“William Roedel Rathvon, CSB, (December 31, 1854 – March 2, 1939), sometimes incorrectly referred to as William V. Rathvon or William V. Rathbone, is the only known eyewitness to Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, of the over 10,000 witnesses, to have left an audio recording describing that experience. He made the recording in 1938, a year before his death. A graduate of Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and a successful businessman, he became a practitioner of Christian Science healing, served as a public lecturer, Church treasurer and director of The First Church of Christ, Scientist in Boston, Massachusetts. He was treasurer from 1911 until he was elected to the Church's Board of Directors, on which he served from 1918 until his death in 1939. From 1908 to 1910 he was correspondence secretary for Christian Science founder Mary Baker Eddy. He also authored "The Devil's Auction" often republished without attribution as "The Devil's Garage Sale".
The Devil's Auction
William R. Rathvon -1912
It was once announced that the devil was going out of business and would offer his tools for sale to whoever would pay his price. On the night of the sale they were all attractively displayed, and a bad looking lot they were. Malice, envy, hatred, jealousy, sensuality, deceit, and all the other implements of evil were spread out, each marked with its price. Apart from all the rest lay a harmless looking, wedge-shaped tool, much worn and priced higher than any of the others.
Someone asked the devil what it was.
"That's discouragement," was the reply.
"Well, why do you have it priced so high?"
"Because," replied the devil, "it is more useful to me than any of the others. I can pry open and get inside a man's consciousness with that when I couldn't get near him with any of the others, and once inside, I can use it with nearly everybody, as very few people yet know that it belongs to me!"
"You say you use this wedge of discouragement with nearly everybody - with whom can't you use it?"
The devil hesitated a long time and finally said in a low voice, "I can't use it in getting into the consciousness of a grateful man."
It hardly need be added that the devil's price for discouragement was so high that it was never sold. He still owns it and he is still using it.
: the act of making something less likely to happen or of making people less likely to do something
: a feeling of having lost hope or confidence
: something (such as a failure or difficulty) that discourages someone
: the act of making something more appealing or more likely to happen
: something that makes someone more determined, hopeful, or confident
: something that makes someone more likely to do something
Always feel encouraged to love! Encourage others!