“Historic peace church” designates three groups: the Church of the Brethren, the Mennonites (including the Amish), and the Religious Society of Friends (the Quakers). The Brethren and Mennonites share a long tradition of Christian nonviolence rooted in European Anabaptism. During the 1770s they jointly petitioned the Pennsylvania Assembly, declaring that they had no “freedom of conscience to take up arms” in the colonies’ revolt. During the Civil War, Brethren and Mennonites paid fees and taxes to gain exemption from military service. As late as 1912, the Brethren’s Annual Meeting ruled that “the church of Jesus Christ is no part of this world system.... His citizenship being in heaven, the child of God sustains the attitude of a pilgrim to the affairs of state.” Voting and office holding were discouraged, and early twentieth-century Brethren and Mennonites clearly understood that military service was off limits.