In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, modern states began to provide many of the public services we now take for granted. Inward Conquest presents the first comprehensive analysis of the political origins of modern public services during this period. Ansell and Lindvall show how struggles among political parties and religious groups shaped the structure of diverse yet crucially important public services, including policing, schooling, and public health. Liberals, Catholics, conservatives, socialists, and fascists all fought bitterly over both the provision and political control of public services, with profound consequences for contemporary political developments. Integrating data on the historical development of public order, education, and public health with novel measures on the ideological orientation of governments, the authors provide a wealth of new evidence on a missing link in the history of the modern state.