Force of Life Chemical Co.
From Kook Science
|Force of Life Chemical Co.|
|Formation||19 September 1903|
|Headquarters||New York City, NY|
The Force of Life Chemical Company was a distributor of proprietary medicines and food supplements, beginning with their namesake "Force of Life" product, a compound of lecithin and unidentified vegetable products, as well as specific remedies for dyspepsia, heart and kidney troubles, rheumatism, catarrh, consumption, piles, and a laxative agent. The company was incorporated at Wilmington, Delaware on 19 Sep. 1903, and operated out of offices on Broadway in New York City, New York until its voluntarily dissolution following scandal from a widely-publicised fraud trial in 1906 credited to the intervention of President Theodore Roosevelt.
Incorporation papers were filed at Wilmington, Delaware on 19 Sep. 1903 by S. S. Adams, Jr., C. C. Pierce, L. Irving Handy; however, these names seem to have quickly disappeared from the leadership of the company, as E. Virgil Neal and his associates ran the concern and populated the board.
- President, E. Virgil Neal (1904)
- President, James R. O'Beirne (1905-1906)
- Vice-President, James A. Tedford (1904-1906)
- Treasurer, Arthur H. Williams (1904-1906)
- Secretary, Frederick H. Wilson (1904-1906)
- Auditor, Solon L. Slade
- E. Virgil Neal (1904-1906)
- Edwin E. Keeler (1905-1906)
- William F. Acton (1905-1906)
- Robert T. Bagley (1904-1906)
- James F. Pierce (1904-1906)
- Luther Bartlett Little (1904-1906)
- James A. Tedford (1904-1906)
- C. W. Robbins (1904-1906)
- A. N. Williams (1904-1906)
Force of Life
The lecithin-based supplement branded "Force of Life" was originally advertised from 1903 as the discovery of A. Wilbur Jacksone,[i] under whose name the same product was advertised for nearly a year prior to the incorporation of the Force of Life Chemical Co. Jacksone's early 1903 advertisements encouraged readers to write him at 173 West 83rd street in New York City; his offices were, after incorporation, removed to 1932 Broadway, the same building as the company. His name would disappear from advertising subsequently, being replaced by William Wallace Hadley, an "eminent thaumaturgic panopathist" who, it was claimed, had brought a woman back to life, a feat credited to his "mysterious control over disease and death" and his discovery of "the vital principle of life itself, the dynamic force that creates and maintains existence."[ii]
Life Ray Capsule
The company sold a small capsule, described in press accounts as resembling a "short 22-caliber Flaubert cartridge" with a "cover of glass and copper," intended to irradiate company medicines as well as drinking water with the "great dynamic force of life" that is given off by the element radium. Fortunately for the customers who ordered this product, the capsules sold by the company did not actually contain the promised radium, but rather, according to Samuel Hopkins Adams' in his 1905 series of articles on The Nostrum Evil, "a mixture of corn starch and calcium sulfid."
Rumours of relocation to Elmira, NY (1905)
- "ANOTHER INDUSTRY - Force of Life Company May Located Here. IMPORTANT CONCERN - Men Interested Are Meeting in Elmira Today and Matters Will Soon be Definitely Settled — Employs Many People.", Star-Gazette (Elmira, NY): 2, 13 Oct. 1905, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/275962726/
- "STILL A CHANCE TO SECURE BIG COMPANY - Force of Life People Want to Locate General Offices, Giving Employment to 100 People, Here, But Elmirans Are Slow About Doing Their Share to Secure This Addition to the City's Population.", Star-Gazette (Elmira, NY): 5, 18 Nov. 1905, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/275966576/
On Trial (1906)
Charges Brought by U.S. Gov't
- "CLAIMED TO RAISE THE DEAD - GENERAL O'BEIRNE MIXED UP IN 'FORCE OF LIFE' SCANDAL. New York Men of Reputation Connected With the Concern That Promised Miracles With Its Remedy, 'Liquid Life' — Two Officials Arrested.", Kansas City Star (Kansas City, MO): 20, 13 Jan. 1905, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/32267067/
- AP (13 Jan. 1906), "UNCLE SAM IS ON THE ALERT - 'Force of Life' Company Officers Under Arrest - CONSPIRACY CHARGED - Roosevelt Takes the Initiative Against Firm Which Proposed to Raise the Dead", Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Fort Worth, TX): 1, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/633961864/
- "HOW FORCE OF LIFERS DID A RUSH BUSINESS - Life Ray Capsules Cured and You Didn't Have to Take Them. WERE RADIUM, SAID HADLEY But They Weren't — Just Came in Barrels by Wholesale — Salary Question Bothered Testimonial Writer.", New York Times (New York City, NY): 4, 15 Jan. 1906, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/20523180/
