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Charles Crozat Converse (October 7, 1832 – October 18, 1918) was an American attorney who also worked as a composer of church songs. He is notable for setting to music the words of Joseph Scriven to become the hymn "What a Friend We Have in Jesus".[1] Converse published an arrangement of "The Death of Minnehaha", with words by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.[2]

Charles Crozat Converse
BornOctober 7, 1832 Edit this on Wikidata
Warren Edit this on Wikidata
DiedOctober 18, 1918 Edit this on Wikidata (aged 86)
Alma mater



He was born in Warren, Massachusetts. He studied law and music in Leipzig, Germany, returned home in 1857, and was graduated at the Albany Law School in 1861.

Many of his musical compositions appeared under the anagrammatic pen-names “C. O. Nevers,” “Karl Reden,” and “E. C. Revons.” He published a cantata (1855), New Method for the Guitar (1855), Musical Bouquet (1859), The One Hundred and Twenty-sixth Psalm (1860), Sweet Singer (1863), Church Singer (1863) and Sayings of Sages (1863).[3]

Converse proposed the use of the gender-neutral pronoun, "Thon".[4]


  1. ^ "Charles Crozat Converse". The Cyber Hymnnal. Archived from the original on May 27, 2012. Retrieved July 25, 2009.
  2. ^ Cornelius, pg. 9
  3. ^   Wilson, J. G.; Fiske, J., eds. (1900). "Converse, Charles Crozat" . Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography. New York: D. Appleton.
  4. ^ Grammar and Gender by Dennis Baron (ISBN 0-300-03883-6), chapter 10.


  • Cornelius, Steven (2004). Music of the Civil War Era. Greenwood Publishing Group. ISBN 0-313-32081-0.

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