THE HISTORICAL CONTEXT FOR THE RISE OF OLD LANDMARKISM
CONTROVERSY AND THE QUESTION OF AUTHORITY
by Louis Keith Harper
As previously noted, most studies of Landmarkism focus on doctrine, and especially on the relationship of Landmarkism to traditional Baptist teachings.
Doctrinal debate among Baptists over the orthodoxy of Landmarkism, let alone debate between Baptists and other religious bodies, may go on forever. The point here is not to settle such questions; rather it is to illuminate the historical circumstances within which Landmarkism emerged as a self-conscious movement. This chapter will illustrate with selected examples the widespread quest in America for a basis for religious authority. It will serve as a sketch of the contours of the search for authority and as an introduction to the principal questions that Landmarkist leaders faced as they sought their own firm foundation.
With the beginning of the nineteenth century came a turbulent time in the history of American religion. Complete religious liberty, quaranteed in Virginia as early as 1786, several years later became the right of every American. The first amendment to the Constitution killed the possibility of an established religion in America. Lacking a national religious establishment to assert and defend the foundations of religious belief, American religious groups sought, each in its own way, some firm ground for faith. Viewed historically, Landmarkism was the result of one of these searches.
A general survey of American religion in the first half of the
nineteenth century reveals that no fewer than four significant, divergent trends emerged from this period that provided a context for the Landmark movement. The first trend questioned the authority and legitimacy of existing ecclesiastical structures. A second trend was the emergence of new religious groups based on extra-Scriptural revelation. A third trend found certain groups reaffirming both the importance and validity of the church as an institution. Finally, a number of groups rejected traditional concepts of God and Christianity in favor of a less restrictive, less dogmatized form of Christianity. As it dealt with frontier life and revivalism, Presbyterianism encountered a series of controversies that provide three examples of the first trend. The Presbyterians, in fact, receive considerable attention in this chapter because they provide such clear examples of the search for authority and the exact role of the church in society.
Western frontier conditions compounded whatever religious problems existed in the early nineteenth century. In many places, settlers were arriving so quickly that existing churches could not keep pace. Frontier life was characterized by hard work, loneliness and general privation. There were few meeting houses, and facilities already in existence tended to be small. Congregations likewise tended to be small. Preachers were scarce, and they frequently had to support themselves by whatever means they could find.1
Since society did not provide a consensus on what constituted an orthodox religious society, many Americans initiated their own search for a religious identity. They were aided in their search when the western region began to experience a renewed religious awareness near the dawn of the nineteenth century. The "Great Revival," as it came to
be known, originated in the Cumberland River region in Logan County, Kentucky, due largely to the efforts of James McGready, a Presbyterian minister. Born in Pennsylvania, McGready was licensed to preach in 1788. On his way to North Carolina he visited Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia and found himself in the midst of a revival among the students. On reaching Guilford County, North Carolina, McGready began preaching intense revivalistic sermons only to encounter stiff local opposition. He left North Carolina in 1796 and in 1797 he took charge of three Kentucky churches; Red River, Muddy River and Gaspar River. He labored there with steady results until June 1800 when several hundred members of the three congregations gathered for a sacramental meeting at the Red River church house. By the end of the meeting, many had become emotionally excited to the point of singing and shouting. A number of people professed conversion. As Catherine Cleveland expressed it, "During the summer of 1800 the revival assumed such proportions that McGready wrote that all before was as a few scattering drops before a mighty rain."2
News of the revival spread quickly and meetings took place almost spontaneously throughout the region. Eventually they became so large that they had to be held outside. Wagon loads of frontiersmen would leave their chores for days at a time to attend these meetings. Facilities were practically non-existent and participants had to camp on the location. Hence, the name "camp meeting." 3
There were numerous benefits involved with the camp meetings. Many frontier church buildings were too small to accommodate large crowds. Camp meetings attracted persons unlikely to attend regular worship services. Curiosity, the novelty of the situation or the
opportunity to hear new preachers provided incentive to attend the camp meetings. These gatherings also provided a time for intensive religious training apart from the normal routine. Finally, camp meetings were a means of spreading religion in areas that had few churches.4
