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.ViAY 17 i^'t 


BV 3705 .A6 T5 1880 
Thompson, A. C. 1812-1901. 
Discourse commemorative of 
Rev. Rufus Anderson, D.D., 





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icb. gufus Sntremn, §. §., f f. §., 












JUNE 20, 1880, 

By rev, a. C, THOMPSON, D. D. 



Two hundred years take us back to the time of the 
Covenanters, and to heaths of Scotland red with the blood 
of witnesses for Christ's cross and crown. The atrocities 
of Claverhouse and his dragoons prepared the minds of a 
God-fearing company in Argyleshire for migration to the 
north of Ireland. In the famous siege of Londonderry it 
was Protestant Scotch colonists whose bravery held that 
small city against King James's twenty thousand men, who 
for four months invested the place. The happy revolution 
effected by William of Orange, however, left them stilL sub- 
ject to various annoyances, such as paying tithes toward 
a distasteful establishment; and before many years passed, 
a company of sixteen men with their families sailed for New 
England. Their iirst winter, a severe one, was from 
necessity spent on shipboard in the harbor of Portland, 
Maine. They then came round by the way of the Merrimac 
to Haverhill in Massachusetts ; and thence groped through 
an untrodden wilderness to a spot in New Hampshire, 
since known as Londonderry. That was one hundred and 
sixty-one years ago. 

In that little group of sixteen men, soon joined by others 
from the Province of Ulster, was James Anderson, the 
great-grandfather of Dr. Rufus Anderson. To no other 
settlement perhaps in our country did there come immi- 
grants more homogeneous, more strictly religious, more 
deliberate in forming their opinions, or more inflexible in 
maintaining them. Neither poverty-stricken nor wealthy, 
they prized their faith and freedom above all treasures. 

6 Parentage. 

They were Scotch, pure and simple ; ^ a race characterized 
by thoughtfulness, firmness, love of liberty and love of 
country. The name of Anderson from Londonderry 
appears among the resolute men at Bunker Hill ; General 
Stark was of the same kith and kin, and it may be affirmed 
without exaggeration that the blood of Londonderry has 
reddened every battlefield over which the flag of our nation 
waves.^ Transmission of qualities is certain ; an individu- 
ality of type will go on from generation to generation, and 
national accent marks the mind, as truly as the tongue, of a 

Dr. Anderson's mother, an amiable, superior New Eng- 
land woman,^ belonged to the same stock with one of the 
ablest men whom this Commonwealth has produced. Chief 
Justice Parsons, of the Supreme Court. True, we always 
ask what a man is, not where he comes from ; yet every 
vintage takes a character from the soil which produces it. 
In the composition of the late Secretary there was too 
much both of father and mother for him to be exclusively 
like either. The father, Rev. Rufus Anderson, a graduate 
of Dartmouth College,* was for many years one of the 
Board of Overseers of Bowdoin College, his brother-in-law, 
Dr. Joseph McKeen, being the first President of that 
Institution. ^ He became pastor of the Second Congrega- 
tional Church in North Yarmouth, Maine, 1794 — where 
his son Rufus was born August 17, 1796 — and after- 
wards of the church in Wenham, Massachusetts, 1805. 
He was a devout man, a faithful and successful pastor, 
earnestly bent upon saving souls, his life being finally 

1 It is certain there was no mixture of blood in the little band who cast 
their fortunes here; they were men of Scottish lineage, pure and simple. 
— Hon. Charles N. Bell, in the Londonderry Celebration, 1870, p. 16. 

2 The Londonderry Celebration, p. 33. 

3 Hannah Parsons, a daughter of Col. Isaac Parsons, of New Gloucester, 
Maine, who was a cousin of the Chief Justice. 

4 1791. 

5 Inaugurated 1802. 

Academic Course. 7 

sacrificed apparently to excessive labors in a revival of 
religion.' Dr. Samuel Worcester, an intimate friend, in a 
sermon preached at his funeral, gave utterance to deep 
affection in these words : " Might an expression of per- 
sonal feeling be indulged, I would say, ' I am distressed 
for thee, my brother Anderson ; very pleasant hast thou 
been unto me! ' " ^ 

Bowdoin College was Dr. Anderson's Alma Mater. Dr. 
Jesse Appleton, an accomplished educator, then at the 
head of that institution, by his admirable handling of 
Butler's Analogy, had a marked influence in forming the 
mental habits of this pupil. Though he often reproached 
himself for not doing justice to advantages enjoyed, young 
Anderson was made President of the leading literary society 
in college, the highest honor in the gift of the students ; 
and he took a high rank in his class — up to that time, 
I Si 8, the largest that graduated there.^ The autumn of 
1 8 19 found him at the Andover Theological Seminary. 

The divine guidance which led Dr. Anderson to his life 
work deserves notice. The home of his youth, Wenham, 
was in the neighborhood of the chief founders of the 
American Board of Foreign Missions. As before stated, 
his 'father was on terms of intimacy with Dr. Samuel 
Worcester, first Secretary of the Board; he took his son 
Rufus to the first ordination of missionaries at the Taber- 
nacle Church in Salem in 1812; and the services of that 
occasion were often referred to by him as having left an 
indelible impress on his young mind. The senior Rufus 
Anderson was one of the earlier men in that section of our 
State to feel the rising interest in behalf of unevangelized 
nations. At the time his health failed and death 
approached, he had begun preparations for a history of 

J February 5, 1814, ^t. 49. 

2 The Christian'' s Confidetice : A Sermon preached at the Funeral of the 
Rev. Rufus Anderson, A. M., February 14, 1814, p. 24. 

3 Letter of Prof. Alpheus S. Packard, of the class of 18 16. 

8 Providential Leadings. 

missions to the heathen ; this son, then a mere lad, was 
employed in copying documents for that purpose ; and thus 
his thoughts received a definite direction. Even before 
conversion he came to entertain the thought, vague at 
least, that he should some time enter missionary service. 
After conversion, which occurred during the college course, 
as his religious character developed, interest became en- 
listed more and more in the same line. The theme of 
his oration, one of the four English orations, on graduat- 
ing at Bowdoin, was " The Probable Improvement of the 
World," which both revealed the bent of mind at that 
time, and foreshadowed his future. Immediately on leav- 
ing college, he was urged by friends solicitous about his 
health to undertake a voyage. Dr. Worcester gave him 
an official letter filled with inquiries concerning countries 
then comparatively unknown, which he might visit. From 
Rio de Janeiro he wrote at length in regard to the capital 
of Brazil, its social and religious condition. This communi- 
cation to the Secretary appeared in the Missionary Herald^ 
and was the causes which determined his future 
career. At Andover the noble pioneers, Mills, Newell, 
Judson and Hall, had left their mark ; Parsons and Fisk, 
Spaulding and Winslow, were names just coming to be 
known ; Hiram Bingham and Asa Thurston were soon to 
attend a memorable meeting at Park Street Church, and 
to sail from the port of Boston for distant islands in the 
Pacific.'^ During his theological course, a special intimacy 
sprang up between the future Secretary and those saintly 
men, William Goodell and Daniel Temple. In common 
with them, he devoted himself to the cause of missions, 
and joined a society known as the Brethren, of which he 
was an influential member.^ 

■ Panoplist and Missionary Herald [yiz.-^, 1S19), pp. 231-235. 

2 October 23, 1819. 

3 A society formed at Williams College, September 7, 1808, with Samuel 
J. Mills as its first President, the name then being Sol Oriens. The avowed 

Providential Leadings. 9 

An impression made upon fellow-students was that he 
had much more than usual maturity of character ; ' and it 
was seen, too, that he had executive ability above the 
average of candidates for the sacred office. In the month 
of August, 1 82 1, at the close of Dr. Anderson's middle 
year in the Seminary, Jeremiah Evarts, the well-known 
father of a well-known son, having recently become 
Corresponding Secretary, besides being Treasurer of the 
American Board, visited Andover, and had an interview 
with this young man, who was destined to be a successor 
of his in office. One immediate result was that he spent 
the next vacation at the Missionary Rooms in Boston, 
assisting Mr. Evarts. Six months later,^ in the midst of 
Senior studies, he was again requested to come to Boston 
in the same capacity, Mr. Evarts being under the necessity 
of going to a warmer climate.^ During the Secretary's 
absence, the correspondence as well as editing of the 
Missionary Herald came chiefly into young Anderson's 
hands. Mr. Evarts's return home in the summer brought 
a release for the assistant, who went back to Andover and 
graduated with his class. Then, at the age of twenty-six, 
began an uninterrupted connection with the cause of 
foreign missions, a cause from which his service was to be 
withdrawn only when in old age strength failed, but from 
which no infirmities could detach his heart or extinguish 
strong desires for further toil. The Spirit and providence 
of God most evidently united in calling the young man to 
this post. 

But what is the Foreign Secretaryship of the American 

design was "to effect in the person of its members a mission or missions to 
the heathen," one condition of membership being that each man shall have 
offered himself to some missionary society for labor at home or abroad. In 
1810 the society was removed to the Theological Seminary at Andover, 

1 Letter of Rev. Dorus Clarke, D. D. 

2 Early in 1822. 

3 To South Carolina, in March. 

lo The Foreign Secretaryship. 

Board ? It may be that very few have an adequate idea of 
the amount, the weight, the variety and delicacy of labors 
and cares pertaining to the position, more particularly at 
the advanced period of Dr. Anderson's public life. The 
foreign secretary, by virtue of intimate relations to the 
home department, can never wholly dissociate himself from 
any of the official agencies. In the way of sermons, 
addresses and contributions to the periodical press, he 
must make his thoughts tell upon current public senti- 
ment. Elaborate preparation of reports and special pa- 
pers is demanded for annual meetings of the Board. 
Hundreds and hundreds of personal calls will be made 
upon him at his office every year. Even of domestic 
correspondence no inconsiderable share comes into his 
hands. The weekly average of letters now received at 
the rooms of the Board is from five hundred to a thousand 
— letters ranging from a few lines to fifty pages ; and the 
longer the more sure are they to be designed for the foreign 

The chief burden of thought in that department, of 
course, relates to men and affairs beyond sea. First 
comes the securing of candidates — joint work, it is true, of 
the home and foreign secretaries — but how responsible, 
how delicate! To ascertain the qualifications, mental, 
moral and physical, and the adaptation to different fields ; 
to exert an influence in regard to some of the gravest ques- 
tions of duty that can occupy the mind of a young man 
or yo'ung woman, and on the settlement of which life inter- 
ests are pending, to know just what advice to give, and 
just when not to give any at all, leaving a matter which 
should be left for conference solely between the candi- 
date and the All-seeing One, require no common sagacity. 
Then the details of outfit, suggestions regarding the voy- 
age ; early as well as more advanced labors ; and manifold 
other points, demand thoughtful attention. The choice of 
new fields calls for the exercise of great wisdom. 



