"And now abideth Faith, Hope, Charity, these three; but the greatest of these in
Charity!"- 1 Corinthians, xiii, 13.
[In this hastily put-together and crude offering, free use has been made of current
relevant publications in the Richmond Dispatch.
It is humbly felt, that in the exemplication adduced, the premises are inherently
The dawn of Friday, January 6th, 1899, brought with is to the people of Richmond, Va., the
knowledge of an event, which in the heart of every one, was as a public calamity; and the
occasion of grief to all.
The animating spark of the so-endeared citizen and minister "Doctor Hoge," had
passed gently to God who gave it, at twenty minutes past two o'clock. His death was not
unexpected, but, it was not the less sorrowful.
Scarce ever, has the rubric gem- "Faith, Hope, Charity," been more impressively
and touchingly exemplified in man, and in not another, have the elementary virtues, it is
felt, more abounded.
Indeed, words seem at fault, and inadequate to depict a life so benignant, so beneficent.
It was one, in its purity, devotion and absence of thought of self not often realized in
such harmonious grandeur of simple blessedness.
His adoration if, and his humble submission to every dispensation of The
sublime-as the trust of a little child.
He was upheld in life to him, that had not its silver lining, whate'er the gloom of its
His tender and expansive heart was eager in its response to every cry of woe, to all
knowledge of want, and suffering, was, to him, as an atoning mantle for human fraility.
Still, he desired not that the world know of what was his paramount enjoyment.
Constant was his succor of the needy, and the effects of his benefactions may never be
Page 256 Southern Historical Society Papers.
A countless multitude have successively rejoiced, in his blessedly protracted
ministrations, in his unheralded bounties.
Whilst the current subtle influence of a character so nearly unique cannot be calculated,
it, as assuredly, was not bounded.
Truly, it permeated ducts of thought broadly, and its influence,, contagiously impelled
action in others, whilst the personal medium, never cared to reckon its inspiring potency.
Dr. Hoge was of us, he could not tear himself from us whatever the dazzling offer, the
attractive and vantage to allure.
Nothing, it seemed, could make him forgetful of endeared association, of cherished and
familiar objects, of the heart-flood of reciprocative affection incidentally attendant
upon a loving ministration, so sweetly and so evenly protracted.
It is transparent that there were no restricting lines with him in heart or hand; in
gracious ministration, in succoring benefaction.
As a citizen, whilst it is palpable there could have been no expectancy of personal profit
(certainly this is clear to the world now), there was never a call upon him, and his
physical ability permitted, for furtherance of any proper object; of devotion, of honored
rite, of intellectual advancement, of public good, nay, of innocent enjoyment, to which he
did not contribute by his honored presence and by invocation and words of cheer.
It is simply true that every one who knew him, or who ever came within the radiance of his
remarkable personality, was attracted to him.
Every man, woman and child here in the compass of his immediate labors, loved him and
revered his virtues. Comprehensive of country of birth, of sectarian tent, of diversity of
avocation, of condition in life; because all felt his influence.
This charm, as well as his intellectual gifts, swayed whithersoever he went, however
distant thus two continented delighted in honoring him.
All this came not by endowment alone. It is held that virtuous ancestry will constrain in
successive generations, and there could scarcely be inheritance more worthy than that of
our loved minister.
Constant still is the publication of tribute to his memory, of his useful offices in
comprehensive offering, and in expressions of sorrow from distant points.
Rev. Dr. Moses Drury Hoge was born at Hampden-Sidney College, Prince Edward county,
Virginia, September 18th, 1818. He was descended on his father's side from ancestors who
Page 257 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
from Scotland and settled in Frederick county, Va., in 1736, on the domain of Thomas Lord
Fairfax, of Colonial memory. His grandfather was Dr. Moses Hoge, President of
Hampden-Sidney College, one of the most eminent among great and good ministers, who have
so richly blessed the Presbyterian Church in Virginia. John Randolph says in one of his
letters that the Doctor was the most eloquent man he ever heard in the pulpit or out of
it. Three of his sons became ministers of the Gospel-Dr. James Hoge, of Columbus, O.; John
Blair Hoge, of Richmond, Va.; and Samuel Davies Hoge, Professor of Natural Sciences in the
Ohio University, at Athens. The last names died early in life, leaving two sons, who
became ministers of the Gospel, the younger of whom was the late Rev. W. J. Hoge, D. D.,
and the elder the late Rev. Moses D. Hoge, D. D., of this city.
The youngest son of Dr. Moses Hoge, of Hampden-Sidney College, was Dr. Thomas P. Hoge, the
only one of his four sons who did not become a minister of the Gospel. He was a popular
physician, and at one time a large planter in Halifax county and an elder in the
Presbyterian Church. He had two sons-one of them captain of an artillery company-and both
of whom were killed in the same battle during the war.
When Dr. Hoge's uncle, Dr. James Hoge, was a young man, he removed to Ohio, then a
frontier State. He went as a domestic or home missionary, and settled at Franklinton,
where there had been a fort for protection against the Indians. He purchased a farm on the
opposite side of the Scioto river, and built the first house were the city of Columbus now
stands. It was through his influence that the asylum for the deaf and dumb and other
philanthropic institutions were build in Columbus. He induced Dr. Hoge's father, soon
after he had been licensed to preach, to remove to Ohio. He was a man of such studious
habits, of such conciliating manners andabulity as a preacher and a college professor,
that he would have attained great distinction but for his death at thirty-three years of
age. After his death all of his family returned to the South.
On the maternal side Dr. Hoge was descended from the Lacy family, which emigrated from
England to Virginia in early Colonial times. His grandfather was the Rev. Drury Lacy, D.
D., President of Hampden-Sidney College, a minister of great eminence and worth. Two of
his sons became ministers-the Rev. William S. Lacy, of Louisiana, and Rev. Drury Layc, D.
D., formerly President of Davidson College, and late of Raleigh, N. C. Many of the
Page 258 Southern Historical Society Papers.
descendants of both Dr. Hoge and Dr. Lacy also entered the officer of the ministry. On
both sides, therefore, Dr. Hoge was undoubtedly of the annointed of the Lord.
Dr. Hoge was educated at Hampden-Sidney College. When he graduated there Dr. Wm. Maxwell,
(whose widow died in this city a few weeks ago, of venerable years) was the president of
the institution, and he was a man of fine attainments, and an ornate and finished speaker.
Among his classmates were Colonel Charles S. Carrington, a whole-souled, splendid man;
Judge F. D. Irving, whom the lawyers called "the grand old man;" Dr. William T.
Richardson, afterwards editor of the Central Presbyterian, and Dr. R. L. Dabney, one of
the profoundest thinkers of the day.
Out of all these distinguished men Dr. Hoge won the first honor, and was the
valedictorian. While at college he gained a widespread reputation as an orator. Members of
his society used to say that his speeches in debate were brilliant and powerful.
BEGAN HIS MINISTRY HERE.
From college Dr. Hoge went at once to the Union Theological Seminary, and he came direct
to Richmond after his ordination, as the assistant of Dr. Plumer, pastor of the First
Presbyterian church. In this capacity his pastoral work had special reference to the
supply of a mission chapel. HI success in gathering worshippers there opened the way for
organizing the Second Presbyterian church. He was naturally called to be its pastor, and
was duly installed. This is the only pastorate that he ever had, although tempting and
pressing calls time and time again came from great cities North and South, and invitations
to the presidency of Hampden-Sidney College, and other literary institutions; to become a
pastor in Lexington, Virginia; St. Louis, Brooklyn, New York, Nashville, Philadelphia, New
Orleans, Charleston, and elsewhere, none of these ever tempted him from the field of his
WHY HE CAME HERE.
The circumstances under which Dr. Hoge came to Richmond seem of moment and interest. As he
drew near the end of his course in the Theological Seminary, a little church in
Mecklenburg county signified its wish to engage him as its pastor as soon as he obtained
his license. About that time, however, Dr. Plumer visited Prince Edward county, and told
Dr. Hoge that he would probably be invited to Richmond to become assistant at the First
Page 259 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
Dr. Hoge said that he would prefer a small country charge, at least until he gained some
experience, and had composed some sermons. Dr. Plumer requested a meeting of the faculty
of the Theological Seminary, explained his wishes to the members, and sent for Dr. Hoge.
