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Salvation Army, international religious and charitable organization dedicated to the propagation of the Christian faith and to helping people in need. It was founded in 1865 in London by the English Methodist minister William Booth. It was originally founded as the Christian Mission, with the aim of carrying on evangelical and welfare work among the inhabitants of the poorest areas of London, and remains active primarily in inner cities. The mission rapidly expanded its activities; in 1878 it was reorganized along its present quasi-military lines and was renamed the Salvation Army. Booth was accorded the title of general, and the officers and members of the organization were given military ranks and titles in accordance with their duties. The organization was later organized into territories, each of which had jurisdiction over a specified country or other major geographical area.