To Help You find what you are researching--remember the year and look for it as you scroll... Be sure to add this site to your favorites as this site is packed-full of incredible links and visit our podsite II Kings 6:16-17 "Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them." Then Elisha prayed and said, "O LORD, I pray, open his eyes that he may see." And the LORD opened the servant's eyes, and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire around Elisha. Secrets of the kingdom:
(Picture is of the First Prayer in Congress that lasted three hours and George Washington stayed on his knees.)
This site is dedicated to let you experience and rememberthe wisdom of some of the greatest minds this nation has ever seen.
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To Help You find what you are researching--remember the year and look for it as you scroll...
Be sure to add this site to your favorites as this site is packed-full of incredible links
and visit our podsite
II Kings 6:16-17
"Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them."
Then Elisha prayed and said, "O LORD, I pray, open his eyes that he may see."
And the LORD opened the servant's eyes, and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire around Elisha.
Secrets of the kingdom:link:
"The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of God has been given to you, but to others I speak in parables, so that,
" 'though seeing, they may not see;
though hearing, they may not understand.'
"This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. Luke 8:10-11
Eighteenth Century Sources of American History
Early American Imprints, edited by Charles Evans. This is a full-text collection (more than 2 million pages) of every book that was available in the American Colonies from 1630-1800. Unfortunately you must be connected with a educational institution to gain access to these materials.
One Hundred Documents Pertaining to Africans and Slavery in America Massive collection of primary sources regarding slavery in America.
The Selling of Joseph, Samuel Sewall (1700) An argument against the slave trade.
His Excellency's Speech to the Honourable General Assembly (April 26, 1700)
The General Assembly's Answer to His Excellency's Speech (April 27, 1700)
A Memorial Representing the Present State of Religion on the Continent of North America, Thomas Bray, D.D. (1700) Documenting the Anglican view of the colonists and appended with a proposition to found the SPG (Society for Progating the Gospel).
King William Addresses Parliament on the French Question, 31 December 1701
A Christian At His Calling, Cotton Mather (1701)
Magnalia Christi Americana, Cotton Mather (1702)
Trinity Church Vestry Minutes (1703) on the plans of Governor Lord Cornbury (Edward Hyde, 1661-1723) to support the establishment of a college on the â€œKingâ€™s Farmâ€ property deeded by him to Trinity Church.
Lewis Morris letter to John Chamberlayne (1704) Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts
Robert Beverley on Bacon's Rebellion (1704)
Laws of Her Majesty's Plantations (1704)
Money and Trade Considered With a Proposal for Supplying the Nation with Money, by John Law (1705)
Slave Laws in Virginia (1642-1705)
The Repentance of a Salem Witchcraft Accuser, Ann Putnam (1706)
Act of Union (1707) The document creating "Great Britain"
The Rehearsal (newspaper) 1707
Philosophical Commentary, Pierre Bayle (1708) A writer recommended by Thomas Jefferson, Bayle criticised French Catholic persecution of Protestants; and argued for toleration as a matter of Biblical principle.
His Excellency's Speech to the General Assembly (Nov. 29, 1708)
The Assembly's Answer to His Excellency's Speech (Dec. 2, 1708)
William Byrd's Diary [excerpt] (1709)
William Byrd's Diary [excerpts regarding slave punishments] (1709)
Theopolis Americana ("God's City: America"), Cotton Mather (1709) This excerpt from Mather's sermon shows how Mather, with other Puritans, believed that America was truly the "Promised Land." This thinking led ultimately to the doctrine of Manifest Destiny, whereby Anglo-Americans believed that it was their divine commission to spread their culture from Atlantic to Pacific.
A New Voyage to Carolina (1709) John Lawson
Awakening Truths Tending to Conversion, Increase Mather (1710). A sermon wrestling with the paradox between predestination and man's effort toward salvation. Mather appears nearly contradictory throughout.
Journal of John Barnwell (1711)
The Spectator (1711)
About the Duties of Husbands and Wives, Benjamin Wadsworth (1712)
Curriculum of the Boston Latin Grammar School (1712)
The History of the Common Law of England, Matthew Hale (1713)
Von Graffenried's Account of the Founding of New Bern (1714)
Documents Concerning the Jacobite Rebellion
The North Carolina Biennal Act (1715)
Vindication of the Government of New England Churches, John Wise (1717) A Puritan political sermon which included most of the principles of government embraced by the founders of the U.S.
Works of Joseph Addison
Selections from Cato's Letters, John Trenchard and Thomas Gordon (1720-23) English newspaper articles advocating Whig principles, which much influenced the American colonists.
Constitution of the Iroquois Confederacy A model for a federal system of government for several Native American nations, Franklin lauded the Iroquois for their ability to confederate.
Statutes of the College of William and Mary (1727) The rules governing the college where Thomas Jefferson received his training.
Massachusetts House of Representatives on the Governor's Salary, 11 September 1728
Governor Burnet of Massachusetts on the Governor's Salary, 17 September 1728
The Maryland Gazette (1728)
The Westover Manuscripts (1728-1736) William Byrd and Edmund Ruffin
The Adopting Act of the Presbyterian Church
The Story of Venture Smith (1729-1809)
Lord Baltimore's Receipt Book (1729-1750)
Plain Reasons for Presbyterians Dissenting, Andrew Clarkson (1731); arguing against unconditional submission to the National Church and magistrates.
A New and Accurate Account of the Provinces of South-Carolina and Georgia (1732) James Oglethorpe; complete text
Dissertation Upon Parties, Henry St. John Bolingbroke (1733). A heavy influence upon Jefferson.
