The Constitutional Principle: Separation of Church and State
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The Barton Chronicles

This is a current list (11-24-02) of all the David Barton articles on this site and links we have to David Barton articles on other sites. This list just makes it easier to navigate the topic. Any additional articles, facts, etc will be added as they are discovered.

Author, etc.

Study Guide: Problematical Religious Right Quotes And Arguments

Misquoting by the Religious Right

Did Madison ever say that our future is staked on the 10 commandments?

Did Madison ever say that religion is the foundation of government?

Did the Supreme Court of New York, in an 1811 decision, ever say that the First Amendment was "never meant to withdraw religion...from all consideration and notice of the law?"

Did John Quincy Adams ever say that the American Revolution "connected in one indissoluable bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity?"

Historically Inaccurate Quotes

Is it true that Madison said "Our future is staked on the 10 commandments?"

Is it true that Madison said "Religion is the foundation of government?"

Sects, Lies and Videotape: David Barton's Distorted History by Rob Boston

Consumer Alert!: Wallbuilders' Shoddy Workmanship by Rob Boston

An Index to Factual Information About David Barton And His Books

Critique of David Barton's America's Godly Heritage from the Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs.

The Northwest Ordinance

The Northwest Ordinance did not require schools to teach religion

The Northwest Ordinance cannot be read as a commentary on the First Amendment

Mything In Action: David Barton's 'Questionable Quotes'

Responding to the Religious Rights, the Basic Arguments:

1. The phrase "separation of church and state" is not in the Constitution.

2. Jefferson's "separation of church and state" letter was hastily written and does not accurately represent Jefferson's view of church and state.

3. Thomas Jefferson actually said that the wall of separation between Church and State is "one-directional."

4. Jefferson's Danbury letter was written mearly to assure Connecticut Baptists that the Constitution did not permit the establishment of a national denomination.

5. Jefferson's Danbury letter was written mearly to address the Danbury Baptists' fears that the First Amendment might be misinterpreted.

6. Jefferson's letter to Benjamin Rush shows that Jefferson was a non-preferentialist.

7. Thomas Jefferson supported Bible reading in school; this is proven by his service as the first president of the Washington D. C. public schools, which used the Bible and Watt's Hymns as textbooks for reading.

Another Jefferson Quote Debunked

Jefferson, Religion, and the Public Schools

8. Federal officials take their oaths upon a Bible, and use the words "so help me God."

9. The Northwest Ordinance proves that the First Amendment did not separate church and state.

10. The Supreme Court has declared that the United States is a Christian nation.

12.The Constitution is based on the Bible. This is proven by the frequency with which the founding fathers quote the Bible in their political writings.

Some thoughts on religion and law, with references to Barton's views.

Separation No Myth an article by Dr. Jim Spivey

Politics of Law and the Courts-Past and Present

State and U.S. Supreme Court Cases - 1799-1947

Barton is famous for misrepresenting the facts of court cases, court decisions, meaning and impact of such court cases, etc. including the following cases:

State and U.S. Supreme Court Cases - 1799-1947

1799 MD Runkel v Winemiller, 4 Harris & McHenry 276

1799 MD John M'Creery's Lessee v Allender, 4 H & Mett. 259

1811 NY The People v Ruggles, 8 Johns 545

1815 PA The Commonwealth v Sharpless, 2 Serg & R. 91

1817 PA The Commonwealth v Wolf, 3 Serg. & R. 48

1824 PA Updegraph v Commonwealth, 11 Serg. & R. (Pa) 394

1838 MA Commonwealth v Abner Kneeland, 37 Mass. (20 Pick) 206

1844 U.S.Vidal v Girard's Executors, 2 How. 127

1846 SC City of Charleston v Benjamin, 2 Strob. 508

A look at two additional 20th century cases that are misrepresented in some of Barton's publications: Reed v. Van Hoven 237 F Supp.48 (W. D. Mich, 1965) and DeSpain v DeKalb County Community School District 255 F. Supp. 655 (N. D. Ill. 1966)

These articles deal with the Holy Trinity Case

1892 U.S. Church of the Holy Trinity v U.S., 143 U.S. 266

Holy Trinity and the Christian Nation Dicta

The Supreme Court has Declared that the United States is a Christian Nation.

Getting to Know Supreme Court Justice David J. Brewer



David Barton Master of myth and misinformation

A Christian Looks At the Religious Right: Responding to David Barton by Don S. Wilkey, Jr., April 2002

Putting God Back Into American History By David D. Kirkpatrick, February 27, 2005