Benjamin Wetzel

Wetzel Headshot4 1


Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow


United States HistoryReligious History


B.A., Grove City College (PA)
M.A., Baylor University
Ph.D., University of Notre Dame

Research and Teaching Interests

My work centers on the intersection of religion, politics, and intellectual life in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.  I have taught both halves of the US history survey as well as a course on American religion from 1865 to the present.


My work has appeared in the Journal of Church and State and The Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era.  I am currently at work on two book-length projects.  The first, based on my dissertation, is tentatively titled American Crusade: Lyman Abbott and the Christian Nation at War, 1860-1920.  This project explores how American Christians debated the righteousness of America’s wars from the Civil War to World War I.  It focuses on the views of prominent minister/editor Lyman Abbott, whose Christian nationalism often reflected the stance of the mainline Protestant establishment.  I compare Abbott’s views with those of more marginalized Christian traditions (black Methodists, Roman Catholics, and Missouri Synod Lutherans) to show that Christians’ stance on war primarily depended on their theology and social position.  The manuscript is complete and I am currently in the process of submitting book proposals to university presses.

My next project, commissioned and currently being contracted by Oxford University Press for inclusion in its new “Spiritual Lives” series, will be a religious biography of Theodore Roosevelt.

Cushwa Center for the Study of American Catholicism
407 Geddes Hall
Notre Dame, IN 46556


Wetzel CV