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Religious Liberty Sacralized: The Persistence of Christian Dissenting Tradition and the Cincinnati Bible War

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  29 November 2021


In 1869, the Cincinnati school board ended a forty-year tradition of Bible reading in the schools in an attempt to encourage Catholics to use them, thus provoking national controversy and a lawsuit brought by pro-Bible advocates. Scholars regularly cite the Ohio Supreme Court decision in favor of the school board as a landmark in the legal separation of church and state. This article interrogates the meaning of the secularization of law by examining expressions of juristic, pedagogic, and popular consciousness in the multiple levels and spaces where individuals raised and resolved constitutional questions on education. Dissenting Christian tradition shaped the legal brief of Stanley Matthews, the school board's lead attorney. Matthews' sacralized the religious liberty guarantee found in the Ohio Constitution within a post-millennialist framework. Ohio Chief Justice John Welch hybridized Christian dissenting tradition with deistic rationalism in <u>Board of Education v. Minor, et al</u>, thus appealing to as broad a constituency as had the right to elect justices to the Ohio Supreme Court. The limited, technical ruling allowed for a metropole/periphery divide in educational practice, so that Bible reading and prayer in Ohio public schools continued well into the 20th century. Far from a landmark in secularization of the law, the Bible War case demonstrates the persistent power of religion to frame law, including the law of religious liberty.

Original Article
Copyright © The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of the American Society for Legal History

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She is the author of The Republic According to John Marshall Harlan, Religion, Morality, and the Constitutional Order, and The Lost Art of Dress, and has published in Journal of Supreme Court History, U.S. Catholic Historian, Journal of American History, and Law and Social Inquiry. This article is part of a book project tracing the origins and impact of the Bible War. She is grateful for comments and suggestions on this project from the members of Notre Dame's Colloquium on Religion and History, especially John McGreevy, Thomas Tweed, and Mark Noll, the members of the Annual Law and Religion Roundtable at the Notre Dame Law School, especially Richard Garnett, Nelson Tebbe, and Paul Horwitz, the anonymous readers for Law and History Review, and Sarah Barringer Gordon, Barry Cushman, Hendrik Hartog, Stanley N. Katz, Daniel Ernst, Peter J. Thuesen, Christopher Hamlin, and John Soares. She also thanks the Institute for Scholarship in the Liberal Arts, the University of Notre Dame, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Spencer Foundation for financial support, and Nan Card of the Hayes Presidential Library and Museums, Spiegel Grove, Fremont, Ohio and Diane Mallstrom at the Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County for archival help.


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2. On public and parochial school consolidation, see Benjamin Justice, The War That Wasn't: Religious Conflict and Compromise in the Common Schools of New York State, 1865–1900 (Albany: State University of New York Press, 2005), 197ff.

3. Although earlier regulations were supposed to have left Bible translations moot, teachers apparently did favor the King James Bible.

4. Quoted in George R. Sage, Rufus King, and Wm. M. Ramsey, The Bible in the Public Schools Proceedings and Addresses at the Mass Meeting, Pike's Music Hall… (Cincinnati: Gazette Steam Book and Job Printing House, 1869), 3; see Thomas Nast, “Church and State: Europe, United States,” Harpers Weekly, February 19, 1870, 121; “Shall We Surrender Our Common Schools?” New York Times, March 21, 1870, 4.

5. “City Matters…The Biblical Discussion,” Cincinnati Enquirer, September 14, 1869, 8. Database newspaper article title errors corrected throughout.

6. R. Freeman Butts, The American Tradition in Religion and Education (Boston: Beacon Press, 1950), 138–41; William Kailer Dunn, What Happened to Religious Education? The Decline of Religious Teaching in the Public Elementary School (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, 1958), 9 (reprint of table found in Burton Confrey, Secularism In American Education: Its History [Washington, DC: Catholic Education Press, 1931], 124–25).

