John Fea (Ph.D, Stony Brook University, 1999) is Distinguished Professor of American History at Messiah University in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, where he has taught since 2002.

His first book, The Way of Improvement Leads Home: Philip Vickers Fithian and the Rural Enlightenment in Early America (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2008), was chosen as the Book of the Year by the New Jersey Academic Alliance and an Honor Book by the New Jersey Council for the Humanities. His book Was America Founded as a Christian Nation: A Historical Introduction (Westminster/John Knox Press, 2011) was one of three finalists for the George Washington Book Prize, one of the largest literary prizes in the United States. It was also selected as the Foreword Reviews/INDIEFAB religion book of the year.

John is also co-editor (with Jay Green and Eric Miller) of  Confessing History: Explorations in Christian Faith and the Historian’s Vocation. (University of Notre Dame Press, 2010), a finalist for the Lilly Fellows Program in Arts and Humanities Book Award.  His book Why Study History?: Reflecting on the Importance of the Past was published in 2013 with Baker Academic. John’s book The Bible Cause: A History of the American Bible Society appeared in March 2016 with Oxford University Press.

His current book is Believe Me: The Evangelical Road to Donald Trump (Eerdmans, June 2018).

John’s essays and reviews on the history of American culture have appeared in The Journal of American History, The Atlantic, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside Higher Ed, The William and Mary Quarterly, The Journal of the Early RepublicSojourners, Explorations in Early American Culture, Pennsylvania Heritage, Education Week, The Cresset, Books and Culture, Christianity Today, Christian Century, and Common Place.  He has also written for The Washington Post,  USA Today, Al-Jazeera, Philadelphia Inquirer, Fox News, CBS News, New York Daily News, AOL News, Houston Chronicle, Austin-American Statesman, Harrisburg Patriot News, Salt Lake City Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, Religion News Service, and other newspapers.  He blogs daily at The Way of Improvement Leads Home, a blog devoted to American history, religion, politics, and academic life.

John has lectured widely at institutions such as Duke University, Columbia University, Southern Methodist University, Bucknell University, Gettysburg College, University of Colorado, University of Southern California, University of Mary Washington, Wheaton College, Grove City College, University of Tennessee, University of Pennsylvania, University of Notre Dame, Woodberry Forest School, Boston Trinity Academy, Georgetown University, Colonial Williamsburg, University of Minnesota, Southwestern Theological Seminary, Northwestern College, Fort Ticonderoga, Syracuse University, Eastern University, Fraunces Tavern Museum, Valparaiso University, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, and the David Library of the American Revolution.  His is a Distinguished Lecturer with the Organization of American History.

John speaks regularly to churches, school and teacher groups, civic groups, and historical societies and has appeared on NBC News, CNN, C-SPAN,  MSNBC, National Public Radio, and dozens of radio programs across the country.

Learn how to book John for a speaking engagement here.

John’s CV.

Fea at Messiah

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  5. Hi John:

    I just wanted to reach out to you to let you know that I have a new book coming out at the end of March.

    Not sure if you are still teaching History/Social Studies Methods courses, but figured since you liked A PASSION FOR THE PAST you might want to use this book. Here is the link:


    Let me know if you want Stenhouse to send you a desk/examine copy.

    You can reach me at jpercoco@idealschools.org or japercoco@cox.net



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