Reuben Post

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Reuben Post (January 7, 1792 – September 24, 1858[1]) was a Presbyterian clergyman who served two separate terms as Chaplain of the United States House of Representatives (1824 and 1831) and also served as Chaplain of the Senate of the United States (1819).[2]

Early life[edit]

Post was born January 7, 1792 in Cornwall, Vermont, the son of Roswell and Martha (Mead) Post.[3] He graduated from Middlebury College, Vermont, in 1814, then studied for the ministry at Princeton Theological Seminary.[4]


Post was ordained in Washington, D.C. on June 24, 1819. He was immediately installed as the second pastor of First Presbyterian Church, Washington D.C., succeeding Rev. John Brackenridge, D.D. John Quincy Adams was a regular worshiper there during Post's tenure.[4]

On December 9, 1819, Post was named Chaplain of the Senate.[5] On December 6, 1824 and again on December 5, 1831, Rev. Reuben Post was named Chaplain of the United States House of Representatives.[6][7]

Post continued at First Presbyterian Church until June 24, 1836 when he was called to serve the Circular Church in Charleston, South Carolina. His inaugural sermon at the Circular Church was from Acts 10:29.[8]

Personal life[edit]

Reuben Post married Harriet Moffitt, a granddaughter of Richard Henry Lee, on January 7, 1823. Their children were: William, Harriet Lee (Mrs. Henry L. Pinckney), Emily, Frances, and Richard Henry Lee Post.[3]

Later years[edit]

Post served as pastor of the Circular Church for 23 years. He was also president of the board of supervisors of the high school in Charleston. In 1858, Post took a vacation to his native Vermont; while there a yellow fever epidemic broke out in Charleston. Post returned at once to care for members of his congregation, and soon fell victim himself and died in the 23rd year of his pastorate there. A memorial tablet was placed in the church and his gravestone is in the church courtyard, along with those of his wife and daughter—they are in the shapes of chess pieces: a king, a queen and a rook.[9]


  1. ^ History of the Presbyterian Church in the United States of America, Volume 1 By Ezra Hall Gillett , p 20
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b Catalogue of the officers and students of Middlebury College in Middlebury, 1915, page 34.
  4. ^ a b A History Of New England, Volume 2, edited by R. H. Howard, Henry E. Crocker; p 258
  5. ^ "Senate Chaplain". United States Senate. Retrieved January 14, 2010. 
  6. ^ Presbyterian Historical Society, Montreat, NC.; see:
  7. ^ "History of the Chaplaincy, Office of the Chaplain". Retrieved 2008-09-14. 
  8. ^ Annual Obituary Notices of Eminent Persons Who Have Died in the United States, 1859, page 268.
  9. ^ The Circular Church: Three Centuries of Charleston History, by Joanne Calhoun, page 73.
Religious titles
Preceded by
John Clark
Chaplain of the United States Senate
December 9, 1819 – November 17, 1820
Succeeded by
William Ryland
Preceded by
Henry Bidleman Bascom
Chaplain of the United States House of Representatives
December 26, 1824 – December 6, 1830
Succeeded by
Ralph Randolph Gurley
Preceded by
Ralph Randolph Gurley
Chaplain of the United States House of Representatives
December 5, 1831 – December 3, 1832
Succeeded by
William Hammett