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Objects of Devotion: Religion in Early America tells the story of religion in the United States through the material culture of diverse spiritual pursuits in the nation's colonial period and the early republic. The beautiful, full-color companion volume to a Smithsonian National Museum of American History exhibition, the book explores the wide range of religious traditions vying for adherents, acceptance, and a prominent place in the public square from the 1630s to the 1840s. The original thirteen states were home to approximately three thousand churches and more than a dozen Christian denominations, including Anglicans, Baptists, Catholics, Congregationalists, Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians, and Quakers. A variety of other faiths also could be found, including Judaism, Islam, traditional African practices, and Native American beliefs.



About the Author

Peter Manseau

Peter Manseau is the author of the narrative history One Nation Under Gods, the documentary history Melancholy Accidents, the novel Songs for the Butcher's Daughter, the memoir Vows, and the travelogue Rag and Bone; he is also the co-author, with Jeff Sharlet, of Killing the Buddha. His writing appears regularly in publications including the New York Times and the Washington Post. He holds a doctorate from Georgetown University, and is the Curator of American Religious History at the Smithsonian Institution.



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