Manuscripts & Correspondence

Document Type




Download Full Text (14.2 MB)

Download Lost Stream Frankness Freedom_ECD1923_Original.pdf (14.1 MB)

Download Letter Editor Lancaster Pub Ledger_ECD1920_Transcribed.pdf (62 KB)

Download Lost Stream_Letter to Atlantic_ECD1923.pdf (859 KB)




“The Lost Stream of Frankness and Freedom” is a manuscript for a text that Earl C. Davis submitted to The Atlantic Monthly for publication. His letter to the Atlantic is below. We do not believe that the article was accepted for publication, or ever published.

Davis argues that the history of thought, governance and religion in the West is a history of moving away from Galilee and Rome, authoritarianism, and the infallibility of Christ and the Bible. He discusses what he sees as two clues. The first are the implications of the letter of greetings sent to the poet Goethe by fifteen English men of letters for his eighty-second birthday. The second comes from Professor J.A Cramb's book Germany and the Next War.

He references how long he has been thinking about these subjects by starting out:

"Is there any spiritual significance in the restlessness and confusion of our times? Is there any definite tendency or undercurrent whose nature we may grasp and the direction of whose movement we may discover? If there is any tendency or meaning, what is it? Such was the question that I was laboring with in the years 1913 and 1914."

Included in the supplementary files is the letter Davis wrote to the Editor of the Atlantic Monthly on June 6, 1923, which was sent along with this manuscript.

The bottom of each item page also features the primary document as an embedded pdf for browsing.

Transcription by Davis Baird. Item description based off writing and context provided by Davis Baird.


Earl Clement Davis, minister, Unitarianism, religion, philosophy

Rights Statement

The Lost Stream of Frankness and Freedom



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