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Bacon, Leonard Woolsey (01 January 1830–12 May 1907), minister and author, was born in New Haven, Connecticut, the son of Leonard Bacon, a minister, and Lucy Johnson. Bacon graduated from Yale College in 1850. Beginning in September of that year he accompanied his father on a year-long tour of Europe and the East. When he returned to the United States, Bacon spent two years at Andover Theological Seminary and one year at Yale Divinity School, graduating from the latter in 1854. He turned next to medical study and received a degree from Yale Medical School in 1856....

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Bainton, Roland Herbert (30 March 1894–13 February 1984), historian of the Protestant Reformation, was born in Ilkeston, Derbyshire, England, the only son of James Herbert Bainton, a Congregational pastor, and Charlotte Eliza Blackham. Bainton’s family moved to Vancouver, British Columbia (1898), and then to Colfax, Washington (1902). He received the traditional British-inspired education in the classics, beginning the study of Latin at twelve and adding German at thirteen. The elder Bainton encouraged his reading and inquiry, and their discussions continued by mail after Bainton entered college. Bainton graduated from Whitman College (B.A. in classics, 1910–1914), Yale Divinity School (B.D., 1914–1917), and Yale University (Ph.D. in Semitics and Hellenistic Greek, 1917–1921)....

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Beaver, Robert Pierce (26 May 1906–20 November 1987), minister and missions scholar, was born in Hamilton, Ohio, the son of Joseph Earl Beaver, an employee of the Game and Fish Commission of Ohio, and Caroline Neusch. He received the B.A. and M.A. in art history at Oberlin College (1928) followed by post graduate studies at Munich (1931–1932), a Ph.D. in history from Cornell University (1933), and postdoctoral study at Yale (1938). He married his high school classmate Wilma Manessier, a kindergarten teacher, in 1927; they had three children....

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Clebsch, William Anthony (19 July 1923–12 June 1984), church historian, developer of religious studies, and university professor, was born in Clarksville, Tennessee, the son of Alfred Clebsch, an owner of tobacco warehouses, and Julia Wilee. In 1944 he married Betsy Birchfield, a horticulturalist; they had two children....

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Corwin, Edward Tanjore (12 July 1834–22 June 1914), minister and historian, was born in New York City, the son of Edward Callwell Corwin and Mary Ann Shuart. Descended on his father’s side from English founders of New Haven, Connecticut, Corwin seems to have been more influenced by his mother’s ethnic heritage. Her ancestors were Dutch, early settlers in New Amsterdam, and the whole family found sustenance in Reformed theological traditions. In 1853 Corwin graduated first in his class from the Free Academy, a school soon to be named College of the City of New York. Three years later he graduated from New Brunswick Theological Seminary in New Brunswick, New Jersey, the oldest and best Dutch Reformed ministerial academy in the country. In 1856 he was also licensed by the church in Bergen, New Jersey. Staying a fourth year at the seminary, he received ordination at Paramus, New Jersey, in 1857. That same year Corwin began his first pastorate in Paramus, devoting himself to ministerial duties there until 1863. In 1861 he married Mary Esther Kipp; the couple had four children, two of whom survived to adulthood....

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de Schweinitz, Edmund Alexander (20 March 1825–18 December 1887), leader of the Moravian church in America and first president of Moravian College and Theological Seminary, was born in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, the son of Lewis de Schweinitz, a pastor and amateur botanist, and Louise Amalie Le Doux. De Schweinitz grew up in the Moravian village of Bethlehem during the period when its character as a closed religious community was crumbling. He studied classics and theology at Moravian schools in Nazareth and Bethlehem until 1844, when he spent several months at the University of Berlin. There he attended lectures in church history, a subject that would be the core of his academic writing. He taught briefly in Zeyst, Holland, before returning to the United States in 1847. From 1847 to 1850 he taught classics at his old school, Nazareth Hall. In 1850 he married Lydia de Tschirschky in Herrnhut, Germany; they had two sons and two daughters. Also in 1850 he was ordained and served in a number of short pastorates, including Dover, Ohio, and Lebanon, Philadelphia, and Lititz, Pennsylvania, before settling in Bethlehem. He was regarded as a good preacher with a scholarly and “ornate” style. He was also known to be formal and at times imperious as a pastor. These traits are evident in his published works....

