|2nd President of Bowdoin College|
|Preceded by||Joseph McKeen|
|Succeeded by||William Allen|
|Born||November 17, 1772
New Ipswich, New Hampshire
|Died||November 12, 1819
|Alma mater||Dartmouth College|
Life and career
After having graduated from Dartmouth College in 1792, Appleton taught at several institutions including Amherst College and then worked at a parish in Hampton, New Hampshire. In the early 19th century, he received the honorary degree of Doctor of Divinity from both Dartmouth and Harvard University. In 1807, he was appointed president of Bowdoin, where he remained until he died of tuberculosis in 1819. A congregationalist minister and prominent Christian lecturer, Appleton was notably determined to make Bowdoin students more pious. He worked at the school, right before it reached its full prominence in the 1820s, when Nathaniel Hawthorne, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, and Franklin Pierce attended. He was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1810, and was elected a member of the American Antiquarian Society in 1813.
He married Elizabeth Means, daughter of Robert Means (Stewartstown, County Tyrone, Ireland, August 23, 1742 – Amherst, New Hampshire, January 24, 1823) and wife (m. November 24, 1774) Mary McGregor (December 6, 1752 – January 14, 1838), and was the father of five children who survived through infancy, including Jane who would become First Lady to President Franklin Pierce, and Frances who would marry famed Bowdoin professor Alpheus Spring Packard, Sr. In 1837, Packard went on to edit The Works of Rev. Jesse Appleton, D.D., with a Memoir of His Life and Character. His wife's sister was Mary Means (Amherst, New Hampshire, October 20, 1777 – April 12, 1858), married on November 6, 1799 to Jeremiah Mason.
- Jesse Appleton Collection at Bowdoin Library (with biographical information)
- Jesse Appleton, Lectures, delivered at Bowdoin college, and occasional sermons, 1822 (at Google Books)
- Jesse Appleton, An address, delivered before the Massachusetts Society for Suppressing Intemperance: at their anniversary meeting, May 31, 1816, 1816.
- "Appleton, Jesse". Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography. 1900.
- "Appleton, Jesse". The American Cyclopædia. 1879.
|President of Bowdoin College