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LEONARD BACON, D. D. DR. BACON, editor of the “ Independ arrived at considerable distinction among born on the 19th of February, 1802, in the College ; Prof. Twining, the distinguished city of Detroit, Michigan. His father civil engineer; Hon. J. H. Brockway, of was one of that band of noble pioneers Connecticut; Prof. Stoddard ; Hon. Garwho have done so much for the advance- ret Duncan, of Kentucky, and others. ment of the religious interests of the Great Into such a class Mr. Bacon entered, West-the American home missionaries. under rather disadvantageous circumstanHe was poor indeed in this world's goods; ces, being the youngest of its members for he possessed nothing beyond a bare with one exception, and without a full subsistence, unless we estimate the legacy preparation, as his pecuniary prospects which he left to the world of three sons rendered it necessary to sacrifice the adand four daughters, all now engaged in vantages which might have been gained active usefulness. Dr. Bacon's father by the study of the previous year. Yet died in the year 1817, after the family had Mr. Bacon ranked high in all the studies resided several years in the towns of of his comrades, and was esteemed one Hudson and Tallmadge, Ohio.
of the very best writers among them. He In his eleventh year, young Bacon com- gave evidence of a strong social disposimenced preparing for college in an insti- tion, and took an active part in the meettution near Hartford, Connecticut, where ings of the literary societies, which he some of his father's friends resided. He regarded as a means of improvement well entered the sophomore class of Yale Col- worthy of attention. lege at the early age of sixteen. His Mr. Bacon received aid from the Educlass included many others who have since cation Society during his collegiate course,
sufficient, with his own exertions, to main- escaped massacre by the Koords. He tain him. His father died soon after he and his companions left Mosul on the 21st entered college, and the young student of May, 1851, with the intention of makwas left self-dependent. Yet it may be ing their way across the mountains to the questioned whether poverty is not a richer Nestorian mission at Oroomiah. They inheritance to a man of mind than any met with no adventures until they arrived amount of wealth. Necessity, if any, in the hill-country, at a small village namthing, will develop the true man. It is ed Beyish, where the party were within this which teaches self-reliance and ener- a hair's-breadth of being murdered while gy, and strengthens all the muscles of sleeping, by a band of robbers, who were manhood.
induced temporarily to defer the execuDr. Bacon's intentions, before entering tion of their design by fear of damaging the college, had been to prepare himself for reputation of the village. But on the folthe Christian ministry: with this under- lowing day they intercepted the travelers standing, he was assisted by the Education in the midst of their journey in a narrow Society, and after graduating at Yale in and lonely pass. “ Six worse-looking the autumn of 1820, he went to Andover men," wrote one of the party, “it would to prosecute a course of theological study. be difficult to imagine. Each man wore Soon after leaving the seminary, at the around his high conical felt-hat a turban age of twenty-three, he was invited to of handkerchiefs of every hue and texture, preach, as a candidate, at the First Con- in his hand a long gun with short and nargregational Church of New-Haven, in row breech, and in his belt the universal Centre-street, of which he is now pastor. Turkish carved and two-edged dagger. He was ordained there in March, 1825. The leader of the gang was a man of midThe post is a prominent one, having been dle age, with black eyes and a grisly, unpreviously filled by the late lamented Prof. trimmed beard, and with half his front Stuart, of Andover, who was dismissed teeth knocked out.” The party was surin 1819; and subsequently by Prof. Taylor, rounded by the savages with rifles leveied, of the New-Haven Theological Seminary, and grinning horribly; and having paid a who left it in 1832. The Church itself black mail of fifty piastres, they were was first established in 1639, in an ancient conducted, as prisoners, to the castle of barn, the site of which is now occupied by a neighboring agha. Arrived here, they the residence of the late Noah Webster, were received by the agha, a tall person, of Dictionary memory.
and elegantly dressed and equipped for The present edifice was repaired and that region. This person, with a princely enlarged in 1842, and on its reopening wave of the hand, bade the travelers reDr. Bacon delivered an eloquent sermon, tire to the hill-side, a few hundred feet which has been published. The Centre distant, while his royal highness should Church is pleasantly situated in the heart decide their fate. of that beautiful city. It is of simple ar- They had received intimations from chitecture, harmonious proportions, and their servants that it was the intention of crowned by a lofty spire.
