The New International Encyclopædia/Patton, Francis Landey

PAT′TON, Francis Landey (1843—). An American clergyman and educator. He was born at Warwick, Bermuda. He studied at Knox College, of the University of Toronto, and at Princeton Seminary, New Jersey. He was ordained to the ministry in 1865, and after holding several pastorates was, in 1871, appointed professor of didactic and polemical theology in the Theological Seminary of the Northwest (now McCormick Seminary, Chicago), where he remained ten years. During the period from 1873 to 1876 he edited the religious journal The Interior (Chicago), in which connection he brought charges of heresy against Prof. David Swing, resulting in the latter's trial and subsequent withdrawal from the Church. While in Chicago, he also held the pastorate of the Jefferson Park Presbyterian Church, and in 1878 was elected moderator of the Presbyterian General Assembly. In 1881 he assumed the professorship endowed for him in Princeton Theological Seminary, styled the chair of the relations of philosophy and science to the Christian religion; in 1885 he became professor of ethics in the college, and in 1888 succeeded James McCosh in the presidency. In 1891 and 1892 he was again prominent as an opponent of the so-called heretical views of Dr. C. A. Briggs, of Union Theological Seminary. In 1902 he resigned from the presidency of Princeton University, but was soon after elected to that of the seminary. His administration of Princeton was marked by the assumption of the title Princeton University in place of the charter name, ‘The College of New Jersey,’ and by large donations which enabled the university to make extensive additions to its equipment and buildings. The number of students nearly doubled during this period from 1888 to 1902, and new courses were added to both the scientific and academic departments. Perhaps most important in the future development of Princeton as a university was the founding of a graduate school. President Patton became widely known as a forcible speaker and a keen, logical thinker on theological subjects. He contributed frequently to leading periodicals and wrote Inspiration of the Scriptures (1869), and Summary of Christian Doctrine (1874).