Perhaps the greatest of all camp meetings occurred in Bourbon County, Kentucky in August 1801. Thousands of people were present for this meeting and witnessed some unusual sights. The Rev. John Lyle attended the meeting but did not stay until it was over. In his diary he said:The meeting at Cane Ridge continued on to Thursday we have heard and do not know whether it be yet broken or not. It was allowed a thousand had fallen before I came away and then I recon there were 60 down and they continued to fall and be exercised. The last account on Wednesday I heard they were almost all men that fell on Tuesday. Tuesday morning I viewed the camp and saw a number down.5Richard McNemar described the "typical" camp meeting by saying:At first appearance, those meetings exhibited nothing to the spectator, but a scene of confusion; that could scarce be put into human language. They were generally opened with a sermon; near the close of which, there would be an unusual out-cry; some bursting forth into loud ejaculations of prayer, or thanksgiving for the truth. Others breaking out in emphatical sentences of exhortation: Others flying to their careless friend, with tears of compassion; beseeching them to turn to the Lord. Some struck with terror; and hastening through the croud (sic) to make their escape; or pulling away their relations. — Others, trembling, weeping; crying out, for the Lord Jesus to have mercy upon them: fainting and swooning away, till every appearance of life was gone; and the extremities of the body assumed the coldness of a dead corpse.6The "falling" mentioned by Lyle and McNemar in their accounts was common to the frontier camp meeting. As the name implies, men, women and children literally fell to the ground and some stayed there for hours or days at a time. Falling was usually accompanied by groans,
shrieks, cries for mercy and praises to God.7 After such an experience many claimed conversion.
In all, there were seven categories of extraordinary responses to revival preaching. There was the falling exercise, as mentioned above. Additionally, there was the rolling exercise where participants rolled on the ground. Some were seized by "the jerks," an involuntary jerking action of the body. Others made noises that sounded like barking. Some danced. Others laughed uncontrollably. Still others sang.8
As camp meetings grew in popularity, religion on the American frontier exerted a noticeable influence. Some believed that prior to the Great Revival drunkenness, gambling, and other forms of vice were common. After the revival, however, there was less drunkenness and a seemingly more consecrated spirit. There was also an increase in the missionary impulse. Between 1796 and 1802 no fewer than seven missionary societies were formed in New England alone. There was also a heightened social awareness that raised questions on issues such as slavery.9 The Great Revival also greatly strengthened Baptists and Methodists. Between 1800-1802 the six Kentucky Baptist Associations went from an initial membership of 4,766 to 13,569. In the five years following the beginning of the Great Revival the Methodist Church in Tennessee and Kentucky grew from 3,030 members to 10,158. 10
The Great Revival began within the ranks of Presbyterianism but they seemed to have suffered most from its ultimate effects. The unorganized structure of camp meetings and their seeming disregard for conventional worship aroused opposition. Sharp differences of opinion soon divided Presbyterians into pro and anti-revival parties. Doctrine also caused differences of opinion, seeing that the more successful
frontier evangelists were Methodists who espoused an Arminian theology. That is, the Methodists emphasized God's love and the availability of salvation to all for the taking. Presbyterian views of predestination made many of them skeptical of revivalism. Furthermore, the tendency toward excessive emotionalism, disorder and extravagance that was generally found in camp meetings also came under the scrutiny of many Baptists.11
In analyzing the Great Revival one scholar has concluded, "Paradoxically, the Great Revival, which promised religious harmony, not only began an evangelical culture that came to characterize the Southern mind but also brought forth stress that cracked existing church structures. A greater degree of religious diversity was the long-range heritage of the Great Revival."12 Most denominations experienced this diversity, but none felt it as quickly or as severely as the Presbyterians.
One of the first problems associated with the revival was, ironically, new converts. Through the efforts of the revival many were converted and added to the churches of the various denominations. This increase of church membership led to an increased demand for ministers to hold services and administer baptism and the Lord's Supper. For example, the minutes of the Cumberland Presbytery for Friday, October 7, 1803 read in part:A written petition from the congregations of Spring Creek, McAdow and Clarksville praying the ordination of Finis Ewing, in whose circuit these congregations are included. Considering the petition of those congregations and particularly because of the large circuit and many young societies earnestly desiring and really needing the administration of the sealing ordinances amongst them Presbytery agrees that Mr. Ewing be ordained on the Friday before the third Sabbath in November next.13
The Cumberland Presbytery licensed and ordained a number of men to fill the demands of new congregations that were coming into existence. Typically, ministerial examinations dealt with such matters as one's conversion experience, personal motivation for entering the ministry and preaching ability.14 There was little attention paid one's formal education, and many conservatives became concerned that the general quality of ministry suffered.15
By the end of 1805 the Kentucky Synod, the supervising body over the Cumberland Presbytery, had investigated the Cumberland Presbytery and found a number of "irregularities" ranging from defective, poorly kept records to licensing and ordination of uneducated, unqualified men. Judging such practices "irregular,"16 the investigating commission also found seventeen men unqualified as preachers because of their lack of formal education. Summoned for a re-examination of their qualifications, these men refused to submit; they were immediately prohibited from, " . . . exhorting, preaching and administering ordinances in consequence of any authority which they have obtained from the Cumberland Presbytery, until they submit to our jurisdiction and undergo the requisite examination."17 This schism deepened until the Cumberland group formed an independent Presbytery in 1810. They became the Cumberland Presbyterians.