the agha to kill them, and this had been The Church now numbers between quite manifest from the conduct of the five and six hundred, a large, yet most people whom they met. In anticipation harmonious body, free from the discords of this fate, Dr. Bacon and his companand jealousies which have rent in pieces ions betook themselves to prayer, and many a smaller society. They are united awaited the course of events with calm in their pastor, whom they justly esteem. resignation. But Providence had other In 1828 and 1831, Dr. Bacon's lahors were designs, and the danger was averted, and rewarded with extensive and powerful re- that by a Koordish Pocahontas, the agha's vivals of religion.
wife. The trunks of the party were In the year 1851 Dr. Bacon made a thoroughly searched, and all the money tour of the continent of Europe, likewise and other valuables therein contained were visiting some of the missions of the Amer- speedily appropriated by the chief of the ican Board in Western Asia. While robbers, yet in the most courteous manner among the Mountains of Nestoria, he and imaginable. his party met with a dangerous, yet most Owing, in all probability, to the interromantic adventure, in which they barely 'ference of the agha's wife, the bloody
intentions of the Koords were somewhat murder the party, with the view, doubtless, modified, and the council sat on the rocks of shifting the responsibility of the outdebating whether to kill the Franks, or rage to other shoulders than his own. send them into the mountains. The latter Preparations had been made to fulfill this expedient was determined upon; but be- request, and a band of ruffians sat waiting fore starting, the travelers were obliged to the approach of the travelers to dispatch submit to another search. Dr. Bacon's them. Mullah Mustafa had tried every son gives an amusing account of the man means in his power to dissuade the agha ner in which some of their personal effects from the bloody deed, but without effect, were appropriated :
until, appealing to his greedy desire of "A black silk cravat, which had seen much power, he persuaded the old savage that service in New-Haven drawing-rooms, was twist
these travelers were men of influence at ed about the suspicious-looking head of an un- Mosul, and that, by securing their influcommonly dirty boy. A pair of heavy riding
ence against Mellul Agha, (the first-menboots were transferred to the shoulders of a
tioned robber,) he might obtain a supremyouth who bore the gallows-mark' on his features with unmistakable distinctness. A sat acy over that rival in the government of in vest of Mr. Marsh's was circulating through the district. This plea succeeded, and the crowd on the person of a dirty child, who
the party were set free by Khan Abdul, boasted no other wealth than a ragged shirt and
who also made a full revelation of the a green pomegranate. I looked at the youngster with a smile of congratulation; but he conspiracy against their lives among the turned on his heel and strutted gravely away, Koordish chiefs. The travelers were his new garment trailing on the ground at then treated with great courtesy, and every step."
Khan Abdul remarked with a smile, that From this place they were led in an- " if we had come alone he should have other direction by an escort of the agha's, certainly killed us all; but as we were and by a good Providence came to the under the protection of his friend Mullah village of a benevolent mullah, to whom, Mustafa, we were quite welcome; he under God, the party owed their ultimate was sorry that we could not remain four preservation. They were received with or five days with him, that he might show kindness by him, passed the night in se
us proper honor."
was then curity under his roof, and occupied the brought, and the party sat down with no next day in prescribing remedies for nu- great relish to the table with men who, merous diseases which were presented but a moment before, were ready to deto their attention. There Dr. Bacon's prive them of their heads. knowledge of surgery was turned to good Before starting, a young Koordish dan
The travelers were informed by dy, with rings, and soap-locks, and silverMullah Mustafa that messages had been mounted dagger, who had been quite sent to all the aghas toward Oroomiah to vociferous in recommending plunder and rob and murder them, and that the only massacre, having heard of Dr. Bacon's safe course was to return to Mosul, and medical operations on the previous day, the good man volunteered to accompany came up with his hands pressed upon the them in person over the most dangerous pit of his stomach, complaining that his portion of the journey. “He declared to "heart was as hard as iron," which exus that if we had been angels from heaven, pression he meant to have understood in a or pashas, he would not have gone to this metaphorical sense, as, in the East, it trouble for us; but as he saw that we denotes an attack of colic. Dr. Bacon were nien who willed only what God informed the young gentleman that he was willed, and did what he commanded, he troubled with the dyspepsia, and prescribed would do for us whatever was in his rhubarb and pills enough to last till they power."
