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Published on Aug 23, 2015
Lecture Forty-two Ingersoll and American Freethought The books and articles referred to in the lecture may be found in the Bibliography at the end of the written lecture, Lecture Forty-tw0 Ingersoll and American Freethought at AtheistScholar.org. This lecture will be concerned with the Golden Age of American Freethought, from about 1860 to 1900, and its most famous spokesperson, Robert Green Ingersoll (1833-1899.) The events and spread of freethought played out against the backdrop of a very conservative, although dynamic, period of American history. Many books about Ingersoll and freethought often merely mention the Gilded Age in passing, but I would like to talk about what conditions were like in our nation during the flowering of unbelief.