Questions of missionary policy must receive the most 
painstaking consideration. As regards the carrying out of 
Christ's great commission, there is room for considerable 
variety of methods, according to the social and political 
condition of a people; according to the place they hold 
on the scale of civilization; according to the degree of 
their evangelization, and to resources at the command of 
a missionary. Touching all such matters the foreign sec- 
cretary should have opinions carefully weighed. Prob- 
ably no two missions in different countries and under 
the many varying circumstances which are inevitable, 
should in all respects be conducted in precisely the same 
manner. Wise men on the ground, with a fair share of 
discernment, while keeping true to the main object and the 
one heaven-appointed means, will try modifications. In all 
such experimental proceedings large liberty should be 
allowed; but the Secretary must keep himself informed, 
and must be ready with cautions, encouragements, and 
various suggestions as each mission and each measure may 
demand. The due proportion of station labor and of 
itinerating ; the different methods required in cities and in 
rural districts ; the number of laborers in any given field ; 
houses of worship and street-preaching ; the employment 
of native helpers ; the translation of the Bible, and the use 
of the press, are subjects constantly entering into the 
correspondence ; as well as questions relating to the sup- 
port of missionaries, the children of missionaries, the health 
and home visits of missionaries. So, too, the problem of 
education, not yet solved finally and for all fields, the use 
of the English language, and many other related topics. 

Such are some of the topics — a list far from exhaustive 
— which must be uniformly present to the mind of any 
one at the executive center — topics multiplied in propor- 
tion to the number of missions, their size and diversity of 
character. Further, by a constant interchange of letters, 
by personal conference, by a study of the reports, periodi- 

12 Diversity of Labors. 

cals, memoirs and histories of other societies and other 
periods, the administrator has occasion to bring a philosophi- 
cal mind to bear upon detecting what is incidental, local 
and temporary ; upon seizing what is essential and uniform ; 
upon mastering all the more important principles and 
tendencies involved, and then applying the same in a 
wisely flexible treatment, according as the whole foreign 
field, as each particular field, as each individual, may 
require. Varying tides and currents in the great deep of 
the political world and of the commercial world at home 
and abroad — indeed all" over the globe — must also be 
studied with reference to their bearing on the interests of 

Now, who is sufficient for these things .'' Whence shall 
come the man with adequate capacity and qualifications .'' 
No such man can be found ready furnished to hand. The 
ablest must serve an apprenticeship ; must grow into and 
work into the sphere, of which, if he be the right one, he 
will sooner or later become a master spirit. 

When the young graduate from Andover came to Boston 
for permanent residence and labor, the Missionary Herald, 
of which for several years he continued the chief editor, 
was at the outset his principal care.^ From that time 
onward he attended all the meetings of the Prudential 
Committee for fifty-three years, till 1875 ; and occasionally, 
as emeritus member, till September 9, 1879. At first he 
acted as confidential clerk to Mr. Evarts, who was also 
Treasurer, but whose health was infirm. The foreign 
correspondence came more and more, and at length almost 
entirely, into his hands, even long before his election to 
the office of Secretary, in 1832. At that time he had 
served for eight years'' as " Assistant Secretary," an office 
created by the Board to meet his position as it then was. 

I The Herald was upon its second year after being detached from the 
Panoplist, which for eleven years had been edited by Mr. Evarts. 
- From 1824. 

The Period. 13 

The earlier period, 18 10-1822, was comparatively a day 
of small things in our foreign missionary cause at home 
and abroad. The annual receipts in 1822 did not exceed 
the present average for every five weeks; and the gross 
receipts of the whole twelve years previous equaled only 
three fourths of an annual income now. During the ten 
years which had elapsed since the first band of laborers 
sailed out of Salem Harbor,^ six feeble, yet hopeful 
missions had been established. The same month that 
Dr. Anderson came to Boston,'- Catherine Brown, the first 
of our Cherokee converts, whose memoir he wrote not 
long after,^ was praying daily for her brother David, and 
writing him to prepare for the sacred ministry among his 
native people. John Arch, of the same nation, a memoir 
of whom was also written by Dr. Anderson,"* had just 
begun evangelistic tours among his benighted kinsfolk. 
Richards and Poor, Meigs and Scudder, names long since 
embalmed in missionary biography, were beginning to be 
an inspiration by their labors in Ceylon. Gordon Hall had 
not yet been stricken down with cholera in the Mahratta 
country ; but the memoir of Harriet Newell, that wander- 
ing dove, for the sole of whose foot no resting place could 
be found in India, and who yielded up her precious life at 
nineteen (18 12) — that memoir, by its eight or ten editions, 
was doing a work such as scarcely any other female biogra- 
phy has accomplished; a work more important, perhaps, 
than a prolonged life in the East would have been. A 
peculiar interest, partaking of the romantic, was felt in our 
mission to the Holy Land ; while from the Hawaiian 
Islands had come news which thrilled the churches ; the 
mission band at their first approach being greeted with this 

1 February 19, 18 12. 

2 August, 1822. 

3 Memoir of Catherine Brown, Third Edition, Boston, 1828. 

4 Memoir of John Arch, a Cherokee young man, Second Editio7t, Boston, 

14 Moral Qualifications. 

unparalleled message : " The islands are at peace — the 
tabu system is no more — the gods are destroyed — the 
temples demolished." The hymn, 

" Wake, Isles of the South ! Your redemption is near," 

a product of that inspiring movement, was first sung in 

The foreign mission enterprise was fairly launched ; but 
nearly everything connected with its administration was 
as yet tentative. It can never cease to be an occasion of 
gratitude to God, that for "laying the keel, and for the early 
voyages of that goodly bark. He provided men so competent, 
and who made so few mistakes. Preeminent among them 
stands Dr. Samuel Worcester, to whose clear faith, wisdom 
and energy more was due than to any other man of the 
time ; but he, the first Secretary, had already been sleeping 
nearly two years at Brainerd, in the Cherokee country, 
where he closed his earthly labors. 

The chief subject of this commemorative discourse is 
naturally the Foreign Secretaryship — especially in more 
recent years ; Dr. Anderson's qualifications for it, and the 
manner in which he discharged his high trust. 

What, now, are the leading qualities required for the 
position } It will sound superfluous to say that a hearty 
religious consecration must underlie the whole. Dr. 
Anderson had given himself to the Lord in 18 16; later 
he dedicated himself, as has been stated, specifically to the 
cause of foreign missions ; and in coming to his appointed 
sphere, he comes on a missionary basis. Pecuniary at- 
tractions are not held out. His salary for the first year 
is six hundred dollars ; the next five years, after marriage,^ 
one thousand ; it never exceeded two thousand.^ No 

1 At the embarkation of a reinforcement to the Sandwich Islands Mission, 
New Haven, Connecticut, November 19, 1822. 

2 January 8, 1827, to Miss Eliza Hill. 

3 %\,(x)0 from 1834 to 1857 ; $2,000 from 1S58 to 1866. 

Moral Qualifications. 1 5 

pastor in the city with whom he was associated received 
so small a stipend. But this arrangement accorded with 
what seemed to him best on the whole. He made it a rule 
never to incur a personal debt. 

Nor had the post at that time come to be regarded as 
one of honor. The requirements were arduous, indeed 
exacting ; they left little time for general reading, for 
theological studies, or the preparation of sermons. Those 
requirements, however, were cheerfully met ; and the con- 
viction which reconciled him to devote all available 
hours and strength to the duties imposed was that the 
finger of God pointed them out. When, at a later date, 
honorary degrees were conferred upon him,^ he would 
playfully remark that the reason was they were needed in 
order that he might not seem inferior to his associates. 
He knew quite well that such things come down among 
us^ like sunlight and rain, "on the just and on the unjust." 
He was aware, too, that while there may be vanity in 
accepting such titles, there may be greater vanity in 
declining them ; and that the true way is to think little and 
say less about them. There was in his composition no 
sentimentalism, no romantic enthusiasm ; nor did he study 
the dramatic. We are familiar with the picture of Napo- 
leon crossing the Alps on a prancing charger; but, in 
point of fact, he crossed on a mule led by a muleteer. 
Dr. Anderson began to achieve his ascent, not on the plat- 
form of great annual convocations, but by unostentatious 
fidelity to arduous duties, in a small basement room of Mr. 
Evarts's house in Pinckney Street. 

Constructive talent of a superior order is in requisition. 
For organizing missions abroad peculiar tact in forecasting 
and adjusting relations, probable circumstances and influ- 
ences cannot fail to be needed. To a certain orderliness 

I Doctor of Divinity, by Dartmouth College, 1836; and Doctor of Laws, 
by Bowdoin College, 1866. 

1 6 Organizing Talent. 

of mind and unity of the faculties there must be added a 
power of combination, an ability for the happy assorting 
and quick marshaling of means at hand, with a wise 
adaptation to the end sought. Practice is, of course, 
needful, but an original aptitude must exist. Such apti- 
tude Dr. Anderson had. Soon after coming to Boston 
he projected and guided into execution a plan for organiz- 
ing ^ friends of the Board, male and female, which resulted 
in fifty auxiliaries and one thousand distinct associations. 
He was not a man of schemes ; still less a man of fancies ; 
was much given to reflection, but not at all to reverie. 
Having carefully thought out measures which he was to 
bring forward for adoption by the Prudential Committee 
or elsewhere, he would present them with reasons duly 

A secretary's agency having so much to do with men, 
rather than things, a ready discernment of character is 
indispensable. David Hume, notwithstanding his keen- 
ness of intellect, had but little insight into character. 
Dr. Anderson seemed to have an instinctive discernment ; 
something quite beyond the ability of technical analysis. 
He understood human nature in general, and he under- 
stood individual men. With him the diplomatic partook of 
shrewdness in distinction from cunning. There is a great 
deal in knowing how to approach persons and things on 
the right side ; not by the device of flattery — always cheap, 
often mean — but partly by the avoidance of needless 
offense. The painter Apelles knew what he was about 
while drawing the portrait of King Antigonus in profile, 
that he need not expose the blemish of a blind eye. The 
endowment now spoken of appears to have been early 
developed ; for, when a youth of only sixteen, our friend 
was requested to take charge of a school, in which, among 
other pupils, were Beverly sailors off duty. His success 
was such that the next year he received an invitation to 

' 1823. 

Knowledge of Character. ly 

take another school in the same region. He could reprove 
without reproaching. He early discovered that people are 
not apt to confide in a person who does not confide 
in himself. He could discriminate between being light- 
minded and light-hearted; between self-conceit and self- 
reliance; between willfulness and constancy. He saw 
straight through the moral littleness of feigned humility ; 
through the weakness of a man not sincere enough to re- 
frain from professions of sincerity, or who confesses faults 
with a view to being thought candid. 

But did he possess that highest attainment in this line of 
things, self-knowledge ? A weak man can often understand 
his superior more easily than a superior can understand 
himself. Dr. Anderson knew well what he could do; 
• and better than most men what he could not do. He had 
no such infirmity as that of Cardinal Richelieu, who was 
more pleased with being falsely pronounced the greatest 
poet of his age, than truly the greatest statesman. Isaac 
Parsons Anderson, the brother next younger, had a some- 
what poetic temperament. Rufus, while in college, made 
one attempt at versification ; but immediately threw it into 
the fire, and never repeated the experiment. 

