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Theodore Tilton (October 2, 1835 – May 29, 1907) was an American newspaper editor, poet and abolitionist. He was born in New York City to Silas Tilton and Eusebia Tilton (same surname). On his twentieth birthday, October 2, 1855, he married Elizabeth Richards. Tilton's newspaper work was fully supportive of abolitionism and the Northern cause in the American Civil War.

Theodore Tilton was present at The Southern Loyalist Convention held in Philadelphia in September 1866. Frederick Douglass writes of him in his autobiography:

“There was one man present who was brave enough to meet the duty of the hour; one who was neither afraid nor ashamed to own me as a man and a brother; one man of the purest Caucasian type, a poet and a scholar, brilliant as a writer, eloquent as a speaker, and holding a high influential position-the editor of a weekly journal having the largest circulation of any weekly paper in the city or State of New York- and the man was MR. Theodore Tilton. He came to me by the hand in a most brotherly way, and proposed to walk with me in the procession.”

From 1860 to 1871, Tilton was the assistant of Henry Ward Beecher. He gave the 1869 commencement speech for the Irving Literary Society.

In 1874 Tilton filed a complaint against Beecher for "criminal conversation" (adultery) with Elizabeth Richards Tilton and sued for a $100,000 judgment.[1][2]

The Beecher-Tilton trial ended in a deadlocked jury. Afterwards, Tilton moved to Paris, where he lived for the rest of his life. In the 1880s, Tilton frequently played chess with fellow American exile (but ex-Confederate) Judah Benjamin, until the latter died in 1884.

Work referencedEdit

Robert Plant put Tilton's 1858 poem "The King's Ring: Even This Shall Pass Away"[3] to music, a recording of which is on Band of Joy.

Principal worksEdit

  • Victoria C. Woodhull. A Biographical Sketch. 1871.
  • Tempest-Tossed A Romance. 1874.
  • The Complete Poetical Works of Theodore Tilton in One Volume With a Preface on Ballad-Making and an Appendix on Old Norse Myths & Fables. 1897.

ReferencesEdit

  • Fox, Richard Wightman. Trials of Intimacy Love and Loss in the Beecher-Tilton Scandal. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1999.
  • Applegate, Debby. The Most Famous Man in America: The Biography of Henry Ward Beecher. New York: Doubleday, 2006.
  • Tilton's literary work Accessed January 25, 2008
  • Life and Times of Frederick Douglass, Chapter “Vast Changes”. Reference to Theodore Tilton
Specific
  1. ^ Theodore Tilton Vs. Henry Ward Beecher: Action for Crim. Con. Tried in the City Court of Brooklyn, Chief Justice Joseph Neilson, Presiding. Volume 1. McDivitt, Campbell & Company. 1875.
  2. ^ Theodore Tilton Vs. Henry Ward Beecher, Action for Crim. Con. Tried in the City Court of Brooklyn, Chief Justice Joseph Neilson, Presiding. Verbatim Report by the Official Stenographer. Volume 2. McDivitt, Campbell & Company. 1875.
  3. ^ Tilton, Theodore (1897). The Complete Poetical Works of Theodore Tilton in One Volume: With a Preface on Ballad-making and an Appendix on Old Norse Myths & Fables. T. Fisher Unwin.

External linksEdit