Cover for WOOLVERTON: The Education of Phillips Brooks

The Education of Phillips Brooks

The Education of Phillips Brooks probes the formative years of one of the best-known figures of Victorian America's "Gilded Age." Rigorously researched, bringing as yet untapped archival material into play, John F. Woolverton's book is an extremely readable and fascinating look at a gifted, persuasive clergyman and public figure. One of the most influential ministers of his time, Brooks delivered the sermon over the body of Abraham Lincoln at Independence Hall in Philadelphia and is known for penning the lyrics to "O Little Town of Bethlehem."

Although Brooks was not a major theologian, he was nurtured in an atmosphere of serious religious thought. In the crisis era of pre-Civil War America, he sought a religious and cultural ideal in the perfect manhood of Jesus Christ and consequently "won a name" for himself, as his slightly envious cousin, Henry Adams, once remarked. Woolverton places Brooks in his cultural context and shows how this religious leader was shaped psychologically and by his times and how those factors helped him forge a spiritual ideal for a troubled nation.

"Not only casts new light on the young manhood of one of the preeminent Anglican ministers in America, but enhances our understanding of key cultural trends in the mid-nineteenth century." -- Anne C. Rose, author of Victorian America and the Civil War

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