The Silent Separation: A Shopkeeper's Millennium, By Paul E. Johnson
845 Words4 Pages
Joseph V. Palesano
History 7A # 6857
March 31, 2014
The Silent Separation
A Shopkeeper’s Millennium, Authored by, Paul E Johnson in 1978, conveys the idea of the changing routes in trade, due to the efficiency of Eerie Canal, and the splitting political efforts from "The Elites", farmers turned business entrepreneurs, attempting to control the reformation movements until the religious revivals of Charles Finney, introduced a patriarchy style leadership to control the social and moral lives of the people in the city of Rochester. The author presents his narrative as more of a case study of the social, political, economic and religious development of the Middle Class Society in New York, evident by the brilliant use of information gathered from church records, economic registers, and political documents. There is a very interesting aspect that can be extracted from the narrative, specifically the separation of church and state. Were the “Elites” of Rochester of 1830, in violation of the first amendment of the US Constitution that became effective in 1789?
In 1820, the city of Rochester began to “BOOM”, landowners and farmers, began to flourish in the business of export. Now supplying major cities with food and textiles utilizing the most efficient trade route of the Eerie Canal to the best of their advantage, lowered their operating expenses and increased their profits, which they invested in building Mills that were powered by the waterfalls of the Eerie Canal. Another low overhead endeavor, as the mills required less personnel to maintain its output changing again reducing traditional overhead costs and increasing profits.
The pre-industrial society of Rochester, now entering the textile prod...
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... the good of the people. The “Whig party” is now known as the “Republican Party.”
The author explains that the revival enabled the social control that assisted in this transition. Not to be confused with Marxism, it was not a capitalist plot, but a way to legitimize free labor. Finney shows up as government fails to assert control. He then creates the evangelical army led by the Masters and filtered down to the workers, by presenting a free moral agent philosophy within the community. The correct interpretation the separation of church and state, in the US Constitution, is that it does not forbid contact between church and state, it protects the religious liberty for the entire country.
Johnson, Paul E. A Shopkeeper's Millennium: Society and Revivals in Rochester, New York,
1815-1837. New York: Hill and Wang, 1978. Print.