Rev. Lyman Beecher

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Rev. Lyman Beecher

Also Known As: "("the father of more brains than anyone in America")"
Birthdate: (87)
Birthplace: New Haven, New Haven County, Connecticut, United States
Death: January 10, 1863 (87)
Brooklyn, Kings County, New York, United States
Place of Burial: New Haven, New Haven, Connecticut, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of David Henry Beecher; Fred Beecher; Esther Hawley Lyman and Sara Beecher
Husband of Roxanna Beecher; Roxana Ward Beecher; Harriet Beecher and Lydia Beecher (Beals)
Father of Catharine Esther Beecher; William Henry Beecher; Edward Beecher; Mary Foote Perkins; George Beecher and 13 others
Brother of Tompson Beecher and ? Beecher
Half brother of Mary Beecher; Lydia Fitch; David Samuel Beecher and Esther N. Beecher

Occupation: Reverand, Clergyman
Managed by: Ivy Jo Smith
Last Updated:

About Rev. Lyman Beecher

For more pictures go to the Media section..

Lyman Beecher October 12, 1775-January 10, 1863

Find a Grave Memorial #3071 http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=3071

Lyman graduated at Yale College in 1797; studied with Dr. Dwight; licensed to preach in 1798; married and settled in the ministry in East Hampton, Long Island in 1799; in 1810 he removed to Litchfield, Conn. Dr. Beecher married Rozanna Foote of Guilford in Sept. 1799. She was a woman of extraordinary talents.

U.S. and International Marriage Records, 1560-1900 Name: Lyman Beecher Gender: Male Birth Year: 1775 Spouse Name: Roxanna Foote Spouse Birth Year: 1775 Marriage Year: 1799 Number Pages: 1

Massachusetts Marriages, 1633-1850 Name: Rev. Lyman Beecher Gender: Male Spouse: Lydia Jackson Marriage Date: 23 Sep 1836 City: Cambridge County: Middlesex Source: Family History Library, Salt Lake City, UT, Film # 0496864.


Source: Virkus, Frederick A. The Abridged Compendium of American Genealogy. Vol.3, Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc. p. 290.

Source: Rugoff, Milton. The Beechers, An American Family in the Nineteenth Century. New York: Harper & Row, c. 1981. p. 161.

By 1832 Lyman had moved to Guilford, Connecticut, then to East Hampton, Long Island, then to Litchfield, Connecticut, then to Boston, Massachusetts, then to Cincinnati, Ohio & later back to Boston, then finally to Brooklyn - on Willow St. in 1856.

1850 United States Federal Census Name: Lyman Beecher Age: 76 Estimated birth year: abt 1774 Birth Place: Connecticut Gender: Male Home in 1850 (City,County,State): Millcreek, Hamilton, Ohio Family Number: 913 Household Members: Name Age Lyman Beecher 76 Lydia Beecher 60 William Scarborough 37 Eliza Scarborough 24 Ether Scarborough 3 Edward Scarborough 0 Aaron Dutton 34 Margeret Stewart 55 William Stewart 21 Susan Brownly 32 Catherine Kenedy 18

1860 United States Federal Census Name: Lyman Beecher Age in 1860: 83 Birth Year: abt 1777 Birthplace: Connecticut Home in 1860: Brooklyn Ward 1 District 1, Kings, New York Gender: Male Post Office: Brooklyn Household Members: Name Age Louisa White 13 Augustus White 17 Harrison White 19 Henry White 21 Lyman Beecher 83 Lydia Beecher 73 Charles Warren 45 Betsey Stom 35 William White 45 Lucy White 40 Kate White 4 Alfred White 7

Biographical Sketch (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lyman_Beecher) Reverend Lyman Beecher (1775 - 1863), Brooklyn, Kings, NY

Lyman Beecher was a Presbyterian clergyman, temperance movement leader, and the father of several noted leaders, including Harriet Beecher Stowe, Henry Ward Beecher, Charles Beecher, Edward Beecher, Isabella Beecher Hooker, and Catharine Beecher, and a leader of the Second Great Awakening of the United States. Beecher was born in New Haven, Connecticut to David Beecher, a blacksmith, and Esther Hawley Lyman. He attended Yale, graduating in 1797. He spent 1798 in Yale Divinity School under the tutelage of his mentor Timothy Dwight, and was ordained a year later, in 1799. He began his religious career in Long Island. He gained popular recognition in 1806, after giving a sermon concerning the duel between Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr. He moved to Litchfield, Connecticut, in 1810 and started to preach Calvinism . A few years later after moving to Boston's Hanover Church, he began preaching against Unitarianism , which was then sweeping the area.

