The Birth of Religious Liberty

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Saving the 'Wretched' Indians

the birth of religious liberty

Some Europeans came in order to have freedom to practice their religion as they wanted. Others thought they could establish a bulwark against the Catholic Church. And still others thought they would be able to save many souls by converting Indians. An Anglican promotional booklet called on would-be settlers to save "those wretched people," drawing them from "darkness to light, from falsehood to truth, from dumb idols to the living God, from the deep pit of hell to the highest heaven." Despite one famous success story depicted here (The Baptism of Pocahontas), most settlers had to focus more on their own survival than converting Indians.

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