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type of outdoor revival meeting that was held on the American frontier during the 19th century by various Protestant denominations. Camp meetings filled an ecclesiastical and spiritual need in the unchurched settlements as the population moved west. Their origin is obscure, but historians have generally credited James McGready (c. 1760-1817), a Presbyterian, with inaugurating the first typical camp meetings in 1799-1801 in Logan county, Kentucky. Other ministers who associated with McGready subsequently spread his methods throughout the southwestern United States.