Documents Connected With the Early History of Georgia
Founding Vision for Georgia, General James Oglethorpe (1733)
Negotiations Regarding the Settlement of the Georgia Colony, Count Zinzendorf (1733)
Transcript of the Trial of Peter Zenger (1735)
Letters on the Study and Use of History, Henry St. John Bolingbroke (1735)
On Patriotism, Bolingbroke (1736)
Governor Gabriel Johnston's request to repeal the Biennal act, 18 October 1736
Letters and Papers Relating to the Provincial History of Pennsylvania
Newspaper Articles Pertaining to Religion in North Carolina
Disposition of the North Carolina Biennal Act (1737)
The Idea of a Patriot King, Bolingbroke (1738)
Discourse on the Five Points [Of Calvinism], Daniel Whitby. The text which incited Jonathan Edwards to write his most important book, The Freedom of the Will.
Works of John Gill Defender of Calvinism; a celebrated English Calvinist.
Intentions of the SPG (Society for the Propagation of the Gospel) (1740) The desire of this group to land an Anglican Bishop in the American colonies ignited the American Revolution.
The True Scripture-Doctrine Concerning Some Important Points of the Christian Faith, Jonathan Dickinson (1741) Jonathan Dickinson was the first President of the College at Princeton, New Jersey. In this excerpt, Dickinson states that atheism is pure "stupidity" and "madness." Dickinson's opinion in this regard represented the consensus in America. Subsequently all of the founders of the United States were certain of the existence of a Deity. On the other hand, Dickinson here emphasizes the doctrine of Predestination, which was the central controversy of the eighteenth century in the Colonies. Colonists' opinions were divided in this regard. Earlier in the century predestination was the majority view, but by the end of the century a belief in "free-will" had become prevalent among many such as Methodists.
The Works of Jonathan Edwards, Enlightenment Philosopher, Theologian, Orator, Scientist; Edwards was the most important American-born Great Awakening preacher and defender of orthodox Calvinism.
Sermons of George Whitefield, Known for his supreme oratory skills, Whitefield was the most famous inter-colonial celebrity during the Great Awakening. The inter-colonial nature of Whitefield's ministry was an important step in the development of the intercolonial union which commenced in the 1760's and 70's. A strong advocate of predestination, Whitefield entered into a bitter dispute with his Methodist colleague, John Wesley over the issue, and the movement was split.
The Complete Works of John Wesley, An English preacher, Wesley developed the practice of itinerant preaching: out of doors, traveling long distances on horseback. Wesley was a strong opponent of the Calvinism which was prevalent in America. Wesley visited America.
The Works of John Wesley, founder of Methodism.
The Essential Rights and Liberties of Protestants, Elisha Williams (1744) a Boston minister who vigorously promoted liberty of conscience.
Regulations at Yale College (1745) Showing the centrality of Calvinism and the Westminster Confession in colonial higher education.
Maryland Gazette (1745-1751)
The Presence of Great God in the Assembly of Political Rulers, John Barnard (1746) A early warning against tyranny from one of Boston's ministers.
William Borden's Addresses to the People and the Burgesses (1746)
Narrative of the Deliverance of Briton Hammond, An account of an African-American taken captive by Native Americans (1747)
taken captive by Native Americans (1747)
The Principles of Natural Law, J. Burlamaqui, tr. Thomas Nugent (1748, tr. Thomas Nugent 1752) This was the textbook on political theory used at Harvard. It was this book that gave James Otis, John Hancock, Samuel Adams, Joseph Warren, and John Adams their understanding of political science.
The Principles of Politic Law, J. Burlamaqui, tr. Thomas Nugent (1748, tr. Thomas Nugent 1752) Sequel to The Principles of Natural Law carrying natural law into constitutional law. Commentary on the ideas of Grotius, Hobbes, Puffendorf, Barbeyrac, Locke, Clarke, and Hutchinson.
The Spirit of Laws, Charles de Montesquieu, (1748, tr. Thomas Nugent 1752) Laid the foundations for the theory of republican government, particularly the concepts of the separation of powers into legislative, executive, and judicial, a federal republic, representatives elected from political subdivisions, a bicameral legislature, and a system of checks and balances. Montesquieu was the most frequently cited political theorist during the founding of the U.S.
An Inquiry into the Principles of Political Economy, James Steuart. Recommended by Jefferson as one of the best books on political science.
History of Massachusetts Bay, Thomas Hutchinson, excerpt regarding coinage.
The Pennsylvania Gazette (1749)
Remarks on the Fable of the Bees, Frances Hutcheson (1750)
Indian Captivity Narrative, Mary Jemison (1750)
A Discourse Concerning Unlimited Submission and Non-Resistance to the Higher Powers, Jonathan Mayhew (1750) About this document, John Adams wrote, "It was read by everybody; celebrated by friends, and abused by enemies... It spread an universal alarm against the authority of Parliament. It excited a general and just apprehension, that bishops, and dioceses, and churches, and priests, and tithes, were to be imposed on us by Parliament." This sermon has been called the spark which ignited the American Revolution. This illustrates that the Revolution was not only about stamps and taxes but also about religious liberty.
Petition to Parliament: Reasons for Making Bar, as well as Pig or Sow-iron (ca. 1750)
Petition to Parliament: Reason Against a General Prohibition of the Iron Manufacture in Plantations
Memoir on the English Aggression, October 1750
Eighteenth Century Sources of Influence on America (latter part of the century) Memoir on the French Colonies in North America, December 1750
The Spangenberg Diary (1752)
THE INDEPENDENT REFLECTOR: William Livingston
"No. XVIII. A Continuation of the Same Subject" (March 29, 1753)
"No. XIX. The Same Subject Continued," (April 5, 1753)
"No. XX. A Farther Prosecution of the Same Subject," (April 12, 1753)
"No. XXI. Remarks on the College, Continued," (April 19, 1753)
"No. XXII. The Same Subject Continued and Concluded," (April 26, 1753)
Of Party Divisions, William Livingston (1753)
George Washington Goes to Ohio (1753)
A Discourse on the Origin of Inequality, Jean Jacques Rousseau (1754) Discussion on political inequality, its origins and implications.
