Reverend Isaac Taylor Hinton
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Isaac Taylor Hinton

The youngest child of Rev James Hinton (1761-1823) and Ann Taylor (1766-1832), Isaac Taylor Hinton was born at Oxford, England on July 4, 1799, educated under the guidance of his father, a teacher, and in 1814 apprenticed as a Isaac Taylor Hintonprinter at the Clarendon Press at Oxford. He was for several years in partnership with his brother-in-law John Bartlett, in a printer at Oxford.

In 1822 he married Sarah Mursell of Lymington, Hampshire. In that year he also set up his own printing business in Warwick Square, London, editing and publishing the Sunday School Magazine. After studying at the Bristol Baptist College he became pastor of a Baptist church in London.

While working with his brother, Rev John Howard Hinton, on several books, including A History and Topography of the United States, Isaac Taylor Hinton became interested in North America and moved there in 1832, initially to Philadelphia, where a classmate from Bristol College had established a mission. In Philadelphia he was connected with the Fifth Baptist Church.

By April 1833 his reputation had evidently spread, as a committee was appointed by the First Baptist Church, Richmond, Virginia, "to have a full, free and frank conversation with Isaac Hinton in view to his service as pastor of this church". The outcome of this conversation was a call to the young Englishman to become co-pastor of the church at a salary of $US800 a year.

Sarah Mursell HintonIn June 1833 he was ordained by the Richmond church, serving as co-pastor until December, when he took over as pastor, a post in which he continued until June 14, 1835.

By January 1835, Rev Hinton had become concerned about attitudes to slavery and other matters among his congregation, and presented his resignation, which the church at first refused to accept. He said:
There are, indeed, reasons (some of them appealing to the tenderest feelings of my heart) which render the prospect of separation truly painful to me. There are hopeful indications of good which, when contemplated alone, might well impress me with a desire to remain. But when, taking a more impartial view of the difficulties with which I am surrounded arising from the existence of slavery, both with respect to the faithful discharge of ministerial duties and the welfare of my family; from the extreme difficulty attending the payment of the sum pledged by the church, which is absolutely essential to my maintenance; and from the absence of a spirit of mutual co-operation, persevering activity and fervent prayer among very many of the members, I am left to conclude that it is the will of God that I should labour in another portion of his vineyard.

On June 14 Rev Hinton preached his valedictory sermon and left Richmond to become pastor of the Chicago Baptist Church, then a base of the American Baptist Home Mission Society.

Rev Hinton remained in Chicago from 1825-41, preaching at the Chicago Baptist Church and occasionally at the First Presbyterian Church when that congregation did not have its own minister.

In October 1841 Rev Hinton moved to the Second Baptist Church, St Louis, where he remained until 1844. A historian of that church, Neola McCorkle Koechig, writes:

He was a Bible scholar and an eloquent speaker. Attendance at worship services grew. An enlarged seating capacity was needed. Part of the vestibule was opened into the church and galleries added ...

Early in 1843 the Reverend Hinton conducted a revival meeting, William Carr Lane, who served the city as mayor for five terms, related the following in a letter to his wife in Terre Haute, Indiana:

"... His daughter, an unmarried woman of 29, is exceedingly low from the effects of a desperate cold caught at a recent baptising in Chouteau's Pond — she being only a spectator. There has been a great revival in the church of late and from six to a dozen have been immersed in the Pond every Sunday for several weeks past. As a matter of course, the ice has to be cut on every occasion. Thinks-I-to-myself, I know not which to admire most, the fiery zeal of the pastor, who will remain for more than half an hour in the water, when the temperature is below zero, or that of the convert who chooses such a rigorous occasion for this rite."

In December 1844 Rev Hinton moved on to the First Baptist Church, New Orleans, and in May 1845 he was one of two delegates from New Orleans who attended the Southern Baptist Convention, in Augusta, Georgia.

Loyd Corder writes in The New Orleans Story:

Hinton was one of the ablest preachers ever to labour in New Orleans. His brief but brilliant ministry (1845-47) marked the most prosperous period which Baptists had experienced in this city. The membership grew from 27 to 122 by July 1847. A number of prominent business and professional men were added to the church membership.

This prosperous season of the church was abruptly closed by the death of Rev Hinton in August 1847. He died of yellow fever. His death was undoubtedly due to exposure to the disease while visiting stricken members of his church and community.

 Rev Hinton was buried at New Orleans but his grave was moved to Oakland Cemetery, St Louis, in April 1848, and then in 1852 during a cholera epidemic all the graveyards in central St Louis were closed and his remains were moved to Bellfontaine Cemetery, St Louis, where several of his children were also reburied on December 29, 1852.

Isaac Taylor Hinton's writings include: The History and Topography of the United States, 1834 (jointly with his brother, John Howard Hinton); Prophecies of Daniel and St John, Illustrated by the Events of History; History of Baptism, 1841; Lectures on the Prophecies, 1843. He was also at various times contributing editor to the Religious Herald, associate editor of the Western Baptist Magazine, a member of Virginia Baptist Education Board and trustee of Virginia Baptist Seminary.

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