Sunday School Books: Shaping the Values of Youth in Nineteenth-Century America


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Mother watching children at play
[Detail] Illustration from Little Red Cloak by Harriet Burn McKeever. Ca. 1866.
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This collection presents 163 Sunday school books published in America between 1815 and 1865, drawn from the collections of Michigan State University Libraries and the Clarke Historical Library at Central Michigan University Libraries. They document the culture of religious instruction of youth in America during the Antebellum era. They also illustrate a number of thematic divisions that preoccupied nineteenth-century America, including sacred and secular, natural and divine, civilized and savage, rural and industrial, adult and child. Among the topics featured are history, holidays, slavery, African Americans, Native Americans, travel and missionary accounts, death and dying, poverty, temperance, immigrants, and advice.

1999 LC/Ameritech Competition Awardee Institution: Michigan State University with Central Michigan University


Shaping the values of youth.