In 1799 he married Roxana Foote, the daughter of Eli and Roxana (Ward) Foote. They had nine children: Catharine E., William, Edward, Mary, Harriet, Tommy, George, Harriet Elizabeth, Henry Ward, and Charles. Roxana Beecher died on September 13, 1816. In 1817, he married Harriet Porter and they had four children: Frederick C., Isabella Holmes, Thomas Kinnicut, and James Chaplin. After Harriet Beecher died on July 7, 1835, he married Lydia Beals Johnson (1789-1869) in 1836.

In 1832, Beecher became pastor of the Second Presbyterian Church of Cincinnati (today, this congregation is Covenant First Presbyterian Church), and the first president of Lane Theological Seminary where his mission was to train ministers to win the West for Protestantism . Beecher's term at the school came at a time when a number of burning issues, particularly slavery , threatened to divide the Presbyterian Church, the state of Ohio, and the nation. In 1834, students at the school debated the slavery issue for 18 consecutive nights and many of them chose to adopt the cause of abolitionism . When Beecher opposed their "radical" position and refused to offer classes to African-Americans , a group of about 50 students (who became known as the "Lane Rebels") left the Seminary for Oberlin College. The events sparked a growing national discussion of abolition that contributed to the beginning of the Civil War.

Beecher was also notorious for his anti-Catholicism and authored the Nativist "A Plea for the West." His sermon on this subject at Boston in 1834 was followed shortly by the burning of the Catholic Ursuline sisters convent there.

Although earlier in his career he had opposed them, Beecher stoked controversy by advocating "new measures" of evangelism that ran counter to traditional Calvinism understanding. These new measures were an outworking of the practice of evangelist Charles Finney, and for the time brought turmoil to churches all across America. Fellow pastor, Joshua Lacy Wilson, pastor of First Presbyterian (now, also a part of Covenant-First Presbyterian in Cincinnati) charged Beecher with heresy. Even though Beecher was exonerated by the Presbyterian church, he eventually resigned his post in Cincinnati and went back East to live with his son Henry in Brooklyn, New York in 1850. After spending the last years of his life with his children, he died in Brooklyn and was buried at Grove Street Cemetery, in New Haven, Connecticut.

The Harriet Beecher Stowe House in Cincinnati, Ohio is the former home of her father Lyman Beecher on the former campus of the Lane Theological Seminary. Harriet lived here until her marriage. It is open to the public and operated as an historical and cultural site, focusing on Harriet Beecher Stowe, the Lane Theological Seminary and the Underground Railroad. The site also presents African-American history. The Harriet Beecher Stowe House in Cincinnati is located at 2950 Gilbert Avenue, Cincinnati, OH.

Ivy Olah added this on 13 Nov 2008 Susan Bradley originally submitted this to Susan Rockwood Bradley file on 11 Jul 2008 (Ancestry.com File)

The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition | 2008 | Copyright

Lyman Beecher 1775-1863, American Presbyterian clergyman, b. New Haven, Conn., grad. Yale, 1797. In 1799 he became pastor at East Hampton, N.Y. While serving (1810-26) in the Congregational Church at Litchfield, Conn., he published his six sermons on intemperance, which passed through many American and English editions. Beecher helped to found (1816) the American Bible Society. In 1826 he was called to the Hanover St. Church, Boston, where his revival services created excitement. He was president of Lane Theological Seminary, Cincinnati, from 1832 to 1852. His liberal views not infrequently placed him in sharp opposition to the conservative group in the Presbyterian Church. Of his 13 children, Henry, Charles, Edward, Thomas, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Catharine Esther Beecher won wide recognition. '