While the battle regarding the Cumberland Presbyterians was being waged, another schism captured the attention of the Kentucky Synod. Richard McNemar, having already come under the scrutiny of his Presbytery, the Washington Presbytery, for preaching anti-Calvinistic doctrines, was brought up on charges before the Kentucky Synod in 1803. He was not alone, however, in his sentiments. In a letter signed by
Robert Marshall, John Dunlavey, Richard McNemar, Barton W. Stone and John Thompson (dated September 10, 1803), the group protested the proceedings and formally withdrew themselves from the Synod's jurisdiction.18
These five men cited three reasons why they were disassociating themselves from the Kentucky Synod. First, they felt that McNemar had been deliberately misrepresented. Second, they claimed:. . . the privileges of interpreting the Scriptures by itself according to Section 9 Chapter 1 of the Confession of Faith, and we believe that the Supreme Judge by whom all controversies of religion are to be determined; and all decrees of Counsels, opinions of ancient writers, doctrines of Men, and private Spirits are to be examined, and in whose sentence we are to rest — can be no other but the Holy Spirit speaking in the Scriptures.19Third, they pledged allegiance to the "doctrines of grace" but felt these doctrines had been, "... darkened by some expression in the Confession of Faith which are used as the means of strengthening sinners in their unbelief and subjecting many of the pious to a spirit of bondage."20 In closing the letter Stone and his associates bid the "Reverend body" adieu until through God's providence they saw fit to adopt, ". . . a more liberal plan respecting human Creeds and Confessions."21 Such a plan was never adopted. Three days later these five men had formed a new Presbytery which they called the Springfield Presbytery and the Kentucky Synod had suspended them from the ministry until they manifested sorrow for the schism they had caused. 22
The new Presbytery soon boasted some fifteen congregations in Kentucky and Ohio but by the spring of 1804 the seceders had reached the conclusion that the new Presbytery was hindering their work. The Springfield Presbytery was disbanded; and the churches, who, like their
pastors, had withdrawn from the ranks of regular Presbyterianism became known simply as Christian churches.23
Even this confederation did not last long. Richard McNemar and John Dunlavey eventually became Shakers. John Thompson and Robert Marshall returned to Presbyterianism. This left Barton W. Stone who eventually joined forces with Thomas and Alexander Campbell.24 The association of the Campbells and Stone produced the Disciples of Christ which will be discussed in the next chapter.
Presbyterianism experienced yet another division in the 1830's that came to be known as the Old School-New School controversy. In 1801 the Presbyterians and Congregationalists united their evangelistic efforts under The Plan of Union. Initially, the two groups functioned smoothly in evangelizing both the home and foreign fields despite their doctrinal differences.25
Not all Presbyterians were satisfied with the Plan of Union, however, and in 1837 Presbyterianism experienced yet another division. There were three factors that led to the division. First, there was a matter of polity. The Old School, those Presbyterians who held to more traditional ideas and interpretations, charged that churches established under the Plan of Union were not geniunely Presbyterian. Proper discipline in their opinion was therefore impossible. The Old School also favored denominational boards responsible to the General Assembly administrating missionary activity rather than non-denominational agencies. The New School was satisfied with the Plan of Union and saw no reason to abandon it. Second, the Old School was more doctrinally inclined toward a rigidly structured Calvinism while the New School was more liberal and less Calvinistic. Third, by the 1830's
slavery had become a dividing issue. The Old School tended to favor slavery while the New School tended to favor abolition. When the General Assembly met in 1837 the Old School constituted the majority. They abrogated the Plan of Union, declared their action retroactive and pronounced the synods formed under the Plan of Union to no longer be a part of the church. This one action effectively excommunicated the New Schoolers, most of whom were members of the excluded synods.26
For many people each of the mentioned divisions involved questions pertaining to authority. The Cumberland Presbyterians rejected the authority of the Kentucky Synod and formed their own body. The Presbyterian revivalists likewise rejected a rigidly structured, centralized, ecclesiastical authority, arguing that a more decentralized church structure was more in conformity to New Testament teaching. The Old School Presbyterians sought to reassert Presbyterian authority and distinctiveness which they thought had been compromised by the Plan of Union.