They united in advising him to come to Richmond if he received an invitation. There was
another small church in another county to which Dr. Hoge had been recommended, but an
influential elder opposed the call of the ground that he did not think the young minister
qualified for the position.
LICENSED TO PREACH.
Dr. Hoge was licensed to preach at a meeting of the Presbytery in Lynchburg. The
circumstances were without parallel. It was the same church in which his father had been
licensed, and what made the event unique was that Dr. Hoge's father was Moderator of the
Presbutery and gave the charge to his son. Thus three generations of the same family were
connected by this strange sequence of services in the same church.
AS DR. PLUMER'S ASSISTANT.
It was in the year 1844 that Dr. Hoge was invited to Richmond by the session of the First
Presbyterian church. The invitation was accepted, and an arrangement was made by which he
was to assist Dr. Plumber until a lot could be purchased and a small church erected, with
the view of ascertaining whether another congregation could be collected in a new
locality. The site on which the Second Presbyterian church now stands was purchased, a
lecture-room built, a congregation gathered, and on the 27th of February, 1845, Dr. Hoge
was installed as pastor-the Rev. Dr. Leyburn preaching the ordination sermon, Dr. Plumer
delivering the charge to the pastor, and Rev. William Loyn the charge to the people. In a
few months it was found that the lecture-room was too small for the needs of the
congregation, and plans were adopted for the erection of a more commodious house of
worship. Dr. Hoge went, with Mr. Samuel P. Hawes, to New York to obtain a model for the
new church building; an architect of that city was chosen, who drew the plans, in
accordance with which it was erected. It was dedicated in the year 1848, a dedication hymn
having been composed by the late John R. Thompson, and introduced into the hymn-book
subsequently authorized by the Presbyterian General Assembly. In the process of time the
edifice was found too small for the requirements of the con-
Page 260 Southern Historical Society Papers.
gregation, and it was enlarged by throwing a transept across the eastern end, thus adding
two wings to the building, enlarging and beautifying it at the same time. These
alterations were carried out by Mr. George Gibson, an honored deacon of the church, and
perhaps the only original member now living.
An incident connected with the early history of the church illustrates the growth of the
city in a westerly direction. When the officers of the First Presbyterian Church proposed
to purchase the lot on which the Second Church stands, it was earnestly opposed by an
influential member, on the ground that it was too far up-town and that a congregation
could not be gathered at such a remote region.
SENT OUT ITS FIRST COLONY.
In the years 1882 the Second Presbyterian Church sent forth its first colony, now know as
the Church of the Covenant. It occupied the building erected on west Grace street, near
Richmond College, the chief contributor being the late Dr. James McDowell, son of Governor
McDowell, of Rockbridge county. Its first pastor was Rev. Peyton Harrison Hoge, under
whose ministry it was steadily advancing until his removal to Wilmington, N. C. He was
succeeded Rev. A. R. Holderby, who was succeeded by Rev. J. Calvin Stewart, under whose
administration another locality was chosen and a new church erected. This is now one of
the most flourishing churches in the city.
THE OLD-MARKET MISSION.
The second colony sent out from this church was the Old-Market Mission, which has now
become the the strong and well-organized Hoge-Memorial Church. This proved to be one of
the most successful enterprises of Dr. Hoge's life. About twenty years ago he commenced
service in the spacious hall over the Old Market, and it was a success from the first. The
size of the congregation was limited only by the size of the hall; a flourishing
Sabbath-school was established, Bible classes, weekly lectures, visitations, from house to
house, and all the agencies by which the temporal and spiritual good of the people in that
apart of the city could be advanced were employed. So large did the work become that Dr.
Hoge found it impossible to continue to preach three times every Sunday, and personally to
satisfy the requirements of two congregations, as he wished to do, and in consequence the
Rev. L. B. Turnbull was called as an
Page 261 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
assistant to Dr. Hoge, his chief charge being the Old-Market Hall Mission. No better
choice could have been made. Mr. Turnbull became pastor of the Old-Market Hall Church,
after its organization, and it flourished greatly under his care. Owing to impaired
health, he was compelled to resign his charge, and Rev. James F. Cook, one of the young
ministers who grew up in the Second Presbyterian Church, and who had just completed his
theological course, was ordained and installed as pastor of the Old-Market Hall Church.
DEVOTED TO THE CONFEDERACY-SERVED IT IS EVERY WAY POSSIBLE.
During the civil war Dr. Hoge was greatly interested and exercised in the welfare of the
Confederate soldiers, temporal as well as spiritual. He preached to them regularly every
Sunday, and did loving pastoral work in the hospitals. Judge Farrar, in some reminiscences
written for the Dispatch several years ago, had this to say: "During the war I was
closely thrown with Dr. Hoge. The winter of 1862 was a period of disaster to the
Confederate cause. My company was ordered to Richmond to recruit. Sickness prevailed in the
camp, and almost every day some brave fellow was carried to his grave. We had but few
comforts. The men were dispirited. I went to see Dr. Hoge and told him the condition of
things. He did what he could for us. Without hesitation he consented to do so. Rain, hail,
or shine, every Sunday night he was at his post, preaching and visiting the sick, giving
words of comfort and encouragement. I say this: If the Confederate soldier ever had a
friend, that friend was Dr. Hoge. The old veterans loved him. This love was beautiful
illustrated at the meeting of Lee Camp, shortly before Dr. Hoge celebrated the golden
anniversary of his pastorate. Before adjournment an old soldier arose and said: "Mr.
Commanded, I hear that the people are going to give Dr. Hoge a public reception. Lee Camp
ought to be there. Dr. Hoge is one of the best friends the soldier ever had. Why, last
week he buried a man from the Soldiers' Home when the snow was up to his knee." The
camp resolved at once to attend.
WENT ABROAD FOR BIBLES.
Dr. Hoge's most signal service durng the war was in 1862, when he ran the blockade from
Charleston and went to England by way of Nassau, Cuba, and St. Thomas to obtain Bibles and
religious books for the Confederate army. Lord Shaftesbury, the president of the
Page 262 Southern Historical Society Papers.
British and Foreign Bible Society, gave him a hearty welcome, and invited him to make an
address to the society in explanation of the object of his mission. The result was a free
grant of 10,000 Bibles, 50,000 Testaments, and 250,000 portions of the Scriptures, such as
single Gospels, Epistles, the Psalms, and Proverbs bound in black glazed covers, with red
edges and rounded corners, of a size most convenient for the soldiers' pockets. The value
of the donation was pounds 4,000. Dr. Hoge remained during the winter in London,
superintending the shipment of the books by the blockade runners to the Confederacy. He
also obtained a large supply of miscellaneous religious books adapted to camp life, which
were sent over in the same manner, and though some of the vessels on which the books were
transported were captured, at least three-fourths of the Bibles reached the Confederacy.
Dr. Hoge used to say that this splendid donation of the English Bible Society was the
biggest fee he ever got for a speech, and that he reaped a rich reward on his return to
Virginia in visiting the camps and hospitals and lines of battle seeing so many of the
soldiers reading the little red-edged volumes.
It has been stated here that Dr. Hoge was thoroughly Southern in his allegiance. Endeared
customs and familiar objects could but hold in his leal heart. It was in seemingly fixed
surroundings, inevitable that he should hold relationship to that vexed element in national
politics-the negro. He was a holder of slaves-most likely by inheritance. In apology, if
it be so, for that in which the Virginian was simply an involuntary medium of Providence
and benefaction, what follows may be admissible:
AS A SLAVE-HOLDER.
Polk Miller, that wonderful tradacteur, whose delineations of the slave, as he knew him by
association, are so readily recognizable that they have constrained the common judgment,
"Polk is the nigger himself!" testifies.
Mr. Miller is a deacon in the Second Presbyterian Church, and was loved by Dr. Hoge as
he is by everybody.
It should not be forgotten that Polk, in his, is an "Evangel" himself. In
witness, we have only to state his appealing exposition of the mutual tie which bound the
Southern "master and slave"- provider and servitor-educator and
Mr. Miller, in his broad compass of visitation of entertainment and instruction, with
audiences who have been misled by mistaken
Page 263 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
representation, has done more, it is believed, to dispel evil fancies and idle phantasies
born in misguided philanthropy, than have all the cascades of inflated oratory and the
mountains of tractates shed and strewn.
