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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NEILL, William, clergyman, born near McKeesport, Alleghany County, Pennsylvania, in 1778; died in Philadelphia, 8 August, 1860. His parents having been killed by Indians while he was a child, he was brought up by relatives. He was educated in the academy that afterward became Jefferson college, Pennsylvania, and at Princeton, where he was graduated in 1803. He afterward was a tutor there till October, 1805, when he was licensed to preach by the presbytery of New Brunswick. He held pastorates at Cooperstown, New York, in 1805, then at Albany, New York, till 1816, and in Philadelphia till 1824, when he became president of Dickinson college, and so remained till 1829. He was secretary, and general agent of the Presbyterian board of education in 1829-'31, a minister at Germantown, Pennsylvania, in 1831-'42, and after that date resided in Philadelphia till his death. Union college conferred on him the degree of D. D. in 1812. He edited " The Presbyterian " for several years, contributed papers to religious periodicals, and published " Lectures on Biblical History " (Philadelphia, 1846) ; "Exposition of the Epistle to the Ephesians "(1850) ; "Divine Origin of the Christian Religion" (1854); and " Ministry of Fifty Years, with Anecdotes and Reminiscences" (1857).
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