Brown University
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James Manning
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In 1764, the Philadelphia Baptist Association commissioned James Manning, with the cooperation of Isaac Backus and others, to found a college for Baptists in Providence, Rhode Island, which had been the epicenter of Baptists in America ever since the town's founding by Roger Williams a century prior. Brown University's charter, however, stipulated that the college board also include representatives from the Anglicans, Congregationalists, and Quakers.

Several members of the influential Brown family provided funding for the school's construction from their industrial, merchant, and slave-trading businesses. The irony of a Baptist school -- founded upon the ideals of individual soul liberty and congregational democracy -- being funded by money earned through slave-trading did not escape the family then, which was sharply divided on the issue; in the early 2000s, Brown attempted to make amends for its connection to the slave trade by setting up an endowment for urban education.
Interactive Timeline(s)
Baptist Religious Events and People in American History
Religious Groups
Baptist Family: Other Timeline Event Entries
Baptist Family: Other Timeline Biography Entries

Baptist Family: Other ARDA Links

Backus, Isaac

Brown University- Internet Archive

James Manning portrait- Internet Archive

University Hall, Brown University- Internet Archive

Brown University 2- Internet Archive
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Web Page Contributor
Paul Matzko
Affliated with: Pennsylvania State University, Ph.D. in History

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