Sunday Schools, Bible-based classes for children and illiterate adults, were created in the late 18th century against crime and drunkenness in British factory towns. In the growing America of the 19th century, they became the main educational institutions in rural areas, the only ones along the Frontier, and a strong counterpoint to public schooling in the cities. With their daily practice of Bible reading and their belief in the historical truth of the Text, they developed a shared web of myths and memories; but also, in their pedagogical strive to feed the imagination of youngsters, the Schools moulded a unique fictional literature that stands at the foundation of American culture and identity.
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