One of the pleasures of doing historical research is coming across things that have nothing to do with what you’re researching. This morning I was trying to find material on what the traveling evangelist Mordecai F. Ham thought about Zionism. Ham was famous for three things–being a great revivalist, converting Billy Graham, and antisemitic rabblerousing. He was also for a brief time the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Oklahoma City. While searching The Oklahoman‘s archives for mentions of the pastor, I came across a 1927 article about Ham getting hit by a car on North Robinson. Ham, it seems, not only blamed the devil, but called him out:
“I have been lying here trying to figure out why I was hurt and who was to blame. You will remember that I had a great deal to say about the devil that was not complimentary to him. I also had announced a series on ‘Satanic Cults’ for this fall. I guess the devil tried to head me off.
I want to serve notice on him now that unless he does a cleaner job of knocking me out I will have a great deal more to say about him just as soon as these doctors and my good wife will permit me to return to my pulpit.”