In 1844 antislavery Baptists withdrew from the Triennial Convention to form their own missionary group. Among the most famous revivals were those led by Charles Grandison Finney in Rochester, New York, during the winter of 1830-1831. The second push began in 1831, after four Indians from the Columbia Plateau arrived in St. Louis seeking “the white man’s book of heaven.” Methodists, Presbyterians, and Jesuits turned their attention to the distant lands beyond the Continental Divide until 1847, when the massacre of eleven people at an Oregon mission brought a dramatic halt to missionary projects in the region. Controversies, especially slavery, became the points on which faith turned. During this time, America saw a “revival” of religious interest and fervor. Beginning withthe Second Great Awakening(a sudden evangelical movementthat started around the turn of the nineteenth century), this renewed interestin religion arose primarily as a backlash against the Enlightenmentand so-called “age of reason” that had inspired thinkers such asBenjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and Thomas Paine. News of the Cane Ridge camp meeting spread to the East, becoming the butt of jokes to critics but evidence of a second Pentecostal outpouring of the Holy Spirit for others. His success among his churches in Logan County, Kentucky, enthused fellow minister Barton W. Stone in neighboring Bourbon County. Yet in other respects the church displayed democratic elements. In theology Methodism repudiated the exclusivity of Calvinist election. Harmony best characterized the godly society, yet from the beginning the nation had experienced discord, and the new century boded more instability and conflict. Anti-Semitism thus was less apparent in the West than in other regions, perhaps because, as the historian Moses Rischin has suggested, the lack of structure made all outsiders potential insiders. Cane Ridge was the climax to a series of gradually expanding revivals, spearheaded by Presbyterian minister James McGready. An exception was New Harmony, a religious community in Indiana Territory founded by German pietist George Rapp. From both vantage points Cane Ridge remained a symbol of the age: looking forward in anticipation of the “new dispensation” and looking backward at the wreckage caused by human frailty. Over the years, then, Hispanic settlers had developed a unique folk Catholicism, which was characterized by an abundance of local patron saints and religious holidays, an emphasis on the Virgin Mary, and lay religious brotherhoods. Native American religions are the spiritual practices of the indigenous peoples of the Americas. Lilburn W. Boggs, governor of Missouri, issued an extermination order against the Mormons in 1838. Blacks had also responded to California’s siren call, as fortune seekers and as slaves accompanying masters. Linkages to the outside world increased interest in secular affairs, dampening chiliasm, or millenarianism, and the drive for sinless perfection. Pioneer Jews served as community founders and organizers alongside gentiles, and they frequently held public office, though not significantly represented in the electorate. The AMHS persisted in calling areas “destitute of both religious and moral principles” even when Baptists or Methodists were firmly entrenched there. The historical origins of Protestant…, 1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation: Topics in the News, 1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation: Publications, 1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation: Overview, 1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation: Headline Makers, 1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation: Chronology, 1800-1860: Lifestyles, Social Trends, Fashion, Sports & Recreation, 1800-1860: Law and Justice: Topics in the News, 1800-1860: Law and Justice: Headline Makers, 1800-1860: Government and Politics: Topics in the News, 1800-1860: Government and Politics: Publications, 1800-1860: Government and Politics: Overview, 1800-1860: Government and Politics: Headline Makers, 1800-1860: Government and Politics: Chronology, 1800-1860: Science and Medicine: Chronology, 1800-1860: Science and Medicine: Headline Makers, 1800-1860: Science and Medicine: Overview, 1800-1860: Science and Medicine: Publications, 1800-1860: Science and Medicine: Topics in the News, 1800-1860: World Events: Selected Occurrences Outside the United States, 1800–1858: The North and the South Seek Compromise, 1808 Congressional Ban on Importing Slaves, 1815-1850: Business and the Economy: Chronology, 1815-1850: Business and the Economy: Headline Markers, 1815-1850: Business and the Economy: Overview, 1815-1850: Business and the Economy: Publications, https://www.encyclopedia.com/history/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/1800-1860-religion-overview, Essay 1: The Development of American Religion: An Interpretive View, The Development of American Religion: An Interpretive View, Chapter 1: Interfaith and Ecumenical Family of Organizations, Interfaith and Ecumenical Family of Organizations, American Religion in the Twenty-first Century. Diversity sprang from the soil of religious freedom: the state was home to Dutch