William Tennent

1673-1746. Presbyterian minister and educator. Born in Ireland, he graduated from the University of Edinburgh, and in 1706 was ordained priest in the Church of Ireland. About 1717 he emigrated to Philadelphia, where he was admitted to the Presbyterian ministry. He held pastorates in Pennsylvania and New York before becoming minister at Neshaminy, Pennsylvania, where he stayed for the rest of his life. About 1735 he built a small log building on his property, where he educated his three younger sons for the ministry. Some fifteen other men were trained in what came to be derisively called the “Log College” by its detractors because the influential young men trained there were active revivalists who did not meet the educational requirements set by the Philadelphia Synod. In the ensuing controversy Tennent sided with the New Side Presbyterians. His sons Gilbert,* William Jr., John, and Charles and the “Log College men” bear eloquent testimony to Tennent's great contributions to Presbyterian history, especially to the Great Awakening.*