“He said, when he entered upon his duties at West Point, the spiritual condition of the Institution was deplorable — no sense of religious obligation — but few professors of religion among the cadets — and not more than one, if one, among the professors. Skepticism, in its varied forms, was prevalent among officers and cadets, and his labors for some time seemed to be in vain. He finally determined he would combine, with his pulpit ministries, the distribution of religious tracts, leaving them in the rooms of the cadets while they were at drill. They would be as ‘bread cast upon the waters,’ and would return ‘after many days.’ The answer came sooner than he expected.”
Initially sparked by the conversion of [West Point] Cadet Leonidas Polk, the revival would impact a number of other cadets as well, including Robert E. Lee, Albert Sydney Johnston, Joseph E. Johnson, and Jefferson Davis. The story has lots of fascinating twists and turns—too numerous and involved for a blog post—but one of the most interesting aspects of this revival was the conversion of a cadet by the name of Martin Parks. . .
Read the rest of this fascinating story here.
(Image depicts West Point in 1859.)