This is a list of the religious affiliations of Presidents of the United States. For better or worse, the particular religious affiliations of U.S. Presidents can affect their electability, shape their visions of society and how they want to lead it, and positively or negatively shape their stances on policy matters.

For example, a contributing factor to Alfred E. Smith's defeat in the presidential election of 1928 was his Roman Catholic faith. In the 1960s, President John F. Kennedy faced accusations that as a Catholic president he would do as Pope John XXIII would tell him to do.

Some people who were president changed their beliefs during their lives. George Washington, for example, gravitated from conventional Christianity more towards Deism as he aged, while Abraham Lincoln had little religion as a young man and became a devout Christian in his later years.

Table of contents
1 List of Presidential religious affiliations (by President)
2 List of Presidential religious affiliations (by religion)
3 External links
4 Further Reading

List of Presidential religious affiliations (by President)

  1. George Washington – Washington's own contemporaries did not question his Christianity but were thoroughly convinced of his devout faith—a fact made evident in the first-ever compilation of "The Writings of George Washington", published in the 1830s, which includes his writing "You do well to learn...above all the religion of Jesus Christ". Many sources list him as an Episcopalian. According to his own journals Washington rarely attended church, going to Sunday services a handful of times each year.
  2. John AdamsUnitarian. Several John Adams quotes include:
    • "The highest glory of the American Revolution was this: it connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity."
    • Speaking of July 4, 1776 - "I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty."
    • "We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion...Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."
  3. Thomas Jefferson – No official affiliations, but his beliefs were primarily Deist, and are considered very close to Unitarian. The Famous UUs website says:
    • Like many others of his time (he died just one year after the founding of institutional Unitarianism in America), Jefferson was a Unitarian in theology, though not in church membership. He never joined a Unitarian congregation: there were none near his home in Virginia during his lifetime. He regularly attended Joseph Priestley's Pennsylvania church when he was nearby, and said that Priestley's theology was his own, and there is no doubt Priestley should be identified as Unitarian. Jefferson remained a member of the Episcopal congregation near his home, but removed himself from those available to become godparents, because he was not sufficiently in agreement with the trinitarian theology.
  4. James MadisonEpiscopalian
  5. James MonroeEpiscopalian
  6. John Quincy AdamsUnitarian
  7. Andrew JacksonPresbyterian
  8. Martin Van BurenDutch Reformed
  9. William Henry HarrisonEpiscopalian
  10. John TylerEpiscopalian; Deist
  11. James Knox PolkPresbyterian
  12. Zachary TaylorEpiscopalian
  13. Millard FillmoreUnitarian
  14. Franklin PierceEpiscopalian
  15. James BuchananPresbyterian
  16. Abraham LincolnChristian; see (1)
  17. Andrew Johnsonnone
  18. Ulysses S. GrantMethodist
  19. Rutherford B. Hayesnone
  20. James GarfieldDisciples of Christ
  21. Chester A. ArthurEpiscopalian
  22. Grover ClevelandPresbyterian
  23. Benjamin HarrisonPresbyterian
  24. Grover ClevelandPresbyterian
  25. William McKinleyMethodist
  26. Theodore RooseveltDutch Reformed
  27. William Howard TaftUnitarian
  28. Woodrow WilsonPresbyterian
  29. Warren G. HardingBaptist
  30. Calvin CoolidgeCongregationalist
  31. Herbert HooverQuaker
  32. Franklin Delano RooseveltEpiscopalian
  33. Harry S. TrumanBaptist
  34. Dwight D. EisenhowerPresbyterian, Jehovah's Witness
    • Eisenhower was brought up as a Jehovah's Witness as an child. Eisenhower left the Jehovah's Witnesses when he was an adult. see [1], [1], and [1].
  35. John F. KennedyRoman Catholic
  36. Lyndon JohnsonDisciples of Christ
  37. Richard Nixon – raised as a Quaker
  38. Gerald R. FordEpiscopalian
  39. Jimmy CarterBaptist
  40. Ronald ReaganDisciples of Christ
  41. George H. W. BushEpiscopalian
  42. Bill ClintonBaptist
  43. George W. BushMethodist

List of Presidential religious affiliations (by religion)

Baptist Congregationalist Deist Disciples of Christ Dutch Reformed Episcopalian Methodist Presbyterian Quaker Roman Catholic Jehovah's Witnesses Unitarian Presidents without affiliation

External links

Unitarian Universalism is the religion generally associated today with those whose ideology is Deist.

Further Reading

Steiner, Franklin, The Religious Beliefs of Our Presidents: From Washington to F.D.R., Prometheus Books/The Freethought Library, July 1995. ISBN 0879759755