1798-1838

July 6, 1798, Providence, Rhode Island.

May 9, 1838, Newton, Massachusetts, of smallpox.

Newton Theological Institute, Newton, Massachusetts. His grave was in the rear of Sturtevant Hall.

His father having died when he was 12 years old, Knowles was apprenticed to a printer, where he became thoroughly acquainted with printing, as well as writing for the press. At age 21, he became co-editor of The Rhode Island American.

In March 1820, Knowles was baptized by Dr. Gano, pastor of the First Baptist Church in Providence. The following autumn, he was licensed by the church and entered the Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where Dr. William Staughton and Irah Chase were the professors. In 1822, the college merged with Columbian College in Washington, DC, and Knowles followed his instructors there. While there, he edited a weekly, The Columbian Star. After graduating in 1824, Knowles tutored at the college, but the next autumn, he received a call to the Second Baptist Church in Boston, Massachusetts, where he became its second pastor; he was ordained December 8, 1825.

He remained in Boston seven years, then had to resign to ill health. He became a Professor of Pastoral Duties and Sacred Rhetoric at the Newton Theological Institute in 1832. After his health improved, he took over editorship of The Christian Review. Upon returning from a visit to New York, he was stricken with smallpox, which led to his death.

Knowles’ works include:

  1. O God, Though Countless World of Light
  2. O Lord, Where’er Thy Saints Apart

where to get Knowles’ picture