Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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NOTT, Abraham, clergyman, born in Wethersfield, Connecticut, 29 January, 1696 ; died in Saybrook, Connecticut, 24 January, 1756. He was graduated at Yale in 1720, and from his ordination in 1722 was pastor of the Congregational church in Saybrook, Connecticut, until his death. He was remarkable for physical strength, and it is said that he could lift a barrel of cider above his head and hold it at arms-length. --His grandson, Samuel, clergyman, born in Say-brook, Connecticut, 23 January, 1754; died in Franklin, Connecticut, 26 May, 1852, was graduated at Yale in 1780, studied divinity under Jonathan Edwards, and in 1781 became pastor of the Congregational church in Franklin, Connecticut, where he continued until his death, a period of seventy-one years. During his pastorate he also taught a boys' school, and was regarded as one of the most successful educators of his day. Yale gave him the degree of D. D. in 1825. Dr. Nott was styled the "Patriarch of the New England Clergy." His publications include two sermons, one of which was delivered on the 50th, and the other on the 60th anniversary of his ordination. See his " Autobiography" (Franklin, 1850).--Samuel's brother, Eliphalet, clergyman, born in Ashford, Connecticut, 25 June, 1773; died in Schenectady, New York, 29 January, 1866, was left an orphan at an early age, and was brought up by his brother Samuel in Franklin, where he taught to obtain means to enter college. He was graduated at Brown in 1795, studied theology, and the same year was licensed to preach by the New London Congregational association, which sent him as a missionary into the then half-settled part of New York state that borders on Otsegolake. He there established an academy, and acted in the double capacity of its principal and pastor of the church in Cherry Valley. In 1798-1804 he was pastor of the 1st Presbyterian church in Albany, and in 1804 he was elected president of Union college. This institution was then in its infancy, with small funds, and neither suitable buildings nor apparatus, and it was in debt. He at once began the work of providing for its needs, and of removing its disabilities. Through his efforts the legislature passed a law in 1814 by which financial aid was afforded the college from a lottery, at that time a legal and unexceptionable means of raising money, the management of which was confided to Dr. Nott, and conducted by him for many years. As an educator Dr. Nott was eminently practical. He conducted the government of the college on the parental sys-tern, and opposed the rigidity of conventional rules. He was in consequence greatly beloved by his students. During his incumbency 4,000 students were graduated, and in 1854 the semi-centennial anniversary of the college was celebrated in the presence of more than 600 of his former pupils that had assembled to do him honor. A short time previous to his death he endowed the college with property that was valued at $500,000. As a preacher he was original, scholarly, and impressive. He ardently advocated the temperance cause, and wrote and lectured extensively on the subject. As early as 1811 he made speeches against slavery, and throughout his life he was an advocate of civil and religious liberty. He paid much attention to physical science, especially to the laws of heat, and obtained about thirty patents for inventions in that department, of which the most notable was the first stove for burning anthracite coal, which bore his name, and was extensively used. Princeton gave him the degree of D.D. in 1805, and Brown that of LL.D. in 1828. His publications consist principally of sermons and occasional addresses ; of the latter, that on the death of Alexander Hamilton has a national reputation. He also published "Councils to Young Men " (New York, 1845) and "Lectures on Temperance" (1847). See a "Memoir" by Cornelius Van Santvoord, D. D., with a contribution and revision by Professor Tayler Lewis (1876).--Samuel's son, Samuel, missionary, born in Franklin, Connecticut, 11 September, 1788 ; died in Hartford, Connecticut, 1 June, 1869, was graduated at Union in 1808, and at Andover theological seminary in 1810. In 1812 he was one of the first band of missionaries that was sent by the American board to India. The failure of his health compelled his return in 1816, and he subsequently taught in New York city. He was pastor successively of churches in Galway, New York, and Wareham, Massachusetts, and established at the latter place in 1849 a private academy, which he conducted successfully for seventeen years. His publications include " Sixteen Years' Preaching and Procedure at Wareham" (New York, 1845) and "Slavery and the Remedy" (1856). --Another grandson of Abraham, Abraham, jurist, born in Saybrook, Connecticut, in 1768 ; died in Fairfield, South Carolina, 18 June, 1830. He was graduated at Yale in 1781, and studied for the ministry, but abandoned it for law and went to Georgia, where he taught. He settled in Camden, South Carolina, in 1791, studied law, was admitted to the bar, and in 1800 was elected to congress as a Federalist, serving one term. He then removed to Columbia, South Carolina, practised his profession with great success till 1810, when he was appointed law judge, and, on the organization of the court of appeals in 1824, became its president, and held office until his death.--His son, Henry Junius, essayist, born on Pacolet river, South Carolina, 4 November, 1797; died at sea, 13 October, 1837, was graduated at the College of South Carolina in 1812, and admitted to the Columbia bar in 1818. He abandoned his profession in 1821, went abroad, and engaged in literary pursuits in Holland and France. During his absence he was elected professor of belles-lettres in the College of South Carolina, and on his return he filled that chair until 1834. He visited New York in 1837, and on the homeward voyage the vessel on which he was a passenger was wrecked off the coast of North Carolina, and he and his wife were drowned. He was a constant contributor to the literature of the day, a popular and finished essayist, and a successful lecturer. He published "Law Reports," with David McCord (2 vols., Charleston, 1818-'20), and a series of sketches in the "Southern Review," that were subsequently collected in book-form under the title of " Novelettes of a Traveller" (2 vols., New York, 1834), and left a manuscript novel that was never printed. --Another son, Josiah Clark, ethnologist, born in Columbia, 'S. C., 24 March, 1804 ; died in Mobile, Alabama, 31 March, 1873, was graduated at the College of South Carolina in 1824, and at the medical department of the University of Pennsylvania in 1827. After a residence of two years in the latter institution as demonstrator of anatomy under Dr. Philip S. Physic, he settled in Columbia. S.C. He studied abroad in 1835-'6, and in the latter year removed to Mobile, Alabama, where he established a medical college that the legislature endowed and made a branch of the State university. He was subsequently, for a short time, professor of anatomy in the University of Louisiana. Besides contributing many articles to current literature on his special studies in natural history and its kindred sciences, he published " Two Lectures on the Connection between the Biblical and Physical History of Man" (New York, 1849); "The Physical History of the Jewish Race" (Charleston, 1850); "Types of Mankind " (Philadelphia, 1854) ; and "Indigenous Races of the Earth" (1857). The last two works were prepared in connection with George R. Glidden (q. v.), and their object is to refute the theory of the unity of the human race.
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