Thornwell, James Henry, Dd, Lld
Thornwell, James Henry, D.D., LL.D.
an eminent Presbyterian divine, was born in Marlborough, District. S. C., Dec. 9,1812. He received a good common-school training; prepared for college at the Cheraw Academy, S. C.: graduated at South Carolina College in 1831; and subsequently studied at Harvard University and in Europe. After some attention to the law he devoted himself to theology, was licensed by Bethel Presbytery, and in 1834 was ordained and installed pastor of the Church at Lancaster Court-house, S.C.; and soon after the churches of Waxhaw and Six Mile were added to his charge. This relation existed until 1837 when he was elected to the professorship of logic, belles-lettres, and criticism in the South Carolina College, to which metaphysics was soon added. In these departments he taught with uncommon ability and success. "In America he fully deserves the distinguished title which his admirers have long bestowed upon him of the Logician." In 1840 he resigned his professorship, and was installed pastor of the Presbyterian Church at Columbia, S. C.; in 1841 became professor of sacred literature and evidences of Christianity in South Carolina College; in 1851, pastor of the Glebe Street Church, Charleston, S. C.; in 1852 accepted the presidency of South Carolina College; in 1856 was elected professor of theology in-the Theological Seminary, Columbia, and also pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of that place, in which labors he continued until his death, Aug. 1, 1862. Dr. Thornwell published, The Arguments of Romanists from the Infallibility of the Church and Testimony of the Fathers on behalf of the Apocrypha, Discussed and
Refuted, etc. (N. Y. 1845). This is an answer to a series of letters by the Rev. Dr. (afterwards bishop) Lynch on the inspiration of the Apocrypha. "As a refutation, this work of Mr. Thornwell's is complete" (Bibl. Rep. and Prince. Rev. April, 1845, p. 268): Discourses on Truth (1855, 12mo; 1869, 8vo), delivered in the chapel of the South Carolina College; a work highly commended. He also published single sermons, tracts, essays, etc., and papers in the Southern Presbyterian Review. Dr. Thornwell was endowed with genius of an exalted character; a clear, penetrating, logical mind, which was cultivated by profound study, and consecrated to the advancement of learning and religion. "As a pastor, kind, affectionate, and worthy of all reliance; as a pulpit orator, a model of glowing zeal and fervid eloquence; as a teacher, gifted." Rev. H. W. Beecher says concerning him, "By common fame, Dr. Thornwell was the most brilliant minister, in the Old school Presbyterian Church, and the most brilliant debater in its General Assembly. This reputation he early gained and never lost." See Wilson, Presb. Hist. Almanac, 1863, p. 209; Allibone, Dict. of Brit. and Amer. Authors, s.v.; Duyckinck, Cyclop. of Amer. Lit. (1856), 2, 334; La Borde, Hist. of South Carolina College, 1859 ; Presb. Mag. vol. 7. (J.L.S.)