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The Second Great Awakening and Utopian Societies. The Second Great Awakening. Around 1800 – 1830’s Revival of the Great Awakening of the early 18 th century Emphasis on personal piety over schooling and theology.

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the second great awakening
The Second Great Awakening

Around 1800 – 1830’s

Revival of the Great Awakening of the early 18th century

Emphasis on personal piety over schooling and theology


A religious movement during the 19th century which expressed that every person could be saved through revivals

Led to the formation of new denominations

Surge in church membership of Methodists and Baptists


Arose in several places:

    • New England – social activism
    • New York – growth of new denominations
    • Appalachian region (KY and TN) – energized Presbyterians, Methodists and Baptists
      • Camp meetings
      • First in South-Central KY in June 1800

Revival’s effects consisted of two main strains:

    • The virtues and behavior of the middle class – a strong work ethic, frugality – were encouraged
    • The ability of individuals to make changes to their lives sparked reform movements

The movement spread through southern OH, KY, and TN

Among Baptists, ordinary farmers frequently felt they were called by God to become preachers

The Bible Belt of the South was born


The Second Great Awakening left a lasting impact on American Society

    • Established Churches
    • Social Reform
utopian societies
Utopian Societies

In the early 1800’s, more than 100,000 individuals formed utopian societies

Utopian Society – Ideal or perfect society

1820-1860 – large attempt to create numerous communities that would serve as perfect societies


The people that formed these communities believed that the way to a better life was to separate themselves from the corrupting influence of the larger society

Practiced cooperative or communal living and rejected the idea of private property



Oneida Community

The Shakers

New Harmony

Brook Farm

the shakers
The Shakers

Located in several states

Got their name from a ritual shaking dance that members performed

Reached their peak in the mid-1800’s with 6,000 members


Began in England in 1747

Led by Ann Lee – “Mother Ann”

Lee moved with her followers to America in 1774

The community quickly grew


Believed in absolute celibacy

Eventually, the numbers dwindled

3 Shakers left today

Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill in Harrodsburg, KY – living history museum

brook farm
Brook Farm

Community near Boston

Based on social or political ideologies

Founded by George Ripley in 1841

Harmony with nature, communal living, and hard work


Collapsed in 1846 after a huge fire destroyed a large building that was uninsured

The Farm could not continue

Influential in fights for women’s and labor rights