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Horace Holley Collection
1797-1890 (bulk 1818-1832)
Transylvania University Special CollectionsLexington, Kentucky 40508 USA
Open to researchers.
[Identification of item], Horace Holley Collection, 1797-1890 (bulk 1818-1832), MSC 14,Special Collections, Transylvania University, Lexington.
2 cu ft.
Horace Holley, a native of Salisbury, Connecticut, attended Yale University from 1799 to 1803 and did subsequent work at the Yale's divinity school prior to accepting a position as a congregational minister in Fairfield, Connecticut. He slowly developed liberal religious views and accepted the pastorship of Unitarian South End Church in Boston in 1809, where he remained until 1818. In Boston Holley was active in various scientific, educational, and literary organizations and was noted as an orator and as a member of that city's more prominent intellectual circles. Holley accepted the presidency of Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky in 1818. During his tenure (1818-1826) the institution experienced rapid growth in enrollment and prestige, its Medical Department being considered among the nation's best. At the same time, however, Holley's liberal views conflicted with those of various Transylvania trustees. This divergency of opinion on the function of education ultimately resulted in diminished financial support for the university and Holley's resignation. Holley left Lexington for New Orleans in 1827 and died shortly thereafter of yellow fever contracted on a sea voyage from that city to New York. Horace Holley married Mary Austin in 1805. They had two children, Horace Austin Holley and Harriette Williman Holley Brand. Mary Holley, a first cousin of Stephen F. Austin, resided thereafter in Lexington, New Orleans, and Texas, and took an active interest in promotion of Texas's independence. She was the author of "Texas: Observations Historical, Geographical, and Descriptive" (1833
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