Religion at Baylor, 1900-1920

Baylor’s strong ties to the Christian faith, and specifically the Baptist denomination, led to an overwhelmingly Baptist student body between 1900 and 1920, though at times with negative repercussions for non-Baptist students.  Increased involvement of the Baptist General Convention of Texas in Baylor’s finances and the participation of prominent Texas Baptists in University decisions motivated Baylor to publicly emphasize its distinctively Baptist heritage and mission.  The campus culture – reflected by the president, students, and alumni – emphasized pride in the University’s Baptist identity.  This distinct identity helped established a pro-Baptist campus culture, however, sentiments towards the small religious minority on campus were often negative.  Non-Baptist Christian students were also occasionally the targets of derision from the Baptist majority.  In a time when trends in higher education were moving toward institutional secularization, Baylor distinguished itself by serving as an example of persistent integration of religion and academics, though that strong sense of loyalty occasionally produced religious intolerance.

Follow links below for religion at Baylor papers:

The Christian Culture of Baylor University: 1900-1920                                                        (by Caroline Clark)

Baylor University: Sentiments Toward Non-Baptist Students, 1900-1920                          (by Ben Belz)

Baylor University and the Baptist General Convention of Texas                                         (by Elizabeth Leslie)

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