History 200: Gateway Research

Document Type

Student Paper

Publication Date

Spring 2015


History | United States History

Description, Abstract, or Artist's Statement

Anti-Catholicism is an often forgotten feature of our country’s past that was extremely widespread, especially across rural America. In this essay, I focus on an anti-Catholic newspaper, titled The Menace, which was published out of the small Midwestern town of Aurora, Missouri and enjoyed national success. I argue that anti-Catholic sentiments were largely tied to rural values and fears of urbanization, which were being fueled by a massive influx of Irish and Italian Catholic immigrants into the United States. Rural communities cried out against this “Catholic invasion” because they truly believed that urban immigrant populations were taking away their political and economic powers. By considering the historical context of The Menace and the newspaper’s content, I am able to trace the fears that were really behind the anti-Catholic cause.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.