George McCready Price (1870 — 1963) was a Canadian creationist. He produced a string of anti-evolution, or creationist works, particularly on the subject of "flood geology". However, not until after his death did his views become common amongst creationists, the "creation science" movement starting in the 1960s.
Price was born in Havelock, New Brunswick, Canada. His father died in 1882 and his mother joined the Seventh-day Adventist Church. In 1887, he married another follower of the church.
Price then became a schoolteacher, teaching as a missionary at Battle Creek College (now Andrews University) between 1891 and 1893 at another school in 1896, and at a high school in Tracadie, a Francophone fishing village, between 1897 and 1899.
He met Alfred Corbett Smith socially, who, amused by Price's fundamentalism, introduced him to literature on science. Since his faith held that the Earth was young, Price concluded that geologists had misinterpreted their data.
In 1902, Price self-published Outlines of Modern Christianity and Modern Science. After failing as a preacher, and then as a writer in New York, Price helped build the then Seventh-day Adventist headquarters in Maryland and a school in California. In 1906, he self-published Illogical Geology.
He took a job as a secondary teacher with the Adventists but then took the year of 1921 off to write his most important work, The New Geology. In 1924, Price was sent to Stanborough Missionary College, in Watford, London, United Kingdom.
His opposition to evolution
Price's most notable work, The New Geology (1923), a 726 page college textbook, contains numerous arguments that allegedly refute key elements of Darwin's theory of evolution. Several of these arguments remain popular in creationist circles today.
One of the most popular is the argument that evolutionary theory rests on faulty dating techniques. Price alleges that fossils are dated according to the age of the geological strata that they are found in, and that the rocks themselves are assigned probable dates based on the estimated age of the fossils found in them. In short, Price believes that all evolutionary claims based on the dates of fossils are in fact fallacious, based on a fairly straightforward circular argument. Price contends that all fossils are of the same age--that is, that the fossils were all laid down during the flood of Noah described in Genesis.
The use of Price's ideas
Price's defense of creation science (and attacks on evolution) first achieved notability in 1925 when his theories and arguments were utilized heavily by William Jennings Bryan in the famous Scopes Trial. Price's ideas were borrowed again in the early 1960s by Henry M. Morris and John Whitcomb in their book The Genesis Flood, a work that skeptic Martin Gardner calls "the most significant attack on evolution...since the Scopes trial". Morris, in his 1984 book History of Modern Creationism, spoke glowingly of Price's logic and writing style, and referred to reading The New Geology as "a life-changing experience for me".
- Gardner, Martin. "George McCready Price." The New Age: Notes of a Fringe-Watcher. Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, 1991.
- Q. E. D., or New Light on the Doctrine of Creation Gutenberg
- The Predicament of Evolution (1925) online
- Numbers, R. L. (1992). The Creationists: The Evolution of Scientific Creationism. University of California Press.
- Clark, Harold W. (1966) Crusader for Creation, the Life and Work of George McCready Price. Pacific Press Publishing Company.