The Heathen School: A Story of Hope and Betrayal in the Age of the Early Republic

The Heathen School: A Story of Hope and Betrayal in the Age of the Early Republic

John Demos


Longlisted for the 2014 nationwide ebook Award

The staggering tale of a unique missionary project—and the the US it embodied—from award-winning historian John Demos.

close to the beginning of the 19th century, because the newly verified usa appeared outward towards the broader international, a bunch of eminent Protestant ministers shaped a grand scheme for gathering the remainder of mankind into the redemptive fold of Christianity and “civilization.” Its middle aspect used to be a distinct college for “heathen adolescence” drawn from all elements of the earth, together with the Pacific Islands, China, India, and, more and more, the local international locations of North the USA. If all went good, graduates may go back to affix comparable tasks of their respective homelands. For a few years, the college prospered, certainly grew to become relatively famous.  even though, whilst Cherokee scholars courted and married neighborhood girls, public resolve—and fundamental ideals—were put to a severe test. 

The Heathen School follows the development, and the loss of life, of this primary precise melting pot in the course of the lives of person scholars: between them, Henry Obookiah, a tender Hawaiian who ran clear of domestic and labored as a seaman within the China alternate prior to finishing up in New England; John Ridge, son of a strong Cherokee leader and therefore a pacesetter within the procedure of Indian “removal”; and Elias Boudinot, editor of the 1st newspaper released via and for local americans. From its start as a beacon of wish for universal “salvation,” the heathen university descends into sour controversy, as American racial attitudes harden and accentuate. rather than encouraging reconciliation, the varsity exposes the bounds of tolerance and sets off a sequence of occasions that might culminate tragically within the path of Tears. 

In The Heathen School, John Demos marshals his deep empathy and consider for the textures of background to inform a relocating tale of households and communities—and to probe the very roots of yankee id.  

Show sample text content

Download sample