He has a "little story" in his mirthsome repertoire, which he had from a member
of the household of Dr. Hoge. It is somewhat illustrative of what has been just stated,
and is, furthermore, not without humor in the realization of some exemplifications of the
Among the slaves owned by Dr. Hoge was one who had faithfully served him as "carriage
Upon the promulgation of the proclamation of President Lincoln, freeing the slaves, Dr.
Hoge informed Ambrose that he had no longer any right to his service.
"What for?" earnestly asked Ambrose.
Dr. Hoge fully explained, stating that, in law, Ambrose was as a white man, and invested
with all the prerogatives held by his late master.
Ambrose appeared to be stunned by the announcement of his beloved master; gloom overspread
his face, for a moment he was dumbfounded, then he stammered forth in demurrer of his
cruel fate: "I'se bin free all my ife; I'm gwine to strick to my white
people,"-and remain he did for eighteen years. Finally, demands of blood relatiosnhip
called him to the locality of his birth, in a distant county.
But, when opportunity permitted, Ambrose would come "home" to see his old master
and his household, and, as has been the experience with faithful "domestics" of
old, always returned with some gratuity bestowed.
On one occasion Ambrose came with a piteous category of calamity: "I's bin havin' a
gard time dis year anayway. Las' Jenewary, or February, I disremember which, some' possum
hunters come thu my place an' sot de woods afire, an' de fire crope upon my house an' sot
dat a fire, an' when I come out from dar, I never save nothin, but a counterpin.' Den I
got me a house on Briery River an' de freshet wash me out frm dar. Den I had some as nice
Pigs an' Chick'ns as ever you wish to see, an' de Kolry got in amongst de Pigs an' kilt
'em all, and de Chick'ns all died wid de guarps. And if t'warnt for de comfort I gits
out'n de Bible, I couldn't stan't it."
Dr. Hoge listened patiently to the recital, and then, with a twinkle
Page 264 Southern Historical Society Papers.
in his eyes, asked: "From what portion of Scripture do you get so much comfort?"
"You knows Marse Moses de Bible says, dem dat de Lord loveth, he chases, an' de way
He has bun a chasin o'me for de las' years, I known mus' be one 'He favorities."
SOME OF HIS PUBLIC SPEECHES.
On his return from England, Dr. Hoge delivered an address at an anniversary of the
Virginia Bible Society, in St. Paul's Church, to one of the largest audiences ever
assembled in that spacious building.
By invitation of the Virginia Legislature, Dr. Hoge delivered an orationf at the unveiling
of the Jackson statue, by Foley, presented by English gentlemen to Virginia, in October,
1875. The ceremony too place on the Capitol Square, where there had gathered an immense
throng of people, and the scenes and incidents of the memorable day are yet fresh in the
minds of hundreds of Virginians who were present. It was a grand and imposing scene. A
great assembly of brave men and fair women gathered around the pedestal. In the full blaze
of the mid-day sun, the orator faced the surging multitude. With the touch of a master
hand, he outlined the wonderful achievements of the great commander who had filled the
world with admiration. Portraying the characteristics of the unique life of the Christian
hero, in closing the faithful picture, ne could almost see the dying soldier as he looked
beyond the dark, chill floot to his home and rest in the peaceful land.
"Over the river, now a heavenly guest,
Under the shade of the trees forever at rest."
Fresh in the memory of many will be Dr. Hoge's address at the Second Church, in Richmond,
on the occasion of the reinterment of the remains of Jefferson Davis. With an abiding
conviction of the justice of the South's cause, and an intense admiration for the heroic
devotion of Mr. Davis, he spoke in no uncertain tone; yet the address was characterized by
such perfect taste, glowing with such lofty sentiments of patriotism, that one never heard
of an adverse criticism, even from the bitterest enemies of the Confederacy's Chief
At the commencement at Washington and Lee University about
Page 265 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
1867 he was the orator of the occasion. It was a memorable event, being the first time
that General Lee had presided. With matchless grave and dignity he introduced the speaker.
A vast audience of representative people from all parts of the country was present. Dr.
Hoge was in splendid mental trim, and for more than an hour he held the great assembly
spellbound with the witchery of his resistless power. One who was reporting that speech
for a Richmond paper says of it: "I followed the speaker for awhile with my notes,
but gave up the undertaking. I looked around, the other reporters had dropped their
pencils. I said to one of them: 'Why don't you report the speech?' He replied: 'I can't
report the surging of a mountain torrent.'"
One of the most attractive efforts of Dr. Hoge was in 1876, at the centennial celebration
of Hampden-Sidney College. He was on his old tramping-ground, amid the friends of his
boyhood. He gave the reminiscences of the old college. The address was intensely
interesting, sparking, glowing, and facetious. He related a great many amusing things. In
speaking of the changes he told how old Mr. Ritchie, of the Enquirer, had announced in his
papers as a startling piece of news that a steamboat was approaching Richmond at a
wonderful rate of speed-seven miles an hour, up stream. He said in old times, when the
General Assembly of the Church met in Philadelphia, Dr. Alexander was always sent as a
delegate from his presbytery, because he was the only member of that body who knew the
ORTHODOX; NOT SECTARIAN.
Dr. Hoge was thoroughly orthodox. No member of the West-minister Assembly was more so, nor
more devoted to the Presbyterian polity, but he had nothing of the narrowness of a
sectarian. His Christianity was broad enough to embrace all who love Christ. As a
consequence, he was beloved and admired by all denominations, and members of other
churches were constantly found among his congregations. His success as a preacher was due
to a variety of causes all of which conspired to make him a great pulpit orator. His
profound Christian experience and his thorough knowledge of the human heart enabled him to
suit the Gospel message to every class of sinful humanity.
His mind was eminently logical, but his reasoning was overlaid with an exquisite rhetoric,
which, while it detracted nothing frm its strength, imparted to is a never-failing charm.
Page 266 Southern Historical Society Papers.
A ripe scholar, he enriched his discourses with treasures gathered in every field of
knowledge, but whatever passed through the mint of his mind came out impressed with the
stamp of his genius. His unerirng judgment and taste enabled him to select for his
quotations the best thoughts of the best authors, and his illustrations beautified while
they illuminated his subject. He kept fully abreast of the times, and invariably recognize
and attacked the multiform foes of a pure Christianity, whether open or cover.
HIS POWER OF DESCRIPTION.
Dr. Hoge excelled in his powers of description. With a few bold strokes, and with the hand
of an artist, he could bring out his pictures with wonderful distinctness and power, and
added the shading with a delicacy of touch which bespoke the master. He usually spoke
without a manuscript, and this gave full play to a voice and action which were exactly
suited to be vehicles of his eloquent thoughts. His preaching satisfied both the
intellect and the heart, however enlarged they might be.
No more conclusive evidence of his power as an orator could be given than the eagerness
with which they people among whom he had always ministered crowded to hear him. They never
tired of his preaching, and no stranger who might occupy his pulpit, however great his
reputation, could draw the extraordinary congregations of the pastor.
IN POSITIONS OF HONOR.
Dr. Hoge had often been appointed to positions of honor and responsibility by the
Southern General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church. In 1875 he was unanimously elected
to the moderator's chair in the assembly, which met in St. Louis. In 1876, when the
assembly convened in Savanna, Ga., he advocated and carried by overwhelming majorities two
measurers, greatly opposed at the time by some of the most distinguished members. These
were the establishment of "fraternal relations"-not "organic
union"-with the Northern Presbyterian Church, and the sending of commissioners to
represent the Southern Church in alliance of the reformed churches of the world. In 1877
he was a delegate to the Pan-Presbyterian Council, which met in Edinburgh.
