Erskine Clarke's "To Count Our Days"

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At Log College Press, we are pleased to highlight a new publication by respected religious scholar Erskine Clarke released in earlier this month: To Count Our Days: A History of Columbia Theological Seminary (The University of South Carolina Press, 2019, 369 pages).

It is hot off the press and this is by no means an official book review, but having perused this fascinating volume, it is a pleasure to make it our new featured title at the LCP Secondary Sources page.

No easy task is it to tell the story of a nearly two hundred year-old institution devoted to preparation for the gospel ministry, but Clarke carefully, candidly, competently and respectfully navigates a complicated history involving the trajectory of Southern Presbyterian theology, social matters and a move from South Carolina to Georgia. This account is full of rich anecdotes, fascinating photographs and insightful observations.

The great luminaries associated with the seminary are highlighted, including John L. Girardeau, James H. Thornwell, Benjamin M. Palmer, William S. Plumer, Walter Brueggemann, and many more. Lesser-known names are brought to life as well, along with stories of interest, such as the 1856 library acquisition of 11,520 volumes from Thomas Smyth.

Be sure to check out this remarkable work here, and while you are exploring, it’s a great opportunity to browse other volumes of interest concerning church history, biography and more. We have links to over 600 books related to American Presbyterianism.

Kudos to Dr. Clarke for his valuable contribution to our end-of-the-summer reading. If you appreciate church history, this is a great resource that you won’t want to miss. And in case you are wondering, the title comes from Psalm 90:12: “So teach us to count our days that we may gain a wise heart.”