Lyman Beecher, born at New Haven, Conn., Oct. 12, 1775. The only child of David Beecher and Esther Lyman, his wife. He was a 7 months child, weighed scarcely 3 pounds at birth and his mother died of tuberculosis two days after he was born. He was laid aside as not viable, but after awhile, as he continued to breathe, was washed, dressed, and cared for. He grew up in his uncle's family at Guilford, Conn.; worked at blacksmith's shop and farm; placed in a good school where he proved to be the best reader in the school. Graduated from Yale 1797; ordained 1798 and preached in Presbyterian church in East Hampton, Long Island, 1798-1810. In Congregational Church, Litchfield, Conn., 1810-26; in Boston 1826-32; at Cincinnati, 1833-43 and was president of the newly established Lane Theological Seminary at Cincinnati, 1832-50 and professor emeritus until his death at Brooklyn, in 1863. He was tried for heresy, a mark of breath of view in theological matters. Published Views in Theology, 1836; A Plea for the West, 1835; Sermons on Temperance, etc. Was married three times, first to Roxanna Foote, Sept. 19, 1797, who died 1818; then to Harriet Porter of Portland, Me. His mental traits were as follows: His imagination was apparently visionary (for his behavior was erratic) and suggestive; his memory was retentive; his methods of work on the whole unsystematic, impulsive. He had a love of music and was very susceptible to its influence. He had a piano sent from New Haven to Litchfield, learned to accompany it with the violin, while his sons, William and Edward, played the flute. He had a strong sense of humor and his household was full of cheerfulness and much hilarity, he loved pranks and jokes. He loved fishing and took much vigorous exercise, sawed wood, shoveled sand and lived much in the open air. Seldom wore an overcoat or gloves, nor carried an umbrella, except in extreme cases. He never had property norsought to acquire it, nor could he keep it if he had it. He had great personal courage. Thus when, at college, he caught a sneak-thief in the depth of the night he brought him to his room, made him lie on the floor until morning and then took him before a judge. He had no fear of, but loved, a thunder storm. But he was impressionable, for when told as a child by a playmate that a fiction he had invented would incur the wrath of God and cause him to be burned forever, he was deeply affected. He knew periods of depression as well as elation. He was displeased at the publication of the private diaries of great men, especially if they were of a melancholy cast or recorded great alternations of ecstasy and gloom. He "had dark hours in his early life, and was able to impart hope to the despondent." He loved action; said, "I was made for action. The Lord drove me; but I was ever ready. I have always been going at full speed." He loved human sympathy and had no words of uncharitableness, envy or jealousy. He was a great correspondent and his children showed the same trait and maintained for years a sort of circulating letter or "round robin." Enthusiastic himself, he inspired this trait in others; thus the arduous work of building up the family woodpile became a rivalry among the children. In his own work he required a mental stimulus to writing; if he had a sermon to prepare, he would talk with the neighbors up to the last moment and then rush to his study and draw up his outlines. In the pulpit he was bold to the point of audacity, and displayed great personal magnetism and an indomitable will. He preferred speaking from notes but was a careful writer. He was a reformer, a controversationalist, a temperance reformer, an optimist, liberal and progressive, but fearful of radical reform, and was extremely absentminded. His physical health was not robust, though maintained by vigorous exercise. He suffered from dyspepsia and in the last ten years of his life was mentally enfeebled.

SOURCE: [http://books.google.com/books?id=1OwnAAAAYAAJ&dq=Beecher%20family%20tree&pg=PA33#v=onepage&q=Beecher%20family%20tree&f=false The family-history book

, Issue 7] (Google eBook), 1912. 101 pages.

Lyman Beecher was a Presbyterian minister, American Temperance Society co-founder and leader, and the father of 13 children, many of whom became noted figures, including Harriet Beecher Stowe, Henry Ward Beecher, Charles Beecher, Edward Beecher, Isabella Beecher Hooker, Catharine Beecher and Thomas K. Beecher. Beecher was born in New Haven, Connecticut, to David Beecher, a blacksmith, and Esther Hawley Lyman. His mother died shortly after his birth, and he was committed to the care of his uncle Lot Benton, by whom he was adopted as a son, and with whom his early life was spent between blacksmithing and farming. But it was soon found that he preferred study. He was fitted for college by the Rev. Thomas W. Bray, and at the age of eighteen entered Yale, graduating in 1797. He spent 1798 in Yale Divinity School under the tutelage of his mentor Timothy Dwight.