Advertisements of the Beginning of Tuition at King's College (1754) Samuel Johnson
Complete Correspondence of Samuel Johnson
Objections to the Formation of King's College (1754)
A Discourse on Political Economy, Jean Jacques Rousseau (1755) Discussion on the economic principles affecting the politics of a society.
Dictionary, Samuel Johnson (1755) This was the standard dictionary of the late 18th century.
The Value and Purpose of Princeton College, Samuel Davies and Gilbert Tennent (1754); an appeal to British citizens to support the seminary which became Princeton University.
Religion and Patriotism the Constituents of a Good Soldier, Samuel Davies (1755). Davies, a Presbyterian preacher and president of the College at Princeton, here interprets the French and Indian war as a religious war. In this excerpt from a sermon preached in Virginia, Davies rouses the anti-Catholic sentiment of his hearers to rally them to arms against the French in the Ohio country.
The Defeat of Braddock (1755), George Washington
The New Hampshire Gazette (1756)
Primary Sources Pertaining to the French and Indian War
Robertson's History of Scotland
The Curse of Cowardice, Samuel Davies (1758)
The London Chronicle (1758)
The Petition of Reuben Searcy and Others (1759)
The Defeat of Wolfe (1759)
Against the Writs of Assistance, James Otis (1761)
The Role of the Indians in the Rivalry Between France, Spain, and England, Governor Glen (1761)
John Rutherfurd on the Importance of the Colonies to Great Britain (1761)
Henry McCulloh's Representations Relative to the Colonies (1761)
Elements of Criticism, Lord Kaims [Henry Homes] (1762), Highly recommended by Jefferson, in this excerpt Kaims discusses the problems with fiction.
The Social Contract, Jean Jacques Rousseau (1762) Discussed legitimate government as the expression of the general will.
The Statutes of King's College (1763)
Treaty of Paris (1763) Ended the French and Indian War and gave the English control of all the land east of the Mississippi River.
Excerpts from American Newspapers (1763-1775)
Acts of Parliament concerning the American Colonies
- The Royal Proclamation of 1763 Forbid colonists from crossing the Appalachians.
- The Currency Act, 1764
- The Sugar Act, 1764
- The Quartering Act, 1765
- The Stamp Act, 1765 Precipitated the "Stamp Act Crisis" which fomented rebellion throughout the colonies
- The Declaratory Act, 1766 The English Parliament repealed the Stamp Act, but couldn't leave well enough alone, and adopted this statement of parliamentary supremacy over the British colonies.
- The Townshend Act, 1767
- The Tea Act, 1773
- The Administration of Justice Act, 1774
- The Boston Port Act, 1774
- The Massachusetts Government Act, 1774
- The Quebec Act, 1774
- The Quartering Act, 1774
The Rights of the British Colonies Asserted and Proved, James Otis (1764)
John Jay vs. President Myles Cooper (1764)
Laws of Maryland (1765)
Blackstone's Commentaries (1765) Considered the book that "lost the colonies" for England. This text delineates the legal principles of common law which ensure the fundamental rights of Englishmen. Blackstone was quoted by the colonists twice as often as they quoted Locke.
Blackstone's Contents (1765)
Offenses Against God and Religion, William Blackstone (1765). Showing the common understanding that the integrity of the judicial system depends upon the participants' belief in God.
On Husband And Wife, William Blackstone (1765)
Considerations, Daniel Dulany, October 1765
The Objections to the Taxation Consider'd, Soame Jenyns (1765)
The Resolutions of the Stamp Act Congress, October 19, 1765
An Address to the People of Granville County (1765)
The Declaration of Rights of the Stamp Act Congress (1765) Developed the concept that people could not legitimately be taxed except by their elected representatives.
Newspaper Articles Pertaining to the Stamp Act
The Sons of Liberty Constitution (1766)
William Pitt's Speech on the Stamp Act, January 14, 1766
Examination of Benjamin Franklin in the House of Commons (1766)
On Crimes and Punishments, Cesare Beccaria (1766) Set out rights of the accused in criminal proceedings. Argues for crime prevention over punishment, and against the death penalty and torture.
On the History of Civil Society, Adam Ferguson
John Dickinson's Letter 2, from Letters from a Farmer, 1767-1768
John Dickinson's Letter 4, from Letters from a Farmer, 1767-1768
On the Misfortune of Indentured Servants, Gottlieb Mittelberger
An Election Sermon, Daniel Shute; Delivered in Boston, Massachusetts-Bay, 26 May 1768.
Charter of Dartmouth College (1769)
Virginia Nonimportation Resolutions (1769)
Excerpts From Mary Cooper's Diary (1769)
The Boston Chronicle (1769)
The Sons of Liberty (1769)
Daniel Boone's Journal
The Boston Massacre, The Boston Gazette, 12 March 1770
Anonymous Account of the Boston Massacre, 5 March, 1770
Captain Thomas Preston's account of the Boston Massacre, 13 March 1770
Whitehall Evening Post (1770)
The Hymnbook of Isaac Watts, After the Bible and the Catechism, this was the third most commonly used book in colonial New England.
Newspaper Articles Pertaining to the Carolina Regulators
Address to the Inhabitants of Jamaica and Other West India Islands, In Behalf of the College of New Jersey (1772) John Witherspoon
Candid Remarks on Dr. Witherspoon's Address to the Inhabitants of Jamaica... (1772) John Vardill
The Rights of the Colonists, Samuel Adams (1772) John Adams indicated that all the concepts which Jefferson later set forth in the Declaration of Independence were first introduced here.
An Oration on the Beauties of Liberty, Reverend John Allen (1772)
Oration Deliverd at Boston, Joseph Warren (1772)
Second Oration Delivered at Boston, Joseph Warren (1772)
Journal of John Woolman
An Election Sermon, Simeon Howard (1773) Demonstrating that an armed war against a tyrant was a Christian's duty.