should be out of reach of the 'mountains. Dr. Bacon and his companions recom At this place the travelers bade faremenced their journey with gloomy fore- well to Mullah Mustafa " with feelings of bodings, which were not without founda- the profoundest gratitude.” Dr. Bacon's tion ; for at the next village they barely numerous friends and relatives in this escaped death, even though accompanied country remember the benevolent old by the venerated mullah. The agha of Mussulman with feelings approaching afthis village had received a letter from the fection, and many others will recollect one first named, directing him to rob and with pleasure his name who has preserved
a man so useful to his country and to the Mustafa as an acknowledgment. The Church.
matter has since been taken up by the In letters of the party the magnificence Turkish government, and these marauders of the mountain scenery is graphically de- have been compelled to make full satisfacscribed, and, under different circumstances, tion to all the parties concerned. Thus the journey would doubtless have been terminated an adventure such as rarely enjoyed highly ; but they were not yet occurs to diversify the stereotyped routine out of danger. One prospect at length of newspaper correspondence from the presented itself to their eyes, which was East. From the adventures of Dr. Bacon hailed with great satisfaction. Away be- let us turn more particularly to the man yond the desert the Tigris gleamed—a little himself. streak of gold-the happy assurance of
Dr. Bacon is about fifty years of age. ultimate safety. The mountain was de- If we did not know positively to the conscended with thankful hearts, and the party trary, we should set him down as a native bivouacked over night with glad hearts, of Yankeedom beyond all doubt. We though without other covering than blank- will at least venture to assert that his ets, while the rain poured down in torrents. father came from that region. Were we
The next day they arrived at a large called upon for a specimen of the real Christian village, crowded with people in Yankee-not the pumpkin, clownish stage holyday attire, who came out to meet the character, or, more properly, caricature, travelers, filled with the greatest astonish- but the energetic, indomitable, wide-awake ment; for the report had gone out that descendant of the old Puritan fathers—we they had all been stripped and murdered. should certainly point to Dr. Bacon. “ A Chaldean first seated himself on one Resolution and steadiness of purpose are side of Mr. Marsh and a Jewish Rabbi on manifest in all his muscles and movethe other, and white-turbaned Moslems ments, in the lines of his face and the tone and swarthy Zizidis were scattered thickly of his voice. Many would, perhaps, on through the crowd that came to gaze upon slight acquaintance, detect traces of an us. But Christian, and Muhammedan, and overbearing disposition in Dr. Bacon's Jew, and even the very devil-worshippers manner; but this is not confirmed by any themselves, declared again and again that personal knowledge of the writer. The nothing could have delivered us but the tendency of very strong characters, howspecial protection of God.”
ever, is often too much in this direction. After leaving this village they came Dr. Bacon is about the medium height, near falling into the hands of an agha somewhere about five and a half feet. He against whom Mullah Mustafa had spec- is rather thick set, has a slight stoop in ially cautioned them, as a man in whom the shoulders, and a head of larger dimenno confidence should be placed ; but were sions than is ordinarily seen. The foreprovidentially delivered from this danger. head is remarkably high, eyes large and The next day was the Sabbath ; but the dark-colored, shadowed by heavy brows travelers felt obliged to press on, as they of very irregular formation, which, accordwere not entirely beyond the reach of ing to physiognomy, denotes great vivacidanger, and reached Akkre in the morn- ty. His mouth is large, and the lines ing. Hence they made two forced march- about it evince energy and habitually sees by night to Mosul to avoid the attacks vere application. of the Bedouins, who were committing Dr. Bacon's manner, as a speaker, is audacious robberies in sight of the city. pleasing-his action quite energetic, someThey themselves brought the first news times vehement. He is not a finished of their adventures to their friends, who elocutionist, but he possesses a powerful were filled with wonder and gratitude to and well-trained voice. He rarely fails God at their deliverance.
