1. Through the Spanish and others of the Latin races, the
Catholics as religionists, came to be the first representatives of
the Christian religion in South and Central America.   But in
North America, except Mexico, they have never strongly
predominated.   In the territory of what is now the United States
except in those sections which were once parts of Mexico they
have never been strong enough, even during the Colonial period
to have their religious views established by law.

    2. Beginning with the Colonial period, in the early part of the
seventeenth century, the first settlements were established in
Virginia, and a little later in that territory now known as the
New England States.   Religious, or more properly speaking--
irreligious persecutions, in England, and on the continent,
were, at least, among the prime causes which led to the first
settlement of the first United States Colonies.   In some of the
groups of immigrants which first came, not including the
Jamestown group (1607) and those known as the "Pilgrims"
(1620), were two groups, one, at least, called "Puritans"--these
were "Congregationalists."   Governor Endicott was in control of
their colony.   The other group were Presbyterians.   Among these
two groups, however, were a number of Christians with other
views than theirs, also seeking relief from persecution.



    3. These refugeeing Congregationalists and Presbyterians
established different Colonies and immediately within their
respective territories established by law their own peculiar
religious views.   In other words, "Congregationalism" and "Pres-
were made the legal religious views of their
colonies.   This to the absolute exclusion of all other religious
views.   Themselves fleeing the mother country, with the bloody
marks of persecution still upon them and seeking a home of
freedom and liberty for themselves, immediately upon being
established in their own colonies, in the new land and having the
authority, they deny religious liberty to others, and practice upon
them the same cruel methods of persecution.   Especially did
they so treat the Baptists.

    4. The Southern colonies in Virginia, North and South
Carolina were settled mainly by the adherents of the Church of
.   The peculiar views of the Church were made the
established religion of these colonies.   Thus in the new land of
America, where many other Congregationalists, Presbyterians
and Episcopalians have come seeking the privilege of worship-
ping God according to the dictates of their own consciences, there
were soon set up three established churches.   No religious liberty
for any except for those who held governmental authority.   The
Children of Rome are following in the bloody footsteps of their
mother.   Their own reformation is yet far from complete.

    5. With the immigrants to America came many scatter-
ing Baptists (by some still called "Ana-Baptists").   There
were probably some in every American-bound vessel.
They came, however, in comparatively small groups,
never in large colonies.   They would not have been
permitted to come in that way.   But they kept coming.
Before the colonies are thoroughly established the Bap-
tists are numerous and almost everywhere.   But they soon
began to feel the heavy hands of the three State churches.
For the terrible offenses of "preaching the gospel" and
"refusing to have their children baptized," "opposing
infant baptism,"
and other like conscientious acts on
their part, they were arrested, imprisoned, fined,


whipped, banished, and their property confiscated, etc.
All that here in America.   From many sources, I give but a
few illustrations.

    6. Before the Massachusetts Bay Colony is twenty years old,
with the Congregational as the State Church, they passed laws
against the Baptists and others.   The following is a sample of the
   "It is ordered and agreed, that if any person or persons, within
this jurisdiction, shall either openly condemn or oppose the
baptizing of infants, or go about secretly to seduce others from
the approbation or use thereof, or shall purposely depart the
congregation at the ministration of the ordinance * * * after due
time and means of conviction--every such person or persons
shall be sentenced to banishment."
  This law was enacted
especially against the Baptists.

    7. By the authorities in this colony, Roger Williams and
others were banished.   Banishment in America in those days was
something desperately serious.   It meant to go and live among the
Indians.   In this case Williams was received kindly and for quite a
while lived among the Indians, and in after days proved a great
blessing to the colony which had banished him.   He saved the
colony from destruction by this same tribe of Indians, by his
earnest entreaties in their behalf.   In this way he returned good
for evil.

    8. Roger Williams, later, together with others, some of
whom, at least, had also been banished from that and other of the
colonies among whom was John Clarke, a Baptist preacher,
decided to organize a colony of their own.   As yet they had no legal
authority from England to do such a thing, but they thought this
step wiser under existing conditions than to attempt to live in
existing colonies with the awful religious restrictions then upon
them.   So finding a small section of land as yet unclaimed by any
existing colony they proceeded to establish themselves on that
section of land now known as Rhode Island.   That was in the year
1638, ten years later than the Massachusetts Bay Colony, but it
was about 25 years later (1663) before they were able to secure a
legal charter.

