Detail of Horace Bushnell, ca. 1870 – Connecticut Historical Society and Connecticut History Online

Horace Bushnell (1802-1876)

A leading US theologian of the 19th century, Horace Bushnell was born in 1802 in Bantam. Bushnell attended Yale, where he first studied law, then later theology. In 1833, Bushnell was ordained pastor of the North Congregational Church in Hartford, where he ministered until 1859. While in Hartford, he married Mary Apthorp and had three children (one of whom would later found the Horace Bushnell Memorial Hall). Over the course of his life, Horace Bushnell authored a dozen books and gained renown as a minister, theologian, and civic leader. Bushnell’s lasting legacy to the city of Hartford is Bushnell Park, built in the 1860s as a respite from bustling city life. Bushnell died in Hartford in 1876 and is interred at Old North Cemetery.

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“Bushnell Park,” 2017. Link.


Yale University Library. “Guide to the Horace Bushnell Collection, 1802-1876,” 2013. Link.
Yale University Divinity School Library. “Guide to the Horace Bushnell Papers,” 2007. Link.
Connecticut Digital Archive. “Horace Bushnell Collection,” n.d. Link.


Bushnell, Horace. God in Christ: Three Discourses Delivered at New Haven, Cambridge and Andover: With a Preliminary Dissertation on Language. Hartford, CT: WM. James Hamersley, 1867. Link.
Cross, Barbara M. Horace Bushnell: Minister to a Changing America. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1958.
Cheney, Mary Bushnell. Life and Letters of Horace Bushnell. New York, NY: Harper, 1880. Link.
Edwards, Robert Lansing. Of Singular Genius, of Singular Grace: A Biography of Horace Bushnell. Cleveland, Ohio: Pilgrim Press, 1992.
Bushnell, Horace. Sermons on Living Subjects. New York, NY: Scribner, Armstrong & Company, 1872. Link.
Bushnell, Horace. Speech for Connecticut. Being an Historical Estimate of the State, Delivered Before the Legislature and Other Invited Guests, at the Festival of the Normal School in New Britain, June 4, 1851. Hartford, CT: Boswell and Faxon, 1851. Link.