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I was actually a bit saddened that nobody had reviewed this book before me. It deserves to be more popular.
To be honest, I didn't read this book for a month after I got it because it is a large volume (both in size and number of pages) and that sort of intimidated me a bit, but once I started reading I could barely bring myself to put it down.
It is a real page-turner!
This book quite thoroughly discusses the early history of Orthodox Friends in the United States and in the process gives an explanation of the general American religious enviroment(s) of the time. It helps a person to see why most Orthodox Friends in modern times are so similar to other Christian groups. Details and footnotes are everywhere.
Many of the movements and thought patterns discussed, as well as the people who pioneered them are familiar names to many Friends: Rufus M. Jones, Joel Bean, Joseph John Gurney, and many many others.
This book has a huge bibliography and has been impeccably researched by the author. There are over 50 full pages of notes, as well as an Appendix 1 of Orthodox Friends' membership statistics from 1845-1908 and an Appendix 2 of a "family tree" of Quakers which shows all the different branches.
All in all, this book is very solid (absolutely no "filler" material) and very helpful in understand Quaker history and American religious history in general. It is one of my favorite Quaker books.
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