A second early nineteenth century American religious trend featured the rise of new denominations based on extra-Scriptural revelation. Among the new denominations introduced to the American scene one of the most influential was The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, more commonly known as the Mormons. The father of Mormonism, Joseph Smith, was born on December 23, 1805 in Sharon, Vermont. When he was eleven the family moved to Palmyra, New York. Young Joseph and his father were both fond of searching for buried treasure and on at least one occasion Smith was convicted in a Palmyra court for being disorderly and fraudulent in the use of a so-called "seer stone."27
At the age of fourteen, Joseph Smith attended a local revival meeting. A number of preachers were present and at the end of the service the Presbyterian, Methodist, and Baptist ministers had each begun to exhort sinners to conversion. Smith looked upon the scene with confusion. Shortly after this meeting in May 1820, Smith allegedly received the first of several revelations from God. According to Smith, God was displeased wth Christianity and a restoration of true Christianity was needed. Furthermore, God had chosen him to be the leader of this restoration.28
In 1823 Smith was visited once again, this time by the angel Moroni who told him that the genuine Bible of the world was buried nearby. In 1827 he received permission to excavate this "Bible" and found a stone box, two seer stones to aid in translation and a book of these golden plates with writing in the "reformed Egyptian" language which Smith translated into the Book of Mormon.29
Smith soon found a number of people who recognized him as a prophet. His message was plain and direct. He was convinced that he knew a better way to live. A number of people agreed with him.
Between 1831-1846 Mormonism spread to Kirtland, Ohio, Jackson County, Missouri and Nauvoo, Illinois. Mormonism was particularly popular in Nauvoo until Smith received a revelation in 1843 legitimizing polygamy. The town was outraged and the friction between the residents of Nauvoo and the Mormons continued until Smith and his brother Hyrum were arrested and imprisoned in the Carthage jail. Shortly after their arrest, a mob broke into the jail and shot both Joseph and Hyrum Smith. Two years later Brigham Young led the Mormons to a new home in what today is Utah.30
The heart and soul of Mormonism is the Book of Mormon. Yet in the assessment of one Mormon scholar, "It was not, in its own terms, a substitute for the Bible but rather a complement to it."31 Thus, the Mormons rejected the exclusive authority of the Bible. In 1842 Joseph Smith wrote, "We believe the Bible to be the Word of God as far as it is translated correctly."32 Nevertheless, he felt that errors had crept into the Bible through carelessness and mistranslation. Smith's subsequent revelations were preserved in Doctrines and Covenants and Mormons accept them as complementary to the Bible and The Book of Mormon.
The Mormons were not the only nineteenth century group to embrace extra-Biblical authority. The United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Coming, also known as the Shakers, placed great faith in the revelations of Ann Lee Stanley. Mother Ann, as she came to be known, immigrated to America with eight followers in 1774. She was the wife of an English blacksmith who mothered four children, none of which survived infancy. In England she had become a Shaking Quaker, a group notorious for noisily announcing Christ's second advent and foretelling of destruction that would soon befall the wicked. They received their name from the trembling and shaking their bodies would experience during worship.33 She convinced her followers, ". . . that she was Christ in his 'second appearing,' making manifest the female element in the Godhead and inaugurating the beginning of the millennium by gathering a faithful remnant out of the churches of Anti-Christ."34
Ironically, the United Society was not formally organized until 1787, three years after Ann Lee's death. This organization occurred under the leadership of Joseph Meacham who also organized the groups
into "families" for communal living. Nevertheless, Mother Ann's influence was keenly felt in no fewer than two areas. First, she was convinced that the root of all evil was the sex act. Shakers, therefore, were to live celibate lives. Second, since Shakers were celibate, converts had to be introduced to the commune from the outside world. Significant numbers were added to the Shakers as a result of various revivals when the new converts were confronted by the question of what to do with themselves after their conversion. The simplicity of Shaker worship and their communal lifestyle appealed to many who chose not to affiliate with other denominations. As Ahlstrom summarized it, "To those who wondered what to do with their reborn lives, the Shakers offered a meaningful answer. You have not left the world and the flesh, they would say, bidding the seeker to confess his sin to Mother Ann Lee and enter the true millennial church." 35
Mormonism and Shakerism are representative of yet another way by which people of the early nineteenth century sought to solve the question of authority in matters of faith and religious practice. They rested securely in the knowledge that their prophets and prophetesses were instruments of God, and they found a sense of belonging within their respective communities. The Landmarkers followed traditional Baptist thinking by stressing the sole authority of the Bible as the source of religious belief and the local Baptist church as the exclusive agent for propagating the Gospel in the world. All three groups found security for their beliefs in an authoritative statement of God's will and membership in a religious body believed to be divinely ordained.
