Josiah Strong, from Our Country (1885)


No writer did more to popularize the idea of “Anglo-Saxon” supremacy than the Protestant clergyman Josiah Strong. His book, Our Country: Its Possible Future and Its Present Crisis, was written for a limited purpose: to promote missionary activity by Protestant churches.  But it argued for foreign missions with ideas that captured a much wider audience than the limited one Strong had in mind.  The book quickly sold almost 200,000 copies, and became something of a bible for those who were ready to be convinced that it was the destiny of the “Anglo-Saxon” race to dominate – even to eliminate – the “savage” races of the world.



It seems to me that God, with infinite wisdom and skill, is training the Anglo-Saxon race for an hour sure to come in the world's future. Heretofore there has always been in the history of the world a comparatively unoccupied land westward, into which the crowded countries of the East have poured their surplus populations. But the widening waves of migration, which millenniums ago rolled east and west from the valley of the Euphrates, meet to-day on our Pacific coast. There are no more new worlds. The unoccupied arable lands of the earth are limited, and will soon be taken. The time is coming when the pressure of population on the means of subsistence will be felt here as it is now felt in Europe and Asia. Then will the world enter upon a new stage of its history-the final competition of races, for which the Anglo-Saxon is being schooled. Long before the thousand millions are here, the mighty centrifugal tendency, inherent in this stock and strengthened in the United States, will assert itself. Then this race of unequaled energy, with all the majesty of numbers and the might of wealth behind it-the representative, let us hope, of the largest liberty, the purest Christianity, the highest civilization-having developed peculiarly aggressive traits calculated to impress its institutions upon mankind, will spread itself over the earth. If I read not amiss, this powerful race will move down upon Mexico, down upon Central and South America, out upon the islands of the sea, over upon Africa and beyond. And can any one doubt that the result of this competition of races will be the "survival of the fittest?"