Wetzel ’09 successfully defends dissertation

Grove City College alumnus Benjamin Wetzel ’09 successfully defended his dissertation titled “American Crusade: Lyman Abbott and the Christian Nation at War, 1861-1918” recently at the University of Notre Dame, South Bend, Ind.

Wetzel, who earned a bachelor’s degree in history at Grove City College, will be a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Notre Dame during the 2016-2017 academic year as he looks for full-time academic employment.

His dissertation investigated how Christians debated the righteousness of America’s wars from the Civil War to World War I, with a focus on Abbott, an influential minister, editor, and political advisor to Theodore Roosevelt who baptized America's wars as godly crusades. Wetzel examines the way Abbot’s view influenced less mainstream Christian denominations, including the African Methodist Episcopal and Catholic churches, and how ideology and social status determined Christian opinion on American wars.

Wetzel ’09 successfully defends dissertation

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