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‘Abdu’l-Bahá Manages to Catch a Train

Abdul Baha Manages to Catch a Train
The Sun
June 30, 1912
Montclair, NJ

But for Two Perhaps Fortuitous Incidents He Would Have Been Left.

MONTCLAIR, N.J., June 29. — The departure of ‘Abdu’l Bahá, leader of the Bahá’í cult, from Montclair to-day was attended by excitement that was strikingly at variance with the peaceful character of the religious prophet. ‘Abdu’l Bahá and a retinue of ten fez wearing Persians have been making their home at 11 Bradford place for several weeks. Arrangements were made for the departure of the aged prophet to-day for West Englewood, where he addressed a meeting of Bahá’ís.

Several members of ‘Abdu’l Bahá’s retinue left for the Lackawanna railroad station in advance of their leader. When the time for the train to depart arrived he was not in sight. He had been delayed in leaving the house. The baggage was aboard the train and as it moved out of the terminal there was a great excitement among the retinue, who appealed to the trainmen in several Oriental languages to defer the departure for a few minutes. Some of the excited followers of the prophet, when they realized that the train was leaving, got aboard. One of them in swinging his arms about, accidentally or otherwise, pulled the bell rope. At the same instant ‘Abdu’l Bahá came in sight in an automobile that moved swiftly in the direction of the railroad station. To add to the excitement another one of the Persians at this moment, accidentally or with purpose, knocked off the conductor’s hat. The train came to a halt and ‘Abdu’l Bahá leaped from the automobile and was hustled aboard.

Abdu’l-Bahá will be in New York city for a while. About the middle of July he will go to Boston. He had intended to make a long Western trip, but it was feared that the exertion at this season of the year would be too much for one of his age, and the tour was cancelled on the advice of physicians.

During his stay here ‘Abdu’l-Bahá has attracted considerable attention. There are about fifty Bahá’ís in Montclair, and they made the stay of the prophet as pleasant as possible. They showered him with gifts of fruit and flowers daily. These are the only gratuities that the leader would accept at the hands of his followers, as he is wealthy. Last evening at the home of Mrs. Charles H. Edsall of the Crescent a farewell reception was given to ‘Abdu’l-Bahá and his intimate disciples.