1811–1892

Introduction

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Born: Ap­ril 17, 1811, Jef­fer­son Coun­ty, In­di­a­na.

Died: Ap­ril 12, 1892, In­di­an­a­po­lis, In­di­a­na.

Buried: Crown Hill Ce­me­te­ry, In­di­an­a­po­lis, In­di­a­na.

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A FAMOUS MINISTER DEAD

Rev. Love H. Jam­e­son Passes Away at the Ad­vanced Age of Eigh­ty Years. One of the Best-Known Preach­ers of the Chris­tian Church in the Unit­ed States

Story of His Long Life of Use­ful­ness

Rev. Love H. Jam­e­son, the best known mem­ber of the Chris­tian church in In­di­a­na or, for that mat­ter, per­haps in the Unit­ed States, died at his re­si­dence No. 307 Ash Street, this ci­ty, last ev­en­ing at 8:30 o’clock.

Elder Ja­me­son, as he was called, was born in In­di­a­na while it was yet a Ter­ri­to­ry, on May 17, 1811 in Jef­fer­son coun­ty. His pa­rents were na­tives of Vir­gin­ia, first re­mov­ing to Ken­tuc­ky and thence in 1810 set­tling for life on the creek called In­di­an Ken­tuc­ky, in Jef­fer­son county, this State.

His fa­ther was of Scotch par­ent­age and trained as a strict Cal­vin­ist. In the year 1816 both his par­ents be­came mem­bers of the old Chris­tian Church.

From 1818 un­til 1828 Love at­tend­ed school each win­ter and made ra­pid pro­gress, be­ing quick to learn, and pos­sess­ing a re­ten­tive and ac­cu­rate me­mo­ry.

In the fall of 1829 a pro­trac­ted meet­ing was held near the Jam­e­son farm, and a num­ber were con­vert­ed. Among these was young Jam­e­son. He at once took great in­te­rest in the meet­ings, and it was soon in­sin­u­at­ed that he had a tal­ent for preach­ing.

Yielding to im­por­tu­ni­ties, he con­sent­ed, and on Dec. 25, 1829, preached his first ser­mon. From that time up to a few months ago he has been a preach­er of the word, a per­i­od of near­ly fif­ty-three years.

WAS SELF-EDUCATED

During the year 1830 he was en­gaged in teach­ing, while thus em­ployed he dil­i­gent­ly pro­se­cut­ed the work of self-ed­u­ca­tion. Hav­ing ac­quired a good know­ledge of Eng­lish, he be­gan the stu­dy of Greek.

In this, his first text-book was Iron­side’s Gram­mar, which he of­ten re­marked, was ve­ry ap­pro­pri­ate­ly named, as it was writ­ten in Latin, and to ac­quire ei­ther lang­uage he had to first un­der­stand the oth­er.

By the aid of lex­i­cons he pen­etrat­ed Ir­on­sides and was able to read the New Tes­ta­ment in the orig­in­al Greek. Lat­er in life, and to the close of his life he was re­cog­nized as one of the best Greek schol­ars in the country.

In 1833 he went to Ris­ing Sun, where he stu­died in the sem­in­ary, de­fray­ing his ex­pens­es by teach­ing pre­pa­ra­to­ry class­es. He al­so preach­ed re­gu­lar­ly for a con­gre­ga­tion some dis­tance in the coun­try.

This was the last school he at­tend­ed, but through life he was a dil­i­gent self-in­struc­tor and worked his way up to the front rank among the ed­u­cat­ed men of the church. In the na­tur­al sci­enc­es he was es­pe­cial­ly pro­fi­cient.

His li­ter­a­ry char­ac­ter was such that in 1839 the North­west­ern Chris­tian Un­i­ver­si­ty (the pre­de­ces­sor of But­ler Un­i­ver­si­ty) con­ferred up­on him the hon­or­a­ry de­gree of A. M.

In 1834 he preached in Ohio for church­es at Car­thage, Cum­mins­ville and White Oak. In the ear­ly part of 1835 he preached at var­i­ous plac­es in Ken­tuc­ky. In June, 1835, he as­sumed pas­tor­al charge of a church at Day­ton, O[hio].

It was in that year that he paid his first vi­sit to In­di­an­a­po­lis, then an in­sig­ni­fi­cant town of a few hun­dred in­ha­bi­tants and with­out a rail­road. Be­spat­tered with mud and wet as a drench­ing rain could make him, he en­tered the court-house and preached to a few per­sons who had as­sem­bled there.

While at Day­ton much of his time was spent in tra­vel­ing and preach­ing at meet­ings in Ohio, Ken­tuc­ky, and In­di­a­na. In the win­ter of 1837 he at­tend­ed the Alex Camp­bell and Bi­shop Pur­cell de­bate at Cin­cin­na­ti, and took part in the long series of meet­ings that fol­lowed that dis­cus­sion.

