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How the West Was Really Won

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How the West Was Really Won

Mark Galli, Christianity Today Senior Managing Editor, writes, "The topic-Christianity in the American West-is as big as the region, and as diverse. There is no overarching narrative... no single figure... Local heroes and local stories dominate the West."

This issue of Christian History & Biography recounts the neglected story of Christianity and the settling of the American West. Inside it are diary entries, biographical anecdotes, and intriguing articles that capture the courage and ruggedness of Christian faith in the West.

The neglected story of Christians' role in taming America's most diverse and rugged region.

Inside this issue you'll find:

  • Preparing a Way in the Wilderness - Though history has all but forgotten them, it was Christian preachers and teachers who really tamed the West.
  • A Church of Their Own - Ethnic congregations were essential for building community in the nation's most diverse region.
  • No Rest for the Weary - Few pioneers possessed strong enough resolve to keep the Sabbath on the Overland Trail.
  • Tested on All Sides - Excerpts from a wagon train diary reveal that traveling overland was much more than a physical challenge.
  • Yesterday's Christian Woman - Pioneer wives held their households together with a blend of grit and grace.
  • Forty-Niner Faith - Traditional Christianity didn't stand much of a chance in the California gold fields.
  • "Out Yonder, on the Edge of Things" - The most controversial, and most effective, missionary to the West and Alaska, Sheldon Jackson was always pushing boundaries. Sheldon Jackson was always pushing boundaries.
  • Alternative Religions - Many non- and semi-Christian groups also laid claim to the West, but none more successfully than the Mormons.
  • The West That Wasn't Won - Protestant missions to Native Americans had few shining moments.
  • Dying to Save - The "Whitman Massacre" reveals much of what was noble and flawed regarding missions to Native Americans.
  • Local Heroes - The wide-open West was served, state by state, by brave and sometimes beleaguered ministers and missionaries like these.
  • Land of Crumbling Myths - Why the twentieth century West -urban and explosive-ain't what it used to be. A conversation with Richard Etulain.
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