Morse, Jedediah (ON HOLD)

“The Father of American Geography”, minister, teacher, father of inventor-artist Samuel F. B. Morse

Price: $25.00

Description:
(1761-1826) "Father of American Geography”, his textbooks became a staple for students. Father of telegraph pioneer and painter Samuel F. B. Morse. While pursuing theological studies under Jonathan Edwards and Samuel Watts, he established a school for young women in New Haven in 1783. In the summer of 1785 he was licensed to preach, but continued to occupy himself with teaching. He earned a Yale divinity degree and was ordained in 1786. He was a pastor in Charlestown, Mass. 1789-1820. Throughout his life he was occupied with religious controversy, and in upholding the faith of the New England church against Unitarianism. He did much toward securing the foundation of Andover Theological Seminary, and participated in the organization of the Park Street Church in Boston in 1808, when all the Congregational churches of that city, except the Old South Church, had abandoned the orthodox faith. In 1805 he established the Panopolist to illustrate and defend the commonly received orthodoxy of New England, and was its sole editor for 5 years; the journal later became The Missionary Herald. Morse is also known for his part in the New England 1798-99 Illuminati conspiracy theory. Beginning May 9, 1798, Morse delivered 3 sermons supporting John Robison's book Proofs of Conspiracy. Morse was a strong Federalist and shared fears that the anti-Federalists were influenced by alleged French Illuminati, supposedly responsible for the French Revolution, and Americans feared its excesses. Morse strongly influenced the US educational system. While teaching at a school for young women, he saw the need for a geography textbook oriented to the forming nation. The result was skimpy and derivative, Geography Made Easy (1784). He followed that with American Geography (1789), widely cited and copied. New editions of his school textbooks and the more weighty works often came out annually, earning him the informal title, "father of American geography." With the aid of Noah Webster and Rev. Samuel Austin, Morse published his gazetteer as Universal Geography of the United States (1797). He rebutted certain racist views published in the Encyclopædia Britannica concerning Native American peoples, e.g., that their women were "slavish" and that their skins and skulls were thicker than those of other humans. He took great interest in the civilizing and Christianizing of Native Americans, and in 1820 was appointed by the Secretary of War to visit and observe various tribes on the border to ascertain their actual condition, and to devise the most suitable means for their improvement. The results of his investigations were embodied in a Report to the Secretary of War on Indian Affairs (New Haven, 1822). He was an active member of the Massachusetts Historical Society, made significant contributions to Dobson's Encyclopædia (1st encyclopedia published in the US after the Revolution),and published 25 sermons and addresses on special occasions. He also wrote A Compendious History of New England with Elijah Harris (Charlestown, 1804); and Annals of the American Revolution (Hartford, 1824). 1 ½ x 4 ¾ signature clipped from partly-printed DS, receipt, no place, no date.

Condition: Very good, slightly uneven at top
Type:Signature






[View Shopping Cart]
[Home] [Articles] [Biography] [Calendar]
[Catalogue] [Search]



enbainc@cs.com

Edward N. Bomsey Autographs, Inc.
7317 Farr Street
Annandale, VA 22003-2516
(703) 642-2040(phone & fax)




Home
Home

Articles
Articles

Biography
Biography

Calendar
Calendar

Catalogue
Catalogue

Search
Search