Two Oaths to God in Colonial Virginia House of Burgesses

Dateline: Virginia, 1652 and 1658: Despite the hardships of the earliest Virginia colonists, they still formed the House of Burgesses to discuss the running of the colony. Here are two oaths that the members had to swear. They also swore on the Bible. Continue reading

America’s First Government Meeting Begins with Prayer in 1619

Dateline: Virginia, July 30, 1619: The Anglican Virginia colonists under Sir George Yeardley met in a plenary session to invoke God’s blessing and set out basic rules. They met in the choir of the church. This is the first official government assembly. These men were not greedy, Indian-murdering atheists.

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William Penn Proclaims Liberty of Conscience in 1701 Colonial Pennsylvania

Dateline: Philadelphia, 28 Oct 1701: William Penn, Proprietor and Governor of Pennsylvania and territories, says that men are happiest when they can follow their conscience, particularly liberty of religion. Except for one class of citizens….

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1629 Virginia Assembly Decides How to Fight Indians and Levy Taxes

Dateline: Virginia, 16 October 1629: After the English were massacred in 1622, the General Assembly (in this specific meeting) decides not to hold back against the Natives. Plus, how does one pay for the daily business of governing? Is church attendance required? These Anglicans decide.

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Laws of Conduct and Business in 1619 Virginia Colony

Dateline Virginia: 1 Aug. 1619: His Majesty’s Council in Virginia enacted these laws, which mixed civil law and religious behavior. Converting Indians was valid., and so was offering them a college education in the Christian religion, if they wanted it.

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Ministers’ Duties and People’s Conduct in 1619 Virginia Colony

Dateline: Jamestown, 4 Aug. 1619: This is the sixth official government meeting in American history. These Anglicans were expected to attend church with their guns and swords ready. They had to treat Natives fairly, but not alone–together and provide uniform treatment.

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