The Sovereign Decrees of God, Isaac Backus (1773)
Eyewitness Account of the Boston Tea Party, George Hewes (1773)
The Governor's Account of the Boston Tea Party (1773)
Educational Exercises at Princeton (1773)
Resolution of the Virginia House of Burgesses for Establishing an Intercolonial Committee of Correspondence (1773)
Informations Concerning North Carolina (1773)
The Resolves of Hanover (June, 1774)
Early Virginia Religious Petitions (1774-1802) Thomas Jefferson, a member of the Virginia Committee on Religion, was greatly impacted by these petitions in developing his thoughts about religious liberty.
Boston Massacre Oration, John Hancock (1774)
A Plea Before the Massachusetts Legislature, Isaac Backus (1774)
Considerations on the Nature and Extent of the Legislative Authority of the British Parliament, James Wilson (1774)
To the Inhabitants of the Several Anglo-American Colonies, William Livingston (1774) Declaration of Colonial Rights of the Continental Congress (1774) John Adams said that the Declaration of Independence was not much more than a recapitulation of this document.
Resolves of the Continental Congress
First Prayer Given in the Continental Congress, Rev. Jacob Duche (1774)
Journals of the Continental Congress, 34 Volumes. This invaluable collection of documents tells what took place in Philadelphia as the United States was being birthed.
Resolution of the House of Burgesses in Virginia (1774) This resolution was inspired by similar resolutions made in the Puritan Revolution of 1641; the Burgesses resolved to commit their crisis to prayer and fasting.
Sermon on Civil Liberty, Nathaniel Niles (1774) An example of how clergymen stoked the revolutionary spirit.
The Olive Branch Petition (1774). This document is a last-ditch attempt to mend the tears between Britain and America. But George III never read this petition.
A Plan for the Union of Great Britain and the Colonies, Joseph Galloway (1774)
The Suffolk Resolves, Joseph Warren (1774)
Phyllis Wheatley to Samson Occam (1774)
Works of Henry Laurens, President of the Continental Congress
Facsimilies of Newspapers published during the era of the American Revolution
Adams, Franklin, and Madison: Accounts of Their Original Plans to be Christian Clergymen
Authors Most Frequently Cited by the Founders
John Adams Discusses the Historic Sources Which Provided the Intellectual Foundations of American Political Theory
American Archives, a massive collection of primary sources pertaining to the American Revolution; assembled by Peter Force in 1837. A search feature is available.
Documents of the Founding Fathers, This is the most comprehensive site online featuring the writings of the founding fathers.
Sermons Preached during the Founding Era
- Vindication of the Government of New England Churches (1717), John Wise; republished 1772
- Government the Pillar of the Earth (1730), Benjamin Colman
- Nineveh's Repentence and Deliverance (1740), Joseph Sewall
- The Essential Rights and Liberties of Protestants (1744), Elisha Williams
- Britain's Mercies, and Britain's Duties (1746), George Whitefield
- Civil Magistrates Must be Just, Ruling in the Fear of God (1746), Charles Chauncy
- The Presence of Great God in the Assembly of Political Rulers (1746), John Barnard
- A Discourse Concerning Unlimited Submission and Non-Resistance to the Higher Powers (1750), Jonathan Mayhew
- The Mediatorial Kingdom and Glories of Jesus Christ (1756), Samuel Davies
- Sermons by Samuel Davies, many heard and recited by Patrick Henry
- The Presence of God With His People (1760), Samuel Dunbar
- The Snare Broken (1766), Jonathan Mayhew
- An Election Sermon (1768), Daniel Shute
- An Humble Inquiry (1769), John Joachim Zubly
- Oration Deliverd at Boston (1772), Joseph Warren
- Second Oration Delivered at Boston (1772), Joseph Warren
- An Oration Upon the Beauties of Liberty (1773), John Allen
- An Election Sermon (1773), Simeon Howard
- An Appeal to the Public for Religious Liberty (1773), Isaac Backus
- The Sovereign Decrees of God, Isaac Backus (1773)
- Scriptural Instructions to Civil Rulers (1774), Samuel Sherwood
- Sermon on Civil Liberty (1774), Nathaniel Niles
- Defensive War in a Just Cause Sinless (1775), David Jones
- A Sermon on the Present Situation of American Affairs (1775), Rev. William Smith, D.D.
- A Calm Address to our American Colonies (1775), John Wesley
A Constitutional Answer to Wesleyâ€™s Calm Address (1775), Anonymous
- Americaâ€™s Appeal to the Impartial World (1775), Moses Mather
- The Churchâ€™s Flight Into the Wilderness (1776), Samuel Sherwood
- The Dominion of Providence Over the Passions of Men (1776), John Witherspoon
- The Bible and the Sword (1776), John Fletcher
- God Arising and Pleading His Peopleâ€™s Cause (1777), Abraham Keteltas
- Divine Judgments Upon Tyrants (1778), Jacob Cushing
- Election Sermon (1778), Phillips Payson
- A Sermon on the Day of the Commencement of the Constitution (1780), Samuel Cooper
- A Sermon Preached at Lexington on the 19th of April (1781), Henry Cumings
- A Dialogue Between the Devil, and George III, Tyrant of Britain (1782), Anonymous
- The United States Elevated to Glory And Honor (1783), Ezra Stiles
- Defensive Arms Vindicated (1783), A Moderate Whig (Stephen Case?)
- A Sermon Preached on a Day of Thanksgiving (1784), George Duffield
A Sermon on Occasion of the Commencement of the New Hampshire Constitution (1784), Samuel Mcclintock
- The Republic of the Israelites an Example to the American States (1788), Samuel Langdon
- A Century Sermon on the Glorious Revolution (1788), Elhanan Winchester
- A Discourse on the Love of Our Country (1790), Richard Price
- The African Slave Trade (1791), James Dana
- A Sermon Delivered at the Annual Election (1791), Israel Evans
- The Rights of Conscience Inalienable (1791), John Leland
- A Sermon for the Day of General Election (1792), David Tappan
- A Sermon Preached Before the Artillery Company (1793), Peter Thacher
- A Sermon on the Anniversary of the Independence of America (1793), Samuel Miller
- An Oration in Commemoration of the Independence of the United States of America (1793), Enos Hitchcock
- The Necessity of the Belief of Christianity (1794), Jonathan Edwards, Jr.