Merely mentioning the office of secretary suggests at 
once that it requires breadth. The subjects, interests 
and relations are too many, too varied, too complicated to 
leave it possible that they should be handled well by any 
one who has not a versatile and comprehensive mind. 
Many a man succeeds passably in caring for a garden 
who could not manage a farm. At the missionary rooms 
there are needed men of breadth in observing facts, depth 
in discovering principles, and ingenuity in devising meth- 
ods ; men equal to grappling with the more difficult prob- 
lems in human affairs ; who shall not be overwhelmed by 
new questions growing out of greatly diversified climates, 
social conditions, languages, and religions. Great problems 
and startling events which confuse small minds, impart 

1 8 Sound Judgment. 

calmness to superior minds. Missions so remote from 
home and from one another demand a far-seeing and steady 
eye ; one that readily discerns the character of surround- 
ings, the nature and force of adverse agencies ; one that 
detects the modifications of policy needful, and looks 
promptly for a way to effect them. Vast learning is not 
the thing required. Dr. Anderson was not a man of great 
and varied erudition; but he had studied and did under- 
stand one subject thoroughly. President Wayland used 
to say that he knew more about missions than any other 
man living.^ He knew how to weigh the relative value of 
missions in the balances of the sanctuary ; he attained that 
rare elevation of appreciating the importance of disregard- 
ing consistency on a lower and customary plane for the 
sake of consistency on a higher plane. 

Every acquaintance will accept the statement that he 
had a judicial cast of mind, habitually scanning the line 
between essentials and mere accessories ; between courage 
and temerity ; between caution and timidity. He under- 
stood the adjustments of conservatism and progress; when 
to use the anchor and when the sail ; when to seize an 
opportunity and when to forego an advantage. In the 
grand march of missionary events he kept behind the 
rash, but in advance of the hesitating. In the absence of 
precedents, he was skillful in applying general principles, 
as well as in disregarding matters irrelevant and extra- 

Was he not a proficient also in the rare and blessed art 
of letting alone .'' To such popular delusions as Spiritism, 
for instance, he did not devote attention enough to express 
contempt. It was a relief to him to keep in mind that 
many difficulties solve themselves, and even some evils 
cure themselv-es, if you only let them be. Strong common 
sense, that equilibrium of the faculties which never allows 
the excesses of others to drive one into excess, and which 

• Examiner and Chronicle, October i6, 1879. 

Independence and Firmness. 19 

never attempts the impossible, must be accorded to him as 
a marked characteristic. The distinguished President of 
Brown University, already cited, once said,^ "Anderson is 
the wisest man in America." 

From early life he had been in the habit beyond most 
young men of exercising independent thought; but when 
his second year of study at the Theological Seminary 
opened, he came to the conclusion that he had not given 
due attention to mental discipline; that his object in 
reading had been too much to secure a store of knowledge, 
and too little to acquire the habit of ready and concentrated 
thought. This came upon him like a discovery. If it 
seemed to him to be late, it was, in fact, earlier than most 
light upon that prime truth of education, a truth, indeed, 
which some never discover. He saw that this desired end 
could be secured only by thinking, and resolved to make 
that the chief occupation of the year. He read enough to 
ascertain first principles, and then set about a logical use 
of them. Thus he soon began, with high satisfaction, to 
make discoveries of truths and relations, many of which 
he afterwards found were commonplace ; but such health- 
ful exercise of the faculties proved invaluable, and had a 
sensible influence in determining the final cast of his 

As a type of intellectual character along with qualities 
already pictured, this habit of independence had its place 
in the secretaryship. Our friend was candid but deter- 
mined, and he braced himself in the leading positions 
taken, because they were deliberately and well taken. Such 
a man is morally bound to be firm ; it would be wrong for 
him not to be persistent, not to disregard clamor. No 
fortifications can be strong that have only weak men to 
defend them. In Dr. Anderson there was a touch of Lon- 
donderry. At the celebrated siege of that place — the 

' Memoir of the Life and Labors of Frattcis Wayland, D.D., LL.D., 
Vol. II, p. 121. 

20 Overshadowing. 

Scotch pastor, George Walker, being leader — it became a 
military necessity to issue the order, " That no man, on 
pain of death, should speak of surrendering the city." 
Unswerving fidelity to a sacred trust will sometimes seem 
to imply a neglect of this person, and will lie across the 
path of that person. But what is the use of having a 
buttress if it do not resist a dangerous current .'' In such 
positions the man who will give no offense is not in his 
proper sphere. Dr. Anderson's influence always made 
itself felt ; was often great ; was sometimes supreme ; yet 
— I venture to affirm — only where it ought to be. 

A statement once gained limited currency that the For- 
eign Secretary overshadowed the Prudential Committee. 
It may be well to remember that the meetings of that 
Committee for the first ten years, 1810-1819, averaged less 
than eight annually, and were migratory, now at Newbury- 
port, now at Salem, sometimes at Charlestown, sometimes 
at Andover, or elsewhere. Not till 1820 did they begin to 
be held more frequently in Boston; nor till 1832 did they 
become weekly. That, it will be recollected, was the year 
of Dr. Anderson's election as one of the corresponding 
secretaries, and it was then, as ever afterwards, his practice 
to submit every measure of importance to the Committee 
itself for seasonable consideration. But what has been the 
character of that Committee for independence } Were 
Judge Hubbard and Governor Armstrong, were the Hon. 
Messrs. Reed, William J. Hubbard, Aiken, and Child, were 
Charles Stoddard, John Tappan, and Albert Barnes, men to 
be overshadowed by any one who ever held office in the 
American Board } Were they men to smother their 
convictions, to surrender their opinions to the dictation — 
supposing dictation possible — of any man who has wielded 
the pen of a secretary or the scepter of a czar t They do 
not sit at their table merely to register the wishes of an 
official ; nor did Dr. Anderson ever press his recommenda- 
tions on other grounds than well-considered reasons. Not 

Self-Control. 2 1 

very unfrequently was he overruled ; or a stay of proceedings 
would be asked, with a view to further consideration ; in 
which case he would contentedly drop the matter altogether ; 
or, more frequently, come to the Committee a second time 
with a written statement of the case, so full and so clear as 
to leave little room for dissent. Would that all committees 
and corporations, all delegated bodies, civil and ecclesiasti- 
cal, were similarly overshadowed ! In the older countries, 
and especially on the continent of Europe, it is true, things 
proceed differently. The Hermannsburg Foreign Mission- 
ary Society, for instance, is hardly a society at all. Its 
founder, that remarkable man, Louis Harms, was himself 
an institution. The executive department is administered 
monarchically, indeed, autocratically, there being no com- 
mittee or council whose opinion or sanction need be sought 
The one-man power has, to be sure, certain conveniences 
peculiar to itself ; but — thanks to the God of our fathers 
— such a system is not suited to this continent. 

The greatest of living kings is the man, whatever his 
position, who wisely rules himself. But that is an achieve- 
ment which many fail to make even in the course of a long 
life. Lord Brougham, who lived to be almost ninety, at no 
period of his career had much self-control. Dr. Anderson 
was a man of strong feelings, but he early obtained the 
mastery over them to an unusual degree. However much 
he might be gratified with success, was he ever intoxicated 
with it .-• Did he lose his internal collectedness so far as 
to fall into worrying, or to seem cast down by reverses 1 
No person can occupy a high executive post ably and 
faithfully, without more or less of collision with the views 
and interests of others ; and one must have clear convic- 
tions, if he would keep calm, especially under contradiction 
and criticism. 

Nor was our friend wont to lose self-possession in the 
presence of personal danger, as those who have been with 
him under circumstances of peril by land and sea, bear 

22 Laboriousness. 

witness. Memorably was that the case during a terrible 
cyclone on the Pacific Ocean/ when the expectation of 
nearly all on board was that the steamer must be lost But 
he manifested no alarm ; he believed God had further work 
for him to do on earth. He remained calm ; and agitated 
passengers gathered round him, as if there must be safety 
where such composure was seen. 

Thorough criticism of one's manuscripts is no slight test 
of a man's amiability. Having had occasion to witness a 
good deal of that in private and in an official circle, it is not 
out of place for me to say that, among those who have now 
laid down the pen, I never knew a man whose equanimity 
seemed to be less disturbed than Dr. Anderson's by unspar- 
ing treatment of that kind. He always seemed grateful. If 
conceited sensitiveness ever existed and were not wholly 
extinguished, it was effectually suppressed. He could also 
keep his own counsel as well as his temper, and it is not 
dissembling for a man to turn the key upon sundry things 
in his mental possession. The one who cannot do that, 
who has to get his friends to help him keep a secret, is 
weak and untrustworthy. 

To say that a secretaryship of the American Board in- 
volves hard work is needless ; but the one of whom we 
speak had an unusual power of industry. He labored right 
along through the working hours of the day, and often 
through the evening, year in and year out, with few inter- 
missions, for half a century. Duties were manifold and 
onerous; he felt but did not fear the responsibilities of 
toil. One may have great theorizing capabilities, like 
Adam Smith, the founder of the science of business, 
and yet have no practical tact ; or like Sir James Mack- 
intosh, and yet bring no great projects to pass. With Dr. 
Anderson life meant business, strenuous but not spas- 
modic ; energetic but not vehement. He was a person of 
much regularity, but never of mere routine. Industry on 
' August 20, 1863. 

Laboriousness. 23 

the part of men in office being equal, their habits may differ 
widely. Mr, Evarts, for instance, possessing an unusually 
tenacious memory, trusted almost entirely to that ; Dr. An- 
derson, also possessing a good memory, trusted nothing to 
that alone. He thought to best advantage pen in hand, 
and took pains that everything of importance should be 
carefully filed and preserved. 

If you would get a glimpse of the labor performed by 
him, sit down to a perusal of his eight or more printed vol- 
umes ; of his detached publications — Sermons, Addresses, 
Missionary Tracts — amounting to over a thousand pages, 
and of matter in publications of the Board much more than 
that. Then go to the Board's archives and examine about 
one hundred quarto and folio volumes of five hundred and 
fifty sheets each, containing letters written chiefly or wholly 
by him, a correspondence carried on with well-educated men 
and women, independent in their habits of thinking and 
acting. Listen to him in his old age, lecturing eighty-four 
times. Accompany him on one of his four official visits 
beyond sea, that to India.^ Spend seven months with him 
in a personal inspection of everything that concerns the 
welfare of our work there ; during which time, besides 
shorter conferences, there are three several meetings in the 
larger missions, each continuing for three weeks, with usu- 
ally two long sessions daily — the intervening Sabbaths 
being days of rest only so far as a change to more sacred 
work brings rest. Passing from one part of that great 
peninsula to another, and to Ceylon, keep in mind that your 
toilsome trip is before the days of Oriental railroads ; that 
you must take the palankeen, and in that land where " the 
sun shineth in his strength," you must journey all night ; 
but then, lying by in the cheerless bungalow and amidst 
tropical heat, you shall see the indefatigable man, verging 
upon sixty, instead of making up for want of sleep, keeping 
his pen in motion nearly all day. Confident anticipation of 

I 1854-5. 

24 Singleness. 

surviving such exposures he has not ; but being on the 
Lord's errand, work must be done, and he does it. 

