Keyhole Girl

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Idaho History -- Religion

Along with all the others who came to Idaho, were those who came bringing faith and coming to share the Word of God. We would call them missionaries. Religion played an important part in Idaho's development. As we already stated, Idaho's oldest building is a mission, the Caltaldo Mission. It is currently located right off I-90 at Cataldo. Cataldo is in Northern source:
Some time before the early settlers began to come to Idaho, Circling Raven, a powerful chief of the Cour de Alene tribe had a vision foretelling the coming of the "black robes". He felt that these peopl would bring new spiritual power to his people.
In 1831, four members of the Nez Perce and Flathead tribes went to St. Louis looking for someone who could teach them about the Bible. This would cause us to think that there was a hunger for the Word of God. The first church service in Idaho was held at Fort Hall in 1834. It was a funeral, conducted by methodist minister Jason Lee. Lee had planned to start a mission among the Flathead tribe, but they did not accept him because he did not wear black robes.
One of the first missions in the west was built by Henry and Eliza Spalding. Henry and Narcissa Whitman were nearby as well, though further west toward Washington. The Spaldings did a lot in Idaho. They opened the first school, their daughter was the first white child born in Idaho. They printed a song book and parts of the Bible in Nez Perce. The Spaldings also worked to teach the natives how to farm. Up until then, the natives were mostly hunters and gatherers. Some of the natives did not like the changes and all the new settlers. In anger, a few of them killed the Whitman's and destroyed the Spalding's mission.
A few years later, Father Pierre John DeSmit arrived. Father DeSmit wore the black robes of the Catholic priest and was accepted by the descendants of Circling Raven.
Mormons came west in the late 1840's. Their leader was Brigham Young and they came not as missionaries, but seeking to escape religious discrimination. They were looking for a state of their own, one they could rule themselves. Though most of them settled in the Salt Lake area of Utah, a few crossed the border into Idaho. Franklin was Idaho's first permanent settlement, consisting mostly of the Mormons. Trouble came when other religions began to disagree with the Morman way of life, especially the practice of polygamy. Eventually the leaders of the Morman church urged their people to obey the law and marry only one wife. Lawmakers, however, denyed the Mormons the right to vote when they first wrote the state's constitution. In fact, it wasn't until 1984, that they changed that law, although it had been ignored for many years.
The first Jewish governor in the United States was Moses Alexander elected in Idaho in 1914.
Idaho's religious history was shaped by many people of many different faiths.

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I'm a preacher's kid, a sister, a homeschooler and a girl who wants to serve Jesus. I like to read and spend time with my family and friends. I like camping and fishing and girly things like prissing and baking. I like cleaning because I love the way it looks AFTER it's all done! Sometimes I get a chance to blog and that's done here! Welcome!