The Importance of History

by David Crabtree


History is important. In centuries past this statement would have seemed self-evident. Ancient cultures devoted much time and effort to teaching their children family history. It was thought that the past helps a child understand who he is. Modern society, however, has turned its back on the past. We live in a time of rapid change, a time of progress. We prefer to define ourselves in terms of where we are going, not where we come from. Our ancestors hold no importance for us. They lived in times so different from our own that they are incapable of shedding light on our experience. Man is so much smarter now than he was even ten years ago that anything from the past is outdated and irrelevant to us. Therefore the past, even the relatively recent past, is, in the minds of most of us, enshrouded by mists and only very vaguely perceived. Our ignorance of the past is not the result of a lack of information, but of indifference. We do not believe that history matters.

But history does matter. It has been said that he who controls the past controls the future. Our view of history shapes the way we view the present, and therefore it dictates what answers we offer for existing problems. Let me offer a few examples to indicate how this might be true.

One of my children comes running up to me, “Papa, Stefan hit me!” Another child comes close on the heels of the first, “I did not. You hit me!” As a parent I have to determine what happened. Usually I have to sort through conflicting testimony to get to the truth of the matter. Part of my information is my knowledge of human beings in general; part of my information is the knowledge I have assembled over the lifetimes of these particular children. All of this is essentially history. It is knowledge about the past. I must have a good understanding of the past in order to know how to deal wisely with these children in the present. Any punishment or chastisement will depend on my reconstruction of what actually happened. The children realize this, and thus they present very selective histories of the event in an attempt to dictate my response. In these kinds of situations, children very clearly understand that history matters.

When you go into a doctor’s office for the first time, you invariably have to fill out an information sheet that asks about your medical history. Some of these forms are very detailed, asking questions that require information from rarely accessed memory banks. Why does a doctor ask these questions? The doctor is trying to construct an accurate picture of your state of health. Your health is heavily influenced by the past. Your heredity, past behaviors, past experiences are all important determinants and clues to your present condition. Whenever you return to the doctor, he or she pulls out a file which contains all the notes from past visits. This file is a history of your health. Doctors understand very clearly that the past matters.

Some of you might be thinking that these examples are not very compelling because they both deal with the very recent past—they are not what we think of when we think of history. Let me give one final example that is more to the point. In 1917 the Communists took control of Russia. They began to exercise control over how the history of their country ought to be told. They depicted the tsar as oppressive and cruel. The leaders of the revolution, on the other hand, were portrayed in a very positive light. The Communist government insisted that these leaders, and in particular Lenin, understood more clearly than any one else what Russia needed and what course of action the government ought to follow. According to the official history, Lenin made no mistakes and he passed his virtually infallible understanding on to the other leaders of the party. The official history presented Lenin and Stalin as kind, compassionate, wise, nearly divine leaders. Consequently, difficulties that people in the Soviet Union experienced were all attributable to capitalism. The nation’s economic backwardness, the need for a massive military and tight security, and domestic crime were all ultimately tied to the influence of capitalistic countries. This is the perspective of history that was taught to Soviet children for half a century.

In the seventies and eighties, several things happened to shake people’s confidence in this view of history. One was the publication of Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago. This work was the product of years of historical research by the author. He interviewed scores of prisoners and did extensive research to chronicle the genesis and development of the chain of labor camps that dotted the Soviet Union. His book described the cruelty and injustice of the system in great detail; but most important of all, he was able to show that Lenin and Stalin were active and knowing participants in the formation of this brutal institution.

Solzhenitsyn’s depiction of these leaders was incompatible with the official history. And if the official history was wrong, the legitimacy and justification for Soviet rule was all brought into question. In 1979, a Soviet emigre, after having read Gulag Archipelago, told me, “The impact of this book will be far more devastating to Soviet power than an atomic bomb.” I am convinced that one of the reasons the Soviet Union disintegrated is because people began to doubt the official history. Ask Gorbachev if history matters.

I. A DEFINITION OF HISTORY

So history matters, but what is history? My advisor in graduate school had a simple definition that I have grown to appreciate: “History is a story about the past that is significant and true.” This simple definition contains two words packed with meaning which must be understood in order to understand history.