His eye was single — an obvious demand of the secreta- 
riate. Outside schemes he had none. God called him to 
this ; on the condition of singleness alone would the 
churches give full confidence. For this department of the 
Master's cause, he read, wrote, and journeyed. All his 
strength, all his time, were given to it with continued con- 
centration. To be genial is not the chief end of man. The 
highest function of an officer in command of an Atlantic 
steamer is not to play the agreeable with passengers, but 
to heed all signals, to look well to the chart, the life-boats, 
and everything that concerns the safety of his vessel and of 
those on board. His was a moral courage and a loyalty 
that appears in the fixed purpose never to turn to the right 
hand nor the left from his appointed path ; nor along that 
path ever to shrink from known duty, or waver in any exi- 
gency. Reviewing your imagined trip to the East with 
him, you will find that the pyramids of Egypt, though 
in plain sight, did not make him linger; that the most 
astonishing work of human hands in India, if not in the 
world, the rock temples at Ellora, distant only a few miles, 
could not divert him from his course. Not one step, not 
one hour which belonged to the churches he was serving 
would he devote to personal ends. Never did he criticise 
Paul for keeping silent about the Parthenon and the temple 
of Theseus. Pie had no censure to bestow upon William 
Goodell for never leaving his appropriate work to go up to 
Jerusalem. No reproaches of conscience did he endure 
himself for honestly offering his own body, soul, and spirit 
to the God of missions. The work in hand was enough to 
task the powers of any man. Dr. Eli Smith — ordained by 
the same council which ordained Dr. Anderson^ — whose 

• Ser?non delivered at Springfield, May i8, 1826, at the ordination of the 
Rev. Rufus Anderson as an evangelist ; and of the Rev. Messrs. Josiah 
Brewer, Eli Smith, Cyrus Stone and Jeremiah Stone to the high and sacred 

special Responsibilities. 25 

acquaintance with him was intimate, and who was one of 
the ablest men the Board ever sent out, pronounced the 
judgment, " He is a moral giant" 

The usual routine of a foreign secretary furnishes occa- 
sion to exercise all the qualities now named. Special junc- 
tures and circumstances will occasionally arise, making 
larger demand upon the resources of an incumbent. That 
third of a century during which Dr. Anderson's highest 
responsibilities were exercised, 1 832-1 866, was a period 
marked by som.e peculiaries of development in our foreign 
missionary sphere. An exclusive share of sagacity and 
good judgment in administration is by no means claimed 
for him. He had able associates. No man was more ready 
than he to appreciate their wisdom ; and no man more 
careful to recognize the rights and maintain the etiquette 
due to each coordinate department. That of the foreign 
secretary, however, has peculiar prominence and breadth 
of relations; and he will be expected to exercise a full 
share of influence. 

In the course of that interval now referred to, and of his 
previous ten years' service, there were some questions and 
exigencies not likely to be repeated, as the question of 
educating native youths in this country, at an institution 
like that of Cornwall, Connecticut ; the question of with- 
drawing converts from old, corrupt churches in the East ; 
the sudden and severe cutting down of Christian work 
abroad in accordance with financial revulsions like that of 
1837; and the relations of our Board to the system of sla- 
very. At such junctures Dr. Anderson maintained persis- 
tent hopefulness, a great valor of belief that all would ere 
long come out well. He never spoke despondingly of the 
cause; he found no authority in God's Word for despair; 
on principle he was uniformly cheerful ; and he made it a 
point never to write an official letter when, owing to ill- 
office of Christian missionaries. By Warren Fay. Crocker & Brewster, 
Boston, 1826. 

26 Recurring Exigencies. 

ness or other causes, he felt depressed. Emergencies he 
regarded as a providential school for the churches, for him- 
self, and for all concerned. 

Other specialties exist still, and are liable to recur till 
even the latest periods of universal evangelization. The 
instituting and directing of exploring expeditions is one. 
Relations to similar societies will occasionally bring up 
matters of right and of good neighborhood, that require 
considerate yet firm handling. From Roman Catholics we 
always anticipate mischievous intermeddling on the fields 
of heathenism; and experience has also shown that from 
the employes of certain societies bearing a Protestant name 
we may not invariably expect common Christian comity. 
It occasionally becomes necessary to communicate with 
civil governments, as in cases like that of the unauthorized 
restrictions placed by Holland upon missionaries going to 
Netherlands India; Dr. King's unjust treatment at Athens; 
the outrageous proceedings of Captain La Place on the 
French frigate V Artemise at the Sandwich Islands, and — 
to the disgrace of our own navy — the no less outrageous 
proceedings of Lieutenant Percival at the same islands. 
Now almost any measure adopted at the Missionary Rooms 
of the Board may call forth censure, and the foreign secre- 
tary may lay his account with receiving his full share. In- 
deed, abuse can be depended on as one token of successful 
executive fidelity. Not low scrub, but tall fruit trees are 
most liable to be pelted with stones. 

Perhaps the heaviest burden resting on the heart of a 
foreign secretary results from his wide acquaintance with 
the unevangelized world. Placed at an official center, with 
which there is direct communication from many of the 
dark places of the earth that are full of the habitations of 
cruelty, he hears more distinctly than any other man the 
most piercing cries for help. To listen constantly to the 
call, " Come over and help us ; " to have the wail of thous- 
ands upon thousands ringing in his ear, while the eye sur- 

A Large Heart. 27 

veys broad famine districts where are only a handful of 
men to break the bread of life ; to stand year in and year 
out between a perishing world and churches not half 
awake, is a position unsurpassed in the need of special grace 
from above. 

Dr. Anderson had a large heart. Missionaries going out, 
and missionaries, or their widows, or their children, on re- 
turning, were welcomed to his house, and to a large place 
in his heart — a place scarcely less generous than that held 
by the members of his immediate household. Our breth- 
ren and sisters abroad, when heavy trials came upon them, 
when their health was failing and their hearts were break- 
ing, found him a sympathizing father and friend. Strong 
natures are often among the gentlest also, and most chari- 
table. He uniformly dwelt less on the faults than the good 
points of men. His own burdens and disappointments 
served to chasten, not to sour him. He had a noticeable 
fondness for young children ; and they with instinctive dis- 
cernment, were drawn to him. Of gentle sensibilities he 
had a good share. Of his mother, who died when this her 
eldest son Rufus was only seven years old, he never 
spoke except with peculiar fondness ; he did not fail to 
^sit her grave, and to keep the monumental stone in 
good condition. Lapse of time did not diminish that ten- 
der feeling any more than in the case of Cowper, who was 
bereft of his mother at about the same age, and whose por- 
trait he immortalized in exquisite lines when more than half 
a century had gone by. 

One service rendered by Dr. Anderson to the cause of 
evangelization was a clearer, more just and Scriptural state- 
ment of certain principles than was current when he entered 
upon his work. We would not arrogate for him any undue 
merit in advocating these ; but whoever will candidly go 
through his voluminous writings, and also explore the gen- 
eral field of contemporary kindred discussions, will find, I 
think, that our churches and the Protestant world at large 

28 Missionary Principles. 

owe much to him in this line. Progress in getting an intel- 
ligent and firm hold of sound principles and methods has 
a broader importance than the increase of means or of 
numerical results. 

In general the steady drift of his experience and writings 
was in the direction of spirituality as to aims and simplicity 
as to methods. Let a few specifications be made of points 
which have been somewhat eclaircised within the last sixty 
years. One is that the individual entering upon foreign 
work discharges a personal obligation ; that he does not 
derive his authority from" the Secretary, or the Board, or 
the churches, but from Christ; that he is not perform- 
ing the duty of churches at home for them; that he en- 
gages in a cause binding upon them no less than upon him ; 
that they have no more right to evade their share than he 
to evade his share ; that the proceeding is a cooperative 
one, in which there exists a contract between them and 
him. Another point is that due responsibility should 
be laid on each member of a mission ; and that large dis- 
cretion should be left to our missions, which in some re- 
spects are self-governing little republics, the voice of the 
majority to be decisive. 

Throughout the evangelical world it is now more gener- 
ally, than was once the case, understood and felt that God's 
Word has settled the main point for all boards and all times, 
that the supreme aim of those at home and those going 
abroad should be to give to the largest possible number, in 
the shortest time possible, the pure gospel of our Lord 
Jesus Christ, in order " to turn men from darkness to light, 
and from the power of Satan unto God." That was the 
governing idea which moved and guided the late Secretary 
in his plans. For that the press was to be subsidized ; to 
that schools were to be subordinated. If literary labor, if the 
accumulation of mission property tended to dim the appre- 
hension of this controlling truth, then was caution to be 
suggested. The appliances of mere civilization, for civiliza- 

The Industrial Method. 29 

tion's sake, do not belong of right to evangelistic machin- 
ery. The general education of barbarous nations, or their 
education as a civilizing measure simply, is not our prime 
obligation. Nor is it the duty of the churches at home to 
give a high education to any people or any part of a peo- 
ple, except so far as the direct aim of gospel promulgation 
may require. At the earliest practicable date, native 
churches should be gathered and be supplied with a native 
pastorate, educated to a suitable degree of relative advance 
upon the average culture of the people, but not excessively 
educated. For the most valuable and most vital of all insti- 
tutions on earth, the Christian church, and for the heaven- 
. appointed agency, a converted, devoted, competent minis- 
try. Dr. Anderson labored more and more zealously. He 
would have everything shaped with reference to earnest 
piety rather than high culture. 

The industrial method in missions presents itself; and 
there are societies, like the Moravian and Hermannsburg 
in Germany, which from the outset make secular arts an 
integral part of their evangelistic establishments — such 
establishments being usually colonies to some extent self- 
supporting. That system, partially tried by the American 
Board in its earlier days. Dr. Anderson and the Board found 
cause to abandon. So far as relates to our operations, he 
became grounded in that theory of evangelism, the funda- 
mental principle of which is chief reliance on an oral procla- 
mation of the gospel as the grand agency for converting 
men ; a theory widely removed from repudiating the press, 
for every people under heaven has a right to the Holy 
Scriptures in their vernacular ; a theory which does not 
repudiate schools, for a native agency must be trained to 
take the oversight of churches when gathered ; but this is 
a type of evangelistic policy which claims for itself the 
special sanction of our Lord's example, of apostolic practice 
and of later experience. Whether a single individual is to 
be addressed in his chariot, or an assembly in the syna- 

30 Catholicity. 

gogue ; whether amidst polite Athens or rude Illyricum, 
the living voice of a sanctified man is the primary appoint- 
ment of heaven for saving souls. 

It hardly need be added that the practice of self-help, till 
it reaches the point of self-support and self-multiplication 
in the form of home missionary work, as the duty and the 
best regimen of native churches, engaged his increasing ad- 
vocacy. In order to promote Christian self-reliance as well 
as spirituality among those who come under missionary in- 
fluence, he became deeply convinced that there was always 
need of guarding against every method of virtual bribery. 
The presentation of a reward in some form — the form of 
pecuniary, social, or political advancement — is a practice to 
which, knowingly or unintentionally, even Protestants have 
sometimes resorted. The perquisites of civil promotion 
were held out largely, for instance, by the Dutch in their East 
India possessions, as an inducement for the natives to be- 
come Christians. Hence, when Holland lost some of her 
Oriental colonies, the people lost their motive for hypocrisy. 
The mere presence of missionaries, with a superior culture, 
with money to disburse, asking no pay for their own services, 
among a people perhaps oppressed and impoverished, pre- 
sents a consideration which dark-minded heathen are not 
slow to appreciate ; but sometimes it requires keen discern- 
ment to detect the selfish motive, and much skill to avoid 
fostering it. 