    9. In the year 1651 (?) Roger Williams and John Clarke were


sent by the colony to England to secure, if possible legal
permission to establish their colony.   When they reached
England, Oliver Cromwell was in charge of the government, but
for some reason he failed to grant their request.   Roger Williams
returned home to America.   John Clarke remained in
England to continue to press his plea.   Year after year
went by.   Clarke continued to remain.   Finally Cromwell
lost his position and Charles II sat upon the throne of
England.   While Charles is regarded in history as one of
the bitterest of persecutors of Christians, he finally, in
1663, granted that charter.   So Clarke, after 12 long years
of waiting returned home with that charter.   So in 1663,
the Rhode Island colony became a real legal institution,
and the Baptists could write their own constitution.

   10. That Constitution was written.   It attracted the attention
of the whole wide world.   In that Constitution was the world's first
declaration of "Religious Liberty."
   The battle for absolute religious liberty even in America alone
is a great history within itself.   For a long time the Baptists seem
to have fought that battle entirely alone, but they did not fight it
for themselves alone, but for all peoples of every religious faith.
Rhode Island, the first Baptist colony, established by a small
group of Baptists after 12 years of earnest pleading for permis-
sion was the first spot on earth where religious liberty was made
the law of the land.   The settlement was made in 1638; the colony
legally established in 1663.

   11. In this colony two Baptist churches were organized even
prior to the legal establishment of the colony.   As to the exact date
of the organization of at least one of these two churches, even the
Baptists, according to history, are at disagreement.   All seem to
be agreed as to the date of the organization of the one at
Providence, by Roger Williams, in 1639.   As to the date of the one
organized at Newport by John Clarke, all the later testimony
seems to give the date at 1638.   All the earlier seems to give it later,
some years later.   The one organized by Roger Williams at
Providence seems to have lived but a few months.   The other by
John Clarke at Newport, is still living.   My own opinion as to the
date of organization of Newport church, based on all available


data, is that 1638 is the correct date.   Personally, I am sure this
date is correct.

   12. As to the persecutions in some of the American colonies,
we give a few samples.   It is recorded that on one occasion one of
John Clarke's members was sick.   The family lived just across the
Massachusetts Bay Colony line and just inside that colony.   John
Clarke, himself, and a visiting preacher by the name of Crandall
and a layman by the name of Obediah Holmes--all three went to
visit that sick family.   While they were holding some kind of a
prayer service with that sick family, some officer or officers of the
colony came upon them and arrested them and later carried them
before the court for trial.   It is also stated, that in order to get a
more definite charge against them, they were carried into a
religious meeting of their church (Congregationalist), their
hands being tied (so the record states).   The charge against them
was "for not taking off their hats in a religious service."   They
were all tried and convicted.   Gov. Endicott was present.   In a rage
he said to Clarke, while the trial was going on, "You have denied
infants baptism"
(this was not the charge against them).   "You
deserve death.   I will not have such trash brought into my
  The penalty for all was a fine, or be well- whipped.
Crandall's fine (a visitor) was five pounds ($25.00), Clarke's fine
(the pastor) was twenty pounds ($100.00).   Holmes' fine (the
records say he had been a Congregationalist and had joined the
Baptists) so his fine was thirty pounds ($150.00).   Clark's and
Crandall's fines were paid by friends.   Holmes refused to allow his
fine paid, saying he had done no wrong, so was well whipped.   The
record states that he was "stripped to the waist" and then
whipped (with some kind of a special whip) until the blood ran
down his body and then his legs until his shoes overflowed.   The
record goes on to state that his body was so badly gashed and cut
that for two weeks he could not lie down, so his body could touch
the bed.   His sleeping had to be done on his hands or elbows and
knees.   Of this whipping and other things connected with it I read
all records, even Holmes' statement.   A thing could hardly have
been more brutal.   And here in America!

