Posts Tagged ‘uncivil war’


Lewis Wallace was born 4/10/1827 at Brooksville, IN (on US 52) the 2nd of 4 sons born to David & Esther French Wallace. His father was a West Point graduate, lawyer & governor of Indiana (1837-1840) &  mother was a daughter of congressman John Test.  Lew left school (at 16), served as a copyist & studied law before going to the Mexican War. In 1849 he was admitted to the bar and served in the Union army in the uncivil war. He was a part of the court which tried those charged with assassinating President Lincoln.

Lew met Susan Arnold Elston, proposed in ’49, & married her 5/6/1852 in Crawfordsville. Susan was the daughter of Isaac Compton & Maria Akin Elston. Isaac was a merchant of means;  Maria had a Quaker (Friends) background. Susan would play a part in her Lew’s conversion. Pres. Hayes appointed him governor of the Territory of New Mexico (1878–81).  It was in Sante Fe that he completed the manscript of Ben Hur.  Pres. Garfield made him Minister to the Ottoman Empire (Constantinople, Turkey 1881–85).

Wallace at one point considered himself an atheist. He gathered material “proof” against the Bible.  Susan believed in the Lord & prayed for him. He realized his error & was converted. He reportedly asked his wife what he could/should do with all the material he’d collected – it provided foundations for Ben Hur, A Tale of the Christ (pub.1880) which was enormously successful.  Lew died in Crawfordsville, IN, 2/15/1905.       

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“Sweet By and By” 

There’s a land that is fairer than day,
And by faith we can see it afar;
For the Father waits over the way
To prepare us a dwelling place there.


In the sweet by and by,
We shall meet on that beautiful shore;
In the sweet by and by,
We shall meet on that beautiful shore.

We shall sing on that beautiful shore
The melodious songs of the blessed;
And our spirits shall sorrow no more,
Not a sigh for the blessing of rest.

To our bountiful Father above,
We will offer our tribute of praise
For the glorious gift of His love
And the blessings that hallow our days.

Sanford Fillmore Bennett, MD, died this date 6/12/1898 at Richmond, IL. 

 He was born 6/21/1836, at Eden, New York.  He attended an academy in Waukegan (his poetry first appeared in the Waukegan, Illinois, Gazette) and University of Michigan.  He was first a superintendent of schools (Richmond, Illinois), then an editor, then a soldier (the Uncivil War – 40th Wisconsin Volunteers), ran a drugstore, and finding his niche graduated from Rush Medical College (1874) and was a medical doctor for over twenty years.  He penned “Sweet By and By.”  See more about it at  The Cyber Hymnal.

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“I would not give a tuppence for the American who has not at least tried to do one of three things,” Wallace supposedly told a New York Times reporter. “That person lacks the true American spirit who has not tried to paint a picture, write a book, or get out a patent on something.” Or, he added, “tried to play some musical instrument. There you have the genius of the true American in those four – art, literature, invention, music.”

Lew Wallace died this date, 2/15/1905 at Crawfordsville, Indiana.  He had been born in Indiana (Brookville) 4/10/1827.  He served on the Union side of the Uncivil War, was a lawyer, was elected to Indiana State Senate, governored the Territory of New Mexico (1878-1881) and was U.S. Minister to the Ottoman Empire, modern Turkey (1881-1885). 

In May 1852 Lewis Wallace married Susan Elston, sister-in-law of U.S. Senator Henry Lane (who helped found the Republican Party).  Susan was a Christian and a published author (six books – two illustrated by Wallace).  She is said to have given our literature the expression “the patter of little feet.”

While riding a train in 1875 Wallace met the well-known agnostic, Robert Ingersoll. Ingersoll presented to Wallace question after question of evidences for God, heaven, Christ, etc. Wallace later said, “I was ashamed of myself and make haste now to declare that the mortification of pride I then endured…ended in a resolution to study the whole matter.  Connected with Ingersol (or not ) rumor had Wallace an atheist or “that he had gone to the Holy Land to disprove the existence of Christ.”  But his autobiography states, “…I wish to say that I believe absolutely in the Christian conception of God.”  Some think his faith is at least partly due to Susan’s Christian life and prayers.