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Dorchester, Daniel (11 March 1827–13 March 1907), Methodist clergyman and statistician of American church history, was born in Duxbury, Massachusetts, the son of the Reverend Daniel Dorchester, a Methodist clergyman, and Mary Otis. He attended Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut, for two years; in 1847 he entered the Methodist ministry. In April 1850 he married Mary Payson Davis; they had seven children. Mary died in 1874, and in 1875 Dorchester married Merial A. Whipple....

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Dubbs, Joseph Henry (05 October 1838–01 April 1910), clergyman, educator, and historian, was born of Swiss-American parentage in rural North Whitehall Township, Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, the son of Joseph S. Dubbs, a German Reformed pastor, and Eleanor Lerch. In his mid-teenage years he enrolled at Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, graduating in 1856. In 1859 Dubbs completed his ministerial training at the Theological Seminary of the Reformed Church at Mercersburg, which was then guided by the scholar and churchman ...

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Emerton, Ephraim (18 February 1851–03 March 1935), university professor and church historian, was born in Salem, Massachusetts, the son of James Emerton, an apothecary, and Martha West. Emerton graduated from Harvard College in 1871. He worked as a reporter for the Boston Advertiser...

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Engelhardt, Zephyrin (13 November 1851–27 April 1934), California missions historian and Franciscan missionary to Indians, was born in Bilshausen, Hanover, Germany, the son of Anthony Engelhardt, an expert in the manufacture of willowware, and Elizabeth (maiden name unknown). In 1852 the family immigrated to the United States, settling in Covington, Kentucky. In 1869 Engelhardt entered St. Francis Seminary in Cincinnati, and in 1872 he entered the novitiate of the Order of Friars Minor of the Sacred Heart Province in Teutopolis, Illinois. He made his solemn vows in 1876 and was ordained to the priesthood on 18 June 1878 in St. Louis, Missouri....

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Fisher, George Park (10 August 1827–20 December 1909), historian of Christianity, was born in Wrentham, Massachusetts, the son of Lewis Whiting Fisher and Nancy Fisher. After graduating from Brown University in 1847, Fisher enrolled briefly at Yale Divinity School and Auburn Theological Seminary before completing his professional education at Andover Seminary in 1851, where he was influenced by ...

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Gavin, Frank Stanton Burns (31 October 1890–20 March 1938), Episcopal theologian and church historian, was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, the son of William James Gavin, a physician, and Laura Adelaide Burns. In 1907 he entered the University of Cincinnati, from which he received the A.B. in 1912. While there he also took courses at Xavier University and at Hebrew Union College. In 1912 Gavin entered the General Theological Seminary in New York City; while there he also studied at Columbia University, where he was a University Fellow in Semitics (1913–1914). He received his M.A. in Semitic languages from Columbia in 1915, his S.T.B. from General Theological in 1915, and his Ph.D. from Columbia in 1922. His dissertation, “Aphraates and the Jews: A Study of the Controversial Homilies of the Persian Sage in Their Relation to Jewish Thought,” published in the ...

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Guilday, Peter Keenan (25 March 1884–31 July 1947), historian and educator, was born in Chester, Pennsylvania, the son of Peter Wilfred Guilday, a textile plant foreman, and Ellen Keenan. After attending parochial schools in Chester and Philadelphia, Peter entered St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Overbrook in 1902 to study for the Roman Catholic priesthood. There he received a scholarship in 1907 to attend the American College in Louvain, Belgium, for his last two years of theological studies. He was ordained in 1909 and at the same time began graduate work in history at the University of Louvain. Having a facility for languages, he researched archives in France, Belgium, Spain, and Italy, and spent a full year in London. In 1914 he received a Doctorat en sciences morales et historiques for his dissertation on colleges and convents of the European continent that had supported Catholic refugees from Elizabethan England. The outbreak of World War I halted further research, and the young priest returned to his homeland....

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Hitchcock, Roswell Dwight (15 August 1817–16 June 1887), church historian and seminary president, was born at East Machias, Maine, the son of Roswell Hitchcock and Betsey Longfellow. He prepared for college there at Washington Academy and entered Amherst as a sophomore in 1833, graduating three years later. After two years as the principal of an academy, he attended Andover Theological Seminary but after a year was called back to Amherst as a tutor and only in 1842 returned to seminary, graduating in two years. In 1845 he married Elizabeth Anthony Brayton (three children were born of the union) and was ordained as pastor of the First Congregational Church of Exeter, New Hampshire. After a leave of absence to study at Halle and Berlin (1847–1848), he returned to his parish but was appointed professor of religion at Bowdoin College in 1852. Three years later he was elected to the newly endowed Washburn Chair of Church History at Union Theological Seminary in New York City, a post he held for the rest of his life. Once at Union he transferred his ministerial credentials to the New School Presbyterian church and showed loyal devotion to the Westminster Confession, interpreting it in the light of the demanding intellectual trends of his times....