His paternal ancestor fleeing from persecution for his religious faith, was of that worthy
strain which has entered so influentially
Page 267 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
into the elements of Virginian character, which has made it so distinctive-the Huguenot-as
referred to in the following statement:
A very graphic letter was written by Moncure D. Conway, and extensively published in this
county, describing Dr. Hoge's appearance and the effect of a speech he delivered in the
Council, especially the impression produced when he spoken of the old Bible which one of
his family ancestors, fleeing from persecution, had carried to Holland-the Bible often wet
with the salt spray of the sea and the salt tears of the sorrowing exiles, its leaves
yellow with age, and the names of the family register faded and dim, but bright, as the
speaker believed, in the Book of Life.
Dr. Hoge was also a delegate to the meeting of the Evangelical Alliance, which met in New
York in 1873, in which he made an address in vindication of the civilization of the South.
He also attended the Alliance of the Reformed Churches of the World, which met in
Copenhagen in 1884, and made there an address, which obtained for him an invitation to
visit the Crown Princess of Denmark at the Palace.
He was sent as a commissioner to the Alliance of the Reformed Churches, which convened in
London in 1888, and his subject before that body was "The Antagonisms of Society and
How to Reconcile Them."
His last mission of the kind was eight years ago, when, at the Conference of the
Evangelical Alliance in Boston, he delivered a speech which was pronounced by the press of
that city to have been one of the most effective of all that were made at that meeting,
and extracts from which were frequently published and commented on by the newspaper press.
PASTOR FOR FIFTY-THREE YEARS-HAD SERVED BUT THE ONE CHURCH-NOTABLE ANNIVERSARY
When at home Dr. Hoge, up to a few months ago, usually occupied his own pulpit during both
services on the Sabbath, though it would often give him rest were he to invite some other
minister to take his place. Until recent years he preferred to go abroad for recreation.
The bracing effect of the sea voyage and the mental and physical invigoration derived from
the social life and ever varying scenes and incidents of travel in Old World, secured for
the overworked pastor not only needed rest, but fresh stores of information which he
turned to good account on his return for the benefit of his own people.
Page 268 Southern Historical Society Papers.
His longest absence was during the years 1880, when he visited Egypt and Palestine,
returning through Bulgaria and Hungary by way of Rustchuck, Bucharest, Budapest, and
Vienna to Paris. This tour embraced the Oriental cities of Cairo, Jerusalem, Damascus,
Constantinople, and Smyrna.
DEGREES CONFERRED UPON HIM.
The degree of D. D. was conferred on Dr. Hoge by Hampden-Sidney College in June, 1854, the
degrees of LL. D. by Washington and Lee University at the commencement in June, 1886. That
commencement was a centennial celebration. At the invitation of the Board of Trustees, Dr.
Hoge delivered an historical discourse. There was a peculiar propriety in selecting him as
the representative of the University on that occasion, as his grandfather, Dr. Moses Hoge,
was a member of the first class on which degrees were conferred by that institution
(successively known as Liberty Hall Academy, Washington Academy, Washington College, and
Washington and Lee University), one hundred years before.
HIS FORTY-FIFTH ANNIVERSARY.
In February, 1890, the forty-fifth anniversary of Dr. Hoge's pastorate being near at hand,
the session of his church made arrangements for a public celebration of the day (27th),
and it was agreed that the chief ceremonies should take place in the Academy of Music. And
so, on that occasion that spacious edifice was crowded to overflowing with an audience
thoroughly representative of the worth and intelligence of the city and country, and,
among the distinguished people occupying seats on the platform were the Governor and
Lieutenant-Governor of the State, the Mayor of the city, and representatives of the
various religious denominations. Governor McKinney presided, and addresses of
congratulation were made by the Hon. W. W. Henry; Rev. John Hall, D. D., of New York;
Rt.-Rev. A. W. Wilson, D. D., of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South; Hon. J. L. M.
Curry, LL. D., of the Baptist Church; Rt.-Rev. A. M. Randolph, of the Protestant Episcopal
Church of Virginia; Rev. R. P. Kerr, D. D., of the Southern Presbyterian Church, and the
following also had voice in the programme of the evening; Rev. H. C. Alexander, D. D.,
Rev. J. Calvin Stewart, Governor McKinney Lieutenant-Governor J. Hoge Tyler, Colonel C. R.
Barksdale, Rev. P. H. Hoge, D. D., and Rev. H. H. Hawes, D. D.
Page 269 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
The concluding address of the evening was that of Dr. Hoge returning thanks for the
congratulations extended to him, and reviewing briefly, but with exceeding eloquence, the
chief events of his pastorate.
Altogether, the celebration of February 27, 1890, was a great popular recognition of the
services of Dr. Hoge, and an unmistakable expression of the confidence of the public in
his piety, zeal and ability.
The success of this celebration was the chief topic of conversation of the day, and an
account of it, in book form, was issued. But great and impressive as was the observance of
the forty-fifth anniversary of Dr. Hoge's pastorate, it was transcended by that
commemorating his fiftieth anniversary. The dissimilarity between the two was remarkable,
great care being taken to avoid the repetition of anything that occurred at the former
anniversary. Each was unique in itself, and each of its kind was an unsurpassable tribute
of a dmiration and affection to a minister in whim the world found a rare combination of
goodness and greatness.
The movement to celebrate the golden anniversity of Dr. Hoge's pastorate orginated with
the Ladies' Benevolent Society of the Second Presbytrian Church. The organization
presented the pastor with a durable souvenir of the event, which tookk the place of a high
relief bust portraiture of himself, with the inscription, "Rev. Moses D. Hoge,
1845-1895," and on the reverse the words. "Second Presbyterian Church, Richmond,
A reception was held in the Masonic Temple on Tuesday, February 26, 1895, that building
beind tendered for the occasion by the Masons of the city. The programme included a
banquet, at which were present the Governor of the State, the clergy of the city, and Dr.
Hoge's immediate relatives. The public reception followed. The hearts of the whole people,
irrespective of religious affiliations and convictions, was in the movement to do Dr. Hoge
honor, and until nearly midnight there was a surging throng pressing through
the portals of the Temple to meet him, to great him, and testify their love and respect
for him. The occasion was made a testimonial of affection and admiration for the eminent
divine such as it falls to the lot of few men to receive. Indeed, it was a grand civic and
military demonstration that would be unique in the history of any city and State-a
concentering of all creeds, all classes, all professions, to
Page 270 Southern Historical Society Papers.
bear eloquent witness to the fact that Dr. Hoge belonged to the entire community.
The members of his own congregation and choir, the veterans of the Soldiers' Home,
Confederate societies, the congregation of Beth Ahaba, the Church of the Covenant and the
Old-Market Church presented to Dr. Hoge substantial tokens of their love and admiration,
and fights from private sources, telegrams and letters of congratulation poured in upon him
from persons of every shade of religious conviction and every class.
The formal celebration of the semi-centennial anniversary closed on the night of February
27th in a manner that was a fitting finality of the two days' jubilee, and the
demonstration passed into the history of Richmond as constituting a tribute to a citizen
seldom, if ever, equalled in the experience of a community.
The programme, which was carried out at the Second Presbyterian Church consisted of
elaborate music, devotional exercises and a reminiscent discourse of Dr. Hoge. There was
another vast outpouring of the people, but hardly a tithe of those who surged to the church
succeeded in gaining admittance.
SOME LUMINOUS DISCOURSES.
Those who have listened to Dr. Hoge during the past thirty years often refer to certain of
his luminous discourses when he seemed full of divine afflatus, and certain of his
pathetic appeals, when saddest music sounded in the tones of his voice; a discourse, for
example, such as he delivered with startling power, many years ago, from the text,
"The Kingdom of God is within you;" or a discourse of a different kind,
delivered on a dreary, soulless day, from the text, "We have piped unto you and ye
have not danced, we have mourned unto you and ye have not lamented," the former
strikingly brilliant and animated, the latter a classic-a prose poem attuned to a minor
key. The solemn warnings to the unconverted, the prophetic words of wisdom to the church
and the gracious words of sympathy and consolation that have fallen from his lips, can
never, never be forgot.
Notable, too, have been those mournful addresses, like sobbing threnodies, delivered with
almost measured cadence, on the occasion of state funerals. The last address of this
character was made over the bier of United States Senator Vance, in the Senate chamber.
