The Age of Enlightenment - the vegetarian lifestyle had a resurgence of popularity in Europe during the 17th century when a devout Christian named Thomas Tryon read the works of the German mystic Jacob Böhme and started a Hindu vegetarian society in London. Europe's 18th century saw an upsurge in interest in vegetarianism when philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer noted that the brutal and cruel slaughter of animals was wrong. This led to the 1800s when a number of religious and educational communities sprung up which advocated vegetarianism. In 1807, the Reverend William Cowherd broke with the Church of England and established the Bible Christian Church, founded on a literal interpretation of the scriptures. Cowherd believed that the Bible prohibited the eating of meat. Cowherd's congregation abstained from consuming meat, coffee, tea, tobacco and alcohol, and many also abstained from dairy products and eggs. The Bible Christian Church handed out free bowls of vegetable soup to the poor, and is often credited with coining the term "vegetarian." In 1817, William Metcalfe, disciple of Cowherd's, formed a small but influential Philadelphia congregation. One of Metcalfe's followers was a Presbyterian minister, Sylvester Graham, a raw foods enthusiast and inventor of the graham cracker. Graham lectured that certain foods were unhealthy because of their "stimulating" qualities, including white bread and alcohol. He was a tireless advocate of the vegetarian lifestyle. Graham's two greatest legacies were; one, connecting the link between diet and disease; two, promoting the use of whole grains and denouncing the increasingly popular use of refined white flour in baked goods. Graham showed that using white flour was unhealthy and removed the nutritional value of the bread. Among those that Metcalfe and Graham influenced was Amos Bronson Alcott, father of "Little Women" author Louisa May Alcott. Louisa May Alcott advocated an austere vegan lifestyle.
Vegetarianism in the United States - One of biggest influences on modern-day vegetarianism in the United States has been the Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) Church founded by Ellen White. Adventists advocated it was contrary to God's plan to have the life of any creature taken. Adventists are significantly healthier than the general population. One man who worked as a printer for White, helping to publish the Adventists' health journal, was John Harvey Kellogg. White and her husband, paid for Kellogg's medical school. Dr. Kellogg was a believer in the value of preventative medicine with an emphasis on fresh air, sunshine, exercise, rest and eating healthy. He prescribed "biologic living," forbade meats, condiments, spices, alcohol, chocolate, coffee and tea and worked tirelessly to create vegetarian food. He invented over 80 different products using nuts and grains, including peanut butter, a cereal-based coffee substitute (an early version of Postum) and corn flakes. Dr. Kellogg was convinced that a great many illnesses were caused by toxic bacteria in the bowels and favored a high-fiber vegetarian diet, blaming some 90 percent of all disease on stomach and bowel problems. He was especially concerned about the effects of meat-eating on the intestinal tract. Dr. Kellogg's influence as an advocate of vegetarianism was profound. Among the visitors to his sanitarium were automobile tycoon Henry Ford, retailers J.C. Penney and S.S. Kresge, actress Sarah Berhardt, explorer Richard Byrd, inventor Thomas Edison, industrialist Harvey Firestone, President William Howard Taft, and aviator Amelia Earhart. Battle Creek Sanitarium was just one of many vegetarian health retreats in the United States. Next article: Part 3, "The Beginning of Vegetarian Miss Information" and "The Vegetarianism Lifestyle in the United States Today".