Edges of Empire

KNW 2399: Edges of Empire

Religous Influences from Europe


Photographer: Unknown

Location: Mexico 1902

This photo taken in 1902 depicts native Mexicans worshiping in a partially constructed Catholic Church. In the middle of the picture there is a large group of people dressed in traditional Mexican clothing kneeling facing a cross at the front of the church. The indigenous people are dressed nicely showing the importance of mass to them. They are surrounded on three sides by partially constructed walls that will eventually become a church.  The building is not very large or fancy so it was probably located in a rural area that was not too populated. The indigenous people by this time have embraced Christianity after the Spanish forced it on them for so many years during their occupation. With this Church under construction in 1902 you can see that Christianity has remained important and continued to grow in Mexico.

Photographer Henry Hilton

Location Deccan Region, India

This photo taken in the 1850’s by Henry Hilton shows a large Christian church in Deccan region of India. It is much larger than any of the surrounding buildings. The church is definitely Christian but it has many noticeably Indian architectural characteristics. It was most likely built by Indian workers for the British. Christianity was not popular in India so this church was probably built for British settlers or soldiers in the region. The size of the church makes you question how popular European religion was in India at this time. The Indians did not care about Christianity but the large probably expensive church shows that religion was important to those in charge at the time.

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