Dow, Lorenzo an eccentric American preacher, was born in Coventry, Connecticut, October 18, 1777. He began traveling and preaching in the Methodist Episcopal Church in 1798, and in 1799 he was appointed to Essex Circuit, but soon departed for Europe, under the impression that he had a special mission to Ireland. He was "dropped" by the Conference, and ever after continued to travel and preach independently, although still adhering to Methodist doctrines. He rode at the rate of forty to fifty miles a day, and preached often four or five times daily. In his sermons he. particularly "argued against Atheism, Deism, Universalism, and Calvinism." His final efforts were directed against the Jesuits, whose influence he thought would be fatal to the country. He died suddenly at Washington, February 2, 1834.
Dow figured considerably as a writer. Among his publications are, A short Account of a long Travel; with Beauties of Wesley (Phila. 1823, 8vo): — History of a Cosmopolite; or the Writings of the Reverend Lorenzo Dow; containing his Experience and Travels in Europe and America up to near his fiftieth Year; also his Polemic Writings (often reprinted; latest, Cincinnati. 1851, 1855, 8vo): — The Stranger in Charleston; by the Trial and Confession of Lorenzo Dow (Phila. 1822, 8vo): — Polemical Works (N.Y. 1814, 12mo), etc. See Peck, Early Methodism (New York, 1860, 12mo, page 198); Dealings of God, Man, and the Devil, containing Dow's Life and Miscellaneous Writings (N.Y. 1854,2 volumes in 1, 8vo); Stevens, History of the Methodist Episcopal Church, 3 and 4.