7. Leo Pfeffer, Church, State, and Freedom (Boston: Beacon Press, 1953, revised edn. 1967), 443.

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18. D. H. Meyer, The Instructed Conscience: The Shaping of the American National Ethic (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1972); and Mark A. Noll, “Common Sense Traditions and American Evangelical Thought,” American Quarterly 37 (1985): 216–38. On links between early western law and religion, see the works of Harold J. Berman.

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20. Stanley Matthews, The Function of the Legal Profession in the Progress of Civilization (Cincinnati: R. Clarke, 1881), 37.

21. “Meeting of the Cincinnati Bar,” Weekly Law Bulletin 21 (1889): 187–91, at 190.

22. Raymond G. Decker, “The Secularization of Anglo-American Law: 1800–1970,” Thought 49 (1974): 280–98; Mark Hill, Norman Doe, R.H. Helmholz, and John Witte, Jr., eds., Christianity and Criminal Law (Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, 2020).

23. Linda Przybyszewski, “Judicial Conservatism and Protestant Faith: The Case of Justice David J. Brewer,” Journal of American History 91 (2004): 471–96.

24. Daniel L Dreisbach, Mark David Hall, and Jeffry H. Morrison, eds., The Forgotten Founders on Religion and Public Life (Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 2009); Carl H. Esbeck and Jonathan J. Den Hartog, eds., Disestablishment and Religious Dissent: Church-State Relations in the New American States, 1776–1833 (Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 2019); and Daniel L. Dreisbach, “A New Perspective on Jefferson's Views on Church-State Relations: The Virginia Statute for Establishing Religious Freedom in its Legislative Context,” American Journal of Legal History 35 (1991): 172–204.

25. Daniel L. Dreisbach, Thomas Jefferson and the Wall of Separation Between Church and State (New York: New York University Press, 2002), 51.

26. Gary J. Dorrien, The Making of American Liberal Theology: Imagining Progressive Religion, 1805–1900 (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2001), 119, 127–128; and Linda Przybyszewski, Religion, Morality, and the Constitutional Order (Washington, DC: American Historical Association and the Institute for Constitutional History, 2011).

27. Sarah Barringer Gordon, “The First Disestablishment: Limits on Church Power and Property Before the Civil War,” University of Pennsylvania Law Review 162 (2014): 307–72; and Thomas E. Buckley, “‘A Great Religious Octopus’: Church and State at Virginia's Constitutional Convention, 1901–1902,” Church History 72 (2003): 333–60.

28. Tisa Wenger, We Have A Religion: The 1920s Pueblo Indian Dance Controversy (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 2009) and American Religious Freedom: The Contested History of an American (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 2017).

29. Elwyn A. Smith, ed., The Religion of the Republic (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1971); Robert T. Handy, A Christian America: Protestant Hopes and Historical Realities (New York: Oxford University Press, 1971, revised edn. 1984) and Undermined Establishment: Church-State Relations in America, 1880–1920 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991); similarly, see Sehat, The Myth of American Religious Freedom. Others set the date earlier: Daniel R. Ernst, “Church-State Issues and the Law: 1607–1870,” in Church and State in America, 331–64.

30. Jon Gjerde and S. Deborah Kang, Catholicism and the Shaping of Nineteenth-Century America (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2012), 20ff.

31. Hartmut Lehmann, “Anti-Catholic and Protestant Propaganda in Mid-Nineteenth-Century America and Europe,” Pietismus und Neuzeit 17 (1991): 121–34; Linda Przybyszewski, “Fighting the Philistines: Bishop John Purcell, The Catholic Disruption, and the Making of Memory,” U.S. Catholic Historian 38 (2020): 99–124; Philip Hamburger emphasizes anti-Catholicism as the source of nineteenth-century separation impulses, Separation of Church and State (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2002).

32. Gutjahr, An American Bible, 29ff; and Ray Allen Billington, The Protestant Crusade, 1800–1860 (New York: Macmillan, 1938), 42–43.

