The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 44, July 1940 - April, 1941

Book Reviews

for social rights have been subjects of interest to many writers.
The author questions the soundness of Professor Charles Mc-
Lean Andrews' charge that historians have carried the begin-
nings of American democracy "much too far back" and that
"Roger Williams was an impractical utopian who brought tur-
moil and confusion rather than democracy." He kept "these
strictures in mind" while writing, he says, and asserts: "The
evidence does not indicate that Williams was impractical and
visionary; nor that democratic ideas were unknown to or be-
yond the comprehension of the average man of the seventeenth
century" (p. vi).
To prove his side of the case the author uses twenty-one
chapters which are more or less balanced in length. Professor
Brockunier lets his story proceed logically and presents a very
readable account. There are many passages which this reviewer
should like to quote in point, but one will have to suffice, namely:
"He [Williams] proposed to the settlers three objectives cher-
ished to this day as the essence of free government; he proposed
nothing less than a lowering of class barriers to economic op-
portunity, a guarantee of civil liberties including freedom of
worship, and the preservation of liberty and opportunity
through popular organs for majority rule."
Milestones in the story are, of course, Roger Williams' contest
with the Puritan clergy and magistrates of Massachusetts and
his banishment, the founding of Providence, the securing of the
patent in 1644, and the acquisition of the charter in 1663 which
recognized the religious liberty which had been set up in Rhode
Island. Particularly worth mentioning in the author's crafts-
manship is his treatment in the fourth chapter of the steps
which led to the banishment of Roger Williams. The fifth,
sixth, thirteenth, fifteenth, twentieth, and twenty-first chapters
are exceptionally well done and give the reader much cause
for thought. This book will find its place in the historical
writing on the colonial period, and the writer will find ample
reward in the widespread reception of his work.
The University of Texas. R. L. BIESELE.
Slavery Times in Kentucky. By J. Winston Coleman, Jr.
Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1940. Pp.
xiv, 351. Illustrations. $3.00.
This very readable and entertaining book is less a formal
history of African slavery in Kentucky than a series of very

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 44, July 1940 - April, 1941. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146052/. Accessed October 22, 2014.