Catholicity in the best sense might be expected to char- 
acterize the man now portrayed. There was nothing" nar- 
row about him. If he was a man of one idea, that idea was 
as broad as the whole harvest field of earth. Every man, 
whether living at the next door or among the antipodes, was 
a neighbor. He began acquaintance with Boston as a City 
Missionary during the spring vacation of his first year of 
theological study, and the religious welfare of the neglected 
classes near at hand always had a place in his heart. Few 
persons read more constantly or with deeper interest the 

Christian Education. 31 

periodical of the Home Missionary Society. Our land, our 
whole land for the world, and the whole world to Christ, 
was his habitual thought. 

The progress of science, more especially in its philan- 
thropic relations, would of course enlist his interest. Along 
with the late Rev. Dr. Jenks, and that eminent scholar, the 
Hon. John Pickering, he was one of the principal founders 
of the Oriental Society,^ of which for many years he was a 
Director, and afterwards one of its Vice-Presidents. Chris- 
tian education, too, could not fail to awaken thought ; to 
our theological seminaries he paid many visits. With re- 
gard to the aim, atmosphere and working of those institu- 
tions he held a pronounced opinion; and it was that their 
object should be to train up, not professors and authors, 
but pastors, preachers and missionaries ; that the officers 
should strive to become, not literary specialists, but religious 
scholars, who should keep themselves warmly in sympathy 
with the spiritual interests of churches, and especially in 
revivals of religion ; who should make their learning flow 
in the channel of daily instruction and social intercourse, 
and bear with sanctified fervor upon students in the lecture 
room. He was as far removed as could well be from plac- 
ing a low estimate upon sound learning, but he did not 
believe that our Schools of the Prophets were designed to 
bring forward men aspiring to be technically scholars. He 
believed that many young men of inferior attainments in 
that line, but with other special qualifications, ought to be 
encouraged to prepare for the sacred ministry, and he could 
name useful preachers of whom he said, " More education 
would have spoiled them." 

Facilities for a higher grade of female education enlisted 
much thought and effort on his part. He contemplated 
this mainly with respect to the place it should hold among 
agencies for evangelizing other lands, and for the more thor- 
ough Christianizing of our own land. In the movement to 

' Founded 1842 ; first meeting 7th September. 

32 The Missionary Concert. 

furnish greatly improved opportunities for the higher and 
distinctively Christian education of young women, he was a 
pioneer. Seconded by that man of broad views, noble 
powers and scholarship, Professor Bela Bates Edwards, he 
exerted an early influence in behalf of Mary Lyon's move- 
ment to found the Mount Holyoke Seminary, and delivered 
the first public address at an anniversary of that institution.^ 
For seventeen years he served as a Trustee of Bradford 
Academy, and for twelve as President of the Board. The 
new era of enlargement and more ample endowment, includ- 
ing the spacious academic hall, was due in part to his influ- 
ence. In former days, while it was still a mixed school, he 
was himself a pupil there.'- Early recollections or mere 
sentiment, however, entered not at all into the moving 
spring of his interest, but the thought that the Christian 
education of woman is one of the most important factors in 
the higher civilization of our country ; that it is a duty to 
give our daughters advantages equal to those of our sons, 
in order to their due share in the great work of life ; that 
the advantages offered should be gratefully improved with 
a view to make the most of one's faculties and powers for 
the glory of God in the upbuilding of his kingdom at home 
and throughout the world. Such were leading considera- 
tions which he continued kindly and earnestly to urge upon 
teachers and pupils.^ 

His private membership in Boston was first with the 
Park Street Church. The modern observance here of 
the Monthly Concert of Prayer for Missions, was begun in 
this house (1817). The next year it became a united meet- 
ing, the Old South Church joining; two years later (1820) 
Essex Street Church came in ; and others still later.* In 

1 Dr. Anderson^s Address at the Second Anniversary of the Mount 
Holyoke Female Seminary, July 24, 1839. 

2 1809. 

3 Letter of Rev. John D. Kingsbury. 

4 Memorial of Park Street Church. 

A Counselor. 33 

this place of worship how many missionary convocations 
did he attend ! For how many Monthly Concerts held 
here did he make careful preparation ! ^ In the audience 
at this hour are prominent merchants who have assured me 
that their missionary education began under him, as he oc- 
cupied this pulpit half a century ago on the evening of the 
first Sabbath of each month, and that the confidence of 
business men at that time and onward, in the American 
Board, to no small degree depended upon the confidence 
they felt personally in him. This pulpit, did I say ? No ; 
that particular pulpit, a gift from this church, went its 
way years ago to the Sandwich Islands, where it is to-day 
doing good service among a people reclaimed from the low- 
est barbarism during Dr. Anderson's time ; a people of 
whom — though never numerous, and now constantly di- 
minishing • — seventy thousand souls have been gathered 
into Evangelical churches. 

It would be singular if such a man were not valued as a 
counselor. Very seldom did he volunteer to give advice 
unasked ; but in regard to local Christian efforts, in regard 
to the working of benevolent societies and kindred concerns 
how often did young men and older men resort to him for 
direction in their plans. Many a time have committees 
assembled with anxiety, discussed with solicitude, but ad- 
journed with cheerful expectation, from confidence reposed 
in his judgment, and from the magnetic power of his hope- 

In 1825 he took an active part in preparatory arrange- 
ments, and was one of twenty-two members from the Park 
Street Church who, with others, were organized into a new 
church, originally the Hanover Street, afterwards the Bow- 
doin Street. Highly useful service did he render there, as- 
sociated with his friend Professor Edwards, in the instruction 
of Bible classes of young persons.- And what shall I say 

1 Numerous and well-arranged MSS. then used are still on hand. 

2 1834. 

34 Doctrinal Position. 

of his membership in that church with which he was con- 
nected for the last forty-three years ! ^ What a tower of 
strength was his presence ! How wise his counsels ! How 
deeply was he revered and loved ! How long will the re- 
marks he used to offer at meetings of conference and prayer 
linger in the memory of those who heard them ! Who can 
forget how near the unseen world often seemed ; or how, 
on one of the later evenings when present, he spoke of 
being filled with wonder in contemplating Jesus Christ as 
Saviour, and added, " I expect, on entering heaven to look 
up and exclaim, ' That is He ! '" ^ 

Wisner and Cornelius were men of pulpit power ; Wor- 
cester and Evarts were able polemics, and did excellent 
service for the cause of Evangelical Christianity in their 
day. Dr. Anderson did not feel called upon to enter the 
lists as a public disputant, but he entertained clearly-defined 
views regarding what he called " the glorious old doctrines," 
their Scripturalness, beauty and high value ; particularly 
the Pauline elements as set forth substantially by Edwards. 
His own character and life were vitally related to the dis- 
tinctive doctrines of the gospel. It was a settled belief 
with him that the religious opinions commonly termed Or- 
thodox rest on an immovable foundation. With the Re- 
formers, and with the fathers of New England he believed 
that all mankind are by nature in a state of moral ruin ; 
that the Son of God became incarnate and made expiation 
on the cross for the sins of the whole world ; and that only 
those who in this life are renewed by the Holy Spirit will 
be saved from the penalty of sin. The scheme of faith now 
indicated, illustrating the union of justice and mercy, was 
held by him with the ever-deepening conviction of its truth 
and its benign efficacy. In the gospel thus outlined he 
rested, not as a stage in the progress of religious truth, but 
as the testimony of the unerring One, and stamped with 

1 The Eliot Church, from August, 1837. 

2 After reading Farrar's Life of Christ. 

General Estimate. 35 

the divine seal. To him as to multitudes of Christian phi- 
lanthropists in our own and in former times, it proved the 
source and the inspiration of broad plans and patient labor 
for the salvation of lost men. 

Analysis and single strokes fail to give quite all. The 
whole is often more than the sum of its parts. The late 
Chief Justice Chapman, of our Supreme Court, once wrote 
me : "I regard Dr. Anderson as a very good and a very 
great man." Was it an exaggerated estimate } Forget, 
for a moment, the details of the painter's work ; let the por- 
trait be unveiled in the freshness of complete individuality. 
Do you not behold a man free from idiosyncracies ; his 
character rounded into unusual symmetry } Do you not 
discern the unity of a poised and assured soul ? There are 
minds in which things incongruous may coexist, and with no 
great disturbance, though with great blemish ; not so in his. 
There stands before us one too sound and too strong to be 
subtle; discriminating but not fastidious ; vigilant but not 
suspicious; who, owing to a serene trust in God, seldom 
lost patience and never lost heart ; whose influence for good 
made itself felt, directly or indirectly, through large sec- 
tions of the heathen, the nominal Christian and the Moham- 
medan world. Are not such personal character and power 
worth more to a cause than any safe filled with first-class 
securities } What occasion for thanksgiving that a life so 
long passed with no impeachment of fidelity and no imputed 
scandal. But while workmen die, the work goes on. Nor 
is the generation of able and consecrated men failing. For 
every period will the Lord provide such agents as he needs, 
and as can best do the work of their day. 

It may seem like supererogation to say anything spe- 
cifically regarding a more private matter, his Christian 
experience. In the home of childhood a most careful pa- 
rental training resulted in early habits of obedience and 
outward observance of religious duties : but the great re- 
generating change needed by every one whatever the cor- 

36 Christian Experience. 

rectness of deportment, did not take place, as we have 
seen, till Junior year in college. It was during the first 
revival at Bowdoin, and while that plain, earnest, search- 
ing preacher. Father Jotham Sewall, was laboring there.^ 
By a singularly beautiful coincidence, our friend found spir- 
itual peace the same hour with his beloved brother and 
classmate, Isaac Parsons Anderson. Like the two sons of 
Zebedee they simultaneously " left all and followed Jesus." 

He was a man of prayer ; his earliest remembered use of 
language was in prayer; his first sermon at Andover, 
preached in the chapel, was on the efficacy of prayer. His 
convictions concerning God's government of the world, 
concerning Christ's special headship and guidance of the 
Church and of every true member thereof, were peculiarly 
firm. How many times have we heard him remark in 
private, " There is a providence in that ! That is God's 
hand ! " 

About personal spiritual concerns he did not adopt the 
practice of speaking freely. Every Paschal needs a sister 
Jacqueline Dr. Anderson never had a sister; and his 
mother died long before there was a spiritual experience in 
his heart to communicate. Probably under no influences 
would his piety have taken on the emotional type ; it was 
collected, stalwart, and showed itself by religious persis- 
tency in right doing. It made him conscientious in little 
things ; he would never use, nor suffer a member of his 
family to use, a sheet of paper or an envelope belonging to 
the Board, for any other than an official purpose. After an 
acquaintance of nearly forty years, and having traveled with 
Dr. Anderson not less than fifteen thousand miles, I can 
say, as Dr. Increase Mather said of Governor Phipps, 
** Though in the providence of God I have been much with 
him, at home and abroad, near at hand and afar off, on the 

I The largest number of converts, six, was in that class. — Three Discourses 
upon the Religious History of Bowdoin College. By Egbert C. Smyth. 
Brunswick, 1858. 