33. Gerald P. Fogarty, “The Quest for a Catholic Vernacular Bible in America,” in The Bible in America, ed. Nathan O. Hatch and Mark A. Noll (New York: Oxford University Press, 1982), 163–80.

34. Herbert F. Hahn, “The Reformation and Bible Criticism,” Journal of Bible and Religion 21 (1953): 257–61; and Candy Gunther Brown, The Word in the World: Evangelical Writing, Publishing, and Reading in America, 1789–1880 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2004).

35. Fred J. Hood, Reformed America: The Middle and Southern States 1783–1837 (Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 1980), 48–67; and Maura Jane Farrelly, Anti-Catholicism in America, 1620–1860 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017).

36. Smith, “The Voluntary Establishment of Religion,” in The Religion of the Republic, 154–182, 174.

37. On clerical opposition to Mirari Vos, see Anthony H. Deye, “Archbishop John Baptist Purcell of Cincinnati: Pre-Civil War Years” (PhD diss., University of Notre Dame, 1959), 160; and Patrick Carey, An Immigrant Bishop: John England's Adaptation of Irish Catholicism to American Republicanism (Yonkers: U.S. Catholic Historical Society, 1982), 89–90, 95–96.

38. The classic work is Billington, The Protestant Crusade; see also David Brion Davis, “Some Themes of Counter-Subversion: An Analysis of Anti-Masonic, Anti-Catholic, and Anti-Mormon Literature,” Mississippi Valley Historical Review 47 (1960): 205–24; Jenny Franchot stresses the attraction and repulsion of Catholicism for northeastern intellectuals, in Roads to Rome: The Antebellum Protestant Encounter with Catholicism (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1994); Tracy Fessenden, Culture and Redemption: Religion, the Secular, and American Literature (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2007).

39. John T. McGreevy, Catholicism and American Freedom (New York: W.W. Norton, 2003), 1–42; Nancy Lusignan Schultz, Fire & Roses: The Burning of the Charleston Convent, 1834 (New York: Free Press, 2000); and Vincent P. Lannie and Bernard C. Diethorn, “For the Honor and Glory of God: The Philadelphia Bible Riots of 1840,” History of Education Quarterly 8 (1968): 44–106.

40. Ward M. McAfee compares culturkampf in Germany to the Republican Party's anti-Catholic efforts in the 1870s, but Ohio barred state aid to sectarian schools in its 1851 constitution, Religion, Race and Reconstruction: The Public School in the Politics of the 1870s (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1998).

41. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” The Bible in the Public Schools. Arguments in the Case of John D. Minor et al. Versus the Board of Education of the City of Cincinnati et al, Superior Court of Cincinnati. With the Opinions and Decisions of the Court (Cincinnati: Robert Clarke & Co., 1870), 280, 246, 278; see Bertram Wallace Korn, The American Reaction to the Mortara Case: 1858–1859 (Cincinnati: American Jewish Archives, 1957).

42. In addition to those cited here, see the work of Merrill D. Peterson, Robert C. Vaughan, Mark DeWolfe Howe, and Thomas J. Curry.

43. Edmund S. Morgan, Roger Williams: The Church and the State (New York: Harcourt, Brace, and World, 1967).

44. Timothy Verhoeven, Secularists, Religion and Government in Nineteenth-Century America (Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019).

45. “The Civil Sabbath,” Presbyter, March 10, 1869, 4; and “Temperance. Another Day of Preparation…,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, March 24, 1874, 8.

46. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 227.

47. Ronald P. Formisano and Stephen Pickering, “The Christian Nation Debate and Witness Competency,” Journal of the Early Republic 29 (2009): 219–48; and Jud Campbell, “Testimonial Exclusions and Religious Freedom in Early America,” Law and History Review 39 (2019): 431–92.

