On the frontier of the young state of Indiana, formal church buildings and trained pastors were few and far between. That's where circuit riders came in.
President Theodore Roosevelt called it “the most American thing in America.” With its passing, it’s been said, “the American middle class in the interior lost something valuable.” The Chautauqua movement brought religion, politics, culture and entertainment to small towns and rural outposts across the United States from the 1870s through the 1920s.
Over the years many origins of the word “Hoosier” have been identified. It may come from the foloowers of Harry Hoosier, a widely known black preacher of the 18th century.