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Catholics and Southern Honor: Rev. Patrick Lynch's Paper War with Rev. James Henley Thornwell

From: The Catholic Historical Review
Volume 99, Number 3, July 2013
pp. 455-479 | 10.1353/cat.2013.0155



The author examines the ability of Catholics in the American South to utilize the language of honor, a major facet of Southern political culture. The 1843 newspaper clash on the Apocrypha between Patrick Lynch (future bishop of Charleston, South Carolina) and James Henley Thornwell (influential Old School Presbyterian minister) demonstrated that Catholics in the South had adapted well to republican politics. The debate transcended doctrine and became an "affair of honor." Catholics in the antebellum South learned to use the tools of Southern political discourse to demonstrate their sectional loyalty while rigorously defending Catholic doctrinal positions.

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