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Rev. George H. Emerson, D. D.

George Homer Emerson, D. D., was born in Roxbury, Mass., September 3, 1822, and died in Salem, Mass., March 24, 1898. His early educational advantages in the schools were limited, but he was a quick and accurate observer of human nature, and marked out for himself a line of study of books that resulted in his becoming one of the best-informed men of his time. The religious atmosphere of the home of his childhood was permeated with the most rigid Baptist ideas, but whatever impression these made on his mind was easily dissipated when, as a young clerk in a hardware store in Lowell, Mass., he began to attend on the preaching of Rev. Abel C. Thomas, then pastor of one of the Universalist churches in that new and stirring town. He was soon converted to Universalism, and was persuaded by his pastor that he ought to prepare for the ministry. His special studies were under the direction of Mr. Thomas. He was ordained at Laporte, O., in the summer of 1843.

With his residence first in Cleveland, and afterwards at Dayton, he preached in various parts of Ohio and Kentucky, until 1849, when he moved to Massachusetts. While in Ohio, he edited, in 1845, the Ohio Universalist and Literary Companion, which was, in 1846, merged in the Western Evangelist, published in Buffalo, N. Y. As the agent of the Massachusetts Universalist Home Missionary Society, he preached in various parts of that state, organizing, and being for several years pastor of the church in Somerville, where for nine years he was also superintendent of the public schools.

From 1858 to 1864 he edited the Universalist Quarterly. From November, 1862, to May, 1864, he was associated with Sylvanus Cobb, D. D., in editing the [49] Trumpet and Christian Freeman. The name of the paper was changed to the Universalist in 1864, and Dr. Emerson was sole editor until 1867, when he moved to New York, where he edited the Christian Leader until 1872.

At the same time he was pastor at Huntington. Returning to Boston in April, 1872, he resumed his connection with the Universalist, and was its editor, under its various names of the Universalist, the Christian Leader, and the Universalist Leader, until his death. He was the author of several books, and contributed many articles to the Quarterly. As a speaker he was in great demand at conventions and denominational gatherings of every kind. He had a large acquaintance among the clergy and laity of the Universalist Church, and was esteemed by all as a friend. In recognition of his eminent abilities, St. Lawrence University conferred on him the honorary degree of Doctor of Divinity in 1871. The denomination met with an irreparable loss when Dr. Emerson passed away, in his seventy-sixth year.—In part from the Universalist Register, 1899.

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