- The Wonderful Works of God are to be Remembered (1794), David Osgood
- The Revolution in France (1794), Noah Webster
- Manifestations of the Beneficence of Divine Providence Towards America (1795), Bishop James Madison
- Sermon Before the General Court of New Hampshire at the Annual Election (1797), Stephen Peabody
- A Discourse, Delivered at the Roman Catholic Church in Boston (1798), John Thayer
- The Duty of Americans, at the Present Crisis (1798), Timothy Dwight
- Four Discourses On The General First Principles of Deism (1798), Samuel E. McCorkle, D.D.
- A Sermon Occasioned by the Death of Washington (1800), Henry Holcombe
- On the Evils of a Weak Government (1800), John Smalley
- The Voice of Warning to Christians (1800), John Mitchell Mason
- A Solemn Address to Christians and Patriots (1800), Tunis Wortman
Works of Benjamin Franklin
- The Writings of Benjamin Franklin, The most complete site containing Franklin's works.
- A Dissertation on Liberty and Necessity (1725), A little known theological work in which Franklin made a metaphysical argument for predestination and against free-will. Franklin concluded that all things are ultimately good, because God is in total control and God is good.
- Franklin's Advice Concerning His Friend's Sexual Affairs (1745), Illustrating a side of Franklin's character which is seldom exposed.
- Franklin's Writings on Religion
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1733)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1734)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1735)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1736)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1737)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1738)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1739)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1740)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1741)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1742)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1743)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1744)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1745)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1746)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard (1747)
- Franklin, Benjamin: Poor Richard Improved (1748)
- Observations and Suppositions Towards Forming a New Hypothesis for Explaining the Several Phenomena of Thunder Gusts, (1749) The insights which led to Franklin's famous Kite experimentation, which, in turn, gave Franklin his international reputation which mattered greatly as the U.S. was being birthed.
- Observations on the Increase of Mankind (1751)
- Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
- Albany Plan for a Union (1754) Ben Franklin's first attempt to Unite the States.
- In Defense of a Plan for Colonial Union, Benjamin Franklin (1754) Arguments in favor of the Albany Plan of Union, which was rejected as too democratic.
- Benjamin Franklin, How I Became a Printer in Philadelphia
- Franklin's Motion for Prayer at the Constitutional Convention
- Franklin's Advice to Paine about Publishing against Religion, In this letter, Franklin advises Paine to burn his manuscript because it undermines religious ideals.
- Franklin's Tentative Approval of the Constitution
- Franklin's last Letter to Ezra Stiles, Detailing Franklin's religious opinions
- Ben Franklin's Will
Works of Sam Adams
- Writings of Samuel Adams One of the most thorough internet sites of its kind including numerous letters and newspaper articles.
Works of George Washington
- Prayer Journal used by Washington
- Papers of George Washington (Library of Congress). This is the most comprehensive source on the web for documents authored by George Washington.
- Papers of George Washington (Jared Sparks Edition)
- Rules for Civility (1744)
- Journal (1754)
- Braddock's Defeat (1755)
- Religious Oath Taken by Washington (1762)
- The Inauguration of George Washington, containing the account of his addition of "so help me God" to the oath.
- Washington's Inauguration (1789)
- Letter to Presbyterians
- Letter to State Governments
- General Orders, July 2, 1776
- Letter to John Hancock, September 24, 1776
- The Battle of Trenton (1776)
- George Washington Attended Communion
- Testimony about George Washington Praying at Valley Forge, 1778
- Address to the Members of the Volunteer Association and Other Inhabitants... , December 2, 1783
- Letter to George Chapman, December 15, 1784 (On importance of education)
- Letter to Robert Morris, April 12, 1786 (On the abolition of slavery)
- Letter to the President of the Continental Congress, September 17, 1787
- First Inaugural Address, April 30, 1789
- Letter to the United Baptist Churches in Virginia, May 10, 1789
- Excerpts from Drafts of the First Inaugural Address (1789)
- Thanksgiving Proclamation (1789)
- First Annual Message, January 8, 1790 (Order of business for a young Union)
- Excerpts of Washington's Diaries (1790)
- Letter to the Hebrew Congregation in Newport, August, 1790 (On what is a just and good government)
- Proclamation of Neutrality, 1793
- The Diary of George Washington 30 September-19 October 1794
- Letter to the Vice President, November 15, 1794
- Letter to the Commissioners of the District of Columbia, January 28, 1795 (On education and establishment of a university)
- Farewell Address, September 19, 1796 (Public opinion should be enlightened)
- Papers of George Washington (Yale Library)
- Vestry Records from Washington's Church
- Washington's Record as a Church Vestryman
- Washington's Nephew Witnesses his Morning Devotions
- Last Will And Testament of George Washington (1799)
- Several Obituaries of George Washington
- Boston Chronicle Obituary
- George Washington's Adopted Daughter Discusses Washington's Religious Character Nelly Custis lived with the Washingtons at Mt. Vernon for twenty years (1779 until 1799). As a daily observer of his life, she was qualified perhaps more than any other to assess George Washington's religion (even perhaps more than George himself, who was reluctant to speak about his own religious affections).
- Mason Weems' Biography of George Washington (1800), the classic source for most of the greatest stories about George Washington, including the "cherry tree" story.
Works of John Adams
- The Papers of John Adams, This is the best source of material written by John Adams that is available on the web.
- Diary of John Adams, excerpts illustrating Adams' sentiments regarding religion.
