George Whitefield's First American Preaching Tour
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Founder
George Whitefield
Time Period
1739  - 1740
Description
George Whitefield, an Anglican itinerant preacher, established his reputation as the foremost preacher of the First Great Awakening during his first American preaching tour (1739-1740). It began in Pennsylvania on October 1739 and ended in Savannah on November 1740. During this tour, Whitefield traveled thousands of miles across the colonies on horseback, delivering hundreds of sermons. In larger urban centers, such as Boston, New York, and Philadelphia, he preached to enormous crowds that sometimes exceeded 15,000 people, by far the largest such assemblies up to that point in North American colonial history. Some suggest he may have reached at least half the population of the colonies in which he evangelized.

Whitefield’s tour made innovative use of open-air meetings to maximize the number of people who could attend, and his focus on the necessity of believers experiencing a "new birth" played an important role in influencing future evangelicals.
Interactive Timeline(s)
Prominent Religious Events and People in American History
Methodist Religious Events and People in American History
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Prominent Religious Events and People in American History
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Religious Groups
Timeline Entries for the same religious group Anglicanism Family
Anglicanism Family: Other ARDA Links

Methodist/Pietist Family: Other ARDA Links

Biographies
Whitefield, George
Photographs

George Whitefield field preaching- Internet Archive- from Life of George Whitefield by A. S. Billingsley

George Whitefield portrait- Internet Archive- from The Life of George Whitefield by Luke Tyerman

George Whitefield preaching in Philadelphia- Internet Archive- from Life of George Whitefield by A. S. Billingsley

George Whitefield preaching at a horse race- Internet Archive- from Life of George Whitefield by A. S. Billingsley

Bethesda Orphanage, Georgia- Internet Archive- from Life of George Whitefield by A. S. Billingsley
Book/Journal Source(s)
Mahaffey, Jerome Dean, 2011. The Accidental Revolutionary: George Whitefield and the Creation of America. Waco, TX: Baylor University Press.
Noll, Mark A., 2002. The Old Religion in a New World: The History of North American Christianity. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.
Noll, Mark A., 2003. The Rise of Evangelicalism: The Age of Edwards, Whitefield, and the Wesleys. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.
Web Page Contributor
William S. Cossen
Affliated with: Pennsylvania State University, Ph.D. in History

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