Nearly two centuries after his death, Thomas Jefferson continues to be the subject of competing claims about his public policy and his private beliefs.
In Getting Jefferson Right: Fact Checking Claims about Our Third President, two religious conservatives examines key claims frequently made by other religious conservatives about Thomas Jefferson. Using Jefferson's correspondence, accounts of Jefferson's contemporaries, and other original sources, Throckmorton and Coulter separate fact from fiction.
The authors examine the following questions and more.
-Did Jefferson sign his presidential documents, "In the year of our Lord Christ?"
-Did Jefferson and other Founders finance a Bible in 1798 to get the Word of God to America's Families?
-Did Jefferson found the Virginia Bible Society?
-Was Jefferson an orthodox Christian, who only rarely expressed questions about orthodox Christian doctrine?
-Did Jefferson approve laws providing federal funds to evangelize Indians?
-Did Jefferson edit the Gospels of the New Testament to remove sections he disagreed with?
-Did Virginia law keep Jefferson from freeing his slaves?
The aim of the authors is to get Jefferson right.
Praise for Getting Jefferson Right:
Getting Jefferson Right is an intellectual and historical take down of David Barton's pseudo-history of Thomas Jefferson by two Christian professors who teach at a conservative Christian college. Michael Coulter and Warren Throckmorton have done their homework. Anyone who reads this book must come to grips with the untruths and suspect historical interpretations that Barton regularly peddles in his books, speaking engagements, and on his radio program. I have yet to read a more thorough refutation of Barton's claims.
--John Fea, Chair of the History Department, Messiah College and author of Was America Founded as a Christian Nation?: A Historical Introduction
I cannot overemphasize the importance of reading Getting Jefferson Right, by Warren Throckmorton and Michael Coulter. It is a point-counterpoint to David Barton's, aptly titled, The Jefferson Lies; and, it corrects every myth that Barton presents. Every evangelical pastor in America, especially African-American pastors, needs to not only read, but also study the facts in Getting Jefferson Right. For too many years, David Barton has misled pastors across America and this book is the perfect tool to help bring us back to the true, undiluted life of Thomas Jefferson.
-Ray McMillian, President, Race to Unity
Christians are rightly distressed when American history is purged of its religious elements. But that's no excuse for us to reconstruct the views of Founders such as Thomas Jefferson according to our likeness. In Getting Jefferson Right, Warren Throckmorton and Michael Coulter have done all of us a great service by exposing, carefully and dispassionately, so many of the popular distortions and half-truths about Jefferson. In the process, they have modeled how to deal with historical texts honestly. If you are interested in learning about the real Jefferson, you owe it to yourself to read this book.
--Jay W. Richards, Ph.D. Senior Fellow, Discovery Institute, Co-author of The New York Times bestselling Indivisible: Restoring Faith, Family, and Freedom Before It's Too Late
Getting Jefferson Right is an excellent example of the art of historical contextualization, of trying to tell the whole story, not just part of it. For those reasons, the work should become a standard reference.
--Paul Harvey, Religion Dispatches, teaches history at the University of Colorado