Constitutional Predisposition. 37 

land and on the sea, yet I never saw him do an evil action, 
or heard him speak anything unbecoming a Christian." 
Countenance or word did not betray envy, jealousy, or 
other petty passions. While most men looked up to him, 
he did not appear to look down upon any. During his visit 
to missions in India, and seeing many of the converts who 
were chiefly from the lower classes — some of them most 
repulsive in persons and habits — he repeatedly spoke of 
his gratification at finding his heart drawn out warmly 
toward the Pariahs as disciples of Christ. And did he then 
plume himself on correctness of life, on the regulation of 
feelings, on high aims, on loyalty to the King of kings .-' 
Justification by deeds of the law was far from his thoughts. 
The vain, insincere and scofBng Voltaire said jestingly, "I 
am eighty-four years old, and I have committed eighty-four 
faults." Dr. Anderson, after a blameless and consecrated 
life", confessed at the same age, with much humiliation, his 
shortcomings, and looked penitently to the Lamb of God 
for pardon and for cleansing. 

Few comparatively are called to such a place as he occu- 
pied ; but we all must go through the same final gate. In 
view of inherited tendencies, the long life of Dr. Anderson 
-^s truly remarkable. Pulmonary consumption removed his 
father and mother, as well as the two younger sons, who 
fell victims soon after graduating from college. The same 
disease imminently threatened this sole surviving member of 
the family.^ On leaving Bowdoin with his diploma, he was, 
as stated earlier, hastened away from our severe climate by 
friends who had the most anxious apprehensions regarding 
his health. A sea voyage and more genial latitudes reduced 
the threatening tendencies. When he entered upon duty 
at the Missionary Rooms, he was apparently frail, peculiarly 

I In the cemetery of one of our rural towns, not far from the youthful 
home of Dr. Anderson, is a monumental stone with the inscription : 
" Insatiabilis Phthisis ! Patrem, Matremque abstulisti ! Puree O, Paree 
liber is ! " 

38 Decline. 

slender and delicate, one whom the practiced eye would 
select for early decline ; and a year later, he again resorted 
to the tropics as a refuge from our keen, cold winds. The 
cough which had awakened alarm yielded ; yet for the next 
dozen years his physician^ assured him that the probabilities 
of succumbing to consumption or of escape were evenly 
balanced ; but a Greater Physician laid healing touch upon 
the springs of life. Later he often remarked that his excel- 
lent health and prolonged life were due to a good home and 
a high aim. He was temperate at the table, and in all 
things ; was regular in his habits ; had rare power of sleep ; 
and thus, with hopefulness and a calm trust in God, he 
outlived nearly all the robust compeers of his youth and 
early manhood. 

Before reaching eighty, a failure of bodily strength be- 
came evident ; and for the last four years or more the de- 
cline continued uniform, yet so gradual as to be apparent 
only by comparison at considerable intervals of time. Val- 
uable as his labors had been, and yet more important as is 
the service of heaven, still by such a period of feebleness 
God would have us understand that no man is indispensa- 
ble this side or the other side. Somehow the world seemed 
to be a safer and a better place for his being in it ; to look 
upon his face did not make us think of an old man so much 
as of a mature saint. The gentle slope was unattended by 
suffering ; no disease fastened upon him ; no organ became 
specifically affected, and the senses remained but slightly 
impaired. Vital forces were at length so far reduced, that 
for a month he did not leave his room ;^ and when the final 
crisis came, it seemed to be not so much dying as simply 
ceasing to live. This whole period was anything but a 
December of life ; it was the mild Indian Summer with its 
rich garniture of beautiful foliage, 

1 Dr. Enoch Hale. 

2 His last attendance upon public worship was Sunday, April i8, 1880. 

Protracted Service. 39 

Two and a half months more would have completed 
eighty-four years. Seventeen hundred and ninety-six, the 
year of his birth, gave birth^ also to a personal friend and 
correspondent, the well known Rev. Henry Venn, of Lon- 
don ; but that indefatigable, sterling English Secretary fin- 
ished his course seven years ago.- Two months later than he, 
in the same year, was born Dr. William Jessup Armstrong,* 
an earnest and eloquent associate, as Home Secretary of 
the American Board. But it is already thirty-four years 
since the steamer Atlantic went to pieces in a furious storm; 
and among the lifeless bodies found on the beach were the 
remains of Dr. Armstrong. As I looked at his watch, that 
was injured by the same fall of the deck which robbed its 
owner of life — and so marked the precise moment, four 
o'clock and thirty-three minutes * — the mystery of divine 
Providence in permitting such usefulness to be cut short, 
impressed me as never before. When again I looked upon 
the face of a beloved friend, that manly man, the Rev. 
David Greene, another Home Secretary of the Board,^ de- 
prived of life by the falling fragment of a rock, it seemed as 
if violence were the method appointed for removing men in 
these offices. A previous injury had brought Mr. Greene's 
official activity to a close,'' at the same age as Dr. Arm- 
strong's, the age of fifty. Was that then designed to be the 

1 At Clapham, February 10, 1796. And in their lives there are other 
coincidences; parentage determined the peculiar type of character in each; 
each was the eldest son ; each lost his mother at seven; each lost his father 
at seventeen ; they both graduated from college the same year, Mr. Venn 
from Queen's College, Cambridge ; the atmosphere of home gave coloring 
and direction to the career of each; both became foreign corresponding 
secretaries, Dr. Anderson of the largest society in America, Mr. Venn of the 
largest Protestant society in Europe, the Church Missionary Society in 
England ; and both were acknowledged to be, in the positions they filled, men 
unsurpassed in their day by any who belonged to their respective countries. 

2 February 13, 1873. 

3 October 29, at Mendham, N. J. 

4 November 27, 1846. 

s Born at Stoneham, Mass., November 15, 1797 ; died April -x, 1866. 
6 1848. 

40 Reaching Home. 

fixed limit of service in these positions ? Dr. Worcester 
had died at fifty, away from home ; ^ his successor Evarts 
at fifty, away from home ;^ his successor in turn. Dr. Corne- 
lius, still younger, away from home ; ^ and then Dr. Wisner, 
ten years short of the half century line. Happily no such 
decree had gone forth. It seems only yesterday that we 
followed to their last resting-place the remains of one past 
three score and ten ; * and we have been permitted to see 
the white locks of another as far beyond eighty as his co- 
worker Treat was beyond seventy. 

Extremes meet ; the ends of the earth sometimes come 
together. At the first meal to which Dr. Anderson sat 
down amidst tropical heat in Bombay,^ he found water 
cooled with Wenham Lake ice. Half a century and the 
earth's diameter intervened between bright boyhood by the 
Lake, and ripened manhood with that memento at the lips. 
During the last few weeks of failing strength, the scenes 
of early life mingled half dreamily with the present, and 
with anticipations of the future. The homestead and the 
lake were before his eye ; so was our Father's House in 
which are many mansions. His constant desire was to go 
home, to "that beloved," "that beautiful home." "Send 
for a carriage," he would say. The chariot was not far off. 
It called for him noiselessly of a Sunday morning;** and 
presently there was given him "of the fountain of the water 
of life freely." 

Oh what scenes on the banks of that river ! What 
greetings from former beloved associates at the Missionary 
House ; from ministerial friends — Lyman Beecher, Joel 
Hawes, Nehemiah Adams, William A. Stearns ! Men not 
known as pastors of particular flocks so much as shepherds 

1 June 7, 1820, among the Cherokee Indians. 

2 At Charleston, S. C, March 10, 1831. 

3 At Hartford, Conn., ^t. 38. 

4 Rev. Selah B. Treat, died March 28, 1877, ^t. 73. 

5 November 3, 1854. 

6 May 30. 

Reaching Home. 41 

and leaders of the church at large, gather round him — 
President Wayland, Professor Edwards and Professor 
Charles Hodge. Three years ago the one last named wrote : 
" Our dear friend Dr. Anderson has had a golden life. It 
is meet he should have a golden wedding before he gets 
his golden crown. I doubt not the angels will attend his 
wedding. Give him my best love and congratulations; 
beg him to help by his prayers his tottering brethren." 
Tottering is at an end with both of them. Among unor- 
dained personal friends there is a great cloud of witnesses. 
Of missionaries, what a throng! And of converts from 
heathenism, an exceeding great company out of many 
nations, kindreds, peoples, and tongues ! But heaven has 
no need of an interpreter. At one of the scores of mission- 
ary gatherings at Dr. Anderson's house on Cedar Square, 
not less than twenty different languages were spoken.^ It 
was at Siroor, and in the Mahrathi, that a native Christian, 
on beholding Dr. Anderson's fine, tall form and benignant 
face, exclaimed, " Just like Jesus Christ ! " 

Never can I forget scenes in Southern India, when, 
twenty-five years ago, groups of converted Tamulians met 
the Deputation of our Board with their profound salaams 
and their gifts in token of welcome, and in gratitude to 
American Christians whose representative he was.^ Most 
expressive of all were the wreaths of sweet scented flowers 
— fresh chrysanthemums and jasmines — which they hung 
gracefully round his neck. A like scene at this moment 
do I behold. I see men, once swarthy bondservants of 
Satan, now robed in white, and radiant with the glory of 
heaven. From all quarters of Paradise they gather around 
this representative man. I see Leang Afa from China; 
Gabriel Tissera, the first fruits of Ceylon ; Babajee with his 

' October 2, i860; seventy-eight guests being present. Missionary gather- 
ings averaged about three every year. 

2 For instance, at the Travelers' Bungalow, Virthuputty, February, 1855, 
between eighty and ninety men, women, and children. 

42 Reaching Home. 

remarkable wife, and Haripunt, former proud Brahmins in 
Bombay; Pastor Hohannes, of Nicomedia; Mar Elias, the 
venerable Nestorian Bishop; Meshakah, the learned man 
of Damascus ; Asaad Shidiak, the martyr of Lebanon, and 
Kaahumanu, queen of the Sandwich Islands. They bring 
their testimonials of gratitude, gratitude to our fathers and 
to the God of our fathers. But this new guest casts all the 
chaplets, with his own golden crown at the feet of Jesus ; 
and the whole assemblage chant : " Unto him that loved 
us, and washed us from pur sins in his own blood, and hath 
made us kings and priests unto God and his Father ; to 
him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen." 






Senior Pastor of the Eliot Church, 


REV. N. G. CLARK, D. D., 

Corresponding Secretary of the American Board. 

Dr. Anderson died in Boston, May 30, 1880, The 
funeral services were held in the Eliot Church, Thursday, 
June 3. A large congregation was present, including rep- 
resentatives of other Missionary Boards, the Oriental 
Society, the Trustees and Teachers of Bradford Academy, 
returned missionaries, and other friends from a distance. 
After an invocation by Rev. B. F. Hamilton, Junior 
Pastor of the Church, the seventeenth chapter of John's 
Gospel was read by Rev. Thomas Laurie, D.D., of Prov- 
idence, R. I. The Rev. E. K. Alden, D.D., led in prayer, 
and Rev. H. B. Hooker, D.D., pronounced the benedic- 
tion. During the services two hymns, among the favor- 
ites of Dr. Anderson, were sung: 

" Guide me, O Thou Great Jehovah," 
"Asleep in Jesus, blessed sleep," 

and the following addresses were delivered. The remains 
were placed in the family lot at Forest Hills Cemetery. 


No, he is not dead. The familiar phrase, "He is no 
more," we discard. His work is not done. 

