Notable Phelps Family Members
Rev. Philip Phelps, Founder and First President, Western Theological Seminary
Rev. Philip Phelps, D.D., L.L.D., b. Albany, N. Y., July 12, 1826, d. Albany, N. Y., Sept. 4, 1896 m. Sept 27, 1833, Margaret Anna Jordan of Albany, N. V.
Mr. Phelps entered Union College, Schenectady, N. Y., in the junior year and graduated in 1844, at the age of eighteen. He spent two years in teaching, also editing the "Youth', Temperance Enterprise,'' and entered the Theological Seminary of the Reformed church, at New Brunswick, N. J., in 1846, where he took the three year, course, reaching for six months in Major Kinsley's school at West Point. He became pastor of the old Greenburgh Church, Westchester Co., N. Y., and had charge of a mission at Hastings-on-Hudson, which he built up later into a strong church.
He also conducted a school. In 1859 he became missionary pastor, and principal of the academy at Holland, Mich., which had been established by the Reformed Church, and which Mr. Phelps built up into Hope College, which as incorporated in 1866, and later added a theological department which has since become the Western Theological Seminary. He was the first president. He had been made president of the General Synod in 1864, and the same year received the degree of D.D. [Doctor of Divinity] from the University of New York, He devoted his energy to the Hope College until 1878, having at one time brought about the education of several Japanese students, and built tip a flourishing institution, and made himself an honored name.
After eight years of various ministerial and literary labor, he became pastor, in 1886, of the Reformed Churches of North Blenheim and Breakabeen, N. Y., where he spent nine years, and was one of the most noted clergymen of his time. In 1894 Hope College gave him the degree of L.L.D. In 1895 he resigned his pastorates and went to Ghent, N. Y., where his son Philip was pastor of the First Reformed Church, and in 1896 supplied the pulpit of his first charge at Hastings-on-Hudson, During the summer he became prostrated by the heat, and in the absence of his family, went to the home of his sister, Mrs. Dr. R. D. Jones, in Albany, where he died. His death was sincerely mourned by all who had known him.
The Phelps Family of America and
Their English Ancestors, (Save
$201 by ordering through us.) Two volumes.
By Judge Oliver Seymour Phelps and Andrew T. Servin. (Eagle Publishing Company
of Pittsfield, Mass., 1899)(#4530).