By the Rivers of Water
A Nineteenth Century Atlantic Odyssey
Basic Books 2013
New Books in African StudiesNew Books in American StudiesNew Books in Biblical StudiesNew Books in Christian StudiesNew Books in HistoryNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in ReligionNew Books in Religion & FaithNew Books Network February 9, 2015 Dan Kilbride
Jane Bayard Wilson and John Leighton Wilson were unlikely African missionaries, coming as they did from privileged slaveholding families in Georgia and South Carolina, respectively. Yet in 1834 they embarked on a nearly twenty-year adventure as Christian missionaries to two peoples in western Africa — the Grebo in Liberia, and the Mpongwe in present-day Gabon. Erskine Clarke‘s By the Rivers of Water: A Nineteenth Century Atlantic Odyssey (Basic Books, 2013) tells their story, but it also the tale of how profoundly different people in a globalizing world struggled, and sometimes succeeded, in reaching a common understanding. Even more than a model of Atlantic scholarship, By the Rivers of Water is a also a beautifully written study sure to engage readers interested in the exploding field of Atlantic history.