William Ladd [1778-1841] was a ship's captain, merchant, farmer, legislator, and leader of the peace movement in America.
May 10, 1778 - William C. Ladd is born in Exeter, New Hampshire. Click here for source of this information. He is the oldest son of Eliphalet Ladd & Abigail Hall Ladd. He is the eldest of eight siblings. Click here for source of this information. /// Ladd was born in Exeter, N.H. His parents were Eliphalet Ladd [1745?-2/29/1806], a wealthy ship's captain, merchant, shipbuilder, and member of the N.H. State Legislature, and Abigail Hill [1750-9/17/1838] of South Berwick. There other children were: Sarah [7/6/1774-10/12/1798], who married Rev. William T. Rowland; Elizabeth [8/12/1776-11/17/1821, who married Samuel Chauncey; Henry [4/30/1780-1842], who married Hannah Hurd; Charlotte [4/9/1782-?], who married John Langdon [son of Woodbury Langdon]; Alexander [5/9/1784-6/24/1855], who married Maria Tufton Haven; Caroline [5/4/1786-3/10/1803] who never married; Sophia [5/12/1788-? ], who married John P. Lord; Eliphalet [4/25/1791-4/24/1821], who married Mary L. Hurd; and Harriet [8/27/1793-7/31/1800], who died young. Ladd attends Exeter public schools. (Click here for source of this information.)
1789?-1793 - Ladd "fits" for Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, New Hampshire. He is graduated in 1793 at the age of 15. Click here for source of this information.
1792 - Ladd's father, a wealthy sea captain & shipbuilder, moves his family to Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Click here for source of this information. /// Eliphalet Ladd moves to Portsmouth, New Hampshire, about 1795, and in that city becomes an eminent & successful merchant. Click here for source of this information. /// The Ladd family moves from Exeter to Portsmouth in 1792. (Click here for source of this information.)
1793-1797 - Ladd enters Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1793. Click here for source of this information. He excels in Greek & Latin. Click here for source of this information. Ladd is graduated in 1797. Click here for source of this information. He is graduated in 1798. Click here for source of this information.
1797-About 1800 - After college, Ladd sails as a seaman on the Ship 'Eliza,' commanded by his brother-in-law, Capt. Samuel Chauncey. He became master of the 'Eliza' in 1799. (Click here for source of this information.) /// Following graduation, Ladd begins to work for his father as a seaman. Click here for source of this information. /// William Ladd sails as a common sailor in one of his father's vessels & visits London & other parts of Europe. Click here for source of this information. /// By the age of 20 [in 1798], Ladd is promoted to Captain of the 'Eliza.' Click here for source of this information. /// At 20 years old, Ladd is a capable New England captain & has seen much of the world. Click here for source of this information. /// At 20 years of age [in 1798], he will be in command of a ship. He follows the sea until about 1800. His title Captain is thus earned & deserved. Click here for source of this information.
1799-October 1801 - On one of his voyages to England, Ladd meets & marries Sophia Ann Augusta Stidolph. Click here for source of this information. /// On one of his voyages to England, he meets & marries Sophia Ann Augusta Stidolph. Click here for source of this information. /// When he was 21 years old [in 1799], he marries in England, Sophia Ann Augusta Stidolph of London. Click here for source of this information. /// On a voyage from London to Philadelphia, Ladd meets Sophia Ann Stidolph [1780?-12/29/1855] who was living in London, & was traveling to meet her parents in Wilmington, Delaware. William & Sohia are married in London in October 1801; they had no children, Sophia Ladd's siblings included a brother William Stidolph, a brother [?] William Harlim, sisters Mary Whitehead [w. of John], Martha Goodwin, ? Dickinson [son is Henry] and Sally Abbott. (Click here for source of this information.)
February 18, 1802 - "The Town of Minot is incorporated (& the first Town Meeting held on April 5, 1802). Minot was formerly part of Bakerstown Grant, which was given on January 15, 1789 , to Captain John Bridgham, John Glover & 64 other soldiers of the Revolutionary War. Some disputed land titles will be finally settled by the Massachusetts Legislature in 1798. Some of the early settlers were descendants of the Mayflower Pilgrims." (Click here for source of this information.)
