Haven, Gilbert

Haven, Gilbert a bishop of the Methodist Episcopal Church, cousin of the foregoing, was born at Maiden, Massachusetts, September 19,1821. His father, Gilbert Haven, Esq., was one of the pioneer Methodists of that place. After receiving a good common-school education he engaged in business, and early manifested such capacity as to have the most flattering offers of business connections; but feeling an ardent desire for a higher education, refused them all, prepared for college at Wesleyan University, Wilbraham, where he was converted in 1839, and in 1846 graduated at Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut. He was immediately employed as teacher of ancient languages at Amenia Seminary, Dutchess County, N.Y., and in 1848 was elected principal of the institution. In 1851 he joined the New England Conference, wherein he served two years each at Northampton, Wilbraham, Westfield, Roxbury, and Cambridge. At the opening of the rebellion Mr. Haven was commissioned as chaplain of the Eighth Regiment of Massachusetts volunteers, served his time out (three months), then spent a year in extensive travel in Europe and Palestine, and as a result wrote and published his book on Great Britain and Western Europe, entitled The Pilgrim's Wallet. On his return he resumed the active ministry, and was stationed at North Russell Street, Boston, where, through his advice and influence, Grace Church was purchased. From 1867 to 1871 he was editor of Zion's Herald, in 1868 and 1872 was a delegate to the General Conference, and by the latter was elected to the bishopric, May 24, 1872. In this office he devoted himself earnestly to its arduous labors, and was ever conspicuous in the benevolent enterprises of the Church. He visited Mexico in 1873, and Africa in 1876 and 1877. His death at the home of his nativity, January 3, 1880, was remarkably triumphant. Bishop Haven had a very extensive knowledge of books and men, a retentive and ready memory, a wonderful conversational ability, and great popularity among his personal acquaintances. He was noted for his ardent interest in reformatory enterprises, his radical opposition to slavery, and his advocacy of political and social equality. His boldly enunciated views on these subjects gave him great reputation almost wherever the English language is spoken. He was equally conspicuous for his faithful advocacy of the central doctrines of evangelical religion. He. was a careful, successful pastor; a preacher of great simplicity, fluency, and power; and a vigorous and facile writer. His other publications are, Occasional Sermons: — Life of Father Taylor, the Sailors' Preacher: Our Next-door Neighbor; or, A Winter in Mexico. See Minutes of Annual Conferences, 1880, 1:92; Simpson, Cyclop. of Methodism, s.v.; Daniels, Memorials (Boston, 1880).

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