A. Significance

The first word is “significant.” No one could record everything that is true about an event in the past: temperature, atmospheric pressure, humidity, soil type, molecules bouncing around, hearts beating, lungs inflating and deflating, and so forth—there is no end to what could be listed. History is the process of simplifying. Of all that could be said about an event, what is most important or most significant? The goal of history is to tell a story about the past which captures the essence of an event while omitting superfluous details.

Significance is determined by the historian. The historian sorts through the evidence and presents only that which, given his particular world view, is significant. What a historian finds significant is not entirely a personal choice; it is largely shaped by his training and his colleagues. In order for a historian to have his works published, he has to receive the approval of his fellow historians. Therefore, the community of historians has a large say in deciding what about the past is significant. But historians are just as much a part of society as anyone else, and we are all greatly influenced by those around us. As a result, the community of historians tends to share the same notion of significance as is held by society as a whole. Therefore, historians tend to tell stories which reflect the dominant values of the society in which they live.

This leads to a curious feature of historical narrative: the past is fixed—no one can change what happened—but as the values of society change, the historians’ depiction of the past changes also. It has been argued that history tells us more about the time in which it is written than the time about which it is written. I recently did some reading about the history of homosexuality. For a couple of decades in the middle of the nineteenth century, historians viewed homosexuality as an immoral act and consequently looked at the prevalence of homosexuality in ancient Greece as a sign of its moral decadence and a precursor to the collapse of Greek civilization. Historians then applied this same analysis to Roman society. In the latter part of the nineteenth century, however, society began to question the existence of moral absolutes. As a result, historians ceased to give credence to any connection between moral behavior and the health of a civilization. Therefore, the search for a connection between moral decline and the fall of empire ceased to hold any interest and was abandoned. Instead, historians, interested in telling the story of the growth and development of liberty, saw the open practice of homosexuality as a good thing, in that it demonstrated greater social tolerance and, therefore, increased personal liberty. Notice that the first view (based on moral absolutes) was not disproved; it was simply abandoned due to a change in the values of society. This, in turn, produced a change in the way historians depicted the past. The past does not change, but history changes with every generation.

B. Truth

I said that history is a story about the past that is significant and true. I have talked about the word “significant”; now I want to talk about the word “true.” What does it mean to say that a historical account is true? Most modern historians would claim there is no absolute truth. This would imply there is no basis for saying that one historical account is true and another one false. I know of no historian, however, who actually operates this way in practice. Most historians use the word “true” to mean any perspective well supported by facts.

The tricky thing is that every historian uses facts to build his case. Rarely does an historian consciously distort the facts; and although minor factual errors are common, they seldom undermine the overall presentation. But even though most histories are built on facts, the histories can be very different, even contradictory, because falsehoods can be constructed solely with facts.

My parents once put in a new front lawn. Soon after it was planted, my mother discovered bicycle tracks running across the yard. She had a pretty good idea who had done it, so she asked this boy if he knew anything about the tracks. He said, “Yes, I do. My sister’s bike did it.” This is a wonderfully crafted statement. It is built on facts, but it is designed to create a false impression. We often refer to such statements as “half-truths.” For history to be true, it must not only be based on facts, it must present those facts in a balanced, well proportioned manner. Too often histories are half-truths.

I need to point out quickly that most historians do not intentionally distort history to serve their purposes, as this boy did. The process is much less malicious, yet far more insidious. Historians interpret evidence through the eyes of their own world view. This is natural; we could not expect anything else. This has far reaching consequences, however. Take, for example, a historian studying the story of Jonathan and David. If all of the historian’s close same-sex relationships have been sexual, he will be unable to conceive of Jonathan and David’s relationship as being anything else. Thus he will conclude that David and Jonathan were homosexuals. Given his experience, he can not imagine any other interpretation of the evidence. Therefore, the accuracy of an historian’s version of past events depends greatly on the soundness of his world view.

I suspect this is contrary to most people’s image of history. People generally think of history as a very objective discipline. This perspective dominated the field about a century ago, and most of us were led to believe this in the course of our education. We were taught that objective historians began to piece together a picture of the past, and every new generation of historians discovers new facts which alter our understanding of the past. With each generation, therefore, we get closer to the truth of history, but these refinements do not significantly alter the assured findings of science.

This perspective would find few adherents today. It has become painfully obvious that no researcher is a blank slate. We all start with some preconceived notions about what is true and what is not. It should not and can not be otherwise. All history is, in this sense, biased.

