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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FULLER, Richard, clergyman, born in Beaufort, South Carolina, 22 April 1804; died in Baltimore, Maryland, 20 October 1876. He entered Harvard in 1820, and achieved a high standing in his class, but was obliged, on account of feeble health, to leave during his junior year. He then studied law in Beaufort, was admitted to the bar, and soon rose to eminence in his profession. During a period of great religious interest in Beaufort he felt it his duty to abandon the law and devote himself to the Christian ministry. At the same time he was constrained to leave the Protestant Episcopal Church, in which he had been brought up. He was at once ordained, and called to the pastorate of the Baptist Church in Beaufort.
His reputation as a preacher soon became national, and his services were widely sought in promoting religious revivals. During his residence in Beaufort he was engaged in two memorable controversies one with Bishop England, of Charleston, on the claims of the Roman Catholic Church, and the other with President Wayland, of Brown University, Providence, R. I., on the subject of slavery. In both he displayed abilities of the highest order, united with a spirit of Christian courtesy and manliness. In the year 1836 he traveled in Europe for the benefit of his health. In 1846 he accepted a call to the pastorate of a Baptist Church in Baltimore, Maryland, where he spent the remainder of his life. He received the degree of D.D. from Columbian University, Washington, in 1844, and from Harvard in 1853. Dr. Fuller was one of the most effective pulpit orators of his day. His sermons, both in style and delivery, were framed upon the models of the great French preachers, and of their kind have seldom been equaled.
He was more than once president of the southern Baptist convention. In addition to pamphlets containing his debates with Bishop England (Baltimore, 1840), and Dr. Wayland (1845), and various sermons published separately, he was the author of volumes of "Sermons" (New York), and "Letters," an "Argument on Baptist and Close Communion" (Richmond, 1849), and a "Psalmist," which has been much used in his denomination. A memoir of Dr. Fuller was written by his nephew, Dr. ,James H. Cuthbert (New York, 1879).
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