In September 1798, he was licensed to preach by the New Haven West Association, and entered upon his clerical duties by supplying the pulpit in the Presbyterian church at East Hampton, Long Island, and was ordained in 1799. Here he married his first wife, Roxana Foote. His salary was $300 a year, after five years increased to $400, with a dilapidated parsonage. To eke out his scanty income, his wife opened a private school, in which he was an instructor. Beecher gained popular recognition in 1806, after giving a sermon concerning the duel between Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr.

Finding his salary wholly inadequate to support his increasing family, he resigned the charge at East Hampton, and in 1810 moved to Litchfield, Connecticut, where he was minister to the town's Congregational Church, and where he remained 16 years. There he started to preach Calvinism. He purchased the home built by Elijah Wadsworth and reared a large family.

The excessive use of alcohol, known as "intemperance," was a source of concern in New England as in the rest of the United States. Heavy drinking even occurred at some formal meetings of clergy, and Beecher resolved to take a stand against it. In 1826 he delivered and published six sermons on intemperance. They were sent throughout the United States, ran rapidly through many editions in England, and were translated into several languages on the European continent, and had a large sale even after the lapse of 50 years.

During Beecher's residence in Litchfield the Unitarian controversy arose, and he took a prominent part. Litchfield was at this time the seat of a famous law school and several other institutions of learning, and Beecher (now a doctor of divinity) and his wife undertook to supervise the training of several young women, who were received into their family. But here too he found his salary ($800 a year) inadequate.

The rapid and extensive defection of the Congregational churches in Boston and vicinity, under the lead of William Ellery Channing and others in sympathy with him, had excited much anxiety throughout New England; and in 1826 Beecher was called to Boston's Hanover Church, where he began preaching against the Unitarianism which was then sweeping the area.

The religious public had become impressed with the growing importance of the great west; a theological seminary had been founded at Walnut Hills, near Cincinnati, Ohio, and named Lane Theological Seminary, after one of its principal benefactors, and a large amount of money was pledged to the institution on condition that Beecher accept the presidency, which he did in 1832. His mission there was to train ministers to win the West for Protestantism. Along with his presidency, he was also professor of sacred theology, and pastor of the Second Presbyterian Church of Cincinnati (today, this congregation is Covenant First Presbyterian Church) He served as a pastor for the first ten years of his Lane presidency.

Beecher was also notorious for his anti-Catholicism and soon after his arrival in Cincinnati authored the nativist tract "A Plea for the West." His sermon on this subject at Boston in 1834 was followed shortly by the burning of the Catholic Ursuline sisters' convent there.

Beecher's term at Lane came at a time when a number of intense issues, particularly slavery, threatened to divide the Presbyterian Church, the state of Ohio, and the nation. The French Revolution of 1830, the agitation in England for reform and against colonial slavery, and the punishment by American courts of citizens who had dared to attack the slave trade carried on under the American flag, had begun to direct the attention of American philanthropists to the evils of American slavery, and an abolition convention met in Philadelphia in 1833. Its president, Arthur Tappan, through whose liberal donations Beecher had been secured to Lane Seminary, forwarded to the students a copy of the address issued by the convention, and the whole subject was soon under discussion.

In 1834, students at Lane debated the slavery issue for 18 consecutive nights and many of them chose to adopt the cause of abolitionism. Many of the students were from the south, and an effort was made to stop the discussions and the meetings. Slaveholders from Kentucky came in and incited mob violence, and for several weeks Beecher lived in a turmoil, not knowing how soon the rabble might destroy the seminary and the houses of the professors. The board of trustees interfered during the absence of Beecher, and allayed the excitement of the mob by forbidding all further discussion of slavery in the Seminary, whereupon the students withdrew en masse. Beecher also opposed the "radical" position of abolition and refused to offer classes to African-Americans.[citation needed] The group of about 50 students (who became known as the "Lane Rebels") who left the Seminary went to Oberlin College. The events sparked a growing national discussion of abolition that contributed to the beginning of the Civil War.