For the reasons I have listed, history is a value-laden discipline. Howard Zinn, the author of a book to which we will return in a minute, makes the following statement:

It is not that the historian can avoid emphasis of some facts and not of others. This is as natural to him as to the mapmaker, who, in order to produce a usable drawing for practical purposes, must first flatten and distort the shape of the earth, then choose out of the bewildering mass of geographic information those things needed for the purpose of this or that particular map.

My argument cannot be against selection, simplification, emphasis, which are inevitable for both cartographers and historians. But the mapmaker’s distortion is a technical necessity for a common purpose shared by all people who need maps. The historian’s distortion is more than technical, it is ideological; it is released into a world of contending interests, where any chosen emphasis supports (whether the historian means to or not) some kind of interest, whether economic or political or racial or national or sexual.”  (Note 1)

II. “HISTORY” EXAMPLES

History, by its very nature, does more than tell us about the past; it argues for an ideology a world view.

1992 gave us an excellent opportunity to see a struggle between different groups each trying to claim history in support of their cause. It was the 500th anniversary of Columbus’s landing on American soil. Columbus, who had long enjoyed the status of hero, came under heavy criticism. This historical event and the versions of history it generated are a very good example of what I have been talking about. I would like to look at two descriptions of this event and show how ideology infuses both accounts. One account is found in The Light and the Glory by Peter Marshall and David Manuel. (Note 2) The other is from A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn.

Both of these books were written at the end of the 1970s. For a quarter of a century prior to this time, the most noted historian of the life of Columbus was Samuel Eliot Morison. He wrote several books about Columbus, but the most widely read was Christopher Columbus, Mariner. (Note 3) Until the late seventies, Morison’s depiction of Columbus was considered the most authoritative. Since both Marshall’s and Zinn’s books were written to correct Morison’s presentation, let me first describe Morison’s perspective.

A. Morison: Columbus, the mariner

Morison was a naval officer (so I have heard) turned historian. His love of the sea and appreciation for good seamanship is obvious in his history. Morison has enormous respect and admiration for Columbus as a sailor and navigator. This and this alone was Columbus’s greatness. At a time when all of Europe was trying to find economical routes to Asia, Columbus was convinced that Asia could easily be reached by sailing west across the Atlantic. Most scholars of the time believed that the world was round and that Asia could be reached by sailing west, but they thought it was too far. Columbus argued that the scholarly opinion greatly overestimated the distance and that Asia was only about a three week voyage. As it turned out, the scholars were right; Asia was too far away, but fortunately for Columbus, America was just about where he thought Asia would be.

Columbus undertook the trip to prove that he was right. His superior sailing skills enabled the expedition to reach America. Columbus thought he had landed in Asia, and he spent the rest of his life trying to prove he was correct. This drove him to be in constant search for gold and more geographical knowledge: since Asia was known to be rich in gold, a vast amount of gold would suggest that the land was, in fact, Asia; and since Marco Polo had written about the geography of Asia, Columbus felt further exploration would demonstrate that he had found the land Marco Polo described. Columbus’s constant exploration and search for gold led him to make some poor decisions regarding the administration of the lands he discovered; his negligence resulted in brutal treatment of the native population. Although Morison does not excuse Columbus’s negligence, he does not want this flaw to detract from our appreciation for Columbus’s skills as a seaman.

B. Peter Marshall: Columbus, the tool of God

Peter Marshall has a very different perspective. He sees Columbus as a key figure in God’s grand plan to establish a very special country, unique in the history of the world. Just as God selected Israel to be a special nation which He promised to bless as long as the people were obedient to His commandments, God singled out the United States for a similar purpose:

Could it be that we Americans, as a people, were meant to be a “light to lighten the Gentiles” (Luke 2:23)—a demonstration to the world of how God intended His children to live together under the Lordship of Christ? Was our vast divergence from this blueprint, after such a promising beginning, the reason why we now seem to be heading into a new dark age? (p. 19)

Marshall’s book, therefore, chronicles the indications of God’s special guidance of key individuals in the history of the United States.

Columbus is one of those individuals. Marshall sees the hand of God behind Columbus’s voyage from its very inception. He quotes from one of Columbus’s writings:

It was the Lord who put into my mind I could feel his hand upon me) the fact that it would be possible to sail from here to the Indies. All who heard of my project rejected it with laughter, ridiculing me. There is no question that the inspiration was from the Holy Spirit, because He comforted me with rays of marvelous inspiration from the Holy Scripture…. (p. 17)

Marshall is very sensitive to indications of God’s divine guidance and protection for Columbus’s venture and Columbus’s personal relationship with God.

