Episode 4: Religion and the American Revolution

History From the Old Brick Church

Jan 26 2022 • 49 mins


In this episode, we discuss the religious context of the American Revolution. Our guest speaker is an author, Dr. Spencer McBride, who writes about the role of clergy in influencing people on both sides of the conflict, the role of military chaplains, and the religious issues that were among the many grievances of the Colonists towards Parliament and King George III. While the American Revolution is not considered a religious conflict, John Adams states in 1815 that “apprehension to Episcopacy” was among the leading causes of the conflict. The imposition of Establishment was bitterly opposed by many Colonists and led to the efforts of many leaders of the early republic to establish laws protecting Religious Freedom.

Dr. Spencer McBride is the author of Pulpit and Nation. McBride is also the Editor of the Joseph Smith Papers and a specialist regarding the American Revolution and the early American Republic. He has a Ph D from Louisiana State University and is currently completing a book on Joseph Smith’s ill-fated campaign for the Presidency in 1844.

Intro and outro created by Thomas Fosdick. Project supported by a grant from Virginia Humanities.