Reformed, Quakers, Swedenborgians, and Mennonites. Retrieved from https://www.americanhistoryforkids.com/the-reform-of-religion/, Kids Facts about American Religious Reform in The 1800's, History of the United States Political Parties. Encyclopedia.com. . Andover student Samuel Mills toured west of the Alleghenies from 1812 to 1814 and galvanized concerned Christians with his stories of distressed frontier communities lacking ministers, churches, or Bibles. At that time, Catholicism had been identified with the middle and southern states and the hierarchy of the church was tied to France. . The circuit rider would journey into the wilds, close on the heels of the pioneers. Most New Englanders went to a Congregationalist meetinghouse for church services. Conclusion. By challenging the universality of the evangelical appeal, the California experience set the stage for theological shifts later in the century. As a result it nourished the millennial hopes of the early nineteenth century, and its location in Kentucky seemed to indicate a special role for the West in bringing about Christ’s anticipated reign of peace and holiness. In fact, in Ohio a trustee of the seminary made a formal complaint to the synod about Beecher’s doctrinal deviation, and though he was acquitted of heresy, the event drew the church one step closer to schism. In 1825 they sold all holdings to Robert Owen, who transformed New Harmony into a socialist experiment. Coming as it did at the cusp of a new century, Cane Ridge offered seemingly indisputable evidence that God was sending a “new dispensation” to regulate human affairs. Even so, by the close of the antebellum age, pluralism had emerged as a distinguishing trait of religion in the Trans-Appalachian West. As the 1700s drew to a close, Baptist and Methodist influence overtook that of Anglican influence and other traditional churches. People sat on hard wooden benches for most of the day, which was how long the church services usually lasted. In addition to social and economic changes, the antebellumperiod was also marked by a flurry of religious revivalism thatspread throughout every region of the United States. The Lessons of California. Fleeing persecution for refusing to worship in the state church, Rapp and three hundred of his followers had arrived in the United States in 1803 and started a community in Western Pennsylvania. That decade marked the beginning of large-scale Irish Catholic immigration. The urgency of the problem seemed to demand wider cooperation, so national groups formed to address the problem of the Western settlements. Croaking jealousy; blotted bigottry; coiling suspicion; wormish blindness; crocodile malice!” Other prejudices came to the fore in the less conciliatory mood of the 1830s. He and his brother Hiram were murdered. The Old School majority created the Board of Foreign Missions (BFM) with explicit instructions to pursue a strict Presbyterian line and informed other mission groups to stay clear of BFM stations. In fact, about one-in-five U.S. adults reject the basic idea that life on Earth has evolved at all. At the turn of the century the strength of revival currents had fostered interdenominational cooperation. When the day arrived, Elder David Purviance remembered that “the roads were literally crowded with wagons, carriages, horsemen, and people on foot, all pressing to the appointed place.” More than ten thousand people from all walks of life gathered at Cane Ridge, convincing participants that a divine hand was indeed guiding events. The Methodist church, for example, split into Northern and Southern branches in 1844, over the issue of excluding slaveholders from the ranks of preachers. Traditional beliefs are u… Cite this article Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography. By deciding to accept God’s invitation, the convert set out on a rigorous journey of “sanctification,” which could lead the faithful toward the ultimate Methodist goal of perfection—perfect in love and perfect in understanding. The danger, he declared, was that “our intelligence and virtue will falter and fall back into a dark minded, vicious populace—a poor, uneducated reckless mass of infuriated animalism.” The remedy was Bibles, schools, and seminaries—strong institutions infused with religious purpose that would apply “needed intellectual and moral power.” Not only the nation was at risk but also the entire world. Traditional Native American ceremonial ways can vary widely, and are based on the differing histories and beliefs of individual tribes, clans and bands. The movement embodied a wide range of…, Congregationalism In the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo of 1848, the United States purchased California and New Mexico as the spoils of the Mexican War. To Anglo-Americans in the nineteenth century the “ West ” was a migratory concept, continually being relocated as the next geographical region beyond white settlement. Over the years conservative Presbyterians, known as the Old School, had protested the liberal policies of the New School majority, but to no avail. Lyman Beecher. Non-Religious Numbers Climb as Biblical Belief Wanes in America | Christian Action says: July 16, 2019 at 7:24 am Illinois University political