Born: De­cem­ber 23, 1862, Glens Falls, New York.

Died: March 6, 1933, New­ton, Mas­sa­chu­setts.

Buried: New­ton Ce­me­te­ry, New­ton, Mas­sa­chu­setts.



Amos was the son of Amos Rus­sell Wells, Sr., and Sa­rah White­head.

He gra­du­at­ed from An­ti­och Col­lege, Yel­low Springs, Ohio, in 1883, and then served as pro­fess­or of Greek and ge­ol­o­gy there (1883–91).


He was al­so a jour­nal­ist, and pub­lished the per­i­o­di­cals The Gold­en Rule and Chris­tian En­dea­vor.

His oth­er works in­clude:


When I Read the Bible Through

I supposed I knew my Bible,
Reading piecemeal, hit or miss,
Now a bit of John or Matthew,
Now a snatch of Genesis,
Certain chapters of Isaiah,
Certain Psalms (the twenty-third!),
Twelfth of Romans, First of Proverbs
Yes, I thought I knew the Word!
But I found that thorough reading
Was a different thing to do.
And the way was unfamiliar
When I read the Bible through.

O the massive, mighty volume!
O the treasures manifold!
O the beauty and the wisdom
And the grace it proved to hold!
As the story of the Hebrews
Swept in majesty along,
As it leaped in waves prophetic,
As it burst to sacred song.
As it gleamed with Christly omens.
The Old Testament was new,
Strong with cumulative power.
When I read the Bible through.

Ah, imperial Jeremiah,
With his keen, coruscant mind;
And the blunt old Nehemiah,
And Ezekiel refined!
Newly came the Minor Prophets,
Each with his distinctive robe,
Newly came the Song idyllic,
And the tragedy of Job;
Deuteronomy the regal
To a towering mountain grew
With the comrade peaks around it,
When I read the Bible through.

What a radiant procession,
As the pages rise and fall:
James the sturdy, John the tender,
O the myriad-minded Paul!
Vast apocalyptic glories
Wheel and thunder, flash and flame,
While the church triumphant raises
One incomparable Name.
Ah, the story of the Savior
Never glows supremely true
Till you read it whole and swiftly,
Till you read the Bible through.

You who like to play at Bible,
Dip and dabble, here and there,
Just before you kneel, aweary,
And yawn through a hurried prayer;
You who treat the Crown of Writings
As you treat no other book—
Just a paragraph disjointed,
Just a crude, impatient look—
Try a worthier procedure,
Try a broad and steady view;
You will kneel in very rapture
When you read the Bible through!

The Collected Poems of Amos R. Wells, 1921



Help Needed

If you know where to get bet­ter pho­to of Wells (head & shoul­ders, at least 200×300 pix­els),