However, much of the above appears to out of someone's imagination.
William Conley was the first president of the Watch Tower Society before it was incorporated; this information is freely available on many different websites owned by Bible Students. the last mention of him in the pages of the Watch Tower is in that of a letter published in the Watch Tower of June 15, 1894 (there evidently was a special issue of June 11 which has been combined with the June 15 issue). However, most Jehovah's Witnesses are probably not aware of William Conley.
I do not know of anytime that Russell ever said anything about Armageddon as coming in 1881. Russell, at that time, believed that Armageddon -- the time of trouble -- had started in 1874, and that it would last until 1914. As far as I know, no one was expecting Armageddon to come in 1881. Russell adopted this teaching from Barbour; he later believed that Armageddon had not yet started, but that it would begin a few years before 1914 and end in 1914; in 1904, Russell adopted a view similar to some of his associates that Armageddon would not start until 1914, and would continue for some time after 1914.
Much of what is being circulated about Conley, however, is out people's imagination (as such is often done as related to Russell). I do not know to what extent Conley rejected Russell's views, but there were many who rejected Russell's views on many points who were associated with the Bible Students movement. The idea that Russell swindled Conley out of thousands of dollars is, to say that least, unfounded.
If Conley was upset about something related to 1881, there appears to be no historical record of such. At least up to 1894 (13 years after 1881), Brother Conley was still on friendly terms with Russell. Conley died in 1897. Many have made a big deal out the fact that Russell failed to acknowledge his death in the pages of the Watch Tower, and from that imaginative speculations have developed and often presented as though fact. I do not know why Russell did not enter such a notice in the pages of the Watch Tower. It could be for many different reasons.
One thing I might note, however, is that from the very start of the Watch Tower Society, the agreement between Russell and the Society was that Russell was to retain control over the Watch Tower magazine and his writings. For instance, Russell, until he died, considered the Watch Tower magazine "his" magazine; however, he never expressed the same about the Watch Tower Society itself.
Many who were associated with Russell also submitted articles to other magazines, such as "Zion's Day-Star" and "The World's Hope." Russell never prohibited such, nor did he ever claim any authority to prohibit any of the Bible Students from subscribing or using those magazines (or other magazines of that time), but he did point out their misrepresentation of the ransom sacrifice of Jesus. Concerning these two papers, Russell wrote: "We have nothing but kindly personal feelings toward the Editors of these two papers; with both of whom we are on intimate and friendly terms. It is error and falsity which we oppose, not men." -- Watch Tower, April, 1883, page 2.
Will stop for today...