Inman, Samuel Guy (1877-1965)

Advocate of Protestant missions in Latin America

Originally from Trinity, Texas, Inman was profoundly influenced by his ministry in Hell’s Kitchen, New York City, and the broad emphasis of the social gospel. His entire ministry was marked by a concern for the whole person and his or her social context. Ten years of intensive and creative mission work for the Disciples of Christ in Monterrey and Rio Piedras, Mexico, during its revolutionary period fired his enthusiasm for Latin America. When the Edinburgh World Missionary Conference (1910) decided not to consider missions in Roman Catholic lands, the North American mission societies took action and organized the Committee on Cooperation in Latin America (CCLA). As secretary for 25 years (1913-1938) and with Robert E. Speer as chairman, Inman guided the ambitious program of CCLA from its base in New York City. He spearheaded plans for the Panama Mission Conference (1916) and cooperated in the subsequent conferences in Montevideo (1925) and La Habana (Havana) (1929). His philosophy of missions aimed at the conversion of Latin American leaders; sought the elevation of moral character, especially through education; proclaimed Jesus Christ as the savior both of individuals and of society; and, despite concerns about Latin American Roman Catholicism, believed dialogue to be the right approach for interchurch relations. He rejected military intervention of the United States in Latin American lands, helped form President Theodore Roosevelt’s “good neighbor” policy, and participated in the movement for Pan-Americanism. His later years, spent in Brooklyn, New York, were dedicated to teaching and to civil and ecumenical affairs.

Sydney H. Rooy, “Inman, Samuel Guy,” in Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions, ed. Gerald H. Anderson (New York: Macmillan Reference USA, 1998), 319.

This article is reprinted from Biographical Dictionary of Christian Missions, Macmillan Reference USA, copyright © 1998 Gerald H. Anderson, by permission of Macmillan Reference USA, New York, NY. All rights reserved.


Digital Texts

Inman, Samuel Guy. Christian Cooperation in Latin America. New York: Committee on Cooperation in Latin America, 1917.

_____. Intervention in Mexico. New York: Association Press, 1919.

_____. Through Santo Domingo and Haiti: A Cruise with the Marines. New York: Committee on Cooperation in Latin America, 1919.

_____. Problems in Pan Americanism. New York: George H. Doran Co., 1921.


Inman, Samuel Guy. “The Present Situation in the Caribbean.” The Journal of International Relations 11 no. 2 (Oct., 1920): 289-317.

_____. “The Monroe Doctrine and Hispanic America.” Hispanic American Historical Review 4 no. 4 (Nov 1921): 635-76.

_____. “Paran√°, Exponent of North American Education: The Story of the Remarkable Influence of Yankee School-teachers in Argentina.” The Pan-American Union (Nov. 1921): 463-74.

_____. “The Religious Approach to the Latin American Mind.” The Journal of Religion 2 no. 5 (Sep 1922): 490-500.

_____. America’s Debt to the West Indies. New York: Committee on Cooperation in Latin America, [1924].

_____. “Steps Toward Inter-American Friendship.” The World Tomorrow (November 1924): 342-4.

_____. Ventures in Inter-American Friendship. New York: Missionary Education Movement of the United States and Canada, [1925].

_____. “Church and State in Mexico.” The Journal of Religion 8 no. 3 (July 1928): 384-410.

_____. Evangelicals at Havana; Being an Account of the Hispanic American Evangelical Congress, at Havana, Cuba, June 20-30, 1929. New York: Committee on Cooperation in Latin America, [1929].

_____. Trailing the Conquistadores. New York: Friendship Press, [1930].

_____. Engineers Versus Poets. New York: Committee on Cooperation in Latin America, [1931?].

_____. Conditions in Latin America that Call for a New Stressing of the Christian Message. New York: International Missionary Council, 1932.

_____. Which Way South America? New York: Committee on Cooperation in Latin America, [1933].

_____. New Aspects of Christian Work in Mexico: Report on Recent Developments and a Series of Conferences on Evangelical Work Held in Mexico City, March 15-21, 1934. New York: Committee on Mexico of the Comittee on Cooperation in Latin America, 1934.

_____. Religious Conditions in Latin America. New York City: [Committee on Cooperation in Latin America], 1935.

_____. Building an Inter-American Neighborhood. New York: National Peace Conference, 1937.

_____. Latin America: Its Place in the World. Chicago and New York: Willet, Clark & Co., 1937.

_____. Democracy Versus the Totalitarian State in Latin America. Philadelphia, PA: The American Academy of Political and Social Science, 1938.

_____. “Lima Conference and the Totalitarian Issue.” The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 204 (July 1939): 9-16.

_____. “Refugee Settlement in Latin America.” The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 203 (May 1939): 183-93.

_____. “Cultural Relations with Latin America.” The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 211 (Sep 1940): 180-85.

_____. A Gentleman and a Scholar [Charles Thomas Paul]. [Indianapolis, IN: United Christian Missionary Society, 1941].

_____. “Catholics and Latin America.” New Republic (Feb. 26, 1945).

_____. Andres Bello, a South American Humanist. Lexington: [University of Kentucky], 1949.

_____. The Rise and Fall of the Good Neighbor Policy. Lexington, KY: University of Kentucky, 1949.

Inman, Samuel Guy, Carleton Beals, Bryce Oliver and Herschel Brickell. What the South Americans Think of Us. New York: R.M. McBride & Co. [1945].

Inman, Samuel Guy and Harold E. Davis. Inter-American Conferences, 1826-1954; History and Problems. Washington: University Press, 1965.


Castleman, William J. Samuel Guy Inman, 1905-1916: A Historical Literary Biography of the Early Life of Samuel Guy Inman, Herald of Christian Cooperation, Advocate of Inter-American Friendship, Worker for World Peace, and Pioneer in Social Action. Indianapolis, IN: Christian Communications Reporter, 1969. Orig. 1966.

Koll, Karla. “Samuel Guy Inman: Venturer in Inter-American Friendship.” Union Seminary Quarterly Review 42 no. 3 (1988): 45-66.

Williams, Virginia S. Radical Journalists, Generalist Intellectuals, and U.S.-Latin American Relations. Lewiston, NY: E. Mellen Press, 2001.

Woods, K. F. Samuel Guy Inman: His Role in the Evolution of Inter-American Cooperation. Ph.D. diss. American University, 1962.

Links to archived articles by Inman in The Nation.

Edgar P. Sneed, “INMAN, SAMUEL GUY,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed July 19, 2011. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

The Burke Library Archives At Union Theological Seminary, New York. Missionary Research Library Archives: Section 9, Finding Aid for “Samuel Guy Inman Papers, 1914-1929.” Prepared by Miguel Escobar, October 2006.