   13. Painter, another man, "refused to have his child bap-
and gave as his opinion "that infant baptism was an anti-
Christian ordinance."
  For these offenses he was tied up and


whipped.   Governor Winthrop tells us that Painter was whipped
"for reproaching the Lord's ordinance."

   14. In the colony where Presbyterianism was the established
religion, dissenters (Baptist and others) seemed to fare no better
than in the Massachusetts Bay Colony where
Congregationalism was the established religion.
   In this colony was a settlement of Baptists.   In the whole
settlement were only five other families.   The Baptists recognized
the laws they were under and were, according to the records,
obedient to them.   This incident occurred:
   It was decided by authorities of the colony to build a
Presbyterian meeting house in that Baptist settlement.   The only
way to do it seemed by taxation.   The Baptists recognized the
authority of the Presbyterians to levy this new and extra tax, but
they made this plea against the tax at this time--"We have just
started our settlement.   Our little cabins have just been built, and
little gardens and patches just been opened.   Our fields not
cleared.   We have just been taxed to the limit to build a fort for
protection against the Indians.   We cannot possibly pay another
tax now."
  This is only the substance of their plea.   The tax was
levied.   It could not possibly be paid at that time.   An auction was
called.   Sales were made.   Their cabins and gardens, and patches,
and even their graveyards, were sold--not their unopened fields.
Property valued at 363 pounds and 5 shillings sold for 35 pounds
and 10 shillings.   Some of it, at least, was said to have been bought
in by the preacher who was to preach there.   The settlement was
said to have been left ruined.
   A large book could be filled with oppressive laws.   Terrifically
burdensome acts of taxation, hard dealing of many sorts,
directed mainly against the Baptists.   But these lectures cannot
enter into these details.

   15. In the southern colonies, throughout the Carolinas and
especially Virginia, where the Church of England held sway,
persecution of Baptists was serious and continuous.   Many times
their preachers were fined and imprisoned.   From the beginning
of the colonial period to the opening of the Revolutionary War,
more than 100 years, these persecutions of Baptists were
persisted in.


   16. We give some examples of the hardships of the Baptists in
Virginia, and yet strange as it may now seem Virginia was the
next place on earth after Rhode Island to adopt religious liberty.
But that was more than a century away.   But the hardships--as
many as 30 preachers at different times, were put in jail with the
only charge against them--"for preaching the Gospel of the Son
of God."
  James Ireland is a case in point.   He was imprisoned.
After imprisonment, his enemies tried to blow him up with
gunpowder.   That having failed, they next tried to smother him to
death by burning sulphur under his windows at the jail.   Failing
also in this, they tried to arrange with a doctor to poison him.   All
this failed.   He continued to preach to his people from the
windows.   A wall was then built around his jail so the people could
not see in nor he see out, but even that difficulty was overcome.
The people gathered, a handkerchief was tied to a long stick, and
that stuck up above the walls so Ireland could see when they were
ready.   The preaching continued.

   17. Three Baptist preachers (Lewis and Joseph Craig and
Aaron Bledsoe) were later arrested on the same charge.   One of
them, at least, was a blood relative of R.E.B. Baylor, and possibly
of one or more other Texas Baptist preachers.   These preachers
were arraigned for trial.   Patrick Henry, hearing of it and though
living many miles away and though a Church of England man
himself, rode those miles horseback to the trial and volunteered
his services in their defense.   Great was his defense.   I cannot enter
into a description of it here.   It swept the court.   The preachers were

   18. Elsewhere than Rhode Island, religious liberty came
slowly and by degrees.   For example: In Virginia a law was
passed permitting one, but only one, Baptist preacher to a
county.   He was permitted to preach but once in two months.
Later this law was modified, permitting him to preach once in
each month.   But even then, in only one definite place in the
county, and only one sermon on that day, and never to preach at
night.   Laws were passed not only in Virginia but in colonies
elsewhere positively forbidding any Mission work.   This was
why Judson was the first foreign missionary--law forbade.   It
took a long time and many hard battles, in the Virginia House of
Burgesses, to greatly modify these laws.


