Montgomery, James, son of John Montgomery, a Moravian minister, was born at Irvine, Ayrshire, Nov. 4, 1771. In 1776 he removed with his parents to the Moravian Settlement at Gracehill, near Ballymena, county of Antrim. Two years after he was sent to the Fulneck Seminary, Yorkshire. He left Fulneck in 1787, and entered a retail shop at Mirfield, near Wakefield. Soon tiring of that he entered upon a similar situation at Wath, near Rotherham, only to find it quite as unsuitable to his taste as the former. A journey to London, with the hope of finding a publisher for his youthful poems ended in failure; and in 1792 he was glad to leave Wath for Shefield to join Mr. Gales, an auctioneer, bookseller, and printer of the Sheffield Register newspap… Go to person page >
We plan foundations for the dead. J. Montgomery. [Foundation Stone of a Cemetery Chapel.] The manuscript of this hymn is dated “May 5, 1848." The hymn was written for the laying of the foundation-stone of the chapel for the Church of England portion of the Sheffield General Cemetery. Montgomery's hymn, "Father of glory, God of grace," was written for the Opening of the same, and is dated "June 27, 1850." Montgomery died on April 30, 1854, and was buried under the shadow of the spire of this chapel.
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)