Marshall begins by pointing out that Columbus’s first name is Christopher, which means “Christ-bearer.” He sees this as significant because one of the main reasons Columbus gave for wanting to find Asia was to evangelize its inhabitants. Columbus’s name was, therefore, prophetic.

Marshall describes the difficulty Columbus had in finding a sponsor for his expedition. He tried but failed to get the king of Portugal to finance his trip. He got nowhere with the king of England. He approached the king and queen of Spain, but they kept putting him off. Having given up on the Spanish monarchs and at a point of desperation, he was about to leave for France to ask the French king to finance his expedition when the queen of Spain had a change of heart. Marshall points out that the queen’s confessor, who was the head of the monastery where Columbus was staying, was instrumental in convincing the queen of the value of the enterprise. Marshall imagines what might have transpired between the monk and Columbus while Columbus was in despair over his inability to find a sponsor.:

But in the cool stone cloister of the monastery, we can almost hear Father Perez as he might have reminded Christopher that all of the things which had tormented him—the elusive recognition, wealth and position which he wanted so desperately and which always seemed just out of reach—these were the world’s inducements, not the things that concerned the Lord Jesus. (p. 34)

[Let me take this opportunity to make a short digression. I do not think Marshall's book is accepted as a serious work of history. One of the reasons is because the author occasionally inserts these imaginary scenes for which he has absolutely no evidence. I would like to point out, however, that this criticism is a little unfair. The mind of any historian is constantly at work trying to imagine the event under investigation. The evidence is always less than complete, and the historian tries to fill in the missing pieces, by drawing on his knowledge of reality and general human experience to extrapolate what must have happened. So whereas Marshall has actually recorded his imaginings, and serious historians do not, we must nevertheless acknowledge that all historians use their imaginations to fill out the picture, and this affects the way they tell the story.]

Marshall describes Columbus’s first crossing as a major test of Columbus’s faith in God. Early on, the voyage went extremely well, but as the time went on with no land in sight, the crew became very fearful. On October 9th, there was almost a mutiny, but Columbus reached an agreement to sail west three more days before turning back. For the next three days, the sailing conditions improved dramatically, and on the third day, at the end of the day, they finally sighted land. Marshall’s description of this voyage puts less emphasis on Columbus’s skills as a seaman and great emphasis on the indications of providential guidance. From Marshall’s perspective, Columbus’s skill was just one more instance of God’s blessing on the venture. Of infinitely more importance to Marshall is how Columbus responded to this test of his faith, for the success or failure of the mission hinged on this.

Marshall concluded that Columbus responded well to the test of his faith while at sea, but after Columbus reached America he made two serious errors. The first mistake was establishing a precedent for mistreatment of the Indians. While Columbus generally treated the Indians fairly well, he did them one very serious injustice—he forcibly took several Indians back to Spain with him to become interpreters. This set a very bad precedent for the treatment of Indians, which became much more brutal with later explorers. Marshall holds Columbus partially responsible for this. The other error Columbus committed was to embark on a search for gold. From Marshall’s perspective, Columbus became preoccupied with a thirst for gold and this corrupted him:

Gold—one can see the hand of the Devil here. Unable to overcome the faith of the Christ-bearer by sowing fear and dissension in the hearts of his men or by paralyzing him with despair, Satan had failed to keep the Light of Christ from establishing a beachhead in practically the only part of the world in which he still reigned unchallenged. So he now moved to destroy the army of holy invaders from within their ranks. And he chose the one instrument which almost never failed: the love of money. (p. 42)

Behind the scenes, Marshall sees a grand conflict between God and the godly and Satan and his forces. Gold is the tool Satan used to distract Columbus from his divinely appointed mission.

