Isaac Watts was the son of a schoolmaster, and was born in Southampton, July 17, 1674. He is said to have shown remarkable precocity in childhood, beginning the study of Latin, in his fourth year, and writing respectable verses at the age of seven. At the age of sixteen, he went to London to study in the Academy of the Rev. Thomas Rowe, an Independent minister. In 1698, he became assistant minister of the Independent Church, Berry St., London. In 1702, he became pastor. In 1712, he accepted an invitation to visit Sir Thomas Abney, at his residence of Abney Park, and at Sir Thomas' pressing request, made it his home for the remainder of his life. It was a residence most favourable for his health, and for the prosecution of his literary… Go to person page >
Author (refrain): R. E. Hudson
Ralph Hudson (1843-1901) was born in Napoleon, OH. He served in the Union Army in the Civil War. After teaching for five years at Mt. Union College in Alliance he established his own publishing company in that city. He was a strong prohibitionist and published The Temperance Songster in 1886. He compiled several other collections and supplied tunes for gospel songs, among them Clara Tear Williams' "All my life long I had panted" (Satisfied). See 101 More Hymn Stories, K. Osbeck, Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1985).
Mary Louise VanDyke Go to person page >
MARTYRDOM was originally an eighteenth-century Scottish folk melody used for the ballad "Helen of Kirkconnel." Hugh Wilson (b. Fenwick, Ayrshire, Scotland, c. 1766; d. Duntocher, Scotland, 1824) adapted MARTYRDOM into a hymn tune in duple meter around 1800. A triple-meter version of the tune was fir…