Although earlier in his career he had opposed them, Beecher stoked controversy by advocating "new measures" of evangelism (e.g., revivals and camp meetings) that ran counter to traditional Calvinist understanding. These new measures at the time of the Second Great Awakening brought turmoil to churches all across America. Fellow pastor, Joshua Lacy Wilson, pastor of First Presbyterian (now, also a part of the Covenant First Presbyterian Church in Cincinnati) charged Beecher with heresy in 1835.

The trial took place in his own church, and Beecher defended himself, while burdened with the cares of his seminary, his church, and his wife at home on her death bed. The trial resulted in acquittal, and, on an appeal to the general synod, he was again acquitted, but the controversy engendered by the action went on until the Presbyterian church was divided in two. Beecher took an active part in the theological controversies that led to the excision of a portion of the general assembly of the Presbyterian church in 1837/8, Beecher adhering to the New School Presbyterian branch of the schism.

After the slavery controversy, Beecher and his co-worker Stowe remained and tried to revive the prosperity of the Seminary, but at last abandoned it. The great project of their lives was defeated, and they returned to the East, where Beecher went to live with his son Henry in Brooklyn, New York, in 1852. He wished to devote himself mainly to the revisal and publication of his works. But his intellectual powers began to decline, while his physical strength was unabated. About his 80th year he suffered a stroke of paralysis, and thenceforth his mental powers only gleamed out occasionally. After spending the last years of his life with his children, he died in Brooklyn in 1863 and was buried at Grove Street Cemetery, in New Haven, Connecticut.

Beecher was proverbially absent-minded, and after having been wrought up by the excitement of preaching was accustomed to relax his mind by playing "Auld Lang Syne" on the violin, or dancing the "double shuffle" in his parlor.

The Harriet Beecher Stowe House in Cincinnati, Ohio was the home of her father Lyman Beecher on the former campus of the Lane Theological Seminary. Harriet lived here until her marriage. It is open to the public and operates as an historical and cultural site, focusing on Harriet Beecher Stowe, the Lane Theological Seminary and the Underground Railroad. The site also documents African-American history. The Harriet Beecher Stowe House is located at 2950 Gilbert Avenue, in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Cover of "The Remedy for Dueling," a pamphlet with the text of his 1807 sermon Beecher was the author of a great number of printed sermons and addresses. His published works are: Remedy for Duelling (New York, 1809), Plea for the West, Six Sermons on Temperance, Sermons on Various Occasions (1842), Views in Theology, Skepticism, Lectures on Various Occasions, Political Atheism. He made a collection of those of his works which he deemed the most valuable (3 vols., Boston, 1852).

In 1799 Beecher married Roxana Foote, the daughter of Eli and Roxana (Ward) Foote. They had nine children: Catharine E., William, Edward, Mary, Tommy, George, Harriet Elizabeth, Henry Ward, and Charles. Roxana died on September 13, 1816. The following year, he married Harriet Porter, and fathered four more children: Frederick C., Isabella Holmes, Thomas Kinnicut, and James Chaplin. After Harriet died on July 7, 1835, he married Lydia Beals born 17 Sept 1789, died 1869 daughter of Samuel Beals, previously married to Joseph Jackson 1779-10 Dec 1833 but had no more children.

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Rev. Lyman Beecher's Timeline

1775
October 12, 1775
New Haven, New Haven County, Connecticut, United States
1800
September 6, 1800
Age 24
Guilford, New Haven, Connecticut, United States
1802
January 15, 1802
Age 26
Guilford, New Haven, Connecticut, United States
1803
August 27, 1803
Age 27
East Hampton, Suffolk County, New York, United States
1805
July 19, 1805
Age 29
East Hampton, New York
1809
May 6, 1809
Age 33
Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, United States
1811
June 14, 1811
Age 35
Litchfield, Litchfield County, Connecticut, United States
1813
June 4, 1813
Age 37
Litchfield, Litchfield County, Connecticut, United States
June 24, 1813
Age 37
Litchfield, Litchfield, Connecticut, United States