Bacon, Leonard

Bacon, Leonard,

1802–81, American Congregational minister, b. Detroit, Mich. He served for 41 years as pastor of the First Church of New Haven, one of the leading Congregational churches in the country. Bacon was a noted antislavery leader, although not an abolitionist. His Slavery Discussed in Occasional Essays (1846) made a great impression upon Lincoln. He was a founder and editor of the Independent and author of the widely known Pilgrim Hymn (1833) and The Genesis of the New England Churches (1874).
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Bacon, Leonard

(1802–91) Protestant clergyman; born in Detroit, Mich. The son of a missionary, he graduated from Yale in 1820 and, after three years at Andover Theological Seminary, was ordained in 1824. He had planned to return to the western frontier as a missionary, but the First Church of New Haven offered him a pulpit. He accepted and remained there 41 years. An opponent of slavery, in 1848 he helped launch the free soil journal, The Independent. He was professor of theology at Yale from 1866–71.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.