Henry Ward Beecher

Henry War Beecher was born in Litchfield, Connecticut, the son of Lyman Beecher, a prominent Congregationalist minister and educator. His sister was Harriet Beecher (Stowe), author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Beecher graduated from Amherst College in 1834 and studied at Lane Theological Seminary where his father was serving as president. In 1837 he was called to a Presbyterian ministry at Lawrenceburg, Indiana, and began to develop his extraordinary preaching techniques. From 1839 to 1847 he ministered in Indianapolis.

In 1847, Beecher moved to a Congregational church in Brooklyn, New York. His dramatic oratory quickly drew crowds of 2,500 to the pews in Plymouth Church. Most of the great liberal causes of the day were espoused, including temperance, women’s suffrage, abolitionism, evolutionism, and scientific biblical criticism.

In 1854 Beecher and his congregation were strongly opposed to the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, and launched a fund-raising drive to purchase rifles to arm the antislavery forces in the territories. Those arms were dubbed “Beecher’s Bibles.”

Beecher was also active in political circles, first with the Free-Soil movement and later with the Republican Party.When the Civil War erupted, Beecher raised money to support a volunteer Union regiment. In 1863 he conducted a lecture tour in England for the purpose of popularizing the Northern cause to often doubting audiences.

In 1874 Beecher was sued by Theodore Tilton, a former friend, for alleged adultery with Tilton’s wife. This was one of the great scandals of the post-war era. The trial resulted in a hung jury, but Beecher was later cleared of all charges before two church courts. The notoriety sparked by this event followed Beecher for the remainder of his life, but he continued to be a popular writer and lecturer.

Henry Ward Beecher, regarded by many as the greatest clerical orator of his century, was also the embodiment of much that the South feared and hated — a man of liberal ideas who was willing to marry religion, politics and money to accomplish his goals.(u-s-history.com)

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Simple Reminders by Henry Ward Beecher

Amazing Quotes by Henry Ward Beecher

We should not judge people by their peak of excellence; but by the distance they have traveled from the point where they started. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (-9)

All words are pegs to hang ideas on. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (62)

It's easier to go down a hill than up it but the view is much better at the top. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (17)

Every charitable act is a stepping stone toward heaven. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (43)

Every tomorrow has two handles. We can take hold of it with the handle of anxiety or the handle of faith. ~Henry Ward Beecher (14)

Never forget what a man says to you when he is angry. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (45)

Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his pictures. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (9)

The unthankful heart discovers no mercies; but the thankful heart will find, in every hour, some heavenly blessings. ~Henry Ward Beecher (3)

The art of being happy lies in the power of extracting happiness from common things. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (14)

Hold yourself to a higher standard than anyone else expects of you. Never excuse yourself. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (8)

A person without a sense of humor is like a wagon without springs, jolted by every pebble in the road. ~Henry Ward Beecher (17)

The difference between perseverance and obstinacy is, that one often comes from a strong will, and the other from a strong won't. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (-9)

Adversity, if for no other reason, is of benefit, since it is sure to bring a season of sober reflection. People see clearer at such times. Storms purify the atmosphere. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (-49)

There are more quarrels smothered by just shutting your mouth, and holding it shut, than by all the wisdom in the world. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (0)

Troubles are often the tools by which God fashions us for better things. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (26)

Greatness lies not in being strong, but in the right use of strength. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (29)

No man is sane who does not know how to be insane on the proper occasions. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (24)

The soul without imagination is what an observatory would be without a telescope. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (17)

There is no friendship, no love, like that of the mother for the child. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (27)

Good nature is worth more than knowledge, more than money, more than honor, to the persons who possess it. ~Henry Ward Beecher (12)

Gratitude is the fairest blossom which springs from the soul. ~Henry Ward Beecher http://smpl.ws/ft (36)