   19. Evidently, one of the greatest obstructions to religious
liberty in America, and probably all over the world as to that, was
the conviction which had grown into the people throughout the
preceding centuries that religion could not possibly live without
governmental support
.   That no denomination could prosper
solely on voluntary offerings by its adherents.   And this was the
hard argument to meet when the battle was raging for the
disestablishment of the Church of England in Virginia, and also
later in Congress when the question of religious liberty was being
discussed there.   For a long time the Baptists fought the battle
almost alone,

   20. Rhode Island began her colony in 1638, but it was not
legally chartered until 1663.   There was the first spot where
Religious Liberty was granted.   The second place was Virginia in
1786.   Congress declared the first amendment to the Constitution
to be in force December 15, 1791, which granted religious liberty
to all citizens.   Baptists are credited with being the leaders in
bringing this blessing to the nation.

   21. We venture to give one early Congressional incident.   The
question of whether the United States should have an establish-
ed church or several established churches, or religious liberty,
was being discussed.   Several different bills had been offered, one
recommending the Church of England as the established church;
and another the Congregationalist Church, and yet another the
Presbyterian.   The Baptists, many of them, though probably
none of them members of Congress, were earnestly contending
for absolute religious liberty.   James Madison (afterwards Presi-
dent) seemingly was their main supporter.   Patrick Henry arose
and offered a substitute bill for them all, "That four churches
(or denominations) instead of one be established"
Church of England, or Episcopal, Congregationalist,
Presbyterian, and the Baptist.   Finally when each of the others
saw that IT could not be made the sole established church, they
each agreed to accept Henry's compromise.   (This compromise
bill stated that each person taxed would have the right to say to
which denomination of these four his money should go.)   The
Baptists continued to fight against it all; that any combination of
Church and State was against their fundamental principles, that
they could not accept it even if voted.   Henry pleaded with them,


said he was trying to help them, that they could not live without
it, but they still protested.   The vote was taken--it carried nearly
unanimously.   But the measure had to be voted on three times.
The Baptists, led by Madison and possibly others continued to
fight.   The second vote came.   It also carried almost unanimously,
swept by Henry's masterful eloquence.   But the third vote had yet
to be taken.   Now God seemingly intervened.   Henry was made
Governor of Virginia and left Congress.   When the third vote
came, deprived of Henry's irresistible eloquence, the vote was
   Thus the Baptists came near being an established denomina-
tion over their own most solemn protest.   This is not the only
opportunity the Baptists ever had of becoming established by
law, but is probably the nearest they ever came to it.

   22. Not long after this, the Church of England was entirely
disestablished in America.   No religious denomination was
supported by the Central Government (a few separated State
governments still had establishment).   Church and state, so far
as the United States was concerned, were entirely separated.
These two, Church and State, elsewhere at least, had for 1,500
years (since 313) been living in unholy wedlock.   Religious Liberty
was, at least here in the United States, resurrected to die no more,
and now gradually but in many places slowly, it is spreading
throughout the world.

   23. But even in the United States, the Church and State idea
died hard.   It lingered on in several of the separate States, long
after Religious Liberty had been put into the Constitution of the
United States.   Massachusetts, where the Church and State idea
first found a lodging place in America, has, as already stated,
finally given it up.   It had lived there over two and one-half
centuries.   Utah is the last lingering spot left to disfigure the face
of the first and greatest nation on earth to adopt and cherish
"Religious Liberty."   Remember there can be no real and absolute
Religious liberty in any nation where the Government gives its
support to one special religious denomination.

   24. Some serious questions have many times been asked
concerning the Baptists: Would they, as a denomination, have
accepted from any nation or state an offer of "establishment" if


