As the thirty-fifth year of our publication is now closing upon us, it is time to announce to our readers what are our prospects and designs for another year. With humble gratitude to the Sovereign Ruler of all events, we desire to record his goodness and mercy which have followed us all our days; and especially on this occasion would we render a tribute of praise and thanksgiving for his manifold favors to us in our connection with this periodical. With fear and trembling we commenced our editorial and publishing labors just as we were entering the prime and vigor of manhood, under very many discouraging circumstances, and in the face of most violent opposition, as the first, and for many years the only paper devoted to the Old School, or Primitive Baptist cause. Since we commenced our labors just one-half of the three score years and ten which are allotted to man have passed away, and in their rapid flight they have borne away by far the greater portion of those who were our companions and contemporaries at that time. A long list of the names of those who encouraged us in the beginning are now, alas! inscribed upon their tombstones, and their mortal remains now slumber with the silent dead; and why we are spared while so many have been called hence is only known to God; but whatever has been his purpose, we know that our unfeigned love and gratitude is due to him. But while we look around us in vain for those who were companions of our earlier days, to the praise of God be it acknowledged we are not left without true and faithful friends, and loving brethren who have never failed to show themselves in our most trying straits. Today we have a greater number of able and devoted brethren and sisters, scattered throughout all the states and territories of our wide spread country, ready to contribute able communications to fill up and enrich our columns, than we have ever before had at any one time. The violent opposition we have encountered from time to time from avowed enemies, and still more annoying from professed friends, has been more than balanced by the true friendship, fellowship and cooperation of thousands, the faces of many of whom we have never seen in the flesh.
The circulation of our paper was seriously restricted, and its continuance imperiled by the late dreadful scenes of carnage in which our country has been involved, but for the last two years the way has been opened for a circulation in the Southern States, and we are now constantly receiving accessions to our subscription list from all quarters.
In view of our increasing circulation, and the increasing demands for enlarged facilities for a general correspondence, extending to all parts of our country and the Canadas, we propose to add four pages to each number of the “Signs” for the next year, beginning with the first day of January next. The paper to be the same form and size as at present, each number to contain twelve instead of eight pages; without any addition to the subscription price, and the postage, being by weight, will be no more than now. Not more than one page will be occupied with standing advertisements.
This new arrangement will add 50 percent to the amount of printed matter, and afford space for many valuable communications which have heretofore been excluded for want of room. And we flatter ourselves that our additional expense will be met by our increased subscription. As it will involve an expense to us of a large amount, may we not hope our brethren and all who are friends to the paper will use their influence to procure new subscribers, and forward their orders and remittances without delay.
Should our circulation during the year 1868 reach ten thousand, we will, if spared, at the commencement of 1869, issue the “Signs of the Times” weekly.
November 15, 1867.
Elder Gilbert Beebe
Editorials Volume 7
Pages 104 - 105