Still others addressed the question of authority by looking to the
church institutionally. In England between 1833-1845 a movement aimed at restoring the High Church ideals of the seventeenth century developed within the Church of England. The movement came to be known as the Oxford Movement.36 Proponents of the Oxford Movement became staunch defenders of, ". . . the Church of England as a Divine institution, of the doctrine of Apostolic Succession, and of the Book of Common Prayer as a rule of faith."37
The American Episcopalians had their defender of High Churchism in John H. Hobart. Consecrated bishop in 1811, Hobart performed his duties with great zeal. He was an educator who proudly wore the badge of "High Churchman." He chided his "Low Church" associates for what he considered as their lukewarm attitude toward the distinguishing features of the "true church."38 Through his preaching and teaching, John Hobart called many Episcopalians to a firmer commitment to their church.
Another American champion of High Churchism was John W. Nevin, a professor of theology at Mercersburg Seminary. He attacked the excesses of revivalism as an evil that had infiltrated the German Reformed churches. Nevin was also particularly critical of an individualistic concept of the church. He believed that churches were not confederations of individuals. Rather, the church was the medium by which men had access to the saving presence of Christ. It was Nevin's belief that the faithful enjoyed communion with Christ through the sacrament of the Lord's Supper.39 He said, "The question of the Eucharist is one of the most important belonging to the history of religion. It may be regarded indeed as in some sense central to the whole Christian system. For Christianity is grounded in the living
union of the believer with the person of Christ; and the great fact is emphatically concentrated in the mystery of the Lord's Supper."40
Graves and other early Landmarkists were sympathetic with neither Catholicism nor Anglicanism. These movements are significant in relation to Landmarkism, however, because they demonstrate that many looked to the church as an institution in their search for authority. Graves' ecclesiology was different from that of Hobart and Nevin on many points. Nonetheless, Graves believed that a local, Baptist church was the only place where a Christian could legitimately serve God and receive God's sanction.
In addition to the movements already mentioned, a variety of other movements developed in the first half of the nineteenth century that challenged orthodox Christian thought. For example, conservative Christians conceived of God in the terms of trinitarian theology. That is, they believed God was one yet manifested in three persons; the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Each member of the Godhead was co-equal and co-eternal with the others. In opposition to the doctrine of the trinity, the Unitarians denied the deity of Jesus Christ. Conservative Christians also maintained that God would someday judge the earth and those whom He judged as wicked would spend eternity in the literal torments of hell. The Universalists denied the doctrine of eternal punishment and proclaimed instead that God's love was absolutely unlimited. Salvation, therefore, was for everyone.
The Universalists and Unitarians stand as examples of an element in Christianity that sought a less dogmatic and more rationalistic Christianity. The argument for human rationalism found no friends in the ranks of Landmarkism. The Landmarkers were strict Biblical
literalists. They felt the Bible was divinely inspired and any attempts to critically scrutinize its contents were seen as assaults on the veracity of God. If nothing else, Unitarianism and Universalism were instrumental in confirming Baptists in their conviction that the Bible was infallible and traditional theological interpretations were sufficient.
Clearly, the first half of the nineteenth century was a time of great religious controversy for American Christianity. The issue behind many of these controversies was the question of authority. In many, indeed if not most cases, the question of authority also involved one's fundamental understanding of the church. The Presbyterians struggled with the question of authority in the era following the Great Revival and experienced a variety of consequences. The Cumberland Presbyterians declared themselves to be a new, distinct church. Barton W. Stone and others left Presbyterianism entirely in search of Primitive Christianity. Likewise, the Old School-New School controversy was vitally linked to the question of authority in the administration of mission work.
