Rev Joseph Alden was born 4 January 1807 in Cairo, Greene County, New York, United States to Eliab Alden (1761-1844) and Mary Hathaway (1766-1859) and died 30 August 1885 New York City, New York of unspecified causes. He married Isabel Graham Livingston (1817-1872) 1834 in United States. He married Amelia Daly (1811-) 4 September 1872 in Long Island City, Queens County, New York, United States.


Joseph Alden was an American academic and Presbyterian pastor. He was born in Cairo, New York, in 1807.

He received his bachelor's degree from Union College, going on to receive his advanced degrees from Columbia University.

He was professor at Williams College in 1835, professor at Lafayette College in 1853, president of Jefferson College in 1857, and principal of the State Normal School (now University at Albany, SUNY) in Albany, New York until 1882.

Among his many books, more than seventy, the most well known were Christian Ethics or the Science of Duty (1866), The Science of Government (1867) & Thoughts on the Religious Life (1879).


Offspring of Rev Joseph Alden and Isabel Graham Livingston (1817-1872)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Ida Livingston Alden (1835-1843)
William Livingston Alden (1837-1908)


Vital Records

NY Times Obituary

Obituary appearing in the New York Times, Aug. 31, 1885, page five.

"Rev. Dr. Joseph Alden, D.D., L.L. D., died of pneumonia at 5 o'clock yesterday afternoon at his residence, N. 105 West Fifty-fourth-street, after an illness of only four days. He was born at Cairo, Greene County, NY, Jan 4, 1807, and was a lineal descendant in the sixth generation of John Alden, of the Mayflower.

At the age of 14 he began to teach in a district school, and from that time forth he devoted his life to the work of instruction, and to that end his studies were always directed. In 1825 he attended Brown University, but in his senior year he entered Union College and graduated with the Class of '28. Thence he went to the Princeton Theological Seminary, where he stayed two years, after which he remained two years as a tutor in the college.

In 1834 he married Miss Isabel G. Livingston, daughter of the Rev. Dr. Gilbert R. Livingston, of Philadelphia, and became Pastor of the Congregational Church of Williamstown, Mass. His voice failing in 1835, he was appointed Professor of Rhetoric and Political Economy at Williams College, which position he held for 17 years.

In 1853 he became Professor of Mental and Moral Philosophy at Lafayette College, and in 1857 he accepted the Presidency of Jefferson College, and held that office six years.

In 1867 he was appointed President of the State Normal School, at Albany, where he remained until 1882, when he resigned.

In 1872 Mrs. Alden died, leaving an only son W. L. Alden, recently on the editorial staff of The Times, and the present Consul-General at Rome.

In 1882 he married Miss Amelia Daley, daughter of George Daley, of Staten Island, who is his surviving widow.

In 1839 Union College conferred upon him the degree of Doctor of Divinity, and in 1837 Columbia College the degree of Doctor of Laws.

Dr. Alden's published works include "Science of Government", "Christian Ethics", Elements of Intellectual Philosophy", "Studies in Bryant", "Thoughts on the Religious Life" with an introduction by William Cullen Bryant, and 50 or more books for the young. He was also an extensive contributor to the periodical press. He was well known for his kind disposition and educational capacities, and he died in full vigor of his intellectual strength."



Footnotes (including sources)