48. Annie A. Nunns, “Letters of Salmon P. Chase 1848–1865,” American Historical Review 34 (1929): 536–55, at 544; see also, Mrs. Harland Cleveland, Mother Eva Mary, C.T. The Story of a Foundation (Milwaukee: Morehouse Pub. Co, 1929), 12; “Remarks of George Hoadly” Proceedings of the Bench and Bar of the Supreme Court of the United States: In Memoriam Stanley Matthews (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 1889), 10–15, at 13; on Universalism and its theological critics, see E. Brooks Holifield, Theology in America: Christian Thought from the Age of the Puritans to the Civil War (New Haven. CT: Yale University Press, 2003), 218–33.

49. See John Niven, Salmon P. Chase: A Biography (New York: Oxford University Press, 1995), 90–108. Matthews was a delegate at two Democratic presidential conventions, “Terrible Shipwreck Chicago Convention” Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, June 18, 1847, 2; and “REGULAR DISPATCHES: From Washington,” Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, July 8, 1860, 3. On the Fugitive Slave law, see “The Findlay Market Meeting LAST NIGHT…,” Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, October 4, 1860, 2.

50. See William R. Wantland. “Jurist and Advocate: the Political Career of Stanley Matthews, 1840–1889” (PhD diss., Miami University, 1994), 56–62. Americans reworked Fourierism; see Carl J. Guarneri, “Importing Fourierism to America,” Journal of the History of Ideas 43 (1982): 581–94; and Carl J. Guarneri, The Utopian Alternative Fourierism in Nineteenth-Century America (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1991). Both Stanley and Mary Ann Matthews signed a Brook Farm circular, Cleveland, Mother Eva Mary, 12.

51. See Linda Przybyszewski, “Scarlet Fever, Stanley Matthews, and the Cincinnati Bible War,” Journal of Supreme Court History 42 (2017): 256–74.

52. See Stanley Matthews Collection, Hayes Presidential Library, Spiegel Grove, Fremont, Ohio.

53. Charles D. Cashdollar, A Spiritual Home: Life in British and American Reformed Congregations, 1830–1915 (University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2000), 101–9. See Holifield, Theology in America, 370ff. Old School Presbyterianism in the nineteenth century was the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America.

54. Rutherford B. Hayes and Charles Richard Williams, Diary and Letters of Rutherford Birchard Hayes 2 (Columbus: Ohio State Archæological and Historical Society, 1922–26), 401, 404.

55. See Irving Stoddard Kull, “Presbyterian Attitudes toward Slavery,” Church History 7 (1938): 101–14; Minutes of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America XVII (1864), 296–99; “The Lincoln Convention Yesterday…” Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, August 8, 1864, 3.

56. “Secularization of the Schools: Mass Meeting of the Anti-Bibleists …” Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, March 31, 1870, 4.

57. “Remarks of George Hoadly,” 14. Cincinnati's Unitarians divided over Bible reading.

58. “Court Reports: The Bible in the Schools… Conclusion of Judge Matthews’ Argument,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, December 3, 1869, 1.

59. Selective excerpts can be used to support any given position on education, see Lawrence Moore, “Bible Reading and Nonsectarian Schooling: The Failure of Religious Instruction in Nineteenth-Century Public Education,” Journal of American History 86 (2000): 1581–99, at 1594–95.

60. “Court Reports: The Bible in the Schools… Conclusion of Judge Matthews’ Argument,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, December 3, 1869, 1.

61. “The Bible Trial,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, December 3, 1869, 2.

62. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 207.

63. Ibid., 208.

64. “Presbyterian Convention…” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, February 18, 1869, 1.

65. “Meeting of the Cincinnati Bar,” 190.

66. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 207–9.

67. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 228–29; and John 1:29.

68. R. B. Hayes to William Henry Smith, November 3, 1868 in Hayes and Williams, Diary and Letters 3, 55.

69. Deuteronomy 19:15.

70. See The Form of Government and Forms of Process of the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America (Philadelphia: Perkins and Purves, 1845), 364–65, note “o.”

