Francis Landey Patton

Francis Landey Patton (January 22, 1843 – November 25, 1932) was a Bermudan-American educator, Presbyterian minister, academic administrator, and theologian, and served as the twelfth president of Princeton University.

Francis Landey Patton
12th President of Princeton University
In office
1888–1902
Preceded by James McCosh
Succeeded by T. Woodrow Wilson
1st President of Princeton Theological Seminary
In office
1902–1913
Preceded by Position established
Benjamin Breckinridge Warfield as principal
Succeeded by J. Ross Stevenson
Personal details
Born (1843-01-22)January 22, 1843
Warwick Parish, Bermuda
Died November 26, 1932(1932-11-26) (aged 89)
Hamilton, Bermuda
Signature

. . . Francis Landey Patton . . .

Patton was born in Warwick Parish, Bermuda, to a family of Scottish descent. He attended Warwick Academy. As a child, the family relocated to Canada. Patton received collegiate education at the University of Toronto, followed by a theological education at Knox College, Toronto. He graduated from Princeton Theological Seminary in 1865; was ordained to the Presbyterian ministry in June 1865; was pastor of the 84th Street Presbyterian Church, New York City, and in 1867–1870, of the South Church, Brooklyn.[1]

In 1871, Patton moved to Chicago to become minister of the Jefferson Park Presbyterian Church, Chicago (1874–1881). From 1872 to 1881, he was also a professor at McCormick Theological Seminary, Chicago. He wrote The Inspiration of the Scriptures (1869), and Summary of Christian Doctrine (1874).[1]

Patton was opposed to the spread of liberal Christianity in his denomination, the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America. As editor of a Presbyterian weekly entitled Interior, he denounced the growth of liberalism in the Chicago Presbytery.[1]

He brought charges of heresy in 1874 against David Swing (a confidant of Abraham Lincoln and Mary Todd Lincoln), and was prosecuting attorney at Swing’s trial. He accused Swing of subscribing to a modern version of the heresy of Sabellianism and of unduly countenancing Unitarianism. Patton lost his case and Chicago Presbytery acquitted Swing, but Patton had gained a new prominence in the denomination and this was partially responsible for his election as moderator of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in 1878.[1]

. . . Francis Landey Patton . . .

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. . . Francis Landey Patton . . .

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