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Reverend Samuel Johnson (1822-1882) Papers

Reverend Samuel Johnson (1822-1882) Papers

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REVEREND SAMUEL JOHNSON (1822-1882) PAPERS, 1836-1899





Collection Summary

Repository:The Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum 132 Essex Street Salem, MA 01970 Phone: 978-745-9500 Fax: 978-531-1516
Creator:Johnson, Samuel, 1822-1882
Title:Reverend Samuel Johnson (1822-1882) Papers
Dates:1836/1899
Quantity:7.5 linear feet (15 boxes)
Abstract:The Reverend Samuel Johnson Papers consist of correspondence, appointment books, notebooks, sermons, and writings of this Lynn, Massachusetts minister.
Collection Number:MSS 248

Series List

SERIES I. Correspondence
SERIES II. Personal Papers
A. Travel Logs and Appointment Books
B. Notebooks
C. Clippings
D. Photographs
SERIES III. Sermons
SERIES IV. Compositions
A. School Papers and Exercises
B. Essays and Lectures

Scope and Content Note

The Reverend Samuel Johnson Papers consist of correspondence, appointment books, notebooks, sermons, and writings of this Lynn, Massachusetts minister. This collection is divided into four series. Series I. Correspondence consists of an extensive assortment of letters written to and from Johnson's family members and colleagues. Series II. Personal Papers is divided into four subseries: Travel Logs and Appointment Books, Notebooks, Clippings and Photographs. Series III. Sermons consists of original sermons that Johnson wrote and preached. Series IV. Compositions is divided into two subseries: School Papers and Exercises, and Essays and Lectures. The collection is arranged chronologically within each series.


Biographical Sketch

Samuel Johnson (1822-1882), was born in Salem, Massachusetts on October 10, 1822 to a physician father and a mother whose family who had lived in Salem for many generations. Best known for his independent religious and political philosophies, Johnson embraced ideas and practiced views of science, humanity, ethics, spirituality, and natural and universal religion.


At sixteen, Johnson entered Harvard College, where he graduated second in his class in 1842 with a degree in Arts. From there, he enrolled in the Harvard Divinity School, where he graduated in 1846 with a degree in Theology. It was at the Harvard Divinity School, where along with fellow classmates, Octavius Brooks Frothingham (1822-1895) and Samuel Longfellow (1819-1892), Johnson would discover and adopt the philosophies of transcendentalism, universal religion, and other non-Christian religions. Although Johnson had no religious denomination, in 1851 he briefly worked at a Unitarian Church in Dorchester, MA before resigning in 1852.


In 1853, Johnson established the Free Church of Lynn (Massachusetts), which focused on free and independent thought, and was described by the founder himself as being an "independent religious society". Johnson remained a minister of the Free Church until June 26, 1870, when he retired to concentrate on his writing and publications. Johnson wrote many poems, hymns, essays and sermons which addressed topics that ranged from his beliefs in religion, spirituality and reform, to women's suffrage and the anti-slavery movement; a cause that he actively advocated. Johnson also wrote many books, such as Book of Hymns in 1846, and Hymns of the Spirit, 1864, with colleague Samuel Longfellow and a three volume series Oriental Religions and Their Relation to Universal Religion: India (1872), China (1877), and Persia (1885), which illustrated his interests in eastern spirituality and philosophy.


In 1876, Johnson moved to a house in North Andover, MA that had been bequeathed to him by his father. He remained there until his death on February 18, 1882.


Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in Philcat. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

Alcott, Amos Bronson, 1799-1888
Brown, John, 1800-1859
Chadwick, John White, 1840-1904
Dix, Dorothea Lynde, 1802-1887
Frothingham, Octavius Brooks, 1822-1895
Garrison, William Lloyd, 1805-1879
Hale, Edward Everett, 1822-1909
Johnson, Anna, b. 1826
Johnson, Joshua, 1827-1880
Johnson, Samuel, 1790-1876
Lebaron, Francis
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865
Longfellow, Samuel, 1819-1892
May, Samuel J. (Samuel Joseph), 1797-1871
Peabody, Elizabeth Palmer, 1804-1894
Smith, Increase S.
Stanton, Elizabeth Cady, 1815-1902
Stone, Lucy, 1818-1893
Wasson, David Atwood, 1823-1887
Harvard Divinity School
Lynn Free Church (Lynn, Mass.)
Antislavery movements
Great Fire, Boston, Mass., 1872
Hymns
Religion--China
Religion--India
Religion--Iran
Religious literature
Sermons, American
Transcendentalism
Voyages and travels
Women's rights
Europe--Description and travel
Diaries
Photographs

Restrictions

Restrictions on Access

This collection is open for research use.


Administrative Information

Copyright

Requests for permission to publish material from the collection must be submitted in writing to the Manuscript Librarian in the Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum.

Preferred Citation

Reverend Samuel Johnson (1822-1882) Papers, MSS 248, Phillips Library, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass.

Provenance

The provenance of this collection is unknown.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Karen Clemons, July 2011.


Related Material

"Image of the Month for January 2009." Andover-Harvard Theological Library. President and Fellows of Harvard College, 26 Jan 2009. Web. 27 Jul 2011.


Longfellow, Samuel. Memoir. Lectures, Essays, and Sermons. By Samuel Johnson. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin and Company, 1883. Print.


"Samuel Johnson (clergyman)." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. 7 April 2011. Web. 27 Jul. 2011.


Stewart, Samuel. "Samuel Johnson (1822-1882)." Heralds of a Liberal Faith. 3. American Unitarian Association, 1901. Web.


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