- "PROSECUTION OF FRAUDULENT PRACTITIONERS.", The New England Journal of Medicine 154 (3): 82, 18 Jan. 1906, https://www.google.com/books/edition/The_New_England_Journal_of_Medicine/IrQ1AQAAMAAJ?hl=en&gbpv=1&dq=%22Force+of+Life+Chemical+Company%22&pg=PA82
- "SUCKERS BY THE MILLION", Morning Press (Santa Barbara, CA): x, 24 Jan. 1906, https://cdnc.ucr.edu/?a=d&d=MP19060124.2.46&srpos=3&e=-------en--20--1--txt-txIN-%22William+Wallace+Hadley%22-------1
- "DOPE DRAWN FROM BARREL - 'Force of Life' Woman Says Water Was Sent as Medicine. Supposed to Be of Four Different Strengths, and Was Bottled by a Boy. What 'Money Refunded' Meant.", Washington Post (Washington, DC): 59, 21 Feb. 1906, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/31563797/
- "AN IMPUDENT FRAUD.", Chicago Tribune (Chicago, IL): 8, 24 Feb. 1906, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/350215948/
- "'Stick to the Truth if Possible.'", Buffalo Evening News (Buffalo, NY): 6, 27 Feb. 1906, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/842980989/
- "GEN. O'BEIRNE ON THE STAND - Force of Life Company President Says He Remedied Objections.", Baltimore Sun (Baltimore, MD): 5, 11 Mar. 1906, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/370626081/
- "FORCE OF LIFE HEARING. Head of the Correspondence Department Never Heard of Woman Specialist.", Washington Post (Washington, DC): 1, 13 Mar. 1906, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/28957548/
- "30 TO 200 DIAGNOSES A DAY FOR $30 A WEEK SALARY - Dr. Contant Tells of 'Highest Class Physicians' Work for Force of Life Company. NEVER HEARD OF GIVING DOPE. How Dr. Hadley and Advertising Agent 'Revolutionized the Practice of Medicine.'", Brooklyn Daily Eagle (Brooklyn, NY): 68, 18 Mar. 1906, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/53154545/
All Defendants Discharged
- AP (24 Apr. 1906), "FORCE OF LIFE CHARGES DISMISSED.", Buffalo Evening News (Buffalo, NY): 6, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/842980160/, "A decision discharging all the defendants in the hearing of the Force of Life Chemical company was given by United States Commissioner Ridgway. The hearing was upon a charge of conspiracy to defraud which was brought against the following officers of the company: E. Virgil Neal, former president; Dr. William W. Hadley, medical director; A. H. Williams, treasurer; and Miss Laura M. Wilson, a stenographer."
- Supreme Court Appellate Division, Second Department: Josephine T. Deady, Plaintiff-Appellant, against E. Virgil Neal, Defendant-Respondent, 1912. https://books.google.com/books?id=YvpIS_ezFVMC&pg=RA1-PP53
A. Wilbur Jacksone
- "Most Marvellous Book of the Age Free. A Wondeful Method of Home Treatment Fully and Completely Explained. The Doctors of Two Continents Are Dumfounded at the Remarkable Cures Made by This Great Discovery. Kidney, Liver and Lung Troubles, Rheumatism, Nervous Prostration and Other Dangerous Diseases Banished as if by Some Magic Power.", Evening World (New York City, NY): 9, 17 Feb. 1903, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/78625947/
- "I WILL CURE YOUR CATARRH. If My Treatment Succeeds You Pay Me; If It Fails Pay Nothing — You Are the Judge. IT is FREE. My New Book on 'FORCE OF LIFE' Tells All About My Wonderful Remedy; It Tells What It Contains, What It Cures and Why It Cures. It Describes the Most Marvelous Discovery in the History of Medicine. It Is Free To You, So Is My Complete Diagnosis of Your Disease.", St. Louis Republic (St. Louis, MO): 8, 22 Feb. 1903, https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84020274/1903-02-22/ed-1/seq-30/
- "WOMEN! Listen to this Marvelous Story - Nervous Troubles Forever Ended. A Vital Life Fluid Discovered Which Builds Nerve Force with Magical Power. IT HAS MADE ITS DISCOVERER FAMOUS - THIS IS THE MAN, A. WILBUR JACKSONE, M.D., Ph.D.", Philadelphia Inquirer (Philadelphia, PA): 10, 20 Sep. 1903, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/169010349/
- "What is this Mysterious Vital Fluid of Life? Who is This Wizard That Dumbfounds the Doctors and Startles Two Continents by a Series of the Most Remarkable Miracle-Cures Known Since the Beginning of the Christian Era. Can It Be That at Last We Have Found the Wonderful Vital Fluid, the Real Force or Essence of Life, Which Has Been the Dream of the Chemist and the Goal of the learned Medical Professor of All Ages? Dr. Jacksone Heals the Poor as Well as the Rich; None are Turned Away. Those Who Write Him Seem to Receive the Same Benefits as Those Who Call in Person. He Sends His Mysterious Preparation by Express to all Parts of the World. He Absolutely Refuses to Accept a Single Cent of Pay Unless His Treatment Succeeds. Then You May Him What You Like Beyond the Actual Cost of His Remedies.", News & Observer (Raleigh, NC): 12, 8 Nov. 1903, https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85042104/1903-11-08/ed-1/seq-12/
Force of Life Co.
