Methodist General Biblical Institute (Concord, NH)

John DempsterJohn Dempster

The Rev. John Dempster, in New York on leave from missionary work in South America during the summer of 1840, was contacted by Charles K. True, head of the staffing committee of the seminary project. He asked Dempster to head the project, though at first Dempster rejected the idea out of hand (“I feel I am totally unqualified for this kind of work”). He asked for more details and finally accepted the offer, provided he be allowed to finish the construction of a school for his South American Mission. That was agreed, and he returned to the mission field, beginning his seminary work in 1844, when he began to raise money and collect books. He never taught at Newbury although he was chief financial officer for the project, but when the new program at Concord NH was established in 1847, he became president and primary teacher.

Methodist General Biblical InstitutePostcard of the Methodist Biblical Institute

Methodist General Biblical Institute Concord, NH, offered the recently vacated Congregational Church as home for the seminary in 1847. Under a new charter with trustees chosen from the minsterial rolls of all the area conferences, the school was incorporated as the Methodist General Biblical Institute. The students, finances, and library from Newbury were relocated to Concord, where the school had a twenty-year lease. Osmon Baker, who was a native of Concord, also moved with the program, and taught with Dempster and Charles Adams. The school graduated its first class of three in 1850. The students of 1855 paid for a printing plate to be engraved so they would get a real diploma instead of a hand-written note, prompting the school to create an official, if very similar, diploma shortly thereafter.

The Methodist General Biblical Institute flourished despite Osmon Baker’s leaving when he was elected Bishop in 1852, and John Dempster’s leaving in 1854 to establish a seminary supported by Mrs. Eliza Garrett of Evanston, IL. Daniel Drew, an early supporter of the Institute, soon opened his own school in New Jersey in 1867, while New Englanders Lee Claflin (longtime treasurer of for the project), Jacob Sleeper, and Isaac Rich, focused their attention on the establishment of a Methodist university in Boston, to be centered around the seminary.

The following are names of students at the Biblical Institute under the year of their graduation.  Students who did not graduate are listed with an asterisk (*).


John B. Foote — John Paulson


Shadrach L. Bowman, A.M. — William Kellen — Samuel McKean — Charles Nason — John McLaughlin — Oliver P. Pitcher — William H. Stetson — Luke B. Tower


Benjamin S. Arey — Horatio Arthur — Lorenzo Barber — Alfred Brigham — Oloff H. Call — George W. Chesbrough, A.M. — Isaac S. Cushman, A.M. — Alonzo Flack, A.M. — J. P. French — Rodney Gage — Charles C. Goss — Austin F. Herrick — Dugald Thompson, A.M. — Alfred Welch — Ira S. Watkins — Henry S. White


Carlos Banning — Andrew J. Church — Hiram M. Church — Lewis E. Dunham — Reuben Gregg — Francis D. Hemenway, A.M. — E. Franklin Hincks — Levings H. Hooker — Thomas Montgomery — Robert Paterson — Charles H. Smith — Ezekiel Smith — Robert S. Stubbs — Wesley P. Wright, A.M.


Gilbert R. Bent — John Capen — John K. B. Clayton — Henry T. Giles — Andrew F. Morey — Oliver Springstead, A.M.


Jarvis A. Ames — Andrew Cather — Andrew K. Crawford — Charles U. Dunning — Joel W. Eaton — William S. Edwards — George W. E. Ellis — Elon Foster — Nelson Green — John S. Hannah — Charles E. Harris — Enos E. Kellogg — Jonathan A. Knowles — Alexander McLean — Charles A. Merrill — Munson G. Wadsworth — Charles Young


Benjamin F. D. Costa — Hanson F. Forrest — Washington I. Pond, A. M . — A. R. Sylvester — Samuel Wilson


Thomas J. Abbott — Robert J. Andrews — George S. Barnes — Edgar F. Clark, A. M . — Tertuilus Davidson, A.M. — Abraham S. Doffs, A.M. — George M. Hamlen — Albert L. Long, A.M. — Henry M. Loud — William V. Morrison, A.M. — John Pilkinton — Joseph Scott — James T. Tucker — William F. Ward — William Wilmot — Thomas S. Wilson


Joseph Baker — Stephen L. Baldwin — George W. Blackman — William Glas — Charles E. Glover — Edwin H. Hynson — John J. Millsaps — Charles Morgan — Barnabas F. Reeve — Henry D. Robinson — Gustavus Silversteen — James B. Stevens


Nicholas M. Brown — Nathan F. Colver — Thomas Elliott — James B. Faulks — Samuel M. Hammond — Malcom D. Herrick — Carols R. Martin — Charles Miller — Edwin W. Parker — Matthew M. Parkhurst — Hiram P. Satchwell, A.M. — William Silverthorn — Ebenezer A. Smith — Sidney K. Smith, A.M. — Abram Vielie


John W. Ackerly — George W. Barber — Alexander N. Fields — Josiah Fletcher — Charles E.. Little — John G. Shrive — Daniel J. Smith — Theodore Stevens — George C. Thomas — Edward W. Virgin, A.M. — W. De M. Weedon — Benajah E. Whipple — Noah Wood


James M. Bean — George W. Brown — Daniel D. Cook — Oliver M. Cousens — Clement T. Frame — Elam Marsh — Thomas C. Potter — Abel W. Pottle — Alexander C. Reynolds — Nathaniel F. Stevens — Charles H. Vinton — Jesse Wagner — Henry S. Ward — Edwin Warriner — Robert H. Wilder


Watson M. Ayers — William W. Baldwin — George W. Brooks — Moses T. Cilley — John G. Gooding — William F. Hatfield, A.M. — Charles H. Newell — William H. Simonson — Henry F. Spencer — Church Tabor — John Warthman


Miles R. Barney — Edwin S. Chase — Anson C. Coult — Edward Davies — Adelbert Gaylord — Elijah Horr — Chester J. Hoyt — John H. Lane — Charles C. Miller — Hiram D. Opdyke — Isaac D. Peaslee — Ezekiel Richardson — James Saunders — William E. Smith — William Stout — Henry Newton Van Deusen


Henry W. Ackerley — Daniel C. Babcock — Sylvester Donaldson —  Richard Harcourt — J. Wesley Harkins — John H. Hillman — J. Henry Owens — Cornelius M. Pegg — Raphael M. Roberts — Watson W. Smith


Samuel R. Bailey — Daniel M. Birmingham, A.M. — J. Wesley Cole — James Esgate — Edwin F. Hadley — Joseph T. Hand — Wesley C. Johnson — Orren C. Lane — John A. Lansing — Norman J. Squires — William E. Tomkinson — Albert Van Densen


Nathan G. Cheney — Thomas Chipperfield — Otis Cole — R. James Donaldson — Alfred E. Drew — Horatio B. Elkins — Theodore S. Haggerty — Joseph R. Hammond — John Keogan — Sullivan C. Kimball, A.B. — Edmund Lewis — George C. Morehouse — Samuel J. Robinson — LeRoy S. Stowe — J. O. Thompson — William H. Washburn — Lorenzo D. Watson


George W. Anderson — James A. DeForrest — Allen J. Hall — Charles E. Hall, A.B. — Samuel J. McCutcheon — Charles W. Millen — E. Frank Pitcher, A.B. — Samuel Roy — George W. Ruland — Edwin R. Sullivan, A.B. — Nicholas T. Whitaker, A.B. — True Whittier