July 15, 1704, Klettenberg (near Nordhausen), Germany.

September 18, 1792, Berthelsdorf , Sachsen, Germany.

Herrnhuter Gottesacker, Herrnhut, Sachsen, Germany.


August was the son of Georg Spangenberg, Lutheran pastor at Klettenberg. August entered the University of Jena in 1722 as a law student, but soon shifted his studies to theology. He lived in the home of a Professor Buddeus, graduated MA in 1726, and for some time lectured there.

In September 1732 he went to Halle as an adjunct of the theology faculty, and superintendent of the Orphanage schools. There he associated himself with the Separatists. By an edict from Berlin, he was removed from office and, on April 8, 1733, expelled from Halle. He went from there to Herrnhut and was received by the Moravian community. In 1735, he accompanied the Moravian colony which settled in Georgia, and served also in Pennsylvania and on the island of St. Thomas. He returned to Germany in 1739, and was for some time at Marienborn, Hessen. In September 1741, he attended an important Moravian Conference in London, and there became a member of the Unity’s Direction, and also director of their financial affairs. He founded, in 1742, the first English Moravian settlement, at Smith House in Yorkshire.

On June 15, 1744, he was consecrated at Herrnhaag, Hessen, as Moravian Bishop for North America, and from that time until 1762 was for the most part in America, working mainly in Pennsylvania, and among the Indians, and making two visits to Europe. In 1762, he became the senior member of the Unity’s Direction, succeeding Zinzendorf. He thereafter lived mostly at either Herrnhut or Barby. He spent the last years of his life near Herrnhut, where retired from active work in September 1791.

  1. Der König ruht, und schauet doch
  2. Die Kirche Christianti ist hin und her
    • The Church of Christ That He Hath Hallowed Here
  3. Heilige Einfalt, Gnadenwunder
    • When Simplicity We Cherish