71. Francois Durrwell, “Christian Witness: A Theological Study,” International Review of Mission 69 (1980): 121–34.

72. Quoted in John A. Ragosta, “Fighting for Freedom: Virginia Dissenter’ Struggle for Religious Liberty during the American Revolution,” The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography 116 (2008): 226–61, at 251.

73. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 282, quoting Matthew 7:6, 257; Second Book of Samuel 6:6–7.

74. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 271, quoting Westminster Confession of Faith (1788), ch. xxiii, sect. 3; see comparison of confessions, Philip Schaff, Church And State In the United States (New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1888), 50. On John Witherspoon's ideas on private judgment as part of this shift, see Nicholas Patrick Miller, The Religious Roots of the First Amendment (New York: Oxford University Press, 2012), 133 ff.

75. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 229, 221, 223, 229–30.

76. Gjerde and Kang, Catholicism and the Shaping of Nineteenth Century America, 112–32.

77. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 234–35.

78. “Centennial Anniversary Of Methodism. Celebration of the Sunday Schools,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, November 12, 1866, 1; “Hagans, Marcellus B,” The Biographical Cyclopedia and Portrait Gallery, with an Historical Sketch of the State of Ohio IV (Cincinnati: Western Biographical Pub. Co, 1891), 928; Linda C. A. Przybyszewski, “Taft, Alphonso,” American National Biography, (July 17, 2021).

79. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 222–23.

80. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 231–34, see also “Secularization of the Schools: Mass Meeting of the Anti-Bibleists …” Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, March 31, 1870, 4.

81. Patrick W. Carey, People, Priests, and Prelates: Ecclesiastical Democracy and the Tensions of Trusteeism (Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 1987); and Philip Gleason, “Baltimore III and Education,” U.S. Catholic Historian 4 (1985): 273–306.

82. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 234.

83. Hood, Reformed America, 70–78.

84. Quoted in “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 284.

85. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 284, quoting Matthew 22:4; 285, quoting Acts 16:31.

86. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 285–87; Revelation 21:2. See J. F. Maclear, “The Republic and the Millennium,” in The Religion of the Republic, 183–216; and Ernest Lee Tuveson, Redeemer Nation; the Idea of America's Millennial Role (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1968).

87. Sidney Mead, The Lively Experiment: The Shaping of Christianity in America (New York: Harpers & Row, 1963), 115–21. Matthews supported pan-Protestant organizations; see “The Civil Sabbath.”

88. “School at Childrens’ Home,” Catholic Telegraph, September 8, 1869, 4; and “The School at the Childrens’ Home,” Catholic Telegraph, August 11, 1869, 4.

89. “Argument of Stanley Matthews,” 234, 237.

90. “Argument of George R. Sage,” The Bible in the Public Schools. Arguments in the Case of John D. Minor et al. Versus the Board of Education of the City of Cincinnati et al, Superior Court of Cincinnati. With the Opinions and Decisions of the Court (Cincinnati: Robert Clarke & Co., 1870), 198–99; and “Home News. Reform School For Boys At Lancaster,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, June 11, 1869, 2.

91. Board of Education v. Minor, 23 Ohio St. 211. 253 (1872).

92. “Opinion of Judge Taft,” The Bible in the Public Schools. Arguments in the Case of John D. Minor et al. Versus the Board of Education of the City of Cincinnati et al, Superior Court of Cincinnati. With the Opinions and Decisions of the Court (Cincinnati: Robert Clarke & Co., 1870), 415, 414.

93. Phyllis Field, “Welch, John,” in American National Biography Online (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000), (accessed September 21, 2017); and John Welch, An Address to the Professors and Students of Franklin College (Cadiz, OH: W.V. Kent, Book and Job Printer, 1876), 5.

94. Welch, An Address to the Professors and Students of Franklin College, 5.

95. “Memorial of Judge John Welch,” Ohio State Bar Association Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the Association Held at Put-In-Bay on July 13, 14 and 15, 1892 13 (Akron: Werner Ptg. & Lith. Co., 1892), 209–11, at 211.