- Liberty of Conscience Traced to Back Calvin's Geneva (1776)
- Letter to James Sullivan, May 26, 1776 (On women and voting rights)
- Letter to Zabdiel Adams, June 21, 1776 (On reason, honor, and love of liberty)
- Correspondence between John and Abigail Adams, March-April 1776 (On nature and liberty)
- Abigail Adams' Correspondence
- "Discourse on Davila--XV," 1776 (Contrast of natural equality and inequalities)
- "Thoughts on Government", 1776 (On republican government)
- A Dissertation on the Canon and Feudal Law
- A Defence of the Constitutions of the United States of America
- Defense of the American Constitutions, An important excerpt in which Adams recommends various writings of Protestant political theorists
- Appendix to the Defence of the Constitutions, 1787 (On the good effects of local institutions)
- John Adams Inaugural Address (1797)
- The Constitution is Inadequate to Govern Atheists, 1798
- Message to the Senate on the Death of George Washington, December 23, 1799
- Letters to Benjamin Rush and Samuel Miller, illustrating Adams' hatred for Thomas Paine and his admiration for Calvinists.
- American Independence Achieved Upon the Principles of Christianity (1813)
- Letter to Evans, June 8, 1819 (The founding's opposition to slavery)
- Letter to H. Niles, February 13, 1818 (On the Revolution as a religious revolution of ideas and principles)
- Letter to Timothy Pickering, August 6, 1822. Detailing Adams' recollection of the production of the Declaration of Independence. Adams states here that there is not an idea in the Declaration which had not been hackneyed in Congress for two years before. According to Adams, the substance of the Declaration is contained in the in the Declaration of Colonial Rights of the Continental Congress, and the essence of it is contained in The Rights of the Colonists, written before the first Congress met, by Samuel Adams.
Works of Thomas Jefferson
- Papers of Thomas Jefferson This is the best site online that contains documents authored by Thomas Jefferson.
- Writings on Religion
- Notes on the State of Virginia
- Jefferson's draft of the Declaration of Independence
- Declaration of Independence, 4 July, 1776
- Jefferson's Bible
- Jefferson's Manual For Parliamentary Procedure
- Draft for a Bill for Establishing Relgious Freedom (1779)
- Letter to the Danbury Baptists (1802). Source of the phrase "wall of separation between church and state."
Annual and Special messages to Congress
- First Annual Message to Congress
- Second Annual Message to Congress
- Third Annual Message to Congress
- Fourth Annual Message to Congress
- Fifth Annual Message to Congress
- Sixth Annual Message to Congress
- Seventh Annual Message to Congress
- Eighth Annual Message to Congress
- Special Message on the Burr Conspiracy
- Special Message on Gun-Boats
Messages to Congress
- Message to the Senate of April 8, 1802 Regarding Article 6 of the Jay Treaty
- Message to the House of December 30, 1802 Transmitting a letter from Manuel de Salcedo, Governor of Louisiana to William Claiborne Regarding the Treaty with Spain of 1795
- Message to the Senate of January 11, 1803 Regarding Louisiana
- Message to the Senate of October 17, 1803 Regarding the Louisiana Purchase
- Message to the Senate and House of October 21, 1803 Regarding the Louisiana Purchase
- Message to the Senate and House of January 16, 1804 Regarding the Louisiana Purchase
- To the Brothers of the Choctaw Nation
- To Brother Handsome Lake
- To Brother John Baptist de Coigne
- To the Chiefs of the Cherokee Nation
- To the Wolf and People of the Mandan Nation
- Draft Constitution for Virginia
- Draft Declaration and Protest of the Commonwealth of Virginia
- Draft of the Kentucky Resolutions - October 1798
- Kentucky Resolution (1799)
- From the Minutes of the Board of Visitors, University of Virginia, 1822 - 1825
- Observations on the Whale - Fishery
- Opinion on the Constitutionality of a National Bank
- Opinion on the French Treaties
- Plan for Establishing Uniformity in the Coinage, Weights, and Measures of the United States
- Report on the Privileges and Restrictions on the Commerce of the United States in Foreign Counies
- Report on Government for Western Territory
- Resolutions of Congress on Lord North's Conciliatory Proposal
- A Summary View of the Rights of British America
Works of James Madison
- Works of James Madison, Probably the best such source available online at this time.
- Debates in the Federal Convention of 1787, James Madison. These are the proceedings of the Constitutional Convention held in Philadelphia, an essential guide to interpreting the intent of the Framers.
- James Madison, First Inaugural (1809)
- James Madison, Second Inaugural (1813)
- The Federalist Papers, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay (1787-88) Arguments for ratification of the proposed Constitution.
- Memorial and Remonstrance (Virginia, 1785)
- James Madison, speech proposing the Bill of Rights, June 8, 1789
- Detached Memoranda (>1817), detailing Madison's views of the importance of no religious establishments
- Letter to F.L. Schaeffer (1821) in which Madison credits Luther with leading the way for the appropriate distinction between church and state.
The Works of Thomas Paine
- The American Crisis, 1776 - 1783
- Common Sense (1776)
- African Slavery in America (1775)
- Age oif Reason (1795)
- The Age of Reason - Part 1 Paine demonstrates the absurdity of a word of God existing in print. As a Deist, Paine believed that the true word of God is nature.
- The Age of Reason - Part 2 Paine demonstrates that neither the Old Testament nor the New Testament can be the Word of God.
- Agrarian Justice
- Answer to Bishop LLandaff Publication of The Age of Reason generated a storm of controversy. One of Paine's critics was Bishop Llandaff, who published a detailed rebuttal to The Age of Reason. This is Paine's reply to that rebuttal.
- Biblical Blasphemy
- The Works of Thomas Paine
- An Essay on Dream (1807)
- Examination of the Prophecies (1807)
- The Existence of God
- Letter to Andrew Dean (1806) Thomas Paine on death and Christianity.
- Letters Concerning "The Age of Reason" (1797-1803) Thomas Paine's correspondence concerning The Age of Reason. Includes correspondence with Samuel Adams.
- Of the Religion of Deism Compared with the Christian Religion In this hard-hitting article, Paine argues that Deism is superior to Christianity.
