To Tayler Lewis

May 1874


[Published in Cornelius Van Santvoord and Tayler Lewis, Memoirs of Eliphalet Nott, D.D., LL.D., for sixty-two years president of Union College (New York: Sheldon & Co., 1876), p. 226.]

Tayler Lewis wrote in the section on "Revivals of Religion":


Dr. Nott frequently sought to secure the benefit of Mr. Finney's services for the students of the college, but as it seems without avail. In a note received from Mr. Finney, in May 1874, he says:

"As an evangelist, I was repeatedly and earnestly invited to labor with Dr. Nott in his college, and once started to go to him, but was providentially stopped in Auburn where a powerful revival immediately commenced and swept through the whole town, so that I failed to comply with his request."



The note was evidently written to Tayler Lewis. C. Van Santvoord in his Preface to the book lists the sections that were written by Professor Lewis, of which Dr. Nott's 'action in "Revivals of Religion," ' was one. We can conclude therefore that this letter was written to Professor Lewis. According to Codman Hislop much of the material that was used for the preparation of the book "which had been in Professor Lewis's custody was destroyed, it was reported, after his death." (Codman Hislop, Eliphalet Nott [Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 1971], p. 621.) The original letter was probably destroyed at that time. There are no Finney letters in any collections in Union College.

There are no invitations from Nott in the Finney Papers. There are, however, invitations from a "Committee in behalf of pious Students" (two letters, dated February 8 and 18, 1831), and a letter from a student, Nelson Slater, dated February 22, 1831