1822–1909

Introduction

portrait

Born: Ap­ril 3, 1822, Bos­ton, Mas­sa­chu­setts.

Died: June 10, 1909, Rox­bu­ry, Mas­sa­chu­setts.

Buried: For­est Hills Ce­me­te­ry, Ja­mai­ca Plain, Mas­sa­chu­setts.

illustration
Hale Statue, Public Garden,
Boston, Massachusetts

Biography

Edward was the son of Na­than Hale, ed­it­or of the Bos­ton Dai­ly Ad­ver­tis­er, and Sar­ah Pres­ton Ev­er­ett, and grand-ne­phew of Am­er­i­can Re­vo­lu­tion­a­ry War he­ro Na­than Hale.

His wife was Em­i­ly Bald­win Per­kins, niece of Con­nec­ti­cut Gov­er­nor and U.S. Sen­at­or Ro­ger Sher­man Bald­win on her father’s side, and Ly­man Beech­er, Har­ri­et Beech­er Stowe and Hen­ry Ward Beech­er on her mo­ther’s side.

After gra­du­at­ing from the Bos­ton La­tin School at age 13, Ed­ward im­me­di­ate­ly en­rolled at Har­vard Un­i­ver­si­ty. At Har­vard, he won two Bow­doin priz­es and was elect­ed Class Po­et. He gra­du­at­ed with the class of 1839, then stu­died at Har­vard Di­vin­i­ty School.

He was pas­tor of a Un­i­tar­i­an church in Wor­ces­ter, Mas­sa­chu­setts (1846–56), and of South Church in Bos­ton (1856–99). When he re­tired from South Church in 1899, he chose as his suc­cess­or Ed­ward Cum­mings, fa­ther of po­et E. E. Cum­mings.

Hale served as 51st chap­lain of the Unit­ed States Sen­ate, 1903–09.

A quote at­trib­ut­ed to him that we like: When asked if he prayed for Amer­i­can sen­a­tors: No, I look at sen­a­tors and pray for the coun­try.

Publications

Poem

The Lord of the Vineyard

Who came at the eleventh hour,
And to their tasks were true,
And labored each as he had power,
Received—each man his due.

Who came when day was breaking bright,
And labored all day through,
Till evening melted into night,
Received—each man his due.

These looked at those, those looked at these,
As from their Lord they came;
The dues of those, the dues of these,
They saw, were just the same.

For those and these God’s children are,
Born for eternity;
Moments of time could not compare
With lives which live for aye.
And souls whose every hope is fixed above
Have no less due from God
Than all a Father’s love.

Edward Everett Hale
Poems and Fancies, 1901

Sources

Lyrics