cover of book

Faith and Fury: Eli Farmer on the Frontier, 1794–1881
by Riley B. Case
Indiana Historical Society Press, 2018
Cloth: 978-0-87195-429-9 | eISBN: 978-0-87195-430-5
Library of Congress Classification BX8495.F37
Dewey Decimal Classification 287.6092

Some of America’s political and social identity today can be traced to the early frontier. After 1801 religion exploded across settlements in the Old Northwest and Kentucky. Not only were souls saved through camp meetings, but regular people also began applying the words “equal” and “independent” to themselves. The life of Eli P. Farmer, a circuit-riding preacher, politician, farmer, and businessman, is instructive. His autobiography includes accounts of Native Americans, brawls, flatboats, settlers, and revival meetings. Setting his story within the context of the Second Great Awakening, author Riley B. Case shows how Farmer’s life personified this religious movement, which gave birth to American evangelicalism, as well as values that would become idyllic to many Americans: self-sufficiency and individualism.

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