such nation or state had freely made them such an offer?   And,
would they, in case they had accepted such an offer, have become
persecutors of others like Catholics or Episcopals, or Lutherans
or Presbyterians, or Congregationalists?   Probably a little con-
sideration of such questions now would not be amiss.   Have the
Baptists, as a fact, ever had such an opportunity?
   Is it not recorded in history, that on one occasion, the King of
the Netherlands (the Netherlands at that time embracing
Norway and Sweden, Belgium, Holland, and Denmark) had
under serious consideration the question of having an establish-
ed religion?   Their kingdom at that period was surrounded on
almost all sides by nations or governments with established
religions--religions supported by the Civil Government.
   It is stated that the King of Holland appointed a committee to
examine into the claims of all existing churches or
denominations to see which had the best claim to be the New
Testament Church.   The committee reported back that the
Baptists were the best representatives of New Testament
teachings.   Then the King offered to make the Baptist "the
church or denomination of his kingdom.   The
Baptists kindly thanked him but declined, stating that it was
contrary to their fundamental convictions and principles.
   But this was not the only opportunity they ever had of having
their denomination the established religion of a people.   They
certainly had that opportunity when Rhode Island Colony was
founded.   And to have persecuted others--that would have been
an impossibility if they were to continue being Baptists.   They
were the original advocates of "Religious Liberty."   That really is
one of the fundamental articles of their religious faith.   They
believed in the absolute separation of church and state.

   25. So strong has been the Baptist conviction on the question
of Church and State combination, that they have invariably
declined all offers of help from the State.   We give here two
instances.   One in Texas and the other in Mexico.   Long years ago
in the days of Baylor University's babyhood, Texas offered to
help her.   She declined the help though she was in distressing
need.   The Texas Methodists had a baby school in Texas at the


same time.   They accepted the State help; that school finally fell
into the hands of the State.
   The case in Mexico occurred in this wise: W. D. Powell was our
missionary to Mexico.   By his missionary work he had made a
great impression for the Baptists upon Governor Madero of the
State of Coahuila.   Madero offered a great gift to the Baptists
from the State, if the Baptists would establish a good school in
the State of Coahuila, Mexico.   The matter was submitted by
Powell to the Foreign Board.   The gift was declined because it was
to be from the State.   Afterwards Madero gave a good large sum
personally.   That was accepted and Madero Institute was built
and established.


   1. During every period of the "Dark Ages" there were in
existence many Christians and many separate and independent
Churches, some of them dating back to the times of the Apostles,
which were never in any way connected with the Catholic
.   They always wholly rejected and repudiated the
Catholics and their doctrines.   This is a fact clearly demonstrated
by credible history.

   2. These Christians were the perpetual objects of bitter and
relentless persecution.   History shows that during the period of
the "Dark Ages," about twelve centuries, beginning with A.D.
426, there were about fifty millions of these Christians who died
martyr deaths.   Very many thousands of others, both preceding
and succeeding the "Dark Ages," died under the same hard hand
of persecution.

   3. These Christians, during these dark days of many cen-
turies, were called by many different names, all given to them by
their enemies.   These names were sometimes given because of
some specially prominent and heroic leader and sometimes from
other causes; and sometimes, yea, many times, the same people,
holding the same views, were called by different names in
different localities.   But amid all the many changes of names,
there was one special name or rather designation, which clung to
at least some of these Christians, throughout all the "Dark
that designation being "Ana-Baptist."   This compound


word applied as a designation of some certain Christians was
first found in history during the third century; and a suggestive
fact soon after the origin of Infant Baptism, and a more
suggestive fact
even prior to the use of the name Catholic.
Thus the name "Ana-Baptists" is the oldest denominational
name in history.

   4. A striking peculiarity of these Christians was and con-
tinued to be in succeeding centuries: They rejected the man-made
doctrine of "Infant Baptism" and demanded rebaptism, even
though done by immersion for all those who came to them,
having been baptized in infancy.   For this peculiarity they were
called "Ana-Baptists."

   5. This, special designation was applied to many of these
Christians who bore other nicknames; especially is this true of
the Donatists, Paulicians, Albigenses and Ancient Waldenses
and others.   In later centuries this designation came to be a
regular name, applied to a distinct group.   These were simply
called "Ana-Baptists" and gradually all other names were
dropped.   Very early in the sixteenth century, even prior to the
origin of the Lutheran Church, the first of all the Protestant
Churches, the word "ana" was beginning to be left off, and they
were simply called "Baptists."

   6. Into the "dark ages" went a group of many churches which
were never in any way identified with the Catholics.   Out of the
"dark ages" came a group of many churches, which had never
been in any way identified with the Catholics.
   The following are some of the fundamental doctrines to which
they held when they went in: And the same are the fundamental
doctrines to which they held when they came out: And the same
are the fundamental doctrines to which they now hold.

