Theodore Parker (1810-1860)

Courtesy of Unitarian Universalist Association Archived on Unitarianism in America website

Dominating audiences by reasoning power, by full knowledge of facts and by the thrill of his moral idealism, Parker’s words disturbed his contemporaries and moved others to humanitarian reforms. From his first ministry in Roxbury, MA Parker developed into a leader in the Transcendentalist circle that believed each person can know truth intuitively by going beyond reason and the five senses and by consulting the spark of the divine within all of us.

In response to the 1850 Fugitive Slave Law, he was a leader of a vigilance committee that helped William and Ellen Craft escape and attempted to rescue Thomas Sims and Anthony Burns.

Under his leadership the Twenty-Eighth Congregational Society of Boson became active in all possible ways for human welfare.

Parker tirelessly campaigned for public education, organized labor, women’s rights and international peace.