The Wesleys and the Anglican Mission to Georgia, 1735-1738
The Wesleys and the Anglican Mission to Georgia examines the experiences of five Anglican minister/missionaries who came to Georgia between 1735 and 1738, including John and Charles Wesley and George Whitefield, on a mission to minister to residents and spread Christianity to the Native Americans. The author argues that personal relationships rather than institutional structures or cultural dynamics largely directed the forming, the dispatch, the unfolding, and eventually the collapse of this the largest minister/missionary effort in early Georgia. In addition to the missioners' relationships among themselves, their interactions with leading Trustees like James Oglethorpe and the Earl of Egmont, with Native Americans, with officials in the colony, with German religious groups in the colony like the Moravians and the Salzburgers, and with individual settlers-some of whom they clashed with and others of whom at least one of them fell in love with-shaped the Mission at every turn. The author also demonstrates how the missioners used Biblical literature to frame and explain their experiences to themselves and others. The Mission involved three of the most important religious figures of the 18th century Atlantic world whose names continue to resonate in the early 21st century. The book tells the story of their lives in Georgia just before they achieved transatlantic fame.