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Turner, Limerick, Religion, the West, and America


see Trails: Toward a New Western History (Kansas, 1991) ... 1882 Edmunds Act. 1887 Edmunds-Tucker Act. 1890 Woodruff manifesto. 1896 Utah state constitution ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Turner, Limerick, Religion, the West, and America

Turner, Limerick, Religion, the West, and America
  • Todd M. Kerstetter
  • History Department
  • TCU
  • It can be done!

Significance of the West--Old
  • Frederick Jackson Turner
  • The Significance of the Frontier in American
  • first presented 1893
  • frontier explains American development
  • savagery meets civilization
  • free land continuous recession westward
  • frontier disappeared by 1890

Significance of the West--New
  • New Western Historians
  • Patricia Limerick, Richard White, Donald Worster,
    and others
  • born late 1980s, early 1990s
  • see Trails Toward a New Western History
    (Kansas, 1991)
  • A Longer, Grimmer, but More Interesting Story,
    Elliott Wests chapter in above

Limericks 4 Cs
  • Continuity
  • Convergence
  • Conquest
  • Complexity

(Norton, 2000)
Limericks characteristics that define the West
  • prone to aridity, semiaridity
  • Indian reservations, Indians
  • borders Mexico
  • borders Pacific Ocean
  • federal land
  • state (U.S.) power
  • boom/bust economies
  • intentional, commercial mythologizing
  • dumping ground
  • unsettled aspects of conquest--ongoing

Religion and the West
  • Mormons, Ghost Dancers, Branch Davidians
  • 1850s through 1990s
  • Explores limits of freedom and tolerance in the
    West and in the United States

  • 1856 Republican platform pledges to eradicate the
    twin relics of barbarism
  • slavery
  • polygamy
  • 1862 Morrill Antibigamy Act
  • 1879 Reynolds v. U.S.
  • 1882 Edmunds Act
  • 1887 Edmunds-Tucker Act
  • 1890 Woodruff manifesto
  • 1896 Utah state constitution

American Indians/West/America
  • 1883 Courts of Indian Offenses established
  • Active measures should be taken to discourage
    all feasts and dances of the character I have
    mentioned.U.S. Secy. of Interior
  • included Sun Dance
  • 1890 agents at Lakota reservations called for
    U.S. Army troops to help suppress Ghost Dance
  • contributed to Sitting Bulls death
  • contributed to Wounded Knee Massacre
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