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Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1887-1889 and 1999. Virtualology.com warns that these 19th Century biographies contain errors and bias. We rely on volunteers to edit the historic biographies on a continual basis. If you would like to edit this biography please submit a rewritten biography in text form . If acceptable, the new biography will be published above the 19th Century Appleton's Cyclopedia Biography citing the volunteer editor





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Nathaniel Hewit

 A Stan Klos Biography

HEWIT, Nathaniel, clergyman, born in New London, Connecticut, 28 August, 1788; died in Bridgeport, Connecticut, 3 February, 1867. He was graduated at Yale in 1808, and studied law, but afterward entered the divinity school at Andover, and in 1815 was licensed to preach. He officiated successfully in the Presbyterian churches in Plattsburgh, New York, and Fairfield, Connecticut, until 1828, when he resigned to become the agent of the American temperance society.

 

He was signally successful in this work, and earned the title of the "Luther of the early temperance reform." He became pastor of the 2d Congregational church in Bridgeport, Connecticut, in 1830, made a visit, in aid of the temperance reform, to England in 1831, and, returning in 1834, continued pastor of the 2d church of Bridgeport, and then of a Presbyterian church that was formed of members of his old parish, until increasing age and infirmities compelled him to withdraw from active labors in 1862. He was a founder and liberal benefactor of the Hartford theological seminary. His wife was a daughter of Senator James Hillhouse of Connecticut.

 

--His son, Nathaniel Augustus Hewit, clergyman, born in Fairfield, Connecticut, 27 November, 1820, was graduated at Amherst in 1839. He studied law, but at the end of a year abandoned it, and entered the Theological institute of Connecticut, which was then at Windsor. In 1842 he was licensed to preach as a Congregationalist, but in the following year he was ordained deacon in the Protestant Episcopal Church. He was selected to accompany Bishop Southgate as a missionary to Constantinople, but the missionary committee refused to ratify the appointment on the ground that Mr. Hewit held beliefs that were distinctively Roman Catholic.

 

He was received into the Roman Catholic Church in 1846, and was ordained in 1847 by Bishop Reynolds. He was then appointed vice-principal of the Charleston Collegiate Institute. He joined the Redemptorist order in 1850, and in 1858, on the foundation of the congregation of St. Paul by Father Hecker, became one of its chief members, taking the religious name of Augustine Francis.

 

Since 1865 he has been employed in literary work, and as professor of philosophy, theology, and Holy Scripture in the Paulist Seminary, New York City. From 1869 till 1874 he edited the "Catholic World." Amherst gave him the degree of D.D. in 1877. Father Hewit's works are "Reasons for submitting to the Catholic Church" (Charleston, 1846); "Life of Princess Borghese" (New York, 1856); "Life of Dumoulin-Borie," an Annamite missionary (1857); "The Little Angel of the Copts"; " Life of Reverend Francis A. Baker " (1865); "Problems of the Age, with Studies in St. Augustine on Kindred Subjects " (1868); " Light in Darkness, a Treatise on the Obscure Night of the Soul" (1870); "The King's Highway, or the Catholic Church the Way of Salvation, as revealed in Holy Scriptures" (1874). Father Hewit has been a frequent contributor to religious periodicals, and has edited the "Complete Works of Bishop England" (Baltimore, 1850).

 

--Another son, Henry Stewart Hewit, surgeon, born in Fairfield, Connecticut, 26 December, 1825; died in New York city, 19 August, 1873, was educated at Yale, and graduated in medicine from the University of New York in 1848, entering the army as acting assistant-surgeon in the autumn of this year. He was stationed at Vera Cruz during the latter part of the Mexican war, in 1849 was commissioned assistant surgeon, was stationed at Fort Yuma, California, and accompanied Captain William H. Warner on the surveying expedition in which that officer was killed by the Sierra Nevada Indians.

 

In the spring of 1852 he resigned from the army, and, removing to San Francisco, practiced medicine there three years. He then returned to New York, and established himself in his profession. In August, 1861, he re-entered the army as brigade-surgeon of volunteers, served under General Charles F. Smith, and afterward as medical director on General Grant's staff at Fort Donelson, Shiloh, and Vicksburg. He afterward served on the staff of General John M. Scofield, and was brevetted colonel in March, 1865, for gallant conduct during the war.