- "New Food That Will Make Giants of Us All - Wonderful Discovery of a New York Physician. Men and Women Run Down in Health Restored to Youthful Vigor — The Blind See, the Lame Walk and Those Suffering the Grevious Bite of Years Are Quickly Cured by This Marvelous Preparation. THOUSANDS EAGER TO TEST IT. An Opportunity To Be Given to All by the Manufacturers.", National Tribune (Washington, DC): 2, 5 Nov. 1903, https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn82016187/1903-11-05/ed-1/seq-2/
- "STARTLING REVELATIONS. Made by the U.S. Government Food Investigation Committee. Discovery of a Strange, New Food Product Which Cures Dangerous Ailments, Which Have For Centuries Baffled Medical Skill — Nearly All Diseases effectually Treated by It. $200,000 Appropriated for Its Manufacture and Distribution — 10,000 Packages to Be Ready for Public Use Within a Few Days. HOW THE SICK MAY OBTAIN AID WITHOUT CHARGE.", Minneapolis Journal (Minneapolis, MN): 10, 26 Dec. 1903, https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045366/1903-12-26/ed-1/seq-10/
W. Wallace Hadley
- "WHAT MYSTERIOUS POWER DOES THIS MAN POSSESS? THE DEAD BROUGHT BACK TO LIFE - Would Hardly Create a Greater Sensation Than Some of the Miraculous Cures He Performs With a Strange Mystic Fluid Unknown to Medical Science. DOCTORS ADMIT FACTS, BUT UNABLE TO EXPLAIN SECRET OF HIS MARVELLOUS POWER OVER DEATH. HEALS THOSE HUNDREDS OF MILES AWAY THE SAME AS THOSE WHO CALL IN PERSON. Refuses Pay for His Services — Says His Discovery is God-Given and That it Belongs to All Mankind Free of Charge.", Nashville Banner (Nashville, TN): 10, 6 Feb. 1904, https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/604378052/
- "IS THERE A LIMIT TO THIS MAN'S HEALING POWER? PANOPATHIC PROFESSOR WORKS WONDERS Restores Health to Invalids Pronounced Hopelessly Incurable by Physicians. Healing in the Face of Apparent Impossibilities DOES AWAY WITH USELESS DRUGS And Condemns Brutal Operations by Surgeon's Deadly Knife. No Disease He May Not Cure by Some Strange, Intangible, Unseen Force of Mighty Potency That Cures When Doctors and Medicines Fail and Hope Is Gone HAS HE THE POWER DIVINE? Ministers of the Gospel Say He Is Gifted of God, and Praise Him for His Help to Suffering Humanity — He Gives Service and Home Treatment Free to the Sick and Afflicted", Los Angeles Herald (Los Angeles, CA): 3, 18 Dec. 1904, https://cdnc.ucr.edu/?a=d&d=LAH19041218.2.46&e=-------en--20--1--txt-txIN--------1
- A. Wilbur Jacksone may have been Abram Wilbur Jackson (January 31, 1848 - December 23, 1908), or the Neal syndicate may have simply borrowed his name. Jackson was a physician and electro-therapeutic enthusiast active in New York from the 1890s, where he received press attention for his public statements against the Keeley Cure and its practitioners, decrying their method of curing alcoholism and morphine addiction. Jackson wrote about lecithin in a November 1903 article for Bernarr Macfadden's Physical Culture magazine, and also sold lecithin supplements outside of any direct association with Force of Life Chemical Co.
- "By his mysterious control over disease and death, Dr. Wallace Hadley of this city, has made the human heart beat again in the body of a woman rescued from the grave. And as a result of his successful experiments he makes the startling statement that no disease should cause death. He claims to have discovered the vital principle of life itself, the dynamic force that creates and maintains existence. Since making this discovery the cures made by this man of science have been so remarkable, the restorations of life and health that he has brought about have been so marvelous, that he is credited with possessing some power over disease and death not given to ordinary mortals. He seems to have absolute control over human life and the diseases that attack it."