science professor Ryan Burge explains in an essay for Religion in Public that while much of the media often frames the statistics that nones now […] The Cumberland church grew rapidly in the Trans-Appalachian states, from Mississippi to Indiana, where its membership numbered approximately seventy-five thousand by 1850. Charles Grandison Finney. Religion In a town like St. Petersburg in the 1800's, there was one church and everyone attended it on Sunday, wearing their best clothing, much like those who go to churches today. Although the Presbyterians led in the educational invasion of the Old Northwest states, they could claim less than 250,000 members in 1840. Sectional Prejudice. The coalition behind this “benevolent empire” lasted until the late 1830s, when it was battered and overwhelmed by economic and political forces. They claimed the privilege of interpreting Scripture and organizing churches for themselves. Oberlin then became the focus for his “new measures” in revivalism, which included carefully planned methods to win converts and a postconversion commitment to Christian reform. Taylor furnished an intellectual foundation for revivalism by softening Calvinist orthodoxy in order to place more emphasis on free will and thus human instrumentality. Interdenominational associations, such as the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions (ABCFM), at first concentrated on the Indian groups nearest to white centers of population: in the areas of the Old Northwest, the Southeast, and just beyond the Mississippi. Missions were also the bane of Baptist unity, but while the Presbyterians had been primarily concerned about heterodoxy, the Baptists chafed at external efforts to contravene the will of congregations. Mobs eventually shot and killed Joseph Smith and his brother, Hyrum. After the Cane Ridge camp meeting, denominational leaders had rejoiced that revivals in the West had encouraged the spread of churches, but they soon discovered that such an intense release of religious energy was hard to contain. The best source to consult for the South is The Protestant Temperament , because Greven’s examples of “genteel” Americans are largely drawn from Virginia Anglicans. A Presbyterian missionary reported to the society that “Campbellism is the great curse of the West—more destructive and more injurious to the cause of religion than avowed Infidelity itself.” Church adherence may best illustrate the reaction of the West to being civilized by the East. "1800-1860: Religion: Overview American Eras. Communities, however dispersed, could use the churches as reference points for the assertion of behavioral norms. The strong Wesleyan emphasis upon the doctrine of Christian perfection was influential. In 1857 President James Buchanan decided to dispatch federal troops to the region to assert federal authority over the rebellious Mormons. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, known as the Mormons, originated in Western New York in April 1830 under the leadership of Joseph Smith. Visitors from the East and from Europe came to New Harmony and extolled its neat appearance and the industry of its people; reformers looked to it as an economic model. Searching for Order. Enthusiasm for the half-hearted Utah expedition quickly waned, and the so-called Mormon War had the unintended consequence of confirming the practical autonomy of the Mormon monolith. Steeples gr… Exhilarated by the revivals, the Kentucky Presbyterians sought to keep the momentum going, but that required ministerial leadership. Among the non-Methodists who responded, Charles G. Finney and his colleagues at Oberlin were the most prominent. The Scots-Irish, who formed a large bloc of the Presbyterian membership, had tended to migrate to the fringes of settlement in the eighteenth century. Without the civilizing presence of churches and the consolations of religion, the vulnerable communities might become hotbeds of immorality and lawlessness. The evangelical persuasion was thus simultaneously optimistic and apprehensive, fearing that unless every Christian shouldered the cross, the experiment would crash. At first Baptist evangelization of the West had occurred under the auspices of regional associations, but in 1814 representatives of Baptist churches met to develop a more comprehensive mission thrust. The spontaneous emergence of Baptist churches in newly settled areas distinguished the denomination from other groups. The Baptist and Methodist religions became very popular. The theological alignments of the Baptists paralleled their institutional focus on autonomy. The conditions were ripe for conflict. Under the Plan of Union in 1801, the two groups allowed the creation of joint churches, with the minister and polity to be chosen by the majority. The Catholic Church had quickly added an institutional branch to its hierarchy to cover the new nation, but the number of communicants was modest until the 1830s. Religion Continued from page 1: page 1 | 2: As late as 1800 most slaves in the U.S. had not been converted to Christianity. Given time, these disadvantages might have lessened, with accommodation in the interim to the practical realities of the sparse settlement, but the Presbyterian Church, still shaken by