President Cleveland and his Cabinet attended the obsequies, and
Page 271 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
some time afterwards the President spoke of Dr. Hoge's perfect
taste and profoundly impressive style as a funeral orator. Among his more lofty and
elaborate orations, the one which will probably live longest on the printed page and in
the memory of those who heard it, was that on "Stonewall" Jackson, delivered to a
throng at the unveiling of the bronze monument in Capitol Square in 1875. It was a sublime
The earliest literary production in pring is probably a lecture delivered by him at the
University of Virginia, Session of 1850-1, on the Evidences of Christianity, and
published, with others, with portraits of the lecturers, in a Royal 8vo. volume, New York,
Dr. Hoge was an LL. D., as well as a D. D., but he never attached the LL. D. to name. He
was the only man in this part of the world, perhaps, on whom the degree of D. D. had been
twice conferred. He received the degree of D. D. from Hampden-Sidney College many years
ago, and from Princeton University in 1895.
Dr. Hoge married April 19, 1844, Miss Susan Wood, of Prince Edward county. The good wife,
who was to long the joy of his life, died in this city twenty-four years afterwards. Four
children survive him. Dr. Moses D. Hoge, Jr., who was an extensive medical practice here,
is his oldest son, and Mr. Hampden Hoge is in business in New York city. His oldest
daoughter, Mary R., is the wife of M. M. Gilliam, Esq., attorney at law, in this city. She
was active in assisting her father in his work, and Miss Bessie L. Hoge, the youngest
child, was his loving and ehlpful companion, taking the keenest interest in all his church
work. Besides the above, Dr. Hoge had one son and two daughters, who died in infancy. His
grandchildren are Mr. Hoge Gilliam, Miss Mary Marshall Gilliam, and little Alice Aylett
Hoge, the last-named being the infant daughters of Dr. M. D. Hoge, Jr., who married Miss
Alice Aylett, daughter of Colonel Wm. R. Aylett, of King William county, three years ago.
MADE A MASON LATE IN LIFE-AN HONOR CONFERRED UPON HIM WHICH NO OTHER MAN EVER
Dr. Hoge died a Mason. He entered the noble brotherhood but a few weeks before his death,
having become a member of Dove Lodge, No. 51, of which Captain J. W. Lockwood, Jr., is
worshipful master. The eminent minister had the distinction of being the
Page 272 Southern Historical Society Papers.
only man upon whom the Grand Master of Masons of Virginia fever bestowed the honor of
conferring the degrees in person at a private residence. This interesting ceremony occurred
in Dr. Hoge's chamber on the evening of November 22d, and was witnessed by a number of
distinguished members of the craft. Dr. Hoge had been balloted for as a member of Dove
Lodge, and was not, therefore, made a Mason at sight, though Grand-Master R. T. W. Duke,
Jr., communicated the degrees and declared him a Mason.
It was through the instrumentality of Worshipful-Master Lockwood that this Masonic honor
was conferred upon this distinguished man. The matter had been under consideration for
nearly a year, but the details were not arranged until after the severe accident to Dr.
Hoge. As soon as the candidate was strong enough to sit up and receive the degrees, which
were, of course, conferred under special dispensation and without the usual form and
ceremony, Grand-Master Duke came to Richmond for the purpose, and, accompanied by the
officers of Dove Lodge and a few others, repaired to Dr. Hoge's home, where he was made a
Mason. Worshipful-Master Lockwood appointed the new member one of the chaplains of the
lodge, and Dr. Hoge, who had previously made a beautiful address, expressive of his
appreciation of the honor and of his admiration for the institution of which he had just
become a member, offered the prayer, with which the meeting closed.
The occasion was one of profound interest, and marked an unique epoch in Masonry in
Early in the present year Dr. Hoge, with the demands upon his time constantly multiplying
and his labor as well as his years increasing, began to feel the need of a co-worker in
the pastorate, and Rev. Donald Guthrie, as though sent by Providence, came to Richmond on
a visit for the benefit of his wife's health, and such mutual attachment sprang up
resulted in his becoming co-pastor with Dr. Hoge. Mr. Guthrie is a brilliant young man, an
exceptionally logical and eloquent speaker, and has completely won the hearts of the
Richmond people. He is a native of Ontario, Canada, and was pastor of Knox church, at
Walkerton, for three and a half years before coming South. The weak state of his wife's
health made a change of climate necessary last winter, and his church gave him three
week's leave of absence in order that he might come South with Mrs. Guthrie. By chance he
met Mr. W. G. Higginbotham, from Richmond, a fellow Canadian, and at his suggestion he
decided to come here with the intention of proceeding to other points in the South. He
brought letters of in-
Page 273 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
troduction to Dr. Hoge, whose advise and influence he sought with reference to securing a
settlement somewhere in the South. Mr. Guthrie preached at the Second Presbyterian church
twice and at the First church once, and was offered by Dr. Hoge a position as assistant
for three months, with the understanding that if there was mutual satisfaction some
permanent relationship would be entered him. In April, just before the three months' term
as assistant came to an end, Mr. Guthrie was invited to Baltimore to preach at the First
church, the pastorate of which Dr. Witherspoon had resigned to come here, and later he was
extended a call at a salary of $5,000, the free use of a manse, and two months holiday
every summer. The Second church here about the same time extended Mr. Guthrie a cal to
become co-pastor at a salary of $2,500 a year, and having become attached to the
congregation and having a deep personal regard for Dr. Hoge, he decided to remain here,
feeling perfectly satisfied that this was the right thing for him to do.
The installation of Rev. Mr. Guthrie as co-pastor was to have taken place on Sunday
afternoon, November 26th, but Dr. Hoge's physicians felt that it would be unwise for him
to attend the service, over which he had been appointed by Presbytery to preside, and it
was postponed-first, for a week, and then indefinitely.
DECLINE IN HIS HEALTH.
While Dr. Hoge's death was probably hastened by his recent accident, in having an electric
car to collide with and overturn his buggy, his strength had been failing for some time.
For eighteen months he struggled heroically against incurable deseases, and no one but a
man of his tremendous will power would have attempted to withstand their onslaught and
continued at his daily task. It was often predicted by those who knew him that the eminent
divine would die in his pulpit. It was especially characteristic of him that during his
long illness at the White Sulphur Springs last summer, it was not the pain he suffered
that wrung a complaint from him, but the fact that he was losing precious time from his
work, and he was wont to say that he would not mind his ailments if he could only be at
his desk again.
As the shadows lengthened around him, what blessed memories must have filled his mind,
what glories of brightness must have hallowed the retrospect of a life so gracious,
devoted and true!
Page 274 Southern Historical Society Papers.
DR. HOGE'S LAST HOURS.
Dr. Hoge's last hours were calm and serene. Life ebbed with him so low all day Thursday
that it was realized that the end was close at hand. He slept fitfully, but was too weak
to talk. Shortly after 9 o'clock at night his daughter read to him the twenty-third Psalm.
It was one of his favorite portions of the Scriptures, and as she read the latter verses,
of which he was particularly fond, his lips framed the words they could not utter. At 10
o'clock Mrs. Gilliam lelf him folding his hands upon his breast, and so he fell asleep
like a little child. He never moved again, and at twenty minutes after 2 o'clock of the
morning of January 6, 1899, his life went out with softest respiration. There was no
struggle or movement, even when the end came at last, and he lay with his hands clasped
just as his daughter had left them, his face serene and smiling, grand in the awful
majesty of death.
The final resting place of Dr. Hoge is in the old part of the cemetery past the ravine,
and almost opposite the graves of the President Monroe, Tyler and Davis. In this lot there
now lie the remains of Rev. Dr. William J. Hoge, brother of Dr. Hoge, and his wife; Mrs.
Moses D. Hoge, wife of the deceased, and the four children who preceded him to the grave.
The elders and deacons of the Second Presbyterian church, met at 5 o'clock Friday evening,
and after adopting a series of resolutions, undertook the arrangements of the details of
the funeral services. The Rev. Donald Guthrie presided. It was decided that the funeral
should be held at 2 o'clock on Sunday afternoon in the Second Presbyterian church. A great
number of applications from various organization wishing to be represented at the funeral
were received and considered. The conclusion arrived at were that if one were recognized
then all would be entitled to recognition, and the church could not possibly accommodate
all who would come in that way. The eldest and deacons said they would be pleased to see
such committees, but they could not undertake to reserve any special place for them. They
felt that Dr. Hoge belonged to the whole city, and they could not, without depriving
many, make any special reservation for the members of the congregation even, could only be
set aside for the members of the family, the pall-bearers, the ministers of the various
churches in the city,. and the officers of the church. There was some discussion as to
whether or not admission should be by ticket, but the suggestion was not entertained, and
Page 275 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
was decided to open the doors of the church at 1:30 o'clock. By express request of Dr.
