University of Notre Dame

House of David Scrapbooks

1914 - 1927

Origination : House of David
Extent : 2 reels of microfilm.
Repository : University of Notre Dame Archives
Address : Notre Dame, Indiana 46556

Preferred Citation

House of David Scrapbooks (DVD), University of Notre Dame Archives (UNDA), Notre Dame, IN 46556

Scope and Content

Microfilmed scrapbooks of newspaper clippings concerning the House of David. The bulk of the clippings concern the history of the group and the legal charges brought against Purnell.

An index to eleven volumes appears at the beginning of reel one, but we have only seven volumes on microfilm. An item list appears before each volume. The Niles District Library in Niles, Michigan, has microfilm of all the scrapbooks (including the ones we lack).


A religious commune that flourished in Benton Harbor, Michigan, in the 1910s, 1920s, and 1930s. The group was led by King Benjamin Purnell. He proclaimed himself the younger brother of Christ and the Seventh Messenger Angel who, according to the Book of Revelation, would gather together the 144,000 people who were to have immortal life on earth. Several members of the group were still living in the Benton Harbor commune at the beginning of the third millenium.


Purnell, Benjamin Franklin, 1861-1926.
House of David.
Sects -- Michigan -- Benton Harbor.
Cults -- United States.
Cults -- Law and legislation -- United States.

Related Material