John Harvard and His Times

by Henry C. Shelley


Henry C. Shelley prefaced this work on John Harvard by stating,
“Among the names graven on the foundation stones of American history none is so deeply carved or is so rich in promise of endurance as that of John Harvard. In fact, no name has been for so many generations so literally a household word. It was familiar long before the name of George Washington become a commonplace of American speech; and, no matter what new sons of fame may be born in the future, there is little fear that eclipse will overtake the renown of John Harvard.”

John Harvard lived for only 30 years, having been born in 1607 in England, and dying of tuberculosis on September 14, 1638 in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He was an English minister who left a bequest to a college built in the Bay Colony. He left half of his estate, a sum of £780, to the school, along with over 300 books. The other half of his estate went to his wife, Ann Sadler, whom he married in 1636. Upon receipt of the bequest, the grateful institution became officially known as Harvard Colledge.

This edition is dedicated to Peter Gibbon, Harvardian unquestionably, shrewd commentator on higher education.