Hoge the obsequies were simple and unostentatious. The pall-bearers were chiefly from the
membership of his church. No military cortege followed, although many organizations
solicited the privilege. Yet the loved remains were met at the gates of beautiful
Hollywood by the sered inmates of the Soldiers' Home and by the Veterans of Lee and Pickett
camps-through whose parted ranks, with bowed and bared heads, the mournful line passed and
The funeral took place Sunday afternoon, January 8th, from the church of which Dr. Hoge
had been pastor for over half a century, and was attended by a great concourse of people.
The serviced was quite simple.
From the many tributes to the memory of Dr. Hoge and the several analyses of his gifts and
characteristics, the following may be cited:
Rev. Richard McIlwaine, D. D., President of Hampden-Sidney College, writes of his interest
HIS INTEREST IN EDUCATION.
Nowhere outside the circle of his immediate family and church will be death of this
honored servant of God be more lamented and occasion a deeper sense of loss than at
Hampden-Sidney. He was born at this place during the presidency of his grandfather and
while his father was a professor in the college, in a building still standing and in use.
He was graduated here with the highest honors of his class, along with such men as Hon. W.
C. Carrington, Colonel Charles S. Carrington, Judge F. D. Irving, and Rev. W. T.
Richardson, D. D. When still a young man he was elected a member of the Board of
Trustees-an office the duties of which he punctually and regularly filled throughout life,
being seldom absent, and often presiding over the deliberations of the board. He was twice
calld to the presidency of the college, a position which he did not see his way clear to
accept. He never seemed to be in finer spirits or to enjoy himself more than during our
annual commencements, using every power in public and in the social circle to lend eclat
to the occasion and promote then enjoyment of others. He was a conspicuous figure at the
last commencement and made one of the finest bries addresses of his life to the graduating
class immediately after they had received their diplomas. So accustomed were the people of
Prince Edward to hear him, and such delight did they take in lis-
Page 276 Southern Historical Society Papers.
tening to his charming utterances, that for years, no matter what other speakers were
present, they were wholly dissatisfied with the exercise unless his voice had been heard.
The common feeling was expressed some years ago, when he was not present, by a lady who
had ridden twenty miles to see and hear him, as she had been accustomed to do, and has
regularly done since, when she said: "This is no commencement at all. Dr. Hoge is not
INTEREST IN EDUCATION.
The explanation of all his besides the fact of his wonderful power of speech and his
attractive grace as a man, is to be found in his deep devotion to the place, his pride in
its history, his sympathy in its aspirations, and his thorough and absorbing belief in
Christian education as auxiliary and essential to the real and permanent progress of the
Christian religion. Dr. Hoge was no only a Christian, a gentleman, but he was educator. He
believed in it. He distrusted that kind of religion which willingly remains in ignorance
or willingly allows others to continue in this deplorable state. Immediately after
graduation he was chosen to teach in the college. During the earlier years of his
ministry, under the force of circumstances, he conducted in his own house a seminary for
young ladies which gained high repute and at which many of the finest women of the land
were trained. He was for years a valued trustee of Union Theological Seminary, and had
much to do with the founding and success of "The Home and School" at
Fredericksburg and of "Hoge Academy," at Blackstone. He was always in through
sympathy with the young. He understood their possibilities and was anxious to see them
make the most of themselves, and in order to do this, to afford them the best
opportunities for improvement. His sincerity in the cause of education was abundantly shown
by his generosity in bestowing his time, his efforts, and his money in its behalf. He was
not only a benevolent but a beneficent man, and gave of his means freely and to nothing
more liberally than to the Christian educational institutions. Hampden-Sidney has again
and again participated in his bounty. He once spoke to his congregation in my presence
almost in these identical words: "I have often thought that if I were suddenly
endowed with wealth, the first use I would make of it, before attending to any other claim
or even making provision for the members of my own family, I would adequately endow
Hampden-Sidney College in order that it may be fully prepared for the great
Page 277 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
work before it." Few men in the country have had more to do with educational
institutions than he or been more honored by them. He loved to breathe their atmosphere
and was refreshed in spirit; by contact with them. Only in June last be remarked to me
that he did not know any one who had attended more college commencements.
Besides Hampden-Sidney for the past fifty years, he mentioned Randolph-Macon, Richmond
College, the University of Virginia, Washington and Lee University, the universities of
North Carolina and Mississippi, Princeton, Yale, Harvard, Oxford, in England, and then
added, "many others in this country and in Europe."
Perhaps no man in the commonwealth has been so identified with our higher institutions by
the delivery of literary addressed and special sermons on important occasions. Many of
these have been published, either in volumes along with the addresses and sermons of other
distinguished gentlemen, or in pamphlet form. If gathered together in a separate volume
they would constitute a valuable contribution to the literature of the South, and give an
admirable picture of the man of letters and of wide and accurate culture; the devoted
servant of God; the sympathetic mentor of youth; the scribe widely instructed in all useful
knowledge, bringing out of his treasures things new and old for the delectation and
improvement of his fellowmen. It thus appears that few men have been more honored in their
generation by whose recognition is the highest praise, and that none have more worthily
responded to the calls made upon them. Early in life he was thought worthy of the degree
of Doctor of Divinity by his Alma Mater. He received the degree of LL. D. from Washington
and Lee University on the occasion of its centennial celebration on 1886. Princeton
University honored itself in selecting him for the degree of D. D. from among all the
ministers of the South two or three years since, when it ceased to be the College of New
Jersey and took on the form of a university.
Rev. Robert P. Kerr, D. D., writes of him as a minister, and further portrays his
character as follows:
AS A PRESBYTERIAN MINISTER.
I experience a mournful pleasure in complying with the request of the Dispatch that I
write a brief tribute to the memory of Dr. Hoge as a minister of the Presbyterian Church.
There are many reasons of a personal nature, growing out of my close relations with him
for the fifteen years of my residence in Richmond, which constrain me,
Page 278 Southern Historical Society Papers.
with affection and gratitude, to pen the following inadequate sentences:
From my earliest recollection, Dr. Hoge has been the one of all our ministers who most
frequently, and always with honor to himself and his denomination, represented the
Presbyterian Church in great Ecclesiastical assemblies of Christians in America and
Europe. By reason of his breadth of sympathy, his wide acquaintance with public men, and
his splendid ability as an orator, there was no man of his time who could, with more
propriety, grace and impressiveness, rise to an occasion. He always challenged first the
attention, and then the confidence and admiration of his audience, whether in an American
city or beyond the sea. We have lost the man who most represented the Southern
Presbyterian Church to the Christian Church at large, and to the world; the man of whom,
whenever he appeared in the arena of a national or international assembly, we were always
In our own church courts Dr. Hoge had little interest, and took small part in the details
of Ecclesiastical procedure. He was not given to much speaking, but only on occasions of
importance did he take the floor. When he did, it was with a gentle and easy grace,
coupled with masterly eloquence, and always on broad lines and for peaceful measures. He
was never polemical, always irenic. Probably there is no living man whose feelings Dr.
Hoge ever wounded in the least degree in debate. His courtesy was a principle and an
HIS PULPIT CHARACTERISTICS.
As to Dr. Hoge's pulpit characteristics, these are well known in most cities of the
English-speaking world. Partly from his natural endowments, and partly from his wide
studies and careful preparation for preaching, he spoke with an exquisite grace of
thought, diction and manner, that caused him to be regarded as a model sacred orator.
There was in his style a charm, a fascination, difficult to analyze, and yet impossible to
resist. No one who heard him could help listening, and was bound to acknowledge that the
speaker felt every word he uttered. He was an evangelical of evangelicals, and held
unwaveringly to the time-honored doctrines of the Church. He espouses no novelties in
theology, but preached Christ and Him crucified, revealed by infallible Scriptures, as the
only hope of sinful men, and the sufficient Gospel, for a lost and ruined world.
