In a clear and original treatment of a controversial topic, historian James H. Hutson describes the rise of organized religion in America and its interaction with government from the arrival of Protestant and Catholic groups in New England and the middle Colonies in the early 17th century to the establishment of new religious groups in the early decades of the 19th century. By interpreting the Puritans' arrival in New England in the context of European religious persecution, he lays the groundwork for his examination of the evolving relationship between church and state in America. The history of Rhode Island Baptists and Pennsylvania Quakers prefigured the principles of religious freedom and separation of church and state laid down in the founding documents of the US. Hutson describes the founding of the federal and state governments and the founders' attitudes toward religion's role in government. Hutson's own expertise and the Library of Congress's rich documentation of this period give particular weight and interest to this period.
As a companion piece for a Library of Congress exhibit which opened June 1998, chronicles the settlement of the North American colonies as a religious refuge through 1835<-->when Tocqueville wrote that Americans consider religion "indispensable to the maintenance of republican institutions." The amply illustrated narrative considers the early experience of diverse religious denominations in the context of the First Amendment. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
JAMES H. HUTSON is chief of the Manuscript Division of the Library of Congress. His most recent book is The Sister Republics: Switzerland and the United States from 1776 to the Present (1991). JON BUTLER's most recent book is Awash in a Sea of Faith (1990).
Foreword - Jaroslav Pelikan
Preface - James H. Billington
AMERICA AS A RELIGIOUS REFUGE
RELIGION IN EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY AMERICA
RELIGION AND THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION
RELIGION AND THE CONGRESS OF THE CONFEDERATION, 1774-89
RELIGION AND THE STATE GOVERNMENTS
RELIGION AND THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
RELIGION AND THE NEW REPUBLIC
Library of Congress Resources
Catalogue of Objects in the Exhibition