The Original 13


By William J. Federer

A Documentary History of Religion in America’s First Thirteen States – “The whole power over the subject of religion is left exclusively to the State governments, to be acted upon according to their sense of justice and the State Constitutions,” wrote Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story in his Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States, 1833. Who was Joseph Story? He was the founder of Harvard Law School and appointed to the Supreme Court by President James Madison – the same James Madison who introduced the First Amendment in the first session of Congress. To understand the progression of religious freedom in America, it is necessary to review the Constitutions of the original thirteen States, together with the Colonial Charters that preceded them. Examining Charters, Constitutions, Court Decisions, and Correspondence, this overview of history is intended as a study help for those interested in discovering the role religion played in America’s original thirteen States. The process of how the Federal Courts used the 14th Amendment to remove religion from States’ jurisdiction, most notably in the 1947 Everson v. Board of Education case, and subsequently evolved it into its present interpretation, is the subject of another book.

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Author: ISBN: 978-0977808526 Categories: ,

Additional information

Weight21 oz
Dimensions5.5 × 8.5 × .9 in

414 pages


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