writes about the renewal of interest in Roger Williams, the Puritan founder of Rhode Island and champion of religious liberty.
Rhode Island has been celebrating the 375th anniversary of its founding (the anniversary was last year, but the party continues). John Barry's recent book Roger Williams and the Creation of the American Soul is getting a lot of attention. And several conferences on Williams are in the works.
Williams (and Anne Hutchinson) best represent the spirit of the American founders on religious freedom. Yet many still insist on tracing the religious roots of the United States to the largely intolerant Puritans and Pilgrims.
Here is a taste of Fisher's post:
There’s more one could say about how Roger Williams continues to inspire
and haunt this great city. I’ll leave you with this. If you are ever at
the John Brown House Museum on
College Hill, ask the receptionist to see the Roger Williams root and
hear its story. This experience alone will give you a sense of the
staying power that Williams has had and will likely to continue to have
in this endearing city and state. In the meantime, brace yourself for
more national discussions regarding Williams, Rhode Island, and
religious liberty (if nowhere else, on this blog in the coming weeks
when I post my review of Barry’s book).