  1. A spiritual Church, Christ its Founder, its only Head and Law-
  2. Its ordinances, only two, Baptism and the Lord's Supper.
    They are typical and memorial, not saving.
  3. Its officers, only two, bishops or pastors and deacons; they
    are servants of the [local] church.


  1. Its Government, a pure Democracy, and that executive only,
    never legislative.
  2. Its laws and doctrines: The New Testament and that only.
  3. Its members.   Believers only, they saved by grace, not works,
    through the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit.
  4. Its requirements.   Believers on entering the church to be
    baptized, that by immersion, then obedience and loyalty to all
    New Testament laws.
  5. The various churches--separate and independent in their
    execution of laws and discipline and in their responsibilities
    to God--but cooperative in work.
  6. Complete separation of Church and State.
  7. Absolute Religious Liberty for all.

Partial list of books used in preparing lectures on

History of Baptists in Virginia--Semple
Baptist Succession--Ray
Baptists in Alabama--Holcomb
History of the Huguenots--Martin
Fifty Years Among the Baptists--Benedict
Fox(e)'s Book of Martyrs
My Church--Moody
The World's Debt to the Baptists--Porter
Church Manual--Pendleton
Evils of Infant Baptism--Howell
Reminiscences, Sketches and Addresses--Hutchison
Short History of the Baptists--Vedder
The Struggle for Religious Liberty in Virginia--James
The Genesis of American Anti-Missionism--Carroll
The True Baptist--A. Newton
The Baptists in America--Cox and Holey
A Guide to the Study of Church History--McGlothlin
Baptist Principles Reset--Jeter
Virginia Presbyterianism and Religious Liberty in Colonial and
    Revolutionary Times--Johnson
Presbyterianism 300 Years Ago--Breed
History of the Presbyterian Church of the World--Reed
Catholic Belief--Bruno
Campbellism Examined--Jeter
History of the Baptists in New England--Burrage
History of Redemption--Edwards
Principles and Practices of Baptist Churches--Wayland
History of the Liberty Baptist Association of North Carolina--
Carson on Baptism
History and Literature of the Early Churches--Orr
History of Kentucky Baptists--Spencer
Baptist History--Orchard
Baptist Church Perpetuity--Jarrel
Progress of Baptist Principles--Curtis
Story of the Baptists--Cook
Romanism in Its Home--Eager
Americanism Against Catholicism--Grant

The Faith of Our Fathers--Cardinal Gibbons
The Faith of Our Fathers Examined--Stearns
The Story of Baptist Missions--Hervey
Christian "Baptism"--Judson
Separation of Church and State in Virginia--Eckenrode
The Progress of Religious Liberty--Schaff
Doctrines and Principles of the M. E. Church
The Churches of Piedmont--Allix
The History of the Waldenses--Muston
The History of Baptists--Backus
The Ancient Waldenses and Albigenses--Faber
History of the Waldenses of Italy--Combs
History of the Baptists--Benedict
Baptist Biography--Graham
Early English Baptists--Evans
History of the Welsh Baptists--Davis
Baptist History--Cramp
History of the Baptists--Christian
Short History of the Baptists--Vedder
A Plea for the Cumberland Presbyterian Church--Jones
Religions of the World--Many Writers
History of the Reformation in Germany--Ranke
Church History--Kurtz
Constitution of the Presbyterian Church in the U. S. A.
Doctrines and Discipline--African M. E. Church--Emory
Church History--Jones
History of the Christian Religion and Church-- Nea[n]der
Ecclesiastical History--Mosheim
History of Christian Church--Gregory
History of the Church--Waddington
Handbook of Church History--Green
Manual of Church History--Newman
History of Anti-Pedo Baptism--Newman
Catholic Encyclopedia (16 vols.)
The Baptist Encyclopedia--Cathcart
Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge--Brown
Encyclopedia Britiannica
Origin of Disciples--Whittsitt
Schaff-Herzogg--Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge
Book of Martyrs--Fox(e)
Baptist History--Schackleford

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