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Jackson, Samuel Macauley (19 June 1851–02 August 1912), church historian and philanthropist, was born in New York City, the son of George T. Jackson, a businessman, and Letitia Jane Aiken Macauley. Born into a socially prominent and financially comfortable family, Jackson embodied the intellectual tastes and public mindedness often found among members of that class. In 1870 he graduated from the College of the City of New York and for the next year studied divinity at Princeton Theological Seminary. In 1871 he transferred to Union Theological Seminary in New York City, graduating with a B.D. degree in 1873. For two years thereafter he toured Europe and took advanced courses at the universities in Leipzig and Berlin. Upon his return to the United States, he earned an A.M. degree from the College of the City of New York in 1876 and was ordained as a Presbyterian minister. For four years he served as pastor of a church in Norwood, New Jersey....

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Jacobs, Henry Eyster (10 November 1844–07 July 1932), historian, theologian, and churchman, was born in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the son of the Reverend Michael Jacobs, a college professor, and Julianna Matilda Eyster. Michael Jacobs taught natural science at the Lutheran Pennsylvania (now Gettysburg) College. As a consequence, from the outset Henry Jacobs lived in the contexts of education and church. In his youth Jacobs’s world view was also profoundly influenced by witnessing at close range the battle of Gettysburg, fought when he was nineteen, and by hearing ...

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Jones, Rufus Matthew (25 January 1863–16 June 1948), exemplar of mysticism and rebuilder of Quakerism, was born on his family’s farm in South China, Maine, the son of Edwin Jones and Mary Hoxie. Despite the demands of the farm and financial need, as well as an almost fatal injury at age ten, Jones attended local day and Quaker boarding schools. The vitality of worship and loving guidance in his Quaker home were described in the first of his humorous, small autobiographical books, ...

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Little, Charles Joseph (21 September 1840–11 March 1911), Methodist minister and seminary president, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Thomas Rowell and Ann Zimmermann. Raised in a bilingual family (German and English), Little developed an excellent facility for languages and eventually became proficient in Greek, Latin, Italian, and French. Following his graduation with a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1861, he joined the Philadelphia Conference of the Methodist church the next year. Prevented from serving in the Union army during the Civil War because of poor health, he served as pastor of Methodist congregations in Newark, Delaware (1862–1863), and Philadelphia (1863–1865); he also visited thousands of wounded and dying soldiers on battlefields and comforted many who lost loved ones in the war. In 1864 he completed an M.A. at the University of Pennsylvania. After serving Methodist parishes in Springfield, Pennsylvania (1865–1866), and Chestnut Hill in Philadelphia (1866–1867), he accepted a position as a professor of mathematics at Dickinson Seminary (later Lycoming College) in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, a decision prompted in part by his fear that he did not have the physical stamina the ministry required. While doing graduate study in Europe from 1869 to 1872 he met Anna Marina Schultze, whom he married in Berlin, Germany, in 1872; they had four children....

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McAvoy, Thomas Timothy (12 September 1903–05 July 1969), priest, archivist, and historian, was born in Tipton, Indiana, the son of Charles Edward McAvoy, a merchant, and Nora Bernardine Walsh. He graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1925, made final profession of vows in the Congregation of Holy Cross (C.S.C.) that same year, and was ordained a priest in 1929. He taught high school Latin and English from 1929 to 1932, offered courses in American history at Notre Dame from 1933 to 1935, and received a Ph.D. in history from Columbia University in 1940. He was appointed university archivist at Notre Dame in 1929, chairman of the department of history ten years later, and managing editor of the ...

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Morini, Austin M. (04 March 1826–29 July 1909), Catholic priest, philologist, and historian, was born John Morini in Florence, Italy, the son of Paul Morini, a goldsmith and designer, and Anna Bartolini, an embroiderer. He received his early education at the school of the Piarist Fathers in Florence; then in 1844, at the age of eighteen, he entered the novitiate of the Servite Friars (Servants of Mary) at SS. Annunziata church in Florence. At that time his name was changed to Austin. He completed his philosophical and theological training at SS. Annunziata and was ordained to the priesthood on 1 May 1850. He received the degree of master of theology in 1856....