James Montgomery (b. Irvine, Ayrshire, Scotland, 1771; d. Sheffield, Yorkshire, England, 1854), the son of Moravian parents who died on a West Indies mission field while he was in boarding school, Montgomery inherited a strong religious bent, a passion for missions, and an independent mind. He was editor of the Sheffield Iris (1796-1827), a newspaper that sometimes espoused radical causes. Montgomery was imprisoned briefly when he printed a song that celebrated the fall of the Bastille and again when he described a riot in Sheffield that reflected unfavorably on a military commander. He also protested against slavery, the lot of boy chimney sweeps, and lotteries. Associated with Christians of various persuasions, Montgomery supported missio… Go to person page >
A blessing on our pastor's head. J. Montgomery. [For Ministers.] Written Dec. 26, 1840, for the Jubilee of the Rev. W. Jay of Bath, in 6 stanzas of 4 lines (Montgomery manuscript). In 1853 it was included in Montgomery's Original Hymns. It is sometimes given as "A blessing on Thy servant's head." as in the Prim. Methodist Hymnal, 1887.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, Appendix, Part II (1907)