The formation of new denominations such as Mormonism and Shakerism demonstrate that a number of individuals in the nineteenth century were willing to reject the exclusive authority of the Bible by accepting extra-Scriptural revelation. Furthermore, these groups used their new revelation and forged new denominations and new church structures.
Instead of forming new denominations, others such as John W. Nevin and John H. Hobart were convinced the existing Scriptures and church structures were both adequate and vital to the Christian faith. Thus, they emphasized the question of authority to their parishoners as they
encouraged them to build their lives around the church. Both Hobard and Nevin also encouraged their students to emphasize the church as an integral institution in man's life, especially for those who were already involved.
Others, such as the Unitarians and Universalists, rejected credal authority for a less rigidly structured and more subjectively oriented form of Christianity. Nevertheless, they did not deliberately set about to form new churches. Rather, when it was possible they worked within the framework of existing church structure.
Indeed, as Americans pushed further west, as the questions of home and foreign mission work became more complicated and as education and social issues arose, Christians of all denominations were faced with differing understandings of the church, its nature and function. As people searched for answers they generally resorted to one of three positions. First, some believed that the old European traditions should be followed without change. This position is characteristic of the Old School and High Church spokesman Nevin and Hobard. Second, some groups abandoned existing institutions to return to the "true New Testament" ideal. This position is characteristic of the Stoneites, Mormons and Shakers. Third, due to American life and freedom some felt religious differences could be ignored in lieu of a new type of Christian unity. This position is particularly characteristic of the New School Presbyterians.41
America of the early nineteenth century provided an environment that allowed advocates of each of these positions to gain adherents. As the Mormon historian Leonard J. Arrington has observed:It would be misleading to see deists, Unitarians, Universalists, primitive gospel advocated, Campbellites, and
Shakers as constituting anything like a majority or even a substantial minority within American Christianity. The mainstream — representing perhaps 90 per cent of church members — was still found in Episcopalian, Presbyterian, Congregationalist, Methodist, Baptist, and Roman Catholic congregations. But because of the large percentage of unchurched Americans (about 90 per cent) and the simmering dissatisfaction within the established denominations, the fringe groups had an importance out of proportion to their numbers.42In the face of challenges from these "fringe groups," Baptists, like many other groups, intensified their search for ultimate Christian authority. J. R. Graves and others who shared his "local church only" sentiments sought to restore what they felt was authentic, New Testament practice. By identifying the local church as the body of Christ and exclusive agency for propagating the Gospel, Landmarkism provided Baptists with an identity, a purpose, and according to Landmark thinking, proper authority. Old Landmarkism may have seemed unique in the 1850's, but as LeRoy Benjamin Hogue demonstrated, Graves' ideas were not entirely new. Neither was Old Landmarkism unique; it, like other movements, merely sought a firm basis for religious authority.43
In addition to facing the question of authority, Baptists also faced their share of strife and controversy. At times Baptists quarreled among themselves. At other times they argued with non-Baptists. These controversies helped crystalize the questions that precipitated the Landmark movement. Particular Baptist controversies and the questions they raised will be discussed in the next chapter.
1 Catharine C. Cleveland, The Great Revival in the West 1797-1805 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1916), pp. 1-25. John B. Boles, Religion in Antebellum Kentucky (Lexington: University of Kentucky Press, 1976), p. 17. Hereafter cited as Great Revival, and Religion respectively. See also John Solomon Otto, "The Migration of the Southern Plain Folk: An Interdisciplinary Synthesis," The Journal of Southern History LI, 2 (May 1985): 183-200.
2 William W. Sweet, The Story of Religion in America (New York: Harper and Brothers Publishers, 1939), pp. 326-329. Hereafter cited as Story of Religion. See also Cleveland, Great Revival, pp. 62-64 and Boles, Religion, pp. 18-25.
3 William W. Sweet, The Presbyterians (New York: Cooper Square Publishers Inc., 1964), p. 85.
4 Anne C. Loveland, Southern Evangelicals and the Social Order (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1981),p. 72. Hereafter cited as Southern Evangelicals.
