled the contentious issue of evolution in Abdu’l-Bahá, Darwin, and the Evolution of All Things. On San Francisco’s Sutter Street on October 12, 1912, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá visited the Temple Emanu-El, delivering a challenging talk to the Reform Jewish congregation in Rabbi Martin Meyer Hosts ‘Abdu’l-Bahá at Temple Emanu-El.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá then spent three relaxing days in Pleasanton, California, with the family of Phoebe Hearst, one of America’s greatest philanthropists. We explored her connection with ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in three stories: Phoebe Apperson Hearst, Mrs. Hearst Visits a Prisoner in ‘Akká, and The Grand Benefactress of California.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá then traveled south to Los Angeles to visit the gravesite of his recently departed friend, Thornton Chase, whom he called “the first American Bahá’í.” The Last Days of Thornton Chase, Thornton Chase’s Long Season of Suffering, and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá in the City of Angels told the tumultuous story of Chase.

Before leaving California for the long trek back East, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá spoke to the Century Club Of California, covered in a feature that was popular among our readers: “The Great Educator of Man Is Woman”.

On the trip back across the country, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá gave a Catholic cardinal A Gentle Rebuke, and had many Conversations in Transit. He paid one last visit to the Windy City, where we witnessed how In Chicago, Anything is Possible.

The watershed Presidential election of 1912 also finished in the month just passed, which we covered in three features: The Stubborn Hide of the Bull Moose, On Election Day, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá Praises Cincinnati’s Favorite Son, and The Wilson Landslide.

‘Abdu’l-Bahá then paid a farewell visit to the nation’s capital, where he reprised his rhetorical battle against America’s ideologies of race in ‘Abdu’l-Bahá’s Assault on the Color Line.

During the month we also published two editorial pieces: The Home Stretch, and  An Ultimately Disastrous Notion of Human Nature.

There are now just twenty-five days left until ‘Abdu’l-Bahá bids farewell to America.


  • Ann

    Thanks to all the writers who have inspired my days with a gentle reminder of our Beloved Master’s profound dedication to progress of humanity.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/William-Maxwell/1140616716 William Maxwell

    No doubt this is one of the greatest lecture tours of history and totally ignored by mainstream historians. How blind is our species?

    William Maxwell

    • Loie Mead

      Occasionally television networks identify persons as historians; only a few come to mind and spelling their names correctly is important. Perhaps, I will come upon a starter list of mainstream historians to contact. The Baha’i Faith includes everyone!

  • RBulling_47

    Sadly this daily account of ‘Abdu’l-Baha’s journey in America is coming to a close.
    We have been continually inspired by learning new details of His journey. It has been quite interesting to learn more details about the many people he visited and the reactions his talks produced among various groups he addressed. It now remains to be seen what we can accomplish as he challenged us to do–to be promoters of Universal Peace and Universal Brotherhood. Many thanks to the
    writers and research workers who produced this most inspiring work.