Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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PIERCE, Lovick, clergyman, born in Halifax county, North Carolina, 17 March, 1785 ; died in Sparta, Georgia, 9 November, 1879. Early in life his parents moved to Barnwell county, North Carolina, where, after six months' schooling, he entered the ministry of the Methodist church in 1804. In 1809 he moved to Greene county, Georgia, and during the war of 1812 he was a chaplain in the army. He then studied medicine, was graduated at Philadelphia, and removing to Greensborough, practised and preached there for several years. He was a delegate to the general conferences of his church in 1836, 1840, and 1844, and after the organization of the southern church in 1846 sat in its highest court. He took part in the Louisville conference of 1874, where he had a son and a grandson, and, notwithstanding his great age, he preached occasionally until within a few months of his death. In 1878 he published a series of theological essays.--His son, George Foster, M. E. bishop, born in Greene county, Georgia, 3 February, 1811 ; died near Sparta, Georgia, 3 September, 1884, was graduated at Franklin college, Athens, in 1829, and afterward studied law, but, abandoning it for theology, was received in 1831 into the Georgia conference of the Methodist Episcopal church. For one year he was a member of the South Carolina conference. He soon attained great popularity as a public speaker, and was appointed to Augusta, Savannah, and Charleston before he had been in the ministry five years. In his fifth year he was returned to Augusta, and in his sixth, seventh, and eighth he was presiding elder of that district. He filled various important pastoral and collegiate posts, the last of which was the presidency of Emory college, Oxford, Georgia While he was there he was elected and ordained bishop at Columbus, Georgia, in 1854. Bishop Pierce was a man of great eloquence, and had many friends in all parts of the, country. Notwithstanding the alienation of the two branches of his church, he was frequently invited to deliver addresses in the north. His conversational powers were remarkable, and in wit he had few superiors. On one occasion a young man, trying on his hat, rather presumptuously said: "Bishop, our heads are the same size." "Yes," said the bishop, " outside." The degree of D. D. was conferred upon him by Transylvania university, and that of LL.D. by Randolph Macon college. He was personally the most popular of the bishops of his church; somewhat autocratic and self-complacent, but very kind and persuasive; an admirer of the south and devoted to the church. For several years he was in infirm health, but he often made great oratorical efforts at a time when most men would have considered themselves too ill to venture abroad. He was the author of "Incidents of Western Travel" (Nashville, 1857).
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