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Hillhouse, James Abraham, 1789-1841



  • Existence: 1789 - 1841

James Abraham Hillhouse (September 26, 1789 - January 4, 1841) was born in New Haven, Connecticut, the eldest child of James and Rebecca (Woolsey) Hillhouse. He entered Yale College at the age of 13, but withdrew before the end of his freshman year, and eventually received an A.B. degree with the class of 1808. When his business plans were interrupted by the War of 1812, he relocated to New Haven from Boston, where he had resided for three years after his graduation. In 1819 he visited England, where he first published Percy's Masque (1819), a drama based on Bishop Percy's ballad, "The Hermit of Warkworth." Returning to the United States in 1820, Hillhouse engaged in business as a hardware merchant in New York City. In 1822 he married Cornelia Lawrence, the eldest daughter of New York merchant Isaac Lawrence, and the following year returned to New Haven, where he spent the remainder of his life in study and literary pursuits. In 1824, he wroteHadad (1825), a drama based upon the Biblical narrative of Absalom's rebellion. Most of his writings are contained in the volume Dramas, Discourses, and Other Pieces (1839).

Found in 2 Collections and/or Records:

Hillhouse family papers

Call Number: MS 282
Overview: The papers consist of correspondence, deeds, account books, estate records, architectural drawings, legal papers, notebooks, commonplace books, letterbooks, scrapbooks, daybooks, and miscellaneous papers documenting the personal lives and professional careers of three generations of the Hillhouse family of New Haven, Connecticut and New York. Major figures represented in the papers include: James Hillhouse (1754-1832), Mary Lucas Hillhouse (1785-1871), James Abraham Hillhouse (1789-1841),...
Dates: 1707-1943

James Abraham Hillhouse papers

Call Number: YCAL MSS 444
Overview: The James Abraham Hillhouse Papers contain writings and personal papers documenting the literary activities of a member of the prominent New Haven Hillhouse family during the early-to-mid nineteenth century. Writings consist of drafts of plays, essays, poems, and other genres, including notebooks dating from Hillhouse's days as a student at Yale College, covering subjects such as the sermons of Yale President Timothy Dwight and the philosophical lectures of professor Jeremiah Day, who succeeded...
Dates: 1804-1844