- Origin of Free-Masonry (1818)
- Prospect Papers (1804)
- Rights Of Man (1792)
- Worship and Church Bells (1797)
American Revolution Military Documents
- First-hand Account of the Midnight Ride, Paul Revere (1775)
- The Royal Proclamation of Rebellion (1775)
- Military Letters, A huge collection of correspondences between officers; particularly late war period in the South
- Military Records of the American Revolution
- Espionage Documents of the American Revolution
- Daniel Morgan's Autobiography
- Lexington & Concord (1775) William Emerson
- The Battle of Bunker Hill, Major-General Sir John Burgoyne to Lord Stanley, June 1775
- The Battle of Bunker Hill, Lieutenant J. Waller, First Royal Marine Battalion, to His Brother, Camp of Charlestown Heights, 22 June 1775
- The Capture of Boston, George Washington (1776)
- The Battle of Trenton, George Washington (1776)
- Recruiting Instructions (1776)
- The Recruiting Service, Captain Alexander Graydon, 1776
- Army Life, Captain Georg Pausch, 8 September 1776
- Christopher Vail's Journal (1775-1782)
- Nathan Hale's Execution (1776)
- The Battle of Saratoga, Hessian Account (1777)
- Saratoga, Major-General Burgoyne to his nieces, Albany, 20 October 1777
- From the Diary of a Surgeon at Valley Forge, Albigence Waldo (1777)
- Letters from Valley Forge (1778)
- Orderly Book (1778) of the First Battalion of Maryland Loyalists
- Alliance with France (1778)
- Papers of General Nathaniel Greene
- Treaties With France
- Comments on Hessian Troops, Lieutenant W. Hale, Philadelphia, 23 March 1778
- Monmouth Court House, Lieutenant Hale, Neversunk, 4 July 1778
- Treaty with the Delawares (1778)
- John Paul Jones' Sea Fight (1779)
- The Capture of Vincennes (1779)
- Benedict Arnold's Treason and other Spy Documents (1780)
- The Execution of Andre (1780)
- Washington's Headquarters, Francois Jean, Marquis de Chastellux, 1780
- The Norfolk Chronicle, Saturday, February 17, 1781
- Connecticut Gazette (1781)
- The Surrender of Cornwalis (1781)
- From the Diary of Ebenezer Denny (1781) describing the surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown
- Contract Between the King and the Thirteen United States of North America, signed at Versailles July 16, 1782
- Preliminary Articles of Peace, U.S. and Great Britain, 30 November 1782
- Declarations for Suspension of Arms and Cessation of Hostilities, Signed at Versailles January 20, 1783
- Journal, John Paul Jones; Naval Hero
- Treaty of Paris (1783)
- George III Laments the Loss of the Colonies
- History of the American Revolution, David Ramsay (1789), the first complete treatment of the American Revolution by an eyewitness.
- History of the Rise, Progress, and Termination of the American Revolution, Mercy Otis Warren (1804); full length, eyewitness account of the American Revolution by a relative of James Otis and Joseph Warren.
Letters of the Founding Fathers, The most comprehensive source for letters written by the members of the Continental Congress.
Letters of Episcopal Ministers of Massachusetts
Letters of Episcopal Ministers, showing their loyalty to Britain.
Sermons Preached During the Revolutionary Period, an online collection of dozens of sermons that fueled the American Revolution
The American Revolution in New Jersey; an abundance of primary sources
The American Revolution in New York, an exhibit of primary material
Speech of Governor William Franklin of New Jersey (1775); loyalist son of Benjamin Franklin
The Pennsylvania Ledger (1775)
Letters of a Westchester Farmer, Rev. Samuel Seabury (1775); loyalist propaganda
The Farmer Refuted, Alexander Hamilton (1775). In this defense of the American cause in response to an Anglican minister's criticism of the revolution, Hamilton states that laws, rights, and political principles are all based in the existence and law of God.
Newspaper Articles during the Revolution
John Newton Criticizing Arminians (1775) A letter from the author of "Amazing Grace" claiming that repentance is the not key to atonement.
Daniel Leonard's Letter of January 9, 1775
Defensive War in a Just Cause Sinless, David Jones (1775). Sermon justifying the revolution.
Speech on Conciliation with America, Edmund Burke, March 22, 1775; Burke describes the character of the American colonists and links their commitment to liberty to their Protestantism.
Government Corrupted by Vice, and Recovered by Righteousness, Samuel Langdon, May 31, 1775; This sermon preached a year before Jefferson wrote his declaration, included this phrase: "By the law of nature, any body of people, destitute of order and government, may form themselves into a civil society, according to their best prudence, and so provide for their common safety and advantage."
On Civil Liberty, Passive Obedience, and Nonresistance, Jonathan Boucher (1775)
Taxation no Tyranny (1775) Samuel Johnson
A Calm Address to our American Colonies, John Wesley (1775)
The American Vine, Jacob Duche (1775)
Extract of a Letter from Philadelphia to a Gentleman in London (1775)
The Charlotte Town Resolves (1775) Resolutions of Presbyterians of Mecklenberg, North Carolina.
Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death, Patrick Henry (1775). Famous oration which motivated Southerners to join in the battle already taking place in New England.
Declaration of the Causes and Necessity of Taking up Arms, Jefferson and Dickinson, July 6, 1775. This document was inspired by the Puritan Declaration of August, 1642, "Declaration of the Lords and Commons to Justify Their Taking Up Arms," available in John Rushworth, ed., Historical Collections of Private Passages of State, Weighty Matters in Law, Remarkable Proceedings in Five Parliaments (1680-1722),vol. 4, pp. 761-768.
Yankee Doodle The anthem of the Continental Army
The Church's Flight into the Wilderness, Samuel Sherwood, January 17, 1776; A sermon which labels British tyranny Satanic.
The Virginia Declaration of Rights, George Mason (1776) Unquestionably a document which Jefferson had in mind when writing the Declaration of Independence.
