* It was during the 1800s that the river of humanism began to cut a many-streamed delta across the western world: mankind believed his 'progress' placed him at the center of science, industry, philosophy, literature, etc., with the power to re-write life's most basically-held truths.
* But the fountain of spiritual renewal was also bubbling in a concern for missions, slavery, revival, and more.
* News of the American Revolution had given many freedom-parched Europeans a desire for liberty. Their problems were very real, but they had to decide who had the answers: God, Karl Marx, or the sophisticated humanism swiftly consuming even the Christian church.
* In all that, history was marching on: Napoleon's conquests, the Industrial Revolution, the Romantic Movement in art, the rise of socialism, etc.
* America was just a fledgling nation, facing the War of 1812 and then the fearsome Civil War/War Between the States. She never stopped growing though, as pioneers poured into the new Louisiana Purchase and down the Santa Fe and Oregon Trails.
* Ideally for Grades 5-12, but younger siblings can participate. Includes book recommendations for all ages, where available.