A grandson of Princeton president Jonathan Edwards, he could read at age 4 and entered Yale at 13. He was a chaplain in the Continental Army until his father died. Then, as the eldest of 13 children, he worked the family farm to pay off debts. He served in the very first session of the Massachusetts State Legislature. His name was Timothy Dwight IV, and he died Jan. 11, 1817.
Timothy Dwight IV was Yale’s eighth president, serving from 1795 to 1817. In his 22 years at Yale, he created the Departments of Chemistry, Geology, Law, and Medicine. He also founded Andover Theological Seminary. Timothy Dwight pioneered women’s education, and was critical of slavery and encroachment on Indian lands.
He befriended Henry Opukahaia, the first Hawaiian convert to Christianity, which led to missionaries sailing to the Hawaiian “Sandwich” Islands. One of his students was Samuel Morse who invented the telegraph.
During Timothy Dwight’s time at Yale, the college grew from 110 to 313 students. Originally a Puritan college, Yale students had become enamored with “French infidelity” and France’s deistic “cult of reason.” Timothy Dwight met with students and answered their questions on faith. By the time of his death, Jan. 11, 1817, over a third of the graduates were professing Christians, and 30 entered the ministry.
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On July 4, 1798, Timothy Dwight gave an address in New Haven titled “The Duty of Americans at the Present Crisis.” In this address, he explained how Voltaire’s atheism inspired the French Revolution and it’s Reign of Terror, 1793-1794, where 40,000 people were beheaded and 300,000 were butchered in the Vendée:
About the year 1728, Voltaire, so celebrated for his wit and brilliancy and not less distinguished for his hatred of Christianity and his abandonment of principle, formed a systematical design to destroy Christianity and to introduce in its stead a general diffusion of irreligion and atheism.
For this purpose he associated with himself Frederick the II, king of Prussia, and Mess. D’Alembert and Diderot, the principal compilers of the Encyclopedie, all men of talents, atheists and in the like 》》》》》