 

Dr. Hewit became a Roman Catholic in 1855, and was devoted to the benevolent enterprises of his church. Settling in New York after the war, he had charge of the House of the Good Shepherd, was a director of St. Stephen's Orphan Asylum, and president of the medical board of the Charity hospital.

 

Edited Appletons Encyclopedia by John Looby, Copyright © 2001 StanKlos.comTM

HEWIT, Nathaniel, clergyman, born in New London, Connecticut, 28 August, 1788; died in Bridgeport, Connecticut, 3 February, 1867. He was graduated at Yale in 1808, and studied law, but afterward entered the divinity school at Andover, and in 1815 was licensed to preach. He officiated successfully in the Presbyterian churches in Plattsburg, New York, and Fairfield, Connecticut, until 1828, when he resigned to become the agent of the American temperance society. He was signally successful in this work, and earned the title of the "Luther of the early temperance reform." He became pastor of the 2d Congregational church in Bridgeport, Connecticut, in 1830, made a visit, in aid of the temperance reform, to England in 1831, and, returning in 1834, continued pastor of the 2d church of Bridgeport, and then of a Presbyterian church that was formed of members of his old parish, until increasing age and infirmities com-Felled him to withdraw from active labors in 1862. He was a founder and liberal benefactor of the Hartford theological seminary. His wife was a daughter of Senator James Hillhouse of Connecticut.--His son, Nathaniel Augustus, clergyman, born in Fairfield, Connecticut, 27 November, 1820, was graduated at Amherst in 1839. He studied law, but at the end of a year abandoned it, and entered the Theological institute of Connecticut, which was then at Windsor. In 1842 he was licensed to preach as a Congregationalist, but in the following year he was ordained deacon in the Protestant Episcopal church. He was selected to accompany Bishop Southgate as a missionary to Constantinople, but the missionary committee refused to ratify the appointment on the ground that Mr. Hewit held beliefs that were distinctively Roman Catholic. He was received into the Roman Catholic church in 1846, and was ordained in 1847 by Bishop Reynolds. He was then appointed vice-principal of the Charleston collegiate institute. He joined the Redemptorist order in 1850, and in 1858, on the foundation of the congregation of St. Paul by Father Hecker, became one of its chief members, taking the religious name of Augustine Francis. Since 1865 he has been employed in literary work, and as professor of philosophy, theology, and Holy Scripture in the Paulist seminary, New York city. From 1869 till 1874 he edited the "Catholic World." Amherst gave him the degree of D.D. in 1877. Father Hewit's works are "Reasons for submitting to the Catholic Church" (Charleston, 1846); "Life of Princess Borghese" (New York, 1856); "Life of Dumoulin-Borie," an Annamite missionary (1857); "The Little Angel of the Copts"; " Life of Reverend Francis A. Baker " (1865); "Problems of the Age, with Studies in St. Augustine on Kindred Subjects " (1868); " Light in Darkness, a Treatise on the Obscure Night of the Soul" (1870); "The King's Highway, or the Catholic Church the Way of Salvation, as revealed in Holy Scriptures" (1874). Father Hewit has been a frequent contributor to religious periodicals, and has edited the "Complete Works of Bishop England" (Baltimore, 1850).--Another son, Henry Stewart, surgeon, born in Fairfield, Connecticut, 26 December, 1825; died in New York city, 19 August, 1873, was educated at Yale, and graduated in medicine from the University of New York in 1848, entering the army as acting assistant-surgeon in the autumn of this year. He was stationed at Vera Cruz during the latter part of the Mexican war, in 1849 was commissioned assistant surgeon, was stationed at Fort Yuma, California, and accompanied Captain William H. Warner on the surveying expedition in which that officer was killed by the Sierra Nevada Indians. In the spring of 1852 he resigned from the army, and, removing to San Francisco, practised medicine there three years. He then returned to New York, and established himself in his profession. In August, 1861, he re-entered the army as brigade-surgeon of volunteers, served under General Charles F. Smith, and afterward as medical director on General Grant's staff at Fort Donelson, Shiloh, and Vicksburg. He afterward served on the staff of General John M. Scofield, and was brevetted colonel in March, 1865, for gallant conduct during the war. Dr. Hewit became a Roman Catholic in 1855, and was devoted to the benevolent enterprises of his church. Settling in New York after the war, he had charge of the House of the Good Shepherd, was a director of St. Stephen's Orphan Asylum, and president of the medical board of the Charity hospital.

Edited Appletons Encyclopedia, Copyright © 2001 VirtualologyTM

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