John Davenport (clergyman)

From Academic Kids

John Davenport (April 9, 1597March 15, 1670) was a puritan clergyman and co-founder of the American colony of New Haven.

Born in Coventry, Warwickshire, England to a wealthy family (his father was mayor of Oxford), Davenport was educated at Oxford University. After serving as the chaplain of Hilton Castle he became the minister of Saint Stephen's Church in London. In he 1625 returned to Oxford for further studies.

Following a disgreement over the inclusion of the destitute in church congregations, in 1633 he resigned from the established church and moved to Holland. In 1637 he acquired the patent for a colony in Massachusetts and sailed with much his congregation for Boston. In March of 1638 he co-founded the Colony of New Haven along with his classmate, Theophilus Eaton, a wealthy merchant from London who became the colony's first governor.

As a burgess, he held considerable political power in the new colony and continued to influence its development until his death of apoplexy in 1670.

Yale University's Davenport College is named in his honor.

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