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Nathaniel Niles

Connecticut & Vermont

Nathaniel Niles "was a graduate of Princeton, of 1776, and Master of Arts of Harvard, 1772. He removed from Norwich, Connecticut, to Vermont, previous to the close of the Revolution; and was a judge of the Supreme Court of this State from 1784 to 1787. He died at West Fairlee, in Nov., 1828, at the age of eighty-six. His ode was 'one of the finest and most popular productions of the [Revolutionary] war;' it was 'sung vigorously in Norwich, in the olden time, and is still revived, we understand, on certain occasions in New Haven.'" [Abby Maria Hemenway (ed.), Poets and Poetry of Vermont 17 (Boston: Brown, Taggard & Chase; Brattleboro, Vermont: W. Felton, 1860)]

"This pioneer, clergyman and poet was born at South Kingston, R.I., April 3, 1741; attended Harvard; was graduated from Princeton in 1776; entered the Congregational minisry and lived some time at Norfork, Conn. Here, directly after the Battle of Bunker Hill, he composed the striking Sapphic ode, 'The American Hero,' which made him famous among the early patriots. It was set to music, an very generally sung throughout the Colonies during the Revolution. He moved, at the close of the war, to West Fairlee, Vt., become one of its first settlers. He was the first member of Congress elected from Vermont; represenative to the State Legislature, 1784-5, 1801-3, and 1812-14; and was a Judge of the Vermont Supreme Court, 1784-8. He died Nov. 1, 1828, at West Fairlee." [Walter John Coates & Frederick Tupper (eds.), Vermont Verse: An Anthology 243 (Brattleboro: Stephen Daye Press, 1931)]

Nathaniel Niles
Biographical Directory of the United States Congress

Nathaniel Niles


Nathaniel Niles, The American Hero: A Sapphick Ode (Norwich, Connecticut: [s.n.], 1775)(Cheshire, Connecticut: Printed by William Law, 1781] [Place, printer, and date of publication attributed by Harvard]


Nathaniel Niles, The Remembrance of Christ: a sermon, the substance of which was delivered at Medway, West Parish, October 31, 1771 (Published at the request of the hearers)(Boston: Printed and sold by J. Kneeland, 1773)

____________, Two Discourses, on I John i. 9: In which is explained the nature of confession of sins, of forgiveness, of sanctification, and of the faithfulness and justice of God, in forgiving the sanctifying such as confess their sins. Also, the connection of pardon and perfect sanctification, with confession, fully evinced (Newport, Rhode-Island: Printed by Solomon Southwick, in Queen Street,, 1773)

____________, A Descant on Sinful Pleasure: Being the substance of two sermons, delivered at Canterbury, October 31st, 1773.: And now published at the request of a number of the hearers (Norwich [Conn.]: Printed by Green & Spooner, 1774)

____________, Two Discourses on Liberty; delivered at the North Church, in Newbury-port, on Lord's-Day, June 5th, 1774, and published at the general desire of the hearers (Newbury-Port [Mass.]: Printed by I. Thomas and H.W. Tinges, 1774)

____________, The Substance of Two Sermons, delivered in the Second Society in Norwich, on Lords-Day, July 12, 1778. [microform] / By Nathaniel Niles, A.M. ; And now published for a number of the hearers. (Norwich [Conn.]: Printed by John Trumbull, 1779)

____________, The Perfection of God, the Fountain of Good. Two sermons, delivered at Torringford, in Connecticut, Lord's Day December 21, 1777. And now published for a number of the hearers (Norwich [Conn.]: Printed by Green & Spooner, 1778)([Elizabethtown, N.J.]: Norwich: printed; Elizabeth Town: re -printed by S. Kollock, 1791)(Hallowell [Me.]: Printed by E. Goodale, 1820)

Nathaniel Niles Sermons

Research Resources

Nathaniel Niles Papers
Vermont Historical Society