96. See Dorrien, The Making of American Liberal Theology, 398–99; and William R. Hutchison, Religious Pluralism in America: The Contentious History of a Founding Ideal (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2003), 116–17.

97. Board of Education v. Minor, 246, 247, 249.

98. Ibid., 249–50.

99. Ibid., 254.

100. Lance Banning, “James Madison, The Statute for Religious Freedom, and the Crisis of Republican Convictions,” in The Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom: Its Evolution and Consequences in American History, ed. Merrill D. Peterson and Robert C. Vaughan (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988), 109–38, at 109; see Schlereth, Eric, “A Tale of Two Deists: John Fitch, Elihu Palmer, and the Boundary of Tolerable Religious Expression in Early National Philadelphia,” Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography 132 (2008): 531Google Scholar.

101. William C. Rives, History of the Life and Times of James Madison I (Boston: Little, Brown, 1868), 33–34, 602–3; and Verhoeven, Secularists, Religion and Government, 133 ff.

102. See Garrett Ward Sheldon, “Religion and Politics in the Thought of James Madison,” in The Founders on God and Government, ed. Daniel K. Dreisbach, Mark David Hall, and Jeffry H. Morrison (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2004), 83–115; Ketcham, Ralph, “James Madison and Religion--A New Hypothesis,” Journal of the Presbyterian Historical Society 38 (1960): 6590Google Scholar; and Ralph Ketcham, James Madison: A Biography (New York: Macmillan, 1971), 46ff.

103. Dreisbach, “A New Perspective on Jefferson's Views,” 183.

104. Board of Education v. Minor, 252. Welch paraphrased Madison's “Notes of Speech Against Assessment for Support of Religion. November 1784,” Rives, History of the Life and Times of James Madison, 1:605, n. 1; Welch quoted Madison to Edward Everett, March 19, 1823, and to Edward Livingston, July 10, 1822, also found in Rives.

105. “Argument of George Hoadly,” The Bible in the Public Schools. Arguments in the Case of John D. Minor et al. Versus the Board of Education of the City of Cincinnati et al, Superior Court of Cincinnati. With the Opinions and Decisions of the Court (Cincinnati: Robert Clarke & Co., 1870), 139, 137.

106. “Argument of George Hoadly,” 131; Stanley E. Porter, and Constantin Von Tischendorf, Constantine Tischendorf: The Life and Work of a 19th-Century Bible Hunter (New York: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2015); Donald Coggan, “Lord's Prayer,” in The Oxford Companion to the Bible, ed. Bruce M. Metzger and Michael D. Coogan (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993), 464–65; and Albert S. Cook, “The Evolution of the Lord's Prayer in English,” The American Journal of Philology 12 (1891): 59–66.

107. Lloyd D. Easton, Hegel's First American Followers: The Ohio Hegelians: John B. Stallo, Peter Kaufmann, Moncure Conway, and August Willich (Athens: Ohio University Press, 1966).

108. “Argument of J.B. Stallo,” The Bible in the Public Schools. Arguments in the Case of John D. Minor et al. Versus the Board of Education of the City of Cincinnati et al, Superior Court of Cincinnati. With the Opinions and Decisions of the Court (Cincinnati: Robert Clarke & Co., 1870), 67, 80–81, 97–98.

109. See Schmidt, Village Atheists, 23–24.

110. Board of Education v. Minor, 251–52; and Thomas A. Tweed, The American Encounter with Buddhism, 1844–1912: Victorian Culture and the Limits of Dissent (Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 2000), 115–21.

111. Hutchison, Religious Pluralism in America, 132–136; David Mislin, Saving Faith: Making Religious Pluralism an American Value at the Dawn of the Secular Age (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2015), 43 ff.

112. Board of Education v. Minor, 252.

113. Ibid., 254.

114. “The Bible Question Once More: Judge Matthews Answered from the Pulpit,” Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, December 13, 1869, 8.

