This paper explores the impact of state religious and administrative policies and cultural and scholarly developments on local society and culture in Zezhou prefecture, south-eastern Shanxi Province, from the Song to the Yuan dynasty. On the one hand, state religious policies and the local admininistrative system reshaped village society. Deities with official titles replaced Buddhist deities and earth gods as objects of sacrifice in village shrines. In rural areas, the cunshe, or territorial sacrificial association, became the basic social organization transcending the family. On the other hand, neo-Confucianism became the orthodox ideology of the local literati. As a result, Zezhou scholars engaged in writing and explaining local history in the context of an orthodox history constructed by neo-Confucianism. These two important trends indicate that local society and culture became increasingly integrated in the larger history of China. But local tradition also persisted in popular religious ritual practice and rural organization.