All who have within the last three or four years talked 
freely with this departed friend, about dying and about the 
future, must have noticed how one leading thought occu- 
pied his mind, the thought of continued service hereafter. 
His chief expectation was to be still active in the employ 
of .our adorable Master. Among the later words from his 
pen — words recorded since the line of fourscore years 
was passed — are these : " The Lord had a work for me 
to do, and he has given me a long life in which to do it, 
and grace not to be idle ; and though I am conscious of 
the imperfections of my whole life, and never more so than 
,now, I see the more reason to admire the long-suffering 
grace and patience of my Lord and Saviour, The perfect 
work will be after there is freedom from the body, and an 
entrance into the ceaseless, unwearying employments of 
heaven." That sentiment, and the occasion which now 
brings us together, suggest not so much a sketch of Dr. 
Anderson's life, as a glance forward. The great change is 
too recent to admit of a calm analysis of his character ; we 
have been too long observing him on the farther confines of 
the border-land to withdraw our eyes at once, as his ven- 
erable form retires from view. 

We look upward. We follow him into his new sphere, 
and the thought arises : Was that anticipation of activity 
in the world above unfounded .'* Do reason and revelation 
favor the notion of quiescence there .■' Is not the popular 

48 Dr. Thompson s Address. 

idea of heaven too largely that of negation, of mere rest 
from labor, of exemption simply from pain and all impedi- 
ments ? In a wide circle of minds there reigns the vague 
conception of only passive enjoyment, enjoyment of good 
things generally ; that Paradise is only a beautiful abode 
with charming landscape attractions. Some, possessing a 
vivacious temperament, do not readily reconcile themselves 
to such monotony ; their elastic natures demand more stir. 
Hence the Hill of Zion is to them very much a Merry 
Mount, with no more of real holiness, though with more of 
decency, than Mohammed'"s Paradise. But, oh, how unsat- 
isfactory were all such conceptions to our father and friend 
at every period of life, and especially in his advanced 
years. Any deeply reflecting mind, any one awakened to 
the demands of a kingdom which embraces mankind 
through all the conditions of an endless existence, must 
deem such anticipations inane, unworthy of a soul born 
again, born to high and holy aspirations. Man, be the 
world what it may where he is, was made for exertion. 
Even his brief golden era at the outset was in a garden, 
with the appointment to dress it and to keep it. His very 
nature demands effort as a condition both of happiness 
and of growth. Noble souls, by a law of their being, are 
moved to put forth their energies. Disinclination to plan 
and toil for the accomplishment of well-defined objects 
evinces inferiority, decay, or disease. Contempt of labor 
is the badge of barbarism on the one hand, and of spurious 
culture on the other. " A most royal thing it is to labor," 
said Alexander the Great ; " Let others take the riches," 
said Melancthon, " give me the work." Can we conceive 
of the hard-working man, who has here just finished his 
earthly course, as otherwise than actively occupied now } 
Can there be indolence where he has gone .-' Can we call 
in question the uniformity of laws that govern us as intel- 
lectual and moral beings — a uniformity characterizing the 
future in common with the present, a uniformity no less 

Dr. Thompsoti s Address. 49 

certain than the influence of gravitation upon the remotest 
worlds equally with our planet ? If sloth, if a useless life 
here, is only premature death, absence of effort there can- 
not be bliss. New Jerusalem is a city of earnest, wakeful 
men, the very metropolis of busy souls ; not the abode of 
fellowship alone, but of fellow-workers as well. God's 
special manifestations now are made to men in their 
appropriate industries — to Gideon at his threshing-floor, 
to Moses and to the shepherds while keeping their flocks ; 
will it be otherwise on the great pastoral plains of the 
future .'' There remaineth, indeed, a rest to the people of 
God — rest from sin, rest from sorrow, but no inertia, no 
cessation of effort. All analogies forbid the thought of 
somnolence or of simple recipiency in the world to come. 
Our venerated friend, the older he grew, had increasing 
delight in these words : " The throne of God and of the 
Lamb shall be in it, and his servants shall serve him " — 
" shall serve him," 

Holy service without fatigue, work without worry, must 
be the true idea of heavenly rest. But however intensified 
the activity there, saints will not — blessed thought! — be 
liable to overwork ; whatever the amount of energy, reac- 
tion will never ensue. Perplexing thoughts, conflicting or 
excessive emotions, can have no scope. Wasteful combus- 
tion and failure of the flame have ceased. The powers in 
perfect equilibrium, and the soul imbathed in the spirit of 
absolute love and obedience, friction and weariness are 
impossible. Oh, what freedom ! now that our friend finds 
himself exempt from clogs, exempt from all that can 
impair or hinder — the partial decay of memory, the gen- 
eral feebleness of old age — and in possession of an activ- 
ity that requires no repose, but is in itself refreshing. 

It is only the tabernacle of our father that lies here. 
This former abode he left behind him, the dwelling place 
of infirmities which had slowly crept in, as life advanced 
beyond eighty years ; but he is emancipated ; he has 

50 Dr. Thompson s Address. 

become strong and well forever. In the temple above 
there can be no need of kind services such as have been 
rendered by you who so gladly supported him in later 
months whenever, with tottering steps, he entered this 
earthly sanctuary. 

It is a delightful thought, too, that there can be no 
waste of energies ; that failure need not be feared ; that 
every stroke tells because wisely directed. Abortive or 
unappreciated, or unrequited enterprises belong to the 
past. In the Litany of the Moravian Church is one peti- 
tion most appropriate for earth, but needless in heaven : 

" From untimely projects, 
Preserve us, gracious Lord and God ! " 

Are there many saintly workers who can look back upon 
a busy life with less consciousness of unavailing toil than 
the one whose remains are before us to-day .-• For more 
than sixty years Dr. Anderson's avowed purpose was, 
"this one thing I do;" to my Redeemer, for the advance- 
ment of His kingdom, I give myself. Was he not loyal .'* 
Did he ever get disheartened } Many a time he came 
near the brink of physical collapse, but never near the 
dreary confines of hypochondria, or a distrust of the final 
triumph of evangelical Christianity throughout the world. 
Where he has now gone, recuperation being uncalled for, 
no danger of ennui from enforced inactivity can arise; 
youth is evermore renewed like the eagle's. 

But what are they doing? The Lord of the manor will 
not want for ways in which to employ his servants. The 
relative disparity between older and younger saints con- 
tinuing still, may there not be endless demand for the 
occupation of teaching } Has eloquence no sphere in that 
world ; the inventive genius no place .-' Will human dis- 
coveries be at an end } Will the mechanism of the 
heavens lose its attractions for astronomers ? Oh, what 
transcendent studies, philosophies, theologies will there 

Dr. Thompson's Address. 51 

be ! In this world, the independent thinking and the gov- 
erning have been done by comparatively a few minds, and 
it will doubtless continue so. The father and friend who 
left us, four days since, had a statesmanlike mind. In the 
department of missionary administration no one, among 
those who have gone before, has shown superior clearness 
or comprehensiveness of judgment. He acted on well- 
considered, fixed principles ; he exhibited a fine combina- 
tion of firmness and perseverance, with readiness to yield 
whenever change was evidently required. His adherence 
to rules and precedents was not that of a martinet ; still 
less did he act from impulse which disregards everything 
settled. Defeat did not sour him. He never took the 
position of an alarmist or a grumbler. He had the hopeful 
habit of conscious strength and true moral courage, which 
maintains serenity alike in the midst of reasonable criti- 
cism and of unreasonable clamor. 

Must we not suppose that capacities and discipline on 
earth are designed by God for specific future purposes .!" 
Is the training of childhood any more truly a preparation 
for the responsibilities of manhood than our whole life 

below is probationarv to definite service hereafter.? If 
.if , " 

mvigorated qualities of mind have a sure adaptation to 
corresponding departments in the future, we conceive of 
the earthly administrator as transferred to some answering 
administration which God has in mind all the way through 
this primary school life below. Dr. Anderson's earthly 
apprenticeship ended, he passes, as master workman, into 
the province and employment for which half a century of 
professional experience especially fitted him. No doubt 
there is as great diversity there as here ; for one star dif- 
fereth from another star in glory ; but those of the first 
magnitude are not the most numerous. More will enter 
that kingdom qualified to rule over five cities than over 
ten. Skilled labor and competent overseers must be 
specially in demand. Who, then, will say of him to-day, 

52 Dr. Thompson s Address. 

"his work is done!" Nay, it is but just begun, the life- 
work of everlasting ages. After a good-bye to us, his first 
question the other side, as we conceive, is : " Lord, what 
wilt Thou have me to do?" And has he not already begun 
to find great enterprises there, high and arduous ministries 
for the honor of our Lord, as he did at the Missionary 
Rooms in 1822 ? 

He has passed into a scene with vast environments, 
where no such limitations of time and space hold as here. 
That is a city, " the gates whereof are not shut at all by 
day ; " in and out detachments can pass freely at all hours ; 
and with reverent alacrity do they go to and fro on their 
several errands. On ten thousand different mountains 
throughout the universe : " How beautiful are the feet of 
them that bring good tidings, that publish peace ; that say 
unto Zion, Thy God reigneth ! " High offices of superin- 
tendence, demanding rare gifts and a rare training, await 
all the glorified statesmen and prime ministers in civil, 
ecclesiastical, and evangelistic affairs, that this world can 
furnish. Dr. Anderson has simply changed his place ; he 
has only entered upon a wider sphere. Doing good to 
others, and that on a broad scale, must be his endless 

Nor have his motives, nor his objects of contemplation 
undergone essential change. Our Saviour, with many 
crowns upon his head, and that kingdom of which he is 
the Head, still engage the eye and heart as during life on 
earth, only with a more complete devotion. He was not 
insensible to aesthetic attractions ; but how incongruous to 
his tastes, his habits of thought, his clear-cut Christian 
manliness and dignity of character, are the prevailing 
Sybarite conceptions of heaven, the sentimentalities of 
godless culture, and the sensuous images of poetry, so 
cumulative as often to hide all that is distinctive in the 
attractions of a holy world to a holy soul ! If " a thing of 
beauty is a joy forever," immeasurably more is holy occu- 

Dr. Thompson s Address. 53 

pation a joy forever. " Does your grace think," inquired a 
clergyman, who sat by the bed of Archbishop Whately, 
his eye upon an exquisite bouquet ; " Does your grace 
think there will be flowers in heaven ? " " As to that," 
replied the dying prelate, "I know nothing; but this I do 
know, Jesus will be there." Yes, the only one who had 
been there defined heaven thus : " Father, I will that they 
also whom thou hast given me be with me where I am, 
that they may behold my glory which thou hast given me." 
And can the genuine disciple on earth, can any saint in 
New Jerusalem, look upon our divine Saviour and not be 
fired with irrepressible desires for serving him .-' The man 
in whose heart Jesus Christ does not now dwell, whose 
horizon is not bounded by the kingdom of Jesus Christ, 
has little true knowledge of the world to come. 