a schism in the eighteenth century, remained fearful that any compromise in polity or doctrine opened the floodgates to ungodliness. Stone announced that a camp meeting would be held in early August. The assembly removed more than 500 churches and between 60,000 and 100,000 members from the Presbyterian rolls in one swoop. Facing opposition from more-traditional Presbyterians, the revivalists affiliated as the Cumberland Presbytery, but the Synod of Kentucky refused recognition. Yet many Hispanics found themselves marginalized as the church tried to respond to a wide range of immigrants. Although he was more conservative than Finney, Beecher also favored New Haven theological modifications. As many as 20,000 people would gather at “camps” to listen. Brigham Young assumed the leadership of the official church, and from 1846 to 1848 he guided some twelve thousand Latter-Day Saints across Iowa and then a thousand miles to the Salt Lake valley. They complemented their long ministerial service with the establishment of Iowa College in 1848. In the early years of the gold rush, the letters and reports of the overworked ministers tell of the endless round of duties—marriages, funerals, care of sick and dying—interspersed with street-corner and saloon evangelism. The early 1800s were a time of optimism and hope. In hindsight, the irony of Beecher’s dramatic appeal was his perception that mobocracy posed the major threat to the republic. Representing Presbyterians and Congregationalists, the AMHS supplied much of the personnel for the West: college-age men from New England and the Middle Atlantic who shrank from the challenge of the slave South and so directed their ardor westward. Sundays were devoted to God, and nothing else. Against a prevailing view that eighteenth-century Americans had not perpetuated the first settlers' passionate commitment to their faith, scholars now identify a high level of religious energy in colonies after 1700. Writing in his 1856 autobiography, Peter Cartwright had to acknowledge its power though he was not so complimentary of its aftershocks: I suppose since the day of Pentecost, there was hardly ever a greater revival of religion than at Cane Ridge; and if there had been steady, Christian ministers, settled in gospel doctrine and Church discipline, thousands might have been saved to the Church that wandered off in the mazes of vain, speculative divinity, and finally made shipwreck of the faith, fell back, turned infidel, and lost their religion and their souls forever. Gradually, a Romantic worldview began to transform perception and change what people asked of their faith. The History of Religions: Essays in Methodology by Mircea Eliade and Joseph M. Kitagawa (eds.) In the territorial capital of Illinois, for example, Mills could not find a single complete copy of the Bible. Presbyterian and Congregationalist churches dominated New England at the turn of the century, and one characteristic they shared was that they held ministerial aspirants to strict standards of education and experience. Indians responded variously to religious representatives: utilitarian curiosity over a potential new source of power, theological critique, adaptation, conversion, and/or nativist countermovement. Christian African-Americans melded traditional African practices with Christianity. The structure of the church allowed local control through the elders, who handled the daily affairs of the congregation, while the regional presbyteries and synods ensured that the scattered flocks maintained order and orthodoxy. The entire story of Christian missions to the indigenous peoples of North America is a complex one, with both cultural resistance and religious conversion visible on the Native American side, and both arrogant high-handedness and cultural sensitivity, as well as some cases of courageous missionary solidarity with native peoples, visible on the missions' side. “Need I stop to remind you of the host of loathsome reptiles such a stagnant pool is fitted to breed! At the turn of the century the “uninhabited” frontier—though home to some 120,000 Native Americans—was the area between the Appalachian Mountains and the Mississippi River. Reaction to Cane Ridge. Missionary Impulse. Meanwhile, in 1809 Thomas Campbell withdrew from his Seceder Presbyterian Church in Western Pennsylvania and formed a nondenominational “Christian Association.” His son Alexander gave the movement a clearer theological identity, and in 1827 the churches formed by their followers adopted the name “Disciples of Christ.” Five years later the Stone and Campbell churches were loosely affiliated, though congregations continued to call themselves Christians or Disciples of Christ, according to preference. ." However, the date of retrieval is often important. As Finney declared, “If the church will do her duty, the millennium may come in this country in three years.” However, Finney’s new measures were also a telling sign of the religious change since Cane Ridge. During the late 1830s and 1840s the religious mood began to change, and denominational lines hardened under the discipline of orthodoxy. The Catholic population burgeoned from 300,000 to over 3 million. 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