“A Professedly National Secular Show”: The Chicago World’s Fair and the American Sabbath

  • Timothy VerhoevenEmail author


This chapter examines the last great battle of the nineteenth century over Sabbath laws. The Chicago World’s Fair of 1893 was widely anticipated as a great celebration of national progress. But it became a forum for arguing over the relationship between religion and government when Sabbatarians tried to ensure its gates would be shut on Sundays. In response, a motley group of secularists—Seventh-Day Adventists, labor reformers, feminists, and others—petitioned to ensure the Fair opened seven days a week. The outcome would show the entrenched public hostility to anything that smacked of religious fanaticism.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Monash UniversityClaytonAustralia

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