If the inhabitants of that world were limited to those 
only who have been engaged in foreign mission work, it 
would be a choice company. From our own Board, alone, 
considerably over one thousand are already deceased, of 
whom a majority were personal acquaintances and corres- 
pondents of Dr. Anderson — yes, and had been guests at 
his house. We would like to witness the welcome they are 
'at present giving him. Among their children, and among 
the living bands of Christian laborers in our Dakota field. 
Southern Africa, in the Turkish Empire, in India, China, 
Japan, and on the Hawaiian and Micronesian Islands, not 
a few turn their thoughts gratefully to a home in Cedar 

Delicacy forbids the public utterance of what lies appre- 
ciatively in many hearts here regarding a domestic min- 
istry. Without the companionship, the hallowed assiduities 
of that home, such public and official service would have 
been impossible. What could have been more character- 
istic than that in later hours, when the mind had lost in a 
measure its former collected habit, thoughts should be ten- 
derly busied in devising ways and means for the comfort 

54 Dr. Thompso'd s Address, 

and support of her to whom so much was owed during 
fifty-three years of married life ? Beloved daughters have 
been taken before for the Saviour's crown. The patriarch 
has himself now been gathered to his fathers ; but there 
remains to his children and his children's children an heir- 
loom such as no millionaire could leave. 

For many months he had deemed his earthly work all 
done, and spoke of only awaiting the summons to enter 
upon activity elsewhere. The perfect composure with 
which he would speak of this in private was impressive 
and delightful, though it" brought a shadow over the one 
who was listening. In no instance was there the least 
intimation that entrance into a higher and holier sphere 
had any connection with his services here as a meritorious 
ground; his hope rested firmly and only on the person and 
mediation of our Redeemer. In later lucid moments he 
said to me : " I have been permitted to serve Christ for a 
long time, but it has not been with that singleness of aim, 
with that purity of motive which he requires." " God's 
long suffering is wonderful." " Jesus Christ is a wonderful 
being ; I long to see him." One of the last things the dear 
man observed was : " the future is all bright." Last Sab- 
bath morning, as the earliest rays of holy time stole 
sweetly in at his window, he began to breathe quietly, 
though more and more feebly : 

" But when the sun in all his state 
Illumed the eastern skies, 
He passed through Glory's morning gate, 
And walked in Paradise ! " 

For many days a semi-conscious longing had been ut- 
tered, again and again, for the carriage, for some vehicle 
to take him home. " My father, my father ! the chariot 
of Israel, and the horsemen thereof ! " 

Brethren of this church, the Eliot Church — a sugges- 
tive name for the brotherhood of which he had been more 

Dr. Thompsofis Address. 55 

than forty years a deeply-revered and beloved member — 
you will not soon forget his interest in our welfare ; his 
walk among us ; how uniformly he found his way, when 
able, to the meetings for conference and prayer. You will 
long keep in mind how he always took part in the same ; 
that in later years personal experiences, the rich outcome 
of a life long "hid with Christ in God," and his ripened 
expectations regarding heaven, were often the subject of 
his remarks. 

Friends in this city, and from other parts of the Com- 
monwealth, and of New England, your respects are paid at 
this hour to one who, for half a century, has enjoyed con- 
fidence as a man of sagacity, right-minded, never timid, 
never morbid, sometimes bold, always firm. His convic- 
tions were strong, his opinions pronounced ; but decision 
did not degenerate into arbitrariness, nor a stable purpose 
into- obstinacy. Connected in counsel and administrative 
cooperation with sundry educational institutions, with de- 
nominational and religious movements, has he ever failed 
to secure confidence as a safe and able man .? Many a 
one with less insight into character, less of breadth and 
firmness, gathered strength by contact. Executive asso- 
ciation with him was a business education. Never idle, 
he was seldom in a hurry. 

Brethren of the Foreign Missionary Rooms, one more 
has been withdrawn from these earthly to the celestial 
ranks of noble workers. Fifty years is a long time for 
uninterrupted official service in the same connection. 
Longer, perhaps, than any other man who has occupied 
a corresponding position in Protestant Christendom, he 
continued at his post, with acknowledged capacity, with 
unimpeached fidelity, with growing confidence in the power 
of the gospel and grace of God to effect the recovery of 
our ruined race. At threescore and ten, his powers not 
sensibly impaired, he gave up his work, unsolicited, to 
younger and trusted hands. Irrepressible fondness for the 

56 Dr. Thompson s Address. 

scene of former toil carried him to the Missionary Rooms 
repeatedly, after strength for that effort had really failed ; 
but, brethren and associates, you will not again hear his 
feeble step in the hall ; you have seen his countenance 
light up for the last time as, in good news from a far 
country, you presented the cup of cold water to his thirsty 

Honored fellowship in the executive of our Missionary 
Board has there been ; goodly fellowship on high there 
now is : Samuel Worcester, Jeremiah Evarts, Elias Corne- 
lius, Benjamin Blydenburg Wisner, William Jessup Arm- 
strong, David Greene, Selah Burr Treat, Rufus Anderson ! 
They are not deceased. Each name is still a power among 
us. Each devoted life, each walk of faith, each word of 
wisdom, lives to-day in the everwidening reach of the 
grandest movement to which man on earth can give his 
powers. When a fixed star is removed from its place in 
the firmament, long time must elapse before its light will 
cease to beam upon us ; and will not the rays of this con- 
stellation mingle with the dawn of millennial glory } 

" Thus star by star declines, 
Till all are passed away, 
As morning high and higher shines, 
To pure and perfect day; 
Nor sink those stars in empty night — 
They hide themselves in heaven's own light." 


After what has been said so wisely and so worthily, I 
hesitate to add anything ; yet a few words may be expected 
from my relations to our honored father and brother, hav- 
ing taken up as I could the work he laid down. It has 
often been remarked that Providence prepares the men for 
the places they are to fill. It was so preeminently .in the 
case of Dr. Anderson. To his natural endowments of the 
highest order for the work to which he was called, were 
added eight years of intimate association with Jeremiah 
Evarts — a man whom he once called " a prince in the 
domain of intellect and of goodness." Eight years spent 
with such a man was an education. 

Dr. Anderson brought to the service of the Board a 
remarkable dignity of personal bearing, a loftiness of pur 
jJose and singleness of devotion, which well befitted the 
work. And the work needed him. It was a time of begin- 
nings, of laying foundations, when plans world-wide were 
to be organized and carried forward. There was need of a 
carefully developed method in the conduct of the mission- 
ary work ; there was need of a strong will and a persistent 
purpose to carry out such a method, and these needs were 
supplied in Rufus Anderson. Without any disparagement 
to the noble men who have been associated with this work 
and have now gone to their rest, whether connected with 
the American Board or with other societies, there can be 
no hesitation in saying that the world owes to Dr. Ander- 
son the reviving of the true method of missionary effort as 
illustrated most fully in the Acts of the Apostles by the 

58 Dr. Clark's Address. 

Apostle Paul. That method, in short, is this : The devel- 
opment of self-supporting, self-governing, self-propagating 
churches of Christ. This one thought gives direction to 
the entire work. It determines the fields to be occupied, 
the stations to be taken, and the number of men to be 
located at each. It prescribes the forms of labor they are 
to adopt, sets limits to what may be done in the interest of 
education, and the amount of aid that may be given to the 
native communities — and settles ultimately the limits to 
missionary labor, when the native churches are to take up 
and complete the work begun by missionaries. 

This method and the principles involved are now the 
common possession of all missionary societies the world 
over. They are recognized in the plans adopted and in the 
tributes paid to Dr. Anderson in this country, in Great 
Britain, in Germany, and wherever missions are known. 

On the high plane of observation where Dr. Anderson 
stood, he was sometimes alone, sometimes misunderstood. 
If his moral elevation compelled the respect and reverence 
of all who knew him, yet to those who knew him least, it 
made him seem at times cold and distant, indifferent to 
public opinion. But those who knew him better knew that 
underneath that calm and self-contained demeanor was a 
heart tenderly alive to criticism and to public opinion. He 
did not speak of these things much, only to one, the fitting 
helpmeet of his life, the nearest to his heart. Convinced 
of the truth of his opinions, he never faltered. Lifted 
above the clouds of prejudice and ignorance, and some- 
times of opposition, by his lofty purpose and indomitable 
will, he would bate no jot of heart or hope. 

The two leading characteristics of his life were a pro- 
found, controlling sense of duty — duty to God, to his 
cause, and to his official position, and a sublime faith in the 
ultimate triumph of the kingdom of Christ. I need not 
refer here to his long and faithful services as Secretary. 
In his later years, not less anxious lest he come short in 

Dr. Clark's Address. 59 

his duty, he prepared those volumes which gather up so 
largely the results of missionary labor; and when past 
fourscore, I can never forget how he used to come and ask 
if there was really not something more that he could do. 
It is only a little while since he came to ask whether he 
could not prepare one more volume, if he could not do a 
little more for the cause he loved, and I had to plead with 
him to rest, having now done his work. 

He had faith in God — in his plan of redemption, in the 
agencies he was employing to carry it out, in his providence 
to open the way — and in the Spirit of God, and in living 
Christian men and women regenerated by the Holy Ghost. 
Some of us who have known him more intimately have at 
times been startled by the boldness of his suggestions and 
plans. Bold they were, to men of more cautious mold, but 
not to him who could never dream of any obstacle that 
should stand in the way of the kingdom of God. 

To many it seems strange that Dr. Anderson should have 
surrendered his charge to another so fully as he did ; but the 
surrender was once and for all. Ever ready to give advice 
when asked, he rarely, if ever, made any suggestions not 
asked. No father could have been more kind and generous 
to a son than he was to me. His expressions of confidence 
and personal regard, repeated for the last time but a few 
days before his death, will be cherished as among my 
most precious memories. But that confidence and regard 
were, doubtless, not so much because of the man toward 
whom they were shown as from his strong confidence in 
the cause that was to prevail — quite irrespective of this or 
that individual. 

In looking back over his life, two thoughts must have 
been present to all minds here to-day — that it was per- 
mitted Dr. Anderson, as to few other men, to be a witness 
to the success of his labors. The missionary work, which 
was but an experiment when he assumed the office of 
Secretary, has now become a success. The thirty-six 


60 Dr. Clark's Address. 

churches of 1832 have been increased tenfold — the 
eighteen hundred converts more than fifty-fold. Outside 
of this country, where the work was largely among the 
different Indian tribes, little had been accomplished, save 
in two fields — in Ceylon, where a special blessing was 
attending the labors of Spaulding, Scudder, Winslow, and 
others, and in the Sandwich Islands, where was manifested 
the beginning of that great work which was to renovate 
the nation. Only four converts were reported in India, as 
the fruit of the labors of Gordon Hall, Harriet Newell, and 
others, where is now a Christian community reckoned by 
thousands. The vast work in the Turkish Empire was yet 
to be developed. Africa, Japan, other fields were as yet 
unknown. The grand work then beginning is now circling 
the world. Our honored friend saw it and was glad. 

Another thought, already alluded to, is the delightful 
associations he was permitted to make that are now to go 
on. These associations were with many of the noblest 
men and women who have been vital forces in the social 
and moral elevation of this country and in the church of 
Christ, and with a great company of missionaries — with 
Bingham, and Thurston, and Judd, and Gulick ; with 
Goodell, and Dwight, and Smith, and Schneider; with 
Perkins, and Wright, and Stoddard, and Fidelia Fisk; 
with Ballantine, and Tracy, and Scudder, and many more 
in the foreign field. With what pleasure will he meet 
those sainted men and women, and that great company of 
thousands and tens of thousands of once degraded savages 
— polluted heathen, now washed — in white robes coming 
up with their missionary leaders to tender him their thanks 
tor his services in making known to them the gospel of 
Christ. Happy the family circle in which linger the 
memories of such a life ! Happy the cause that has such 
a representative ! 


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