Born: May 27, 1799, Tren­ton, New Jer­sey. Named af­ter Am­eri­can pre­si­dent George Wash­ing­ton, he was born the year Wash­ing­ton died.

Died: Ap­ril, 1859, Bur­ling­ton, New Jer­sey.

Buried: St. Ma­ry’s Epis­co­pal Church, Bur­ling­ton, New Jer­sey.



George is the fa­ther of hymn writ­er Willi­am Doane.

After gra­du­at­ing from Un­ion Col­lege, Sche­nec­ta­dy, New York (BA 1818), he stu­died law for a while in New York Ci­ty, but soon be­came in­ter­est­ed in theo­lo­gy.

In 1821, he was or­dained a dea­con and be­came as­sist­ant rec­tor at Tri­ni­ty Church in New York, where he was or­dained a priest two years lat­er.

He went on to be­come pro­fess­or of rhe­to­ric and belles-lettres at Tri­ni­ty Col­lege, Hart­ford, Con­nec­ti­cut; as­sist­ant rec­tor at Tri­ni­ty Church, Bos­ton, Mas­sa­chu­setts (1828), and rec­tor (1830) (hym­nist Phill­ips Brooks was pas­tor there lat­er); and Epis­co­pal bi­shop of New Jer­sey (1832).

Doane al­so helped found Bur­ling­ton Col­lege and St. Ma­ry’s Hall Doane Aca­de­my in Bur­ling­ton, New Jersey.



Ficus Religiosa

The Banyan of the Indian Isles
Strikes deeply down, its massive root;
And spreads its branching life, abroad,
And bends to earth with scarlet fruit:
And when the branches reach the ground,
They firmly plant themselves again:
Then rise, and spread, and drop, and root;
An ever green, and endless chain.

And, so, the Church of Jesus Christ,
The blessed Banyan of our God,
Fast rooted upon Sion’s Mount,
Has sent its sheltering arms abroad;
And every branch that from it springs,
In sacred beauty spreading wide,
As low it bends to bless the earth,
Still plants another by its side.

Long as the world itself shall last,
The sacred Banyan still shall spread;
From clime to clime, from age to age,
Its sheltering shadow shall be shed;
As nations seek its pillared shade,
Its leaves shall for their healing be:
The circling flood that feeds its life,
The blood that crimsoned Calvary.

Adapted from George Washington Doane
Riverside, 2nd Sunday after Easter, 1851

Written for the third Jubilee of the
Society for the Propagation of the Gospel.