Columbus’s thirst for gold and his rejection of God’s mission for him caused God to afflict Columbus with a series of tragedies. While Columbus went to Spain to report his find, he left a small number of Spaniards in the New World. He returned to America only to discover that these men had been massacred by the Indians who were exasperated by the Spaniards’ cruel, greed-motivated treatment. The men he brought with him on the second trip were even more consumed with a desire for gold; they not only fought with Indians for gold, they fought with each other. When word of the chaos and maladministration reached the king and queen, they sent a new governor and had Columbus returned from his second trip in chains. The king and queen freed him from his chains, but he was nevertheless humiliated. Later, he was afflicted with grandiose illusions of being called by God to lead a crusade against the infidels in the Holy Land. After several years, Columbus returned to America, but now he, too, was obsessed with desire for gold. He finally found a major deposit of gold, but by this time Columbus was almost out of touch with reality. Marshall writes: “It is doubtful that he who does what he will in the world is going to be used to bring many souls to Paradise.” This particular narrative goes on to reveal just how far off-center Columbus’s thinking had wandered: “For by the same sort of weird, convoluted reasoning that earmarks Gnosticism and so much of occult metaphysics, Columbus arrived at a monumental conclusion: he was convinced that he had found King Solomon’s mines!” (p. 65) This dementia was divine punishment for Columbus’s refusal to look constantly to God for deliverance from his difficulties.

Finding a major source of gold opened a Pandora’s box of problems. It brought the conquistadors to America. These men inflicted countless atrocities on the native population, further proof of divine judgment on Columbus and his enterprise.

According to Marshall, God had a glorious role for Columbus to play in the history of mankind, but Columbus was distracted by gold and nearly driven mad because he refused to trust God. Marshall speculates, however, that Columbus, on his death bed, was reconciled to God:

The old man brushed away the tears at the corners of his eyes, and perhaps he spoke to God again then, for the first time in a long while.
“Father, it is over now, isn’t it?”
Yes, son, he might have heard in his heart.
“Father, I’m afraid I have not done well in carrying the Light of Your Son to the West. I’m sorry. I pray that others will carry the light further.”
They will. You are forgiven.
“It’s time now, isn’t it?” Yes.

(p. 65-66)

C. Howard Zinn: Columbus, the oppressor

Howard Zinn’s portrayal of Columbus could scarcely be more different from Marshall’s. His presentation is rooted in a very different understanding of the essence and value of history. Zinn is outraged by the traditional practice of telling the history of a nation as though all members of that nation shared the same interests. This illusion of cohesion within a nation hides the reality that every society includes oppressors and the oppressed. Zinn thinks history should tell the story of this all important struggle, regardless of national divisions. He hopes we might learn from such a history how to help the oppressed successfully rise up against their oppressors.

From this perspective, Columbus is the quintessential oppressor. From the outset of the expedition Columbus was intent on extracting wealth from the native. Zinn demonstrates Columbus’s malevolent motives by quoting Columbus’s words from the log on the day he first saw the Indians:

They. . . brought us parrots and balls of cotton and spears and many other things, which they exchanged for the glass beads and hawks’ bells. They willingly traded everything they owned . . . They were well built, with good bodies and handsome features . . . They do not bear arms, and do not know them, for I showed them a sword; they took it by the edge and cut themselves out of ignorance. They have no iron. Their spears are made of cane . . . . They would make fine servants . . . With fifty men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want. (p. 1)

Zinn sees this as evidence that from the very beginning Columbus was eager to assess the exploitability of the native inhabitants.

Columbus began to gather information from the natives. He took some of the natives by force for this purpose. The object of his investigation was very focused: “The information that Columbus wanted most was: Where is the gold?” (p. 1). Having this as his primary goal, Columbus had no compunction about treating the Indians cruelly. All the Indians of San Salvador were required to collect a certain amount of gold every three months. Those who failed to do so had their hands cut off. When even these extreme methods failed to squeeze enough gold out of the land, Columbus tried another approach: “When it became clear that there was no gold left, the Indians were taken as slave labor on huge estates, known later as encomiendas.” (p. 4). Zinn portrays Columbus as one who would go to any length to extract wealth from the new-found land.

Zinn magnifies our sense of outrage by describing the innocence and nobility of the natives who were so senselessly brutalized. He proves that the Indian culture treated its women well, using the following quotation from a Spanish priest who accompanied Columbus:

Marriage laws are non-existent: men and women alike choose their mates and leave them as they please, without offense, jealousy or anger. They multiply in great abundance; pregnant women work to the last minute and give birth almost painlessly; up the next day, they bathe in the river and are as clean and healthy as before giving birth. If they tire of their men, they give themselves abortions with herbs that force stillbirths, covering their shameful parts with leaves or cotton cloth; although on the whole, Indian men and women look upon total nakedness with as much casualness as we look upon a man’s head or at his hands. (p. 5).