5 John Lyles' diary, August, 1801, as found in Cleveland, Appendix V, pp. 183-189.
6 Richard McNemar, The Kentucky Revival of 1807 (Cincinnati: John W. Browne — Office of Liberty Hall, 1807), p. 23.
7 J. H. Spencer, A History of the Kentucky Baptists, 2 vols., (Cincinnati: 0. R. Baumes, 1885; reprinted ed., Gallatin, Tn.: Church History Research and Archives, 1984), 1:514-515.
8 Ibid., pp. 514-521. See also Boles, Religion, p. 27.
9 Cleveland, Great Revival, pp. 128-159.
10 Ibid. See also Boles, Religion, p. 29.
11 Cleveland, Great Revival, pp. 47-50, 110-112. See also Loveland, Southern Evangelicals, p. 60.
12 Boles, Religion, p. 32.
13 Minutes of the Cumberland Presbytery, Friday, October 7, 1803. According to Presbyterian church government, administrative authority is divided four ways. Presiding over the local congregation is the session which is composed of the pastor and a number of ruling elders. The Presbytery has authority over the session and is composed of both
ministers and ruling elders from a number of congregations. Next in order is the Synod. A Synod is a larger body than a Presbytery. In fact, Synods are composed of a number of representatives from several Presbyteries. Finally, there is the General Assembly. This body represents Presbyterianism at the national level and is composed of representatives from the various Presbyteries.
14 Sweet, The Presbyterians, p. 91.
15 Lefferts A. Loetscher, A Brief History of the Presbyterians (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1978), p. 80. Hereafter cited as B.H.P.
16 Minutes of the Synod of Kentucky, Thursday, October 17, 1805 as cited by Sweet in The Presbyterians.
17 Minutes of the Synod of Kentucky, Monday, December 9, 1805 as cited by Sweet in The Presbyterians.
18 Minutes of the Synod of Kentucky, Saturday, September 10, 1803 as cited by Sweet in The Presbyterians.
22Minutes of the Synod of Kentucky, Tuesday, September 13, 1803 as cited by Sweet in The Presbyterians.
23 Sweet, The Presbyterians, pp. 96-97.
24 Sydney E. Ahlstrom, A Religious History of the American People (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1972), p. 493. Hereafter cited as R.H.A.P. See also Cleveland, Great Revival, pp. 60-80.
25 Loetscher, B.H.P., pp. 82-91.
26 Vergilius Perm, ed., "New School Presbyterian Church," and "Old School Presbyterian Church," An Encyclopedia of Religion (Paterson: Littlefield, Adams and Company, 1964), pp. 529, 541-542. See also Boles, Religion, p. 138 and Winthrop S. Hudson, Religion in America (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1981), pp. 165-167.
27 Ahlstrom, R.H.A.P., p. 502. See also Leonard J. Arrington and Davis Bitton, The Mormon Experience (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1979), pp. 10-13.
28 Carl Carmer, The Angel and the Farm Boy (Garden City: Doubleday and Co., Inc., 1970), pp. 47-52.
29 The Book of Mormon, "Origin of the Book of Mormon."
30 Sweet, Story of Religion, pp. 399-400. See also Hudson, Religion in America, pp. 193-195.
31 Arrington, The Mormon Experience, p. 33.
32 Joseph Smith as quoted by Arrington, The Mormon Experience, p. 30.
33 Ahlstrom, R.H.A.P., p. 492. See also Hudson, Religion in America, pp. 184-185.
34 Hudson, Religion in America, p. 185.
35 Ahlstrom, R.H.A.P., p. 493.
36 F. L. Cross, "The Oxford Movement," The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (London: Oxford University Press,1958), pp. 1001-1002.
38 Hudson, Religion in America, pp. 172-174 and Ahlstrom, R.H.A.P., pp. 625-626.
39 Hudson, Religion in America, p. 171.
40 John W. Nevin as quoted by Hudson in Religion in America, p. 171.
41 H. Shelton Smith, Robert T. Handy and Lefferts A. Loetscher, American Christianity, 2 vols., (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1963),2:65. The analyses came from Smith, Handy and Loetscher while the examples were provided by the author.
42 Arrington, The Mormon Experience, p. 27. Emphasis Arrington, italicized in original text.
43 Campbellism was also a controversial movement in the nineteenth century. It will be discussed in Chapter Three.
[A Thesis presented to the Faculty of the Department of History, Murray State University, Murray, Kentucky, May, 1986 — in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts. Used with the permission of the author.]
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