1821–1902

Introduction

portrait

Born: Sep­tem­ber 6, 1821, Mend­ham, New Jer­sey.

Died: Oc­to­ber 6, 1902, Mont­clair, New Jer­sey.

Buried: Rose­dale Ce­me­te­ry, Or­ange, New Jer­sey.

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Biography

Wolfe was ed­u­cat­ed at Will­iams Col­lege (1844) and Un­ion The­o­lo­gic­al Se­mi­na­ry, New York (1848–51). On Ap­ril 9, 1851, he was li­censed by the Third Pres­by­te­ry of New York.

He ran a young la­dies’ school in Tal­la­has­see, Flo­ri­da (1852–55), and in 1859, es­tab­lished the Hill­side Se­mi­na­ry for Young La­dies in West Bloom­ing­ton (now Mont­clair), New Jersey.

In 1858, he con­trib­uted se­ven hymns, un­der the sig­na­ture A. R. W., to Church Me­lo­dies, by Tho­mas Hast­ings. He re­tired in 1872.

The de­vout spir­it of the man is fit­ting­ly il­lus­trat­ed by the ac­count he once gave his friends of an in­ci­dent which shaped his aft­er-ca­reer some­what ser­i­ous­ly.

When he left Flo­ri­da in the sum­mer of 1855 he put all his ef­fects—lib­ra­ry, notes, and things of that sort—on board a sail­ing-ves­sel at St. Mark’s, and with a sim­ple grip­sack re­turned North by way of Nash­ville and Chi­ca­go.

Reaching New York af­ter some two weeks spent in jour­ney­ing, he sought his goods at the com­mis­sion house to which they had been con­signed.

There he learned that, on the day ap­point­ed for sail­ing, the ves­sel had been struck by light­ning, the mate killed at the foot of the mast, and the ves­sel, la­den with tur­pen­tine, burned to the wa­ter’s edge. Books, papers, notes, ev­ery­thing of past trea­sure had gone up in smoke.

He looked up­on this as a spe­cial pro­vi­dence of God, shap­ing his life, and fix­ing his home. For it made him a teach­er of the young ra­ther than a pas­tor of a church; and soon the way was op­ened for the be­gin­ning of one of the most use­ful en­gage­ments with Dr. Ab­bott, and so his life was fa­shioned…Thus the Lord made up his pet­ty loss­es by a rich re­ward.

Robinson, p. 361

Sources

Lyrics