Bill W.

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(Redirected from William Griffith Wilson)

William Griffith Wilson (commonly known as Bill Wilson or Bill W.), was a co-founder of the self-help group Alcoholics Anonymous. The other co-founder was Dr. Bob Smith.

Wilson was born on 26 November 1895 in East Dorset, Vermont. After a troubled childhood, he became an alcoholic at age 22. Seventeen years later, while recuperating in a hospital, he was inspired to help others caught in a similar situation. This became the inspiration for Alcoholics Anonymous, founded on the notion that "Only an alcoholic can help another alcoholic." In 1941, when the Saturday Evening Post ran an article on the group, it took off.

As the movement grew rapidly, Wilson and the A.A. fellowship came to a mutual decision to decrease his involvement in accordance with the A.A. tradition that principles come before personalities. Wilson had been promoting niacin as a potential cure for alcoholism, which was agreed to be an "outside issue". He refused numerous honors during his life, including an honorary degree from Yale University, and refused to allow himself to be on the covers of magazines.

The phrase "Friends of Bill W." is sometimes a code for Alcoholics Anonymous.

Wilson died of emphysema and pneumonia on 24 January 1971 in Miami, Florida.

Related links

Literature

  • Alcoholics Anonymous, Fourth Edition, 2001. Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. New York, NY, 2001. ISBN 1-893007-16-2, Dewey 362.29 A347 2001
  • As Bill Sees It. Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. (AAWS), New York, 1967. ISBN 0-916856-03-8, Dewey 616.861 ASB
  • Alcoholics Anonymous Comes Of Age. Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. (AAWS), New York, 1957, 1986. Harper, New York, 1957. ISBN 0-91-685602-X, LC HV5278.A78A4, Dewey: 178.1 A1c
  • Pass It On; The story of Bill Wilson and how the A.A. message reached the world. Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. (AAWS), New York, 1984. ISBN 0-916856-12-7, LC HV5032 .W19P37x 1984, LCCN 84-072766, Dewey 362.29/286/O92
  • Dr. Bob and the Good Oldtimers. Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc., New York, 1980. ISBN 0-916856-07-0, LCCN 80-65962, LC HV5278.D62 1980
  • Bill W., by Robert Thomsen. Harper & Rowe, New York, 1975. ISBN 0-06-014267-7, Dewey 362.29 W112t
  • Bill W. - My First 40 Years. An Autobiography by the Cofounder of Alcoholics Anonymous. Hazelden, Center City, Minnesota 55012-0176, 2000. ISBN 1-56838-373-8, Dewey B W11w 2000
  • Bill W. A Biography of Alcoholics Anonymous Cofounder Bill Wilson, by Francis Hartigan. Thomas Dunne Books, An imprint of St. Martin's Press, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010, 2000. ISBN 0-312-20056-0, Dewey B W11h 2000
  • Not-God: A History of Alcoholics Anonymous, by Ernest Kurtz. Hazelden Educational Foundation, Center City, MN, 1979. ISBN 0-899-486065-8 or ISBN 0-89486-065-8 (pbk.), LC HV5278, LCCN 79-88264, Dewey 362.2/9286 or 362.29286 K87 1979

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