Wallace, James Cowden, was born at Dudley, circa 1793. He was brother of the Rev. Robert Wallace (1791-1880), Professor of Theology in Manchester New College, and author of Antitrinitarian Biography. J. C. Wallace was Unitarian minister at Totnes, 1824, and afterwards at Brighton and Wareham. He died at Wareham in 1841. He was a prolific hymnwriter, and contributed various other poetical pieces to the Monthly Repository. In a Selection of Hymns for Unitarian Worship, by R. Wallace, Chesterfield, 1822, there are 13 of his hymns, and in the 2nd edition of the same, 1826, there are 29 more. There are also 10 of his hymns in the Dukinfield Selection of Psalms & Hymns for Christian Worship, 1822 (still in use), and 64 in Beard's Collection of H… Go to person page >
There is an eye that never sleeps, p. 1197, i.; Wallace, J. C. At this place this hymn is given to James Cowden Wallace in error. It is by John Aikman Wallace, p. 1594, ii., and appeared in the Scottish Christian Herald, Sep. 28, 1839, p. 616. W. F. Stevenson, in his note thereon in his Hymns for the Church and Home, 1872, says that the original was furnished to him in manuscript by Mr. Wallace's family, that the lines were not divided into stanzas, and that the received version of the text is an amended form required by the metre, and made by an unknown hand. Stevenson gives also specimen lines from the MS.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, New Supplement (1907)