Royal Reels: Gambling


The registered airmail cover has 3 Australian definitives, a green 3d Q.E, brown-purple kookaburra and a brown 2s crocodile, totalling 2 shillings and 9 pence. It was sent in the early 1950s from Manly, Queensland and it has a blue MANLY E2/ QUEENSLAND registration label as well as the red crayon cross-hatching. It is addressed to Pastor Roy allan Anderson, C/O The Headquarters of the Seventh Day Adventists, London, England, with additional postal directions in blue crayon. The reverse was not seen (Figure 1).

The history concerning Roy Anderson in Australia starts off as follows: “The first patient at the Warburton Sanitarium, (Warburton Victoria) in 1910, was driven from the railway station to the Sanitarium by a youthful Roy Allan Anderson, in the Anderson’s buggy drawn by two shetland ponies.” In 1910, Roy would have been 15, for he was born in 1895, and the earliest photo I have of him is in 1909 as a member of the Warburton Adventist Brass band, where he is seen in a group photo (all members named), the trumpet player identified by the red arrow (Figure 2).

The above Adventists in Warburton site gave information about Roy Anderson’s father, Pastor Albert W. Anderson (1868-1949). “The now beautiful trees in the hospital grounds (Warburton Sanitarium) were planted by Pastor A.W. Anderson, then editor of the Signs Publishing Company, as well as manager of the Sanitarium”. No mention of Roy Anderson’s mother has been found as yet.

In view of Roy Anderson’s long life (he died at the age of 90), possibly the oldest Elder at the time (died 12 December 1985 at home in Loma Linda, California), and that he was recognised as a leading evangelist in Australia, England and the U.S.A., wielding considerable influence by authoring numerous religious books, as well as being the editor of The Ministery (1950-66), together with being the associate (1941-50) and then Secretary (1950-66) of the Ministerial Department of the Adventist church in America, the lack of biographical data is surprising. An example of Anderson’s role as editor of The Ministry is seen in Figure 3.

The only biographical information I have available to-date (2009) was in Gary Land’s Historical Dictionary of Seventh-Day Adventists, London (p.19) as follows: “ANDERSON, ROY ALLAN (1895-1985). Seventh-day Adventist minister and evangelist. Anderson conducted large urban evangelistic campaigns in Australia and London in the 1920s and 1930s, experimenting with new advertising techniques and using a variety of venues. He communicated his knowledge of evangelism through institutes and field schools, having considerable impact on Adventist evangelism internationally. In 1938 he began teaching at La Sierra College and in 1941 joined the Ministerial Association of the General Conference. He wrote several books, of which The Shepherd-Evangelist (1950) was probably the most influential, and participated in the evangelical- Adventist dialogues” (Figure 4).

Mention of Roy Anderson in an Australian newspaper was found in The Age on June 21, 1958, page 8, as follows: “Australian Adventists for America. Fourteen Australian delegates to the Seventh Day Adventist church world conference in Cleveland, Ohio which opened Thursday and will continue to June 28. Delegates will be from all countries outside the Iron Curtain, where there are many thousands of church members…….Peak attendance is expected to reach 23,000 at the two weekend services. At this four-yearly conference plans will be laid for the next quadrennium. Melbourne-born Pastor Roy Allan Anderson, leader of the Adventist World Ministerial Association, and now a foremost preacher in U.S.A., will come up for re-election.

Reports are expected to show an increase in the church’s adherents of from 300,000 to 400,000 in the past four years.” (Figure 5).

Two additional photos of Roy Allan Anderson, one with his wife, Maureen Myrle Anderson who survived him, are seen in Figures 6 & 7.