William E. Blake Jr.’s Stone-Campbell Movement Library
The William E. Blake Jr.’s Stone-Campbell Movement Library is a collection of over 120 books and pamphlets documenting the history of the Stone-Campbell Movement. The collection of 19th and 20th century books is housed in Special Collections and Archives and includes materials covering a diverse range of chuches within the movement.
The collection was donated by Dr. William E. Blake, Jr., Emeritus Professor of History at VCU. Dr. Blake is also an ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). He is the driving force behind two University initiatives - the annual William E. and Miriam S. Blake Lecture in the History of Christianity and the creation of the William E. and Miriam S. Blake Chair in the History of Christianity.
The term “Stone-Campbell Movement” is of somewhat more recent usage that has largely replaced the older designation the "Restoration Movement.” Stone-Campbell are the last names of Barton W. and Alexander respectively. The two men, and others, pioneered what became known as the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Churches of Christ, and Independent Christian Churches. Stone and Campbell represented attempts within Christianity in the early 19th century to unify all Christians, and are voices for what, in the 20th century, became known as “The Ecumenical Movement.”
The Stone-Campbell Movement has a strong presence in Virginia and in Richmond. It is Dr. Blake’s desire to make documents of the “Movement” available for those who may not find it so easy to travel to the largest library of materials - the Disciples of Christ Historical Society in Nashville, Tennessee. Dr. Blake says he hopes that others will donate their “Stone-Campbell” documents to VCU Libraries.
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