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Lord, Nathan, 1792-1870



  • Existence: 1792 - 1870


Nathan Lord (born November 28, 1792, Berwick, Maine [U.S.] – died September 9, 1870, Hanover, New Hampshire [U.S.]), graduated from Bowdoin College in 1809, attended Andover Theological Seminary and was a U.S. Congregational clergyman and educator. Lord served as the College’s sixth president (1828-1863).

Lord was able to bring the college out of debt, improve the overall curriculum, and raise admission levels. He was a founding member of the American Anti-Slavery Society, and in 1833 was its Vice President. But his views on slavery changed dramatically; he came to see it as "not a moral evil", but "an ordinance of...God", which "providentially found a settlement in this country". These views and his opposition to the Civil War, which he blamed on abolitionists, brought a storm of controversy, earning him the enmity of several members of the Dartmouth Board of Trustees, including Amos Tuck (1835), a founding member of the Republican Party and close friend of Abraham Lincoln. Matters came to a head in 1863 when the Trustees were deadlocked on awarding an honorary degree to President Lincoln, and Lord broke the tie by voting against it. The Trustees issued a statement: "Neither the trustees nor the Faculty coincide with the president of the College in the views which he has published, touching slavery and the war; and it has been our hope that the College would not be judged a partisan institution by reason of such publications." Lord tendered his resignation. He continued as an active member of the Dartmouth College community, in Hanover, New Hampshire, until his death in 1870.

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