115. “Rev. A. D. Mayo's Review of the Anti-Bible Meeting in Mozart Hall,” Cincinnati Commercial Tribune, April 4, 1870, 1.

116. “The School Question,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, April 2, 1870, 2; “Judge Matthews,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, March 31, 1870, 2; and “‘Anti-Bible’ Meeting—Matthews and Lilienthal,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, April 4, 1870, 1.

117. “ART. VIII.—Recent Publications on the School Question,” Biblical Repertory and Princeton Review 42 (April 1870): 313.

118. “Article 3 — No Title,” New York Evangelist 42 (1870): 3.

119. McLoughlin, William G., “Isaac Backus and the Separation of Church and State in America,” American Historical Review 73 (1968): 1392–413CrossRefGoogle Scholar, at 1398.

120. Quoted in Irving Brant, James Madison: The Nationalist, 1780–1787 (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1941–1961), 2:348.

121. Anson Phelps Stokes, Church and State in the United States, 3 vols. (New York: Harper, 1950), I:762.

122. “EDITOR'S TABLE…” Ladies' Repository 30 (1870): 158.

123. “The Bible in the Schools,” New York Evangelist 40 (1869): 8.

124. “ART. VIII.—Recent Publications on the School Question.”

125. “The Qualifications Of The Rev. Thomas Vickers For Librarian,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, November 26, 1873, 4.

126. “The Bible Question Once More. Judge Matthews Answered from the Pulpit,” Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, December 13, 1869, 8.


128. “Lane Theological Seminary,” New York Evangelist 41 (1870): 4; [Cincinnati synod] Interior, October 31, 1872, 2; [International Presbyterian meeting] “Sentinel Bayonet Thrusts,” Indianapolis Sentinel, March 21, 1877, 7; [Wooster University degree] Rocky Mountain Presbyterian, July 1, 1876, 3.

129. “The Bible in the Schools,” Cincinnati Enquirer, June 28, 1873, 4.

130. See “Local Politics. The Republican County Convention Yesterday,” Cincinnati Daily Enquirer, August 9, 1876, 8; “Matthews, Stanley,” The National Cyclopedia of American Biography 2 (New York: James T. White and Company, 1892), 476–77; “Justice Stanley Matthews,” The Green Bag 1 (1889): 181–83; Harold M. Helfman, “The Contested Confirmation of Stanley Matthews to the United States Supreme Court,” Bulletin of the Historical and Philosophical Society of Ohio 8 (1950): 155–170; and Murphy v. Ramsey, 114 U.S. 15 (1885).

131. “Guernsey County Politics,” Cincinnati Enquirer, July 15, 1879, 5; see also “How Does Judge Taft Stand?” Cincinnati Enquirer, May 7, 1875, 4; Clifford H. Moore, “Ohio in National Politics, 1865–1896,” Ohio Archaeological and Historical Publications 37 (1928): 220–427, 298–300, 321–22; and Samuel DeCanio, Democracy and the Origins of the American Regulatory State (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2015), 132–48.

132. See Steven K. Green, The Second Disestablishment: Church and State in Nineteenth-Century America (New York: Oxford University Press, 2010), 287; and Brumberg, Stephan E., “The Cincinnati Bible War (1869–1873) and Its Impact on the Education of the City's Protestants, Catholics, and Jews,” American Jewish Archives Journal 54 (2002): 1146Google Scholar; versus Nancy R. Hamant, “Religion in the Cincinnati Schools, 1830–1900,” Bulletin of the Historical and Philosophical Society of Ohio 21 (1963): 239–51.

133. Perko, A Time to Favor Zion, 192–195.

134. Report of the Committee on Moral Instruction Before the Cincinnati Principals’ Association… (Cincinnati: Robert Clarke & Co., 1873); Report on Moral Instruction Before the Cincinnati Principals’ Association, May 1, 1875 (n.p.); “Moral Instruction in the Public Schools,” Cincinnati Commercial Tribune, December 14, 1873, 3; “The Principals’ Association on Moral Instruction,” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, June 21, 1875, 3; see also, “Education In Ohio. The Meetings at Put-in-Bay—…” Cincinnati Daily Gazette, July 3, 1873, 2.