It appears his novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ is a result of his desire to know more about Christ.  Reportedly Wallace’s favorite scene was when Ben-Hur tells friends about the miracles he’s seen Christ perform – turning water into wine, raising a dead man and asks them what they think. Balthasar, one of the original wise men, replies, “God only is so great.”  “When I had finished that,” Wallace is said to have confessed, “I said to myself with Balthasar, ‘God only is so great.’ I had become a believer.”

Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ was published by Harper and Brothers 11/12/1880. It is said to have never gone out of print being presented in 36 English-language editions and translated into twenty other languages including Braille. It has been filmed four times. One source affirms it was at one point required reading in grade schools across the U.S.

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…Selfthe most popular of all the false gods…

                                – William Jennings Bryan, In His Image (NY: Fleming Revell Co., 1922), 75.


There is more science in the twenty-fourth verse of the first chapter of Genesis…than in all Darwin wrote.

                                – William Jennings Bryan, In His Image (NY: Fleming Revell Co., 1922), 94.


What shall it profit a man if he shall gain all the learning of the schools and lose his faith in God?

                                – William Jennings Bryan, In His Image (NY: Fleming Revell Co., 1922), 118.


…The worship of the intellectan idolatry as deadly to spiritual progress as the worship of images…

                                – William Jennings Bryan, In His Image (NY: Fleming Revell Co., 1922), 127.


One can afford to be in a minority but he cannot afford to be wrong.

                                – William Jennings Bryan, In His Image (NY: Fleming Revell Co., 1922), 189.


…Confucius…Buddha…Mahomet…Hindu [followers of these] except where they have borrowed from Christian nations…have made no progress in fifteen hundred years.

                                – William Jennings Bryan, In His Image (NY: Fleming Revell Co., 1922), 202.


War is not a private affair; it disturbs the commerce of the world obstructs the ocean’s highways and kills innocent bystanders.

                                – William Jennings Bryan, In His Image (NY: Fleming Revell Co., 1922), 231.


The preacher should be the boldest of men because of the unselfish character of his work.

                                – William Jennings Bryan, In His Image (NY: Fleming Revell Co., 1922), 261.

William Jennings Bryan was born this date (3/19/1860) in Salem, IL.  He was Democratic contender for the US presidency three-times and Secretary of State under Woodrow Wilson until he felt Wilson compromised and Bryan resigned.  He has been called America’s best-known fundamentalist between the uncivil war to the great depression.


As a Presbyterian layman, lawyer, and Christian, he defended and won (1925) for the state a victory against the teaching of evolution, in the Tennessee “Scopes Monkey Trial.  Bryan College is named for this great man.  He is also know for his “Cross of Gold” speech 7/8/1896, Chicago.



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“Haven of Rest”

My soul in sad exile was out on life’s sea,
So burdened with sin and distressed,
Till I heard a sweet voice, saying,
“Make Me your choice”;
And I entered the “Haven of Rest”!


I’ve anchored my soul in the “Haven of Rest,”
I’ll sail the wide seas no more;
The tempest may sweep over wild, stormy, deep,
In Jesus I’m safe evermore.

I yielded myself to His tender embrace,
In faith taking hold of the Word,
My fetters fell off, and I anchored my soul;
The “Haven of Rest” is my Lord.


The song of my soul, since the Lord made me whole,
Has been the old story so blest,
Of Jesus, who’ll save whosoever will have
A home in the “Haven of Rest.”


How precious the thought that we all may recline,
Like John, the belovèd so blest,
On Jesus’ strong arm, where no tempest can harm,
Secure in the “Haven of Rest.”


O come to the Savior, He patiently waits
To save by His power divine;
Come, anchor your soul in the “Haven of Rest,”
And say, “My Belovèd is mine.”

Henry Lake Gilmour was born this date (1/19/1836 in Londonderry, Ireland.  He came to the US (sometime before the uncivil war).  He was a dentist and was active in the Methodist church. His death in NJ was the result of a buggy accident. 

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