Few men have had so great a gift in comforting the afflicted, both
Page 279 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
by public and private ministrations, and from the faces of hundreds who weep for him now,
has he often wiped away the bitterest tears in time of sore bereavement.
In public prayer he was recognized as a model. Almost any one of his extemporaneous
prayers was worthy of being kept for permanent liturgical use. He voiced the aspirations
of those whom he led at the throne of grace, saying what they felt but knew not how to
express, in such a way as to kindle and intensify devotion, and to infuse a calm and
peaceful resting at the feet of the great High Priest of our profession.
When he read a hymn, he made it sermon, a prayer and a vehicle of praise. It is safe to
say no man could do it better. Each thought and shade of thought were interpreted by the
silver voice, and the heart that responded to each holy impulse of the sacred lyric.
TRUE, BEAUTIFUL, AND GOOD.
So one might go on at any length to speak of the power of this remarkable man, in his
chosen sphere, and in his own and only pulpit which he illuminated for fifty-three years,
which was the focus, and object of all his study-the throne from which his influence went
forth far and wide. His whole life and work stood as a protest against what was not true,
beautiful, and good, and were an inspiration to everything that looked towards the
advancement of the best interests of men, and the glory of the God whom the faithfully
AS A COMFORTER AT THE SICK-BED.
Among the most precious memories of the dead minister, cherished are by those whose
privilege it was to receive his tender and solacing ministrations, and the many who were
the recipients of his sympathetic attentions and consolations on the bed of suffering. He
was so careful of causing anything of surprise or shock, so noiseless in entering the sick
chamber, so soothing in voice and so soft in touch and so comforting and sustaining in
counsel and sympathy. The invalid always testified, warmly, as to the benefit received;
fever seemed to be abated, pain subdued, and anguish tranquilized. "Oh you make me
feel so much better, you comfort me so," was the constant assurance.
His personality was truly winning and his very touch was magnetic, was the grateful meed.
The gentle Doctor had a way of his own of taking both hands of
Page 280 Southern Historical Society Papers.
the suffered or distressed in his, and softly holding them; as it were to lift up, to
render by double current from the heart, all the sympathy and comfort he could give.
Dr. McGuire has often said that Dr. Hoge in his singular aid, was the most potent
assistant he had in the recovery of his patients. Dr. Kerr says:
AS A GENTLEMAN, CITIZEN AND FRIEND.
"If the subject assigned, permitted me to write of Dr. Hoge as a gentleman, a
citizen, and a friend, I would speak of him as one who constituted the radiant centre of
any circle in which he appeared, as a man ready to serve in all proper ways the community
that always delighted to honor him, and as one who, under no circumstances, would fail to
take the part of those who enjoyed the privilege of his regard. The principles that
underlay his character as a gentleman, a citizen, and a friend, were fidelity to truth and
a generosity that knew no bounds. Now that he is gone, all must feel that a personality of
the first magnitude is removed from the Church, the city and the State, and thousands to
rise up to call him blessed, and I, with a hand trembling from sorrow, beg to lay this
humble tribute along with those of many others, beside the bier of my great and noble
As has been stated, our various city papers were crowded with tributes of regard for Dr.
Hoge, from prominent ministers of varied sectarian tenets, from veteran bodies, charitable
institutions, fraternal orders, and admiring friends-and still expressions of reverence
continue to come from distant points.
Judge George L. Christian, so regardfully held in this community for his fidelity and
unassuming worth, and for his constant and useful service in various positions of
honorable trust, contributory to enterprise and progress-and who has been associated with
Dr. Hoge as an Elder in the Second Presbyterian church for a number of years-writes of him
PREACHER, MAN AND FRIEND.
One of the strongest points about Dr. Hoge as a preacher was that, whilst a fine scholar,
and a faithful student in the preparation of his discourses, he did not shut himself up in
his study or cut himself off from contact with his fellow-men, either in their business
pursuits or social enjoyments. He felt that the best way to help in lifting fallen
humanity was that of the Master, "who went about doing
Page281 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
good;" and hence he was a member of the Chamber of Commerce, and was frequent in
attendance at its meetings, and was also a conspicuous figure at nearly every public and
private entertainment given in the city.
He was a man of great public spirit, lending his influence and presence to any and every
measure instituted in the community for the advancement of good or the suppression of
vice, and was ever ready with his talents, time and purse to contribute to the promotion
of the public weal.
He thus, in earnest desire and in sympathetic contact, saw many phases of character, and
could realize contingent want as might no other minister of the Gospel, who followed
And Dr. Hoge had the faculty of using these experiences in his sermons withy marvelous
tact and taste.
He was really a born leader of men. He knew how to harmonize and tranquilize the
conflicting elements with which he was brought in contact, as well, if not better, than
any other man I have ever known, and this characteristic may doubtless account, in a great
degree, for a fact which he often referred to with pride and pleasure: That, in the more
than fifty years' pastorate of one church, there was never a disturbing element or
wrangling of any kind in that church.
His taste of manner and expression was even more wonderful, if possible, than his tact in
guilding and controlling men. I never heard him say or knew him to do anything in the
pulpit that was not almost rigidly clerical, and his taste of expression far surpassed
that of any speaker I ever heard.
I have heard this remarked on frequently by some of the best scholars and critics in this
country, and it has been a common thing to hear it said of him that be always said the
right thing, at the right time and in the right way. He had the best command of language
of any man that I ever hear, and could express the most delicate shades of meaning with a
fidelity and aptness that was simply wonderful.
I cannot better illustrate the impression made by his preaching on those who were
competent to judge, than by relating what was told of himself by a distinguished preacher,
in a distant city, who had invited Dr. Hoge to preach for him.
He said that when Dr. Hoge arose in the pulpit, and (as was his wont) looked over the
congregation, looking first in front of him, then on one side and finally on the other, he
thought to himself: "Jones, that man is sick; you will have to preach today."
Page 282 Southern Historical Society Papers.
after thus hesitating. Dr. Hoge began in a low, melodious, yet distinct, tone, which could
be heard in the remotest corner of the church, and after proceeding about five minutes,
the visited said to himself: "Jones, you will not have to preach today;" and
after listening fifteen minutes, he said to himself: "Jones, you never did preach in
Dr. Hoge really loved to preach, and could do so with more ease than any one I ever heard.
He often preached three sermons a day, after he had almost attained the age of four score
I have heard him say that he was sermonizing nearly all the time, and he was certainly the
readiest and ripest men in his line that I ever knew.
I striking illustration of this occurred whilst he was on a visit to Baltimore, not many
years ago. He was stopping at the Rennert Hotel, and as he was alone and it was Wednesday
evening, he determined to go to the nearest church to the appointed service.
It was a Methodist church; the services had commenced. The minister had not only risen to
preach but had announced his text; when some one went to him and said that Dr. Hoge was in
The preacher then invited Dr. Hoge to sit with him in the pulpit. This request Dr. Hoge,
in courtesy, was constrained to accept.
The preacher then said: "The Reverend Dr. Hoge, of Richmond, is present, and he will
confer a great favor on me and my people if he will preach for us tonight," and
turning to Dr. Hoge, he pressed him to do so.
Dr. Hoge was, of course, totally unprepared for such an exigency, but nevertheless, he
acceded to the request.
Taking for his text that given out by the pastor of the churchy, he delivered, as has been
stated to me, one of the very best sermons ever heard in Baltimore.
Within my knowledge, in several instances, when speakers for special and important
occasions have been unavoidably absent, he has been asked to supply their placed and I
never knew him to fail in the slightest degree in any expected requirement.
He was a great worker, and although of such advanced age, and of physique, seemingly so
frail, he could yet by evidence in dutiful performance and general presence, endure more,
and more undermittedly than any one I have ever known. He gave himself to the public, and
was at work practically all the time, for general weal.
I have hear him say, that too often he had not the time at his
Page 283 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
command to begin preparation for his regular Sunday sermons, until after 10 o'clock the
Saturday night preceding, and that he had to go from his study to his pulpit on Sunday
morning, without having been able to take a moment of rest the night before.
