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Cumberland Presbyterians

The Cumberland Presbyterian Church emerged as a new denomination in 1810 during the Second Great Awakening.* Three ministers-Finis Ewing, Samuel King, and Samuel McAdow-organized the independent Cumberland Presbytery which formed the nucleus of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Refusing to adhere to the licensing requirements for the education of the clergy as set forth by the Presbyterian Church, these men maintained that ministers in the frontier regions of Kentucky and Tennessee did not necessarily need a formal education as a prerequisite for their religious vocations. Moreover, they modified Calvinistic doctrines to suit the revivalistic preaching on the frontier, and this move set them at odds with the mother denomination. In 1906 an attempted union with the Presbyterian Church met with only partial success. The continuing Cumberland Presbyterian Church has some 90,000 members.