County Donegal, Ireland
from the University of Delaware Archives Notable People: http://www.udel.edu/Archives/Archives/NotablePeople/alison.html
Francis Alison was born in County Donegal, North Ireland. In 1732, he graduated with a Masters of Arts from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. Following his University education, Alison trained for the Presbyterian ministry, which brought him to the United States in 1735. Between 1736 and 1752, he served as pastor of the Presbyterian Church in New London, Pennsylvania.
Disturbed by the prevailing standards of education and the lack of reliable institutions in Pennsylvania's lower counties, Alison started a free school in New London, Pennsylvania. The school, which operated out of Alison's home for nine years, was supported by the Synod of Philadelphia and first advertised in the November 24, 1743 edition of the Pennsylvania Gazette. The University of Delaware traces its origin to this school.
In 1752, Alison moved to Philadelphia, when a vacancy occurred at the new Academy of Philadelphia. He left his New London school in the hands of Alexander McDowell, who moved the institution to Cecil County, Maryland, and, then, to Newark, Delaware in 1763. In 1769, the institution was chartered as the Academy of Newark.
During his life, Alison received numerous honors, including degrees from the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) in 1756, and Yale, in 1775. In 1758, he was awarded the Doctor of Divinity from the University of Glasgow, Scotland, the first such award given to an American.
Alison was known for his "Love of Country and Love of God," (Rev. Thomas Pears) and was regarded as the "greatest classical scholar in America." (Ezra Stiles, President of Yale 1778-1795).
New London Presbyterian Church Cemetery
Plot: Old Cemetery
Created by: a. miner
Record added: Jun 28, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 20145214
|Photos may be scaled.|
Click on image for full size.