He was born in Greenfield, Massachusetts. He studied under Dudley Buck in Hartford, Connecticut, counterpoint under Carl August Haupt, and piano under Carl Albert Loeschhorn in Berlin. In 1874-76 he was organist of the First Congregational Church, Chicago; afterward organist and choirmaster of the First Presbyterian Church for 17 years and from 1875 to 1908 was director of the Hershey School of Musical Art. In 1877-79 he gave a series of 100 organ recitals, with entirely different programs, a memorable achievement in American musical annals. He played at several expositions in America and abroad, and gave recitals in the principal American and European cities. He composed several works for the organ. He died in Chicago, Illinois.