Hallelujah Lasses in the Battle for Souls: Working- and Middle-Class Women in the Salvation Army in the United States, 1872-1896
Abstract

The Salvation Army is a largely understudied religious movement in late nineteenth-century America. Traditionally, American historians regard the Salvation Army as part of the Protestant response to urban life. Discussions have focused exclusively on the organization's urban welfare work and influence on the emerging social gospel movement, ignoring its role as a cross-class religious institution. Women's historians have also neglected the Salvation Army, although female Salvationists frequently exercised surprising levels of spiritual and administrative authority in the organization. Indeed, the rationale for women's activities in the Salvation Army provides an arresting contrast to the Protestant middle-class female reform model. While female reformers argued that women must become social housekeepers because of their special qualities as women, this article demonstrates that Salvationists believed sanctified women had an obligation to take to the streets in the name of Jesus, precisely because they were the same as sanctified men.


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