135. Perko, A Time to Favor Zion, 209, table 3; John B. Peaslee, Thoughts and Experiences In and Out of School (Cincinnati: Curts & Jennings, 1900), 82; see also Peaslee, “Moral and Literary Training in the Public Schools,” in The Addresses and Journal of Proceedings of the National Educational Association… (Salem, OH: Allen K. Tatem, 1881), 104–17.

136. E.E. White, “Moral Training in the Public School,” The Journal of Proceedings and Addresses of the National Educational Association (Salem, OH: Observer Book, 1887), 128–38, at 135; see the principals’ reports cited in note 134 for identical expressions.

137. See John B. Peaslee, Poetical and Prose Selections (Cincinnati: J. R. Mills & Co., 1878).

138. Joan Shelley Rubin, “Making Meaning: Analysis and Affect in the Study and Practice of Reading,” in Print in Motion: The Expansion of Publishing and Reading in the United States, ed. Carl F. Kaestle and Janice A. Radway (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2009), 511–27, at 520.

139. E.E. White, “Moral Training in the Public School,” [discussion], 141, 138. Beyerlein misconstrues White's position in “Educational Elites and the Movement to Secularize Public Education,” 178–79.

140. “ Reading of Bible in Public Schools Is Not Violation of Constitutional Rights” Opinions of the Attorney General of Ohio 1 (Cleveland: Banks-Baldwin Law Pub. Co, 1923), 127:893–96; and the opinion cited Donahoe v. Richards, 38 Maine R. 376 (1854).

141. Chalmers, David, “The Ku Klux Klan in Politics in The 1920's,” The Mississippi Quarterly 18 (1965): 234–47Google Scholar.

142. See Nancy Russell Hamant, “An Historical Perspective on Religious Practices in Selected Ohio School Districts” (EdD diss., University of Cincinnati, 1967).

143. Quoted in “Ohio Governor Vetoes School Bible Bill,” New York Times, May 1, 1925, 3.

144. Confrey, Secularism in American Education, 101.

145. Mandel, Bernard, “Religion and the Public Schools of Ohio,” Ohio Archaeological and Historical Quarterly 58 (1949): 185206Google Scholar; and Johnson, Alvin W.Bible Reading in the Public Schools,” Education 59 (1938–39): 274–80Google Scholar, at 279.

146. See Sarah Barringer Gordon, The Spirit of the Law: Religious Voices and the Constitution in Modern America (Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2010), 77–84.

147. Practices Relating to Religion in the Cincinnati Public Schools (Cincinnati: Cincinnati School Foundation, 1964).

148. Author's email correspondence with Barry Cushman on Columbus, Ohio, October 10, 2017.

149. Green, The Bible, the School and the Constitution, 110.

150. Hendrik Hartog, “Pigs and Positivism,” Wisconsin Law Review 1985 (1985): 889–936.

151. See Bruce J. Dierenfield, The Battle over School Prayer: How Engel v. Vitale Changed America (Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 2007), 2, table 1.1, 183, table 8.1.

152. Kevin M. Schulz, Tri-Faith America: How Catholics and Jews Held Postwar America to Its Protestant Promise (New York: Oxford University Press, 2011), 121; Winthrop S. Hudson, The Great Tradition of the American Churches (New York: Harper, 1953); and Ken I. Kersch, Conservatives and the Constitution: Imagining Constitutional Restoration in the Heyday of American Liberalism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019).

153. See Santa Fe Independent School District v. Doe, 530 U.S. 290 (2000).

154. Daniel L. Dreisbach and Mark David Hall, eds. Faith and the Founders of the American Republic (New York: Oxford University Press, 2014), 4.

155. See Green, The Bible, the School, and the Constitution, 116, 123–124; and Brumberg, “The Cincinnati Bible War,” 26.