Peter, Johann Friedrich

Peter, Johann Friedrich

(1746–1813) composer, organist, teacher, minister; born in Heerendijk, Holland. Trained as both a Moravian minister and a musician, he came to Nazareth, Pa., in 1769. In 1770 he became organist at the Brethrens' House in Bethlehem, Pa., and in addition to directing performances of the music of contemporary Europeans such as Mozart, Handel, and Haydn, he himself composed over 30 anthems. He is regarded as the most sophisticated of the Pennsylvanian Moravian composers and ranks as one of the first serious composers in America.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.