“It is a curious error to suppose that you can carry on effectively a great liberal tradition while remaining ignorant or almost ignorant, of the beliefs and achievements of the people who have handed that tradition over to you.” — Harry Meserve

from the Dictionary of UU Biography. . .

Phineas Taylor Barnum (July 5, 1810-April 7, 1891)

known as P. T. Barnum, a prominent Universalist, the most influential American showman of the nineteenth century, was the founder of the first important public museum and creator of the modern three-ring circus.

Phineas was born on July 5, 1810 in the small Connecticut community of Bethel to Irena Taylor and Philo F. Barnum. As a child he attended the only church in Bethel, the Congregational. As he attended prayer meetings and discovered Calvinistic ideas, indeed almost feeling "the burning waves," smelling "the sulphurous fumes," and hearing "the shrieks and groans" of those in hell, he realized it was not the faith for him. Fortunately for him his Universalist grandfather acquainted him with belief in a loving Deity and the universal salvation of humanity. Young Barnum addressed Universalist gatherings and for some years served as clerk of the Universalist Church in Danbury, Connecticut. http://uudb.org/articles/ptbarnum.html

Online UU History Chat

Join our electronic discussion list at http://lists.uua.org/mailman/listinfo/uuhs-chat to participate in an eclectic, ever-changing conversation about UU history, ideas, and contemporary issues. Diggitt McLaughlin and Pete Guest serve as moderators, and participants are based all over the Un..  
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2013 History & Heritage Prize Winners

The Unitarian Universalist History and Heritage Society is delighted to announce the winners of the 2013 history and heritage prizes. The inaugural winner of our Congregational History prize is Richard M. Stower, for A History of the First Parish Church of Scituate, Massachusetts. This is a rema..  
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The mission of the Society is to strengthen a community dedicated to the disciplined study of liberal religious history, and to advance education, research, and dissemination of our Unitarian and Universalist heritage within and beyond the Unitarian Universalist Association.

We seek to increase awareness of our traditions in all their diverse experiences and expressions of which region, race, class, gender, and generation are a part.  To this end we promote the collection and preservation of historical materials, support research by academic and independent scholars, including those in Unitarian Universalist theological schools, disseminate the fruits of that scholarship through various media including the Society‚Äôs journal, sponsor events for a broad public, and engage Unitarian Universalist congregations in historical research and celebration of our heritage.   Join Us

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