Historical Writings

Today in Christian History

Thursday, February 18

1546
Death in Eisleben of German reformer Martin Luther.
1571
A group of Spanish Jesuits in the Chesapeake Bay area, led by Fray Batista Segura, were murdered by the Indians they had come six months earlier to convert. The massacre led ultimately to the withdrawal of all Jesuits living in Florida as well.
1678
John Bunyan's "Pilgrim's Progress" was first published, in England. Bunyan was frequently imprisoned for preaching without a license. During these sequestered times, between 1660-72, Bunyan collected the ideas enabling him to pen this masterpiece of Christian literature.
1688
At a monthly meeting in Germantown, PA, a group of Quakers and Mennonites became the first white body in English America to register a formal protest against slavery. The historic "Germantown Protest" denounced both slavery and the slave trade.
1781
Birth of Henry Martyn, Anglican missionary to Persia. Martyn first sailed for the East in 1805. His great linguistic gifts led him to translate the New Testament both into Hindustani and Arabic, before his premature death at 31.
1867
The Augusta Institute was founded in Georgia. Established as an institution of higher learning for black students, it moved to Atlanta in 1879, and in 1913 changed its name to Morehouse College.
1894
A mob assaults the Presbyterian mission at Yeung Kong, China, breaking into the homes of the Rev. Andrew Beattie and Dr. D. A. Beattie, where they threaten and rough up the mission families (each man has a wife and child) as they smash and loot.
1946
Pope Pius XII makes American Roman Catholic Archbishop Francis Joseph Spellman a cardinal.
1948
Father Butrus Sowmy of St. Mark's Syrian Orthodox Monastery in Jerusalem phones John Trever, asking that he examine an old manuscript. It will turn out to be the first discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
2006
Muslims burn down Victory Baptist Church, Alamuderi, Maiduguri, Nigeria.

Copyright Statement
© 1987-2020, William D. Blake. Portions used by permission of the author, from "Almanac of the Christian Church"