Two Unconfirmed quotes attributed to Noah Webster

Part 5 David Barton: Were the Founding Fathers Deists?
First Bible printed in USA was printed by our founding fathers for use in the public schools. 20,000 Bibles. 10 commandments hanging in our courthouses.

The last few days I have been  looking at this issue of unconfirmed quotes that people think that the Founding Fathers actually said and the historical evidence concerning them. David Barton has collected these quotes and tried to confirm them over the last 20 years. These unconfirmed quotes are used every single day and unfortunately my group of conservatives have been guilty of using them more than the liberals have. This website HALT ( includes the T for the word ‘truth” and I want to be totally honest concerning the scholarship of the works that I quote.

Below are two unconfirmed quotes that have been attributed to Noah Webster in the past.

7. The principles of all genuine liberty, and of wise laws and administrations are to be drawn from the Bible and sustained by its authority. The man therefore who weakens or destroys the divine authority of that book may be assessory to all the public disorders which society is doomed to suffer. — Noah Webster (unconfirmed)

8. There are two powers only which are sufficient to control men, and secure the rights of individuals and a peaceable administration; these are the combined force of religion and law, and the force or fear of the bayonet. — Noah Webster (unconfirmed)

These words are entirely consistent with the life and character of Noah Webster. His conversion in 1808 to true Christianity, as opposed to a reliance on outward works and moral duties, is well-documented in his letters. And his attitude on the relationship between government and religion is clearly revealed in his writings. Concerning the origin of civil liberty, he declared:

Almost all the civil liberty now enjoyed in the world owes its origin to the principles of the Christian religion.
. . . . . . . . . .
[T]he religion which has introduced civil liberty, is the religion of Christ and his apostles.
. . . . . . . . . .
This is genuine Christianity, and to this we owe our free constitutions of government.

This is but a small portion of Webster’s thought on the subject of religion and government. Whether he stated the quotes in question or not, they sound like Webster. There is far too much evidence to deny this. Despite this consistency, we recommend avoiding the unconfirmed quote and using the numerous Webster quotations that have stronger supporting documentation.


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