Zinn also notes the communal and non-capitalistic nature of Indian society:

They live in large communal bell-shaped buildings, housing up to 600 people at one time. . . . They lack all manner of commerce, neither buying nor selling, and rely exclusively on their natural environment for maintenance. They are extremely generous with their possessions and by the same token covet the possessions of their friends and expect the same degree of liberality. (p. 5)

From Zinn’s perspective, these qualities of Indian society made it superior to European society; and yet the Europeans brutalized and, in some cases, exterminated whole tribes in the name of Christianity, civilization, and progress. Columbus was but the first of many such oppressors.

III. CAN WE LEARN FROM HISTORY?

Very briefly I have outlined two different stories of Columbus. You are probably asking yourself, “How can the accounts be so different? Didn’t they read the same evidence?” I am certain they both read many of the same sources. Two people can read the same document, however, and interpret it very differently. One very obvious example of this is the way the two historians handled Columbus’s religious motivations. When Columbus talked about his desire to evangelize the natives, Marshall took him very seriously; Marshall can identify with such desires and is willing to take Columbus at face value at this point. Zinn, on the other hand, does not take these same statements at face value; he dismisses them by saying, “He was full of religious talk. . . ” (p. 3), implying that Columbus was not sincere. Although Zinn seems to be skeptical that anyone could be sincerely religiously motivated, he does not trust Columbus because, more importantly, Columbus was a scoundrel. So, although both authors look at the same words penned by Columbus, one believes him and the other does not. And neither can prove that his judgment on this matter is correct. When the two historians look at document after document through their different perspectives, the end result is two entirely different pictures of Columbus.

I hope you can see from these two versions of Columbus’s discovery of America that history is much more subjective than we generally realize. Every historian tells a different story, each one largely reflecting the historian’s own world view. This raises the awkward question, “Can we learn from history?” If every historian reads his own world view into the past, can the past ever break through and speak to us?

The answer is “yes.” The past speaks in a voice audible to those who want to hear and to listen attentively. Establishing what really happened at a given point in history is much like establishing the guilt or innocence of an accused criminal in a courtroom trial. Evidence is presented and witnesses testify. Taken as a whole, the evidence is full of inconsistencies and inexplicable gaps, and so a sorting process begins. Some witnesses are suspected of being liars; their testimony is handled with suspicion. Some apparent contradictions are found to be resolvable. The gaps are filled with plausible conjecture. As this sorting process continues, a coherent picture begins to emerge. That emerging picture, however, will be one of two very different kinds. If in the course of this sorting procedure we have held tightly to our preconceived notions, the final picture will be a reaffirmation of those prejudices. If, however, we have been willing to jettison beliefs that did not seem to have adequate factual support, we may have our initial suspicions rejected.

Can we learn from history? The short answer is yes—if we are willing to. But if we do not sincerely seek to learn from the past, we will learn nothing. This is true of professional historians as well as students.

CONCLUSION

History is important because it helps us to understand the present. If we will listen to what history has to say, we can come to a sound understanding of the past that will tell us much about the problems we now face. If we refuse to listen to history, we will find ourselves fabricating a past that reinforces our understanding of current problems.

People tend to underestimate the power of history. If I want to convince you that capitalism is evil, I could simply tell you that capitalism is evil, but this is likely to have little effect on the skeptical. This frontal attack is too crude. If, however, I disinterestedly tell you the history of capitalism, nonchalantly listing all the atrocities attributable to it, I am much more likely to achieve my goal. I can leave a lasting impression that will evoke revulsion at the mere mention of the word.

History teaches values. If it is true history, it teaches true values; if it is pseudo-history, it teaches false values. The history taught to our children is playing a role in shaping their values and beliefs—a much greater role than we may suspect.

 


NOTES:
(1) Howard Zinn, A People’s History of the United States (Harper, New York: 1980), 8. (Back to text)
(2) Peter Marshall and David Manuel, The Light and Glory: Did God have a plan for America? (Power Books, Old Tappan: 1977). (Back to text)
(3) Samuel Eliot Morison, Christopher Columbus, Mariner (Little and Brown: Boston, 1942). (Back to text)

Copyright November 1993 by McKenzie Study Center, an institute of Gutenberg College.

David Crabtree