'Most Great Reconstruction': The Baha'i Faith in Jim Crow South Carolina, 1898-1965

Louis Venters, University of South Carolina


By the end of the twentieth century, the Baha'i Faith was the largest non-Christian religion in South Carolina, and it was well known for its longstanding commitment to promoting racial harmony, interfaith dialogue, and the moral education of children and youth. Its message was simple and powerful: in the Orient in the middle of the nineteenth century, Christ had returned. His new name was Baha'u'llah, the “Glory of the Father,” and the transforming power of his Word would excise the cancers of prejudice and injustice from the broken body of humanity.