Photo provided courtesy of reader Andrew Baron

“A library is not a luxury but one of the necessities of life,” — Henry Ward Beecher

© Author Adventures

Henry Ward Beecher, New York’s Celebrity Preacher

Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887) was the 19th century’s version of a rock star. He was a pastor, an author, a library advocate, and a vocal abolitionist with an enormous nationwide following. (He was also the brother of Harriet Beecher Stowe, author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin.) Read about him here: britannica.com. Books by Henry Ward Beecher available for free online can be found here: gutenberg.org.

A 2007 biography entitled The Most Famous Man in America, by Debby Applegate, won numerous prizes, including a Pulitzer in 2007.

We found an early edition of one of Henry Ward Beecher’s books at an independent bookstore in Boston. It cost little and is not worth much because a high number of copies were printed at the time, due to his vast popularity. Still, it is considered collectible because of its authentic early publishing date and because it speaks to an influential person and important time in US history.

Read more about his siblings here:

Edward Beecher in Illinois

Harriet Beecher Stowe in Connecticut

Harriet Beecher Stowe in Ohio

Plymouth Church

Plymouth Church in Brooklyn, where Henry Ward Beecher carried a popular ministry, is still an active Congregational church today. When it opened, and in the years of Preacher Beecher, it was what would be called today a “mega-church.” It remains one of the oldest continuously operating churches in New York and the United States.

“The Church is not a gallery for the exhibition of eminent Christians, but a school for the education of imperfect ones.” — Henry Ward Beecher

Plymouth Church bell
Photo provided courtesy of Andrew Baron
Photo provided courtesy of reader Andrew Baron

Plymouth Church is the first stop on our New York Author Adventures Trail!

Patricia Smart