A qualification of Dr. Hoge has been referred to-his quenchless zeal in good works-his
In instance it is apposite to present a statement from the eminent surgeon and physician,
Dr. Hunter McGuire, whose intimate association with Dr. Hoge is so well known.
In a conversation of the writer with Dr. McGuire, occurring during the last illness of Dr.
Hoge, Dr. McGuire stated that to severe had been the shock sustained by the feeble and
frail tenement of the mighty spirit, that he could not hope for Dr. Hoge to recover, and
he added, that the patient himself did not cherish this delusion.
At the White Sulphur last summer, when Dr. Hoge experienced so prostrating a visitation,
and when his whole system was so gravely involved in threatening complications of
disorder, that everybody was painfully apprehensive, "Dr. Hoge did not give up,"
said Dr. McGuire.
One day he cheerfully remarked to his anxious physician, "Doctor, I am going to get
up again" and "I'll yet ride Lucille (his favorite old mare), all around your
place,"-referring to a country place near the city, owned by Dr. McGuire.
He was a an of marvelous will-power, and this, with his sweetly sympathetic heart,
sustained to a degree of accomplishment, that but few eve aspire to.
As to this exemplification, of all sacrifice of self in undertaking doubtful or tributary
performance, the Editor would fain bear testimony. In the trying heat of August, in making
preparation for the interment, but recently, of an endeared connection, and a member of
Dr. Hoge's congregation, he conferred with the pastor as to the hour for service and
subsequent interment. Something of preparation had been interposed by undertaker and brick
mason. The admirable pastor simply said, "before the sun sinks, it will be found the
most trying time of the day, but I am thinking only of those who will attend, I will
go." The plea was inexpressibly touching. The hour was made later-and everything went
But, to resume the extracts from the loving tribute of Judge Christian-he states as to the
fixed fidelity of Dr. Hoge, to principle, right and controlling associations: "Dr.
Hoge was in sentiment an intense Southerner. He believed that the Southern Confederacy
Page 284 Southern Historical Society Papers.
was justified in the position taken by it in the War between the Stated; and, whilst he
never obtruded his views about this, or any other political matter, on the public, he
never swerved one iota from his opinion and this question, or hesitated to express it no
"There was scarcely a Confederate demonstration in Richmond, for which he was not
called upon to often invocation or to take a prominent part, and whatever he said on such
occasions, was in ever instance pronounced by those who heard them as matchless gems of
"He loved the Veterans of the Confederacy and would never allow any one else to
officiate at the burial of those who died at the Soldiers Home, when he was able to do
He was for a score of years or more a member of the Executive Committee of the Southern
Historical Society, and his zeal was constant in behalf of its interests and the fulfilment
of its justly reverent objects.
Of him, the now aged Chairman of the Executive Committee, the oldest surviving
Major-General of the Confederate Army, but whose life-long animus holds with his
heard-best - General Dabney H. Maury, writes to Judge Christian recently from Peoria,
Illinois, where he is no a visit to his son:
"I have just heard of the death of Dr. M. D. Hoge, our friend and associate in the
work of the Southern Historical Society. It has been a source of manly pride to me, that
from the first [institution of the Society, in May, 1869], I was associated with the great
Dr. [B. M.] Palmer, of New Orleans, and have been since, continuously with Dr. Hoge in the
worthy work of our Southern Historical Society; and feel that when our children and our
children's children point to that proud record, they will rise up and bless us. Much has
been done righteously and effectively to its end.
"High courage is the very foundation of high and noble manhood.
"Dr. Hoge had courage of the highest order.
"All our good people will mourn his absence from our noble community. He was worthy
of the highest place in it. Had he been a soldier, he would have been a brave soldier-a
great general-as he was a brave men, and dared do what became a brave and good Christian
gentleman. I hope and know that our people will honor his memory, as they loved and
honored him when alive."
The following may be embodied as additionally illustrative:
Page 285 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
BROOKLYN, N. Y., January 7, 1899.
DR. R. P. KERR, 502 Grace Street, Richmond, Va:
The tribute of his Northren brethren to beloved Dr. Hoge is found in H. Samuel, third
chapter, thirty-eighth verse.
(Signed) THEODORE L. CUYLER.
The passage alluded to is:
"And the king said unto his servant, Know ye not that there is a prince and a great
man fallen this day in Israel:"
LOOKS NATURAL IN DEATH.
A few friends were admitted to see Dr. Hoge's body. His face looked younger thanin life,
and all traces of emaciation which were evident during his last illness had disappeared.
His countenance was natural and untroubled, and his figure, as he lay upon a couch, with
his lead and shoulders slighty raised upon a pillow, looked majestic. A photograph was
taken of the deceased for the members of the family.
The remains were placed in a casket made of cedar wood, covered with black cloth. It was
very neat but entirely simple. A small silver plate on the lid bears the following
REV. MOSES D. HOGE, D. D.
BORN 18TH DAY OF SEPTEMBER, 1818;
Died 6th day of January, 1899.
TRIBUTES OF RESPECT.
Among the bodies that took action upon the death of Dr. Hoge were the First Presbuterian
Church, First (colored) Presbyterian Church, and the Soldiers' Home Board of Visitors.
The resolutions of the Soldiers' Home Board contain a tender reference to his love of the
Southern cause and his devotion to those veterans who sufferedd for it. The preamble calls
to mind Dr. Hoge's readiness at all times to officiate in the chapel of the home, and to
perform the last sad rites for any of the veterans who passed away.
The resolutions convey to the family the "heartfelt sympathies" of the Board
Page 286 Southern Historical Society Papers.
FROM DR. KERR'S PEOPLE.
At a meeting of the session of the First Presbyterian Church, the following action was
The session of the First Presbyterian Church convened to take action on the removal from
his earthly labors of the Rev. Moses D. Hoge, D. D., LL. D., on January 6, 1899, would
place on record an expression of our sense of bereavement, as a session, and in behalf of
the church we represent in the loss of one so useful, honored and beloved, and who for so
many years has been a leader in the work of the denomination, and an exponent of true
religion in the Church, the city and the State.
The First Presbyterian Church recalls with pride that during the pastorate of the Rev. Dr.
William S. Plumer, in 1844. Dr. Hoge preached in our pulpit his first sermon in Richmond,
where he had been called by the session to lead a movement for the establishment of
another congregation. In the selection of a man for this work, the session of taht day
were divinely guided, as subsequent history has abundantly shown.
In February, 1845, seventy-four members were dismissed to organize the Second Presbyterian
Church, under the pastorate of the Rev. Moses D. Hoge, who came fresh from the hall of
Union Theological Seminaty to this, his first, and, as it proved, his only charge. The
splendid history of his nearly fifty-four years of service in our midst cannot be written
here. Suffice to say that the mother church has ever regarded with affection and gratitude
the steady growth and increasing influence of the Second Church, under the wise and able
leadership of their noble pastor, ut to the present moment, whenis stands as one of the
strongest congregations of the denomination. Few churches and few pastors have made such a
record, and now that he, by whose labors and prayers it was mainly accomplished, has
finished his course, we stand with uncovered heads rememering the years that have come and
gone during which Dr. Hoge was a witness for truth and reighteousness, and says:
"Servant fo God, well done; thy toild are over; thy race accomplished; the victory
won." And we doubt not he has already heard from the lips of that Master whom he
loverd: "Eneter thou into the joys of thy Lord."
We tender to the Second Presbyterian Church our deepest sympathy in their bereavement,
commending them to the care of the Great Shepherd, whose "rod and staff will comfort
Page 287 A Memorial-M. D. Hoge.
Especially do we offer to the family, benift of a devoted father, our hands and hearts,
accompanied by our prayers, that in this time of sore distress they may feel
"underneath them the everlasting arms," and that they may hear the voice of
Jesus sayind: "Lee not your hearts be troubled; ye believe in God; believe also in
Me. In my Father's house are many mansions. I go to prepare a place for you."
As for ourselves, in view of the event which calls us together today, each one of su would
say: "Le tme die the death of the righteous, and let my last end be like his."
Copies of this action of the session are ordered to be sent to the family of our deceased
brother, and to the session of the Second Presbyterian Church.