Sources of the Declaration of Independence (1776) Documents which prove that Jefferson modeled the Declaration largely upon the 1689 Declaration of Rights .
The Dominion of Providence Over the Passions of Men, John Witherspoon, May 1776. This sermon was preached by a member of the Second Continental Congress during the period in which the members were deciding upon American Independence.
The Declaration of Independence (1776) According to recent scholarship, this document was modeled after the Dutch Calvinist Declaration of Independence. In other words, this statement of basic principles was simply a restatement of what Protestant Political theorists and preachers had been saying for centuries.
Reflections on the Mood at the time of the Signing, Benjamin Rush
State Constitutions A collection of the constitutions of each colony.
Religious Clauses of State Constitutions Demonstrating that most states had establishments of religion.
On the Right to Rebel against Governors, Samuel West (1776)
The True Interest of America Impartially Stated, Charles Inglis (1776). A statement of an American loyal to the King.
History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (1776) Edward Gibbon
Political Works of Richard Price
Papers of Charles Lee
Letters Pertaining to Aaron Burr
Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith (1776). The manual for capitalism, the economic backbone of the United States. Jefferson said this was the best book of its kind.
The Philosophical Works of David Hume
Hume's History of England
The Plain Truth (1777)
Divine Judgements Upon Tyrants, Jacob Cushing, April 20, 1778; a sermon on the three year anniversary of the war.
Poetry of Jupiter Hammon (1778)
Election Sermon, Phillips Payson (1778)
The Connecticut Gazette (1778)
Defensive Arms Vindicated (1779) A sermon vindicating the activity of General George Washington.
A Sermon on the Day of the Commencement of the Constitution, Samuel Cooper (1780)
Correspondence of Edward Winslow (1780-1789)
U.S. Articles of Confederation The first Constitution of the United States.
The Origins and Progress of the American Revolution Peter Oliver (1781). Oliver, a tory, names the persons he feels are most responsible for the rebellion. James Otis and the Calvinist clergy ("black regiment") were the chief culprits.
United States Articles of Confederation (1781)
Annuit Coeptis (1782), the religious motto for the U.S.A. that was approved by the founding fathers.
Letters From an American Farmer, Crevecour (1782)
Letters of Ignatius Sancho (1782) an African
Reed - Cadwalader Correspondence
Essay on Money, John Witherspoon, Presbyterian theologian and president of Princeton University.
Reason: the Only Oracle of Man, Ethan Alllen (1784) Revolutionary War hero and Deist.
Charter of Columbia College (1784)
Sketches of American Policy, Noah Webster (1785)
The Pennsylvania Packet (1785)
Memorial and Remonstrance, James Madison (1785). Championing the principal of religious liberty.
Land Ordinance of 1785 (Jefferson). Detailing the manner in which the Northwest Territory shall be partitioned and sold.
John Adams and King George III (1785)
The Annapolis Convention (1786), prelude to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia.
The Federalist Papers 1-85, Madison, Jay, and Hamilton's defense of Federalism
Diary and Letters of Gouverneur Morris, Author of the U.S. Constitution
Debates in the Federal Convention of 1787, James Madison. These are the proceedings of the Constitutional Convention held in Philadelphia, an essential guide to interpreting the intent of the Framers.
Denominational Affiliations of the Framers of the Constitution, contrary to the myth, this chart shows that only 3 out of 55 of the framers classified themselves as Deists.
Records of the Constitutional Convention (Farrand's Records)
United States Constitution (1787)
Elliot's Debates in the Several State Conventions on the Adoption of the Federal Constitution
Northwest Ordinance (1787) Detailing the manner in which new states may be added to the United States.
Shay's Rebellion (1787)
Laws of Maryland (1787)
Revised Charter of â€œColumbia College in the City of New Yorkâ€ (1787)
Debates in the First Federal Congress Regarding A Religious Amendment to the Constitution (1789), edited by Jim Allison. An important source for understanding the intention of the framers concerning religious liberty. Mr. Allison has collected together the debates in the House and the Senate on this most important subject.
Address to Coloured Citizens (1789) John Meachum
Pennsylvania Gazette (1789)
Bill of Rights and the Amendments to The Constitution (1791) The concession to the Anti-Federalists to win their acceptance of the Constitution.
Statutory Laws and Judicial Precedents in Early America
Federal Legislative Documents
Records of the First Sixteen Federal Congresses
Slave Trade and the Middle Passage, Alexander Falconbridge (1788)
History of the American Revolution, David Ramsay (1789), the first complete treatment of the American Revolution by an eyewitness.
The Life of Olaudah Equiano, A Slave's Autobiography (1789)
The Virginia Chronicle, John Leland (1790). Champion of religious disestablishment. Friend and influence upon James Madison.
On Dissenting from the Episcopal Church, John Leland (1790)
Of the Natural Rights of Individuals, James Wilson (1790-91)
On the Equality of the Sexes, Judith Sargent Murray (1790)
The Funeral of Arminianism, William Huntington (1791)
Fugitive Slave Law of 1793
Greenville Treaty with a number of Indian Tribes (1795)
Maryland Gazette (1795)
Enquiry Concerning Political Justice, William Godwin (1793) Part of Jefferson's library of political works.
William Godwin's Works
Treaty of Tripoli (1795)
Washington's Farewell Address
Address of Abraham Johnstone (1797), a black man who was hanged.
Connecticut Courant (1797)
The Sedition Act (1798)
On the Mode of Education Proper in a Republic (1798), Benjamin Rush, signer of the Declaration of Independence, emphasizing the religious foundation and goal of all education.
Four Discourses on the General First Principles of Deism (1798), Samuel E. McCorkle, D. D. The biggest intellectual controversy of the 1790's was called the "deist controversy." On the one side were the followers of Thomas Paine, on the other side were the orthodox Christians as represented here by the Rev. McCorkle.
The Kentucky Resolutions (1799)
Obituaries of George Washington