The purpose of this research is to study the effect that time and circumstance may have with regards to references to God by Presidents of the United States in their Inaugural Addresses. From this data we hope to infer a larger understanding of the place of God and religion in American society over the past two hundred plus years. We will attempt to answer questions such as whether supplications to God rise during periods of national strife such as the Civil War, or the Great Depression. Has the amount of references gone up since the founding of the Republic, gone down, or largely stayed the same?

In addition to these questions, we will seek to draw conclusions from each individual president’s background and their references to God. Who were the most religious presidents? What region of the country do these types of presidents come from? Do presidents of one party reference God more openly than those of another? These are the types of questions that we will attempt to answer with our research into the fifty-seven Presidential Inaugural Addresses.