of entering fully into the spirit of his subMeasures were immediately taken to ject, and evinces sincerity and earnestness obtain redress for these outrages, and me in every performance. morials were transmitted to Constantino The mind of Dr. Bacon is of a strongly ple, where the matter was taken up by mathematical cast; this a physiognomist Sir Stratford Canning and the American would read in his lofty forehead. He ambassador with praiseworthy energy. excels in debate, and is quite a master of Suitable presents were also sent to Mullah logic. His style and thoughts clear and
accurate, and he is rarely misunderstood. portant occasions, combined with someHe has a great power of generalization—a thing of a commanding air, which is mind comprehensive as well as acute, natural to him, sometimes impresses a These traits are evinced in various critical stranger with the idea that he has a little essays on the manifold subjects which of the pope in his disposition; yet it is come within his province as an edit and a nothing more, we have reason to believe, reviewer. He has a remarkable power of than is common to men of unusually enerexpression, which years of platform prac- getic and active temperament. tice have developed and strengthened. The extent of Dr. Bacon's literary This is one of the greatest and most desir- labors is a proof of great industry and perable accomplishments of a public speaker, severance. To these, rather than to his the power of communicating his thoughts efforts on the platform, or in the pulpit, he with correctness and ease under any cir- owes his influence and wide reputation. cumstances. There is a solidity in Dr. For the last twenty-seven years he has Bacon's character which manifests itself | been constantly engaged in ministerial in his public addresses. He appeals to duty, and during that time, also, has pubthe reason and good sense of his hearers lished all the permanent matter which
- he gives them facts and weighty argu- bears his name, besides a great number of ment. He does not, therefore, produce anonymous communications which have so much of immediate effect upon an appeared in periodicals with which he has audience as those who appeal more to the been connected at different times. passions, but there is always something in He has been engaged in editorial labors, his speeches to be remembered and thought at different periods, for many years. This over at home.
is a business, by the way, for which few Dr. Bacon's sermons partake of the men are better qualified than Dr. Bacon. character of his speeches. They are He was connected with the “ Christian sound, practical, earnest and impressive. Spectator,” a quarterly, issued at NewYet occasionally he is kindled by some Haven, which was discontinued about the extraordinary motive to an unusual effort, year 1840. He is now senior editor of the a splendid display of massive eloquence. • Independent," and a regular and effective His style is usually not without ornament, contributor, and chairman of the associabut the embellishment is less noticeable tion which conducts the “New-Englandthan the labored and imposing framework. er.” To the “Spectator” he contributed
Dr. Bacon possesses a large share of a series of essays on slavery, which were sarcastic wit, which is frequently brought afterward collected and published in a into play in debate, and sometimes with more permanent form. A large number great effect. He is very often engaged of occasional sermons have been published in controversy, so much so as to create an by request, and several in the “ National impression, to some extent, that it must be Preacher.” On December 22d, 1838, he congenial to his feelings.
delivered an annual address before “ The Such champions are needed, and we New-England Society of the City of Newknow of no one who seems better con- York,” containing a sketch of the Puritan stituted by nature for such a post than history, and a most elaborate and valuable Dr. Bacon. A debate is the elernent analysis of Puritan character, which was in which he appears to feel most at published by request of the society. Dr. home. His earlier productions show more Bacon has a particular fondness for the of that scathing sarcasm to which he has department of history. He has published a natural inclination, than those of later a large octavo volume, of four hundred years.
pages, containing a series of thirteen disDr. Bacon is one of those men who courses, delivered in New Haven, in 1838, can take no subordinate part in any move- on the." Ecclesiastical and Civil History ment which interests him. Indifference of Connecticut," from the establishment of is foreign to his nature. He does not the colony up to that time. He has also hesitate to give his personal services in written a small but excellent work for the every case where the cause of truth and use of young Christians, besides some other justice is to be promoted, even though it productions, which we cannot at present may turn to his own disadvantage. His enumerate. Earnest, vigorous, laborious, readiness to give his services on all im- . talented, he is a man for the times.