This book explores the lives and worldviews of Indiana's southern hill-country residents during much of the 19th century. Focusing on local institutions, political, economic, and religious, it gives voice to the plain farmers of the region and reveals the world as they saw it. For them, faith in local institutions reflected a distrust of distant markets and politicians. Localism saw its expression in the Democratic Party's anti-federalist strain, in economic practices such as "safety-first" farming which focused on taking care of the family first, and in non-perfectionist Christianity. Localism was both a means of resisting changes and the basis of a worldview that helped Hoosiers of the hill country negotiate these changes.