At no per­i­od in his min­is­try did el­der Jam­e­son ev­er take mo­ney in­to ac­count, and dur­ing his so­journ in Ohio he ne­ver re­ceived more than $400 a year.

In May, 1841, he lo­cat­ed in Mad­i­son as pas­tor of the con­gre­ga­tion of his church in that ci­ty. He con­tin­ued his re­la­tion un­til in the fall of 1842, al­so preach­ing at Terre Haute, Craw­fords­ville, La­fay­ette and In­di­an­a­po­lis.

On the 5th of Oc­to­ber, 1842, El­der Jam­e­son be­came pas­tor of the church at In­di­an­a­po­lis, and from that time un­til 1854 he preached here and else­where in the vi­ci­ni­ty. Since that date he has not held a re­gu­lar pas­tor­ate, but for a long time kept re­gu­lar month­ly ap­point­ments at four or five dif­fer­ent church­es.

His work has ex­tend­ed not on­ly ov­er In­di­a­na, but al­so ov­er Ohio, Ken­tuc­ky, Mis­sou­ri, Il­li­nois, New York and por­tions of New Eng­land.

STRONG IN HIS LOY­AL­TY

At the break­ing out of the war his voice was heard on the side of the Un­ion, and, though ev­en then ad­vanced in years, he went as chap­lain of the Se­ven­ty-ninth In­di­a­na Re­gi­ment, to be looked up­on by the mem­bers of the re­gi­ment as a fa­ther.

From his ear­li­est child­hood he ex­hib­it­ed great mu­sic­al abil­i­ty, and dur­ing his min­is­try he com­posed no few­er than 150 hymns, ma­ny of which are among the fa­vo­rites in the hymn-books of the de­nom­in­a­tion to which he be­longed.

His voice, ev­en in ex­treme old age, was won­der­ful­ly pure and sweet, and he sang with great pow­er and feel­ing. Dur­ing the past eight or ten years he has on ma­ny oc­ca­sion been called up­on to sing Ga­ther­ing Home, one of his own com­po­si­tions, and the pa­thos of the words has caused ma­ny eyes to fill with tears.

On March 20 of this year he com­posed his last hymn, to which he gave the title, An Ear­nest Pray­er, tak­ing the theme from Mark ix, 24. It is re­mark­a­ble as the pro­duc­tion of a man ov­er four score years old, but his in­tel­lect was clear al­most to the last, the sha­dow com­ing ov­er his mind on­ly a few hours be­fore death. The last stan­za of the hymn gives ex­press­ion to his su­preme faith:

While I am passing through this vale of tears
And bowing down beneath the weigh of years,
Of all my prayers, this one will be still be chief—
Lord, I believe, help then mine unbelief.

He has been fail­ing great­ly in health since last Au­gust, though his chief in­fir­mi­ty could be called no­thing else than old age. His eye­sight has been ser­i­ous­ly de­fec­tive for a long time. For two or three years one eye has been with­out sight, and the oth­er be­came so dim that for se­ver­al months he has been un­a­ble to read or write.

Dur­ing this time, up to with­in a few days ago, he has dic­tat­ed cor­res­pon­dence, ad­dress­es and con­tri­bu­tions to re­li­gious pa­pers. He took great in­ter­est in all that was go­ing on in the world, and kept that in­ter­est to the last.

In 1883–84 he was abroad, and for sev­er­al months oc­cu­pied a pul­pit at South­port, Eng­land. He well liked and in­duce­ments ten­dered him to re­main, but he could not bear long­er se­pa­ra­tion from his na­tive land.

Elder Ja­meson was twice mar­ried, his first wife, to whom he was mar­ried Dec. 11, 1837, be­ing Eliz­a­beth Clarke. Of this mar­riage a son, the on­ly child, is Al­ex C. Ja­me­son, of this ci­ty.

On Sept. 6, 1841, he was unit­ed in mar­riage with Eliz­a­beth Ro­bin­son, who sur­vives him. The sur­viving child­ren of this se­cond mar­riage are Mrs. Sar­ah Wall­ace, wi­dow of Post­mas­ter Will­iam Wall­ace, Miss Bet­tie Ja­me­son and Sta­tham Ja­me­son, of this ci­ty, and Ed­ward Ja­me­son, who is now in Or­e­gon.

El­der Ja­me­son was a mem­ber of George H. Tho­mas Post and of the Tip­pe­ca­noe Club. He was a bro­ther of Dr. P. H. Ja­me­son, James Ja­me­son, Miss Lu­cy Ja­me­son and Mrs. Ber­ry R. Sui­grove, of this ci­ty. No ar­range­ments have as yet been made for the fu­ne­ral.

Indianapolis Jour­nal
Ap­ril 7, 1892, p. 5

Sources

Lyrics