Dates? - After leaving the sea, Capt. Ladd lives for a few months in Savannah, Georgia, where he occupies himself as a merchant. From Savannah, he moves to Florida. /// For a brief time, Ladd leaves the sea behind & attempts to raise cotton in Florida. Refusing to use slave labor eventually puts him out of business. Click here for source of this information. /// For a brief time, Ladd leaves the sea behind & attempts to raise cotton in Florida. Refusing to use slave labor eventually put him out of business. Click here for source of this information. /// Ladd briefly has a plantation in Florida (which ultimately fails as he refuses to use slave labor)." Click here for source of this information. /// On a cotton plantation in Florida Ladd undertakes the abolition of negro slavery by the introduction of free labor in the persons of European emigrants. In this he is a failure, and he looses most of his property. Click here for source of this information.
1802-1806 - In 1802, Ladd moves to Savannah, Georgia, & in January 1804 is granted by the Spanish Government about 1500 acres of land in New Smyrna, East Florida, to settle a cotton plantation, primarily using the services of Dutch indentured servants, also called redemptioners. The plantation will fail, and he will leave it in the care of his neighbor Ambrose Hull. William & Sophia will return to Portsmouth in 1806, and he will returnto the seafaring life. (Click here for source of this information.)
1806-1812 - After the death of his father in 1806, Ladd returns to Portsmouth, New Hampshire, & takes over as Captain once again. Click here for source of this information. /// In 1806, the father, Eliphalet Ladd, dies, and William returns to Portsmouth & to the sea, which he follows until the War of 1812 makes such an occupation undesirable. Click here for source of this information. /// William's mother remarried Rev. Joseph Buckminister of Portsmouth after Eliphalet's death. (Click here for source of this information.)
1809 - The origin of Peace Societies may be traced to the publication in 1809 of a tract entitled, "The Mediator's Kingdom, not of this world, but Spiritual," by David Low Dodge [1774-1852], a citizen & merchant of New York City. These societies were an organized religious movement as a protest against war as inconsistent with the teachings of the New Testament. Click here for source of this information.
June 18, 1812 - Start of the War of 1812.
1812 - "A disbeliever in war for any purpose, Ladd turns landsman at the outbreak of the War of 1812, when the British blockade temporarily stops commerce. He moves to Minot, Maine, becomes a prosperous farmer, and devotes both his tongue & his pen to preaching non-resistance." Click here for source of this information.
1812-1815 - Between 1812 & 1814 William & Sophia reside in Portsmouth; William becames involved in the Washington Benevolent Society, writes on the state of the country for the Portsmouth Oracle, & is elected to the Portsmouth Committee of Safety. During this time he purchases his brothers' shares of a farm in Minot, Maine, deeded to them by their father. William & Sophia move to Minot in June 1814. William served as a representative of Minot to the Massachusetts State Legislature in 1815 & as a delegate to the first convention of Maine which formed the independent state government 7 prepared a state constitution. (Click here for source of this information.)
1813 - The Cumberland County Registry of Deeds shows in 1813 that Capt. Ladd buys of James Jewett of New Durham, New Hampshire, 'The New Farm' in the town of Minot, Maine. For this he pays $7,750. In addition to 'The New Farm' he will buy otter lands until he possesses more than 600 acres. To house his herds & crops he has six large barns. He employs many hands, and his farming operations are most extensive & conducted on scientific lines. That his interest among his neighbors is not confined to selfish ends alone is evidenced by the fact that he is a stockholder in the first shoe manufacturing company organized in Minot, now Auburn, January 2, 1835. Click here for source of this information.
June 1814 - As he himself records in his 'Annals of Bakerstown,' William Ladd moves from Portsmouth to Minot & the hill-top where he makes his home and builds his mansion house, dreams of peace, conceives the idea of a Congress of Nations, as set forth in his 'Essay on a Congress of Nations,' and justly earns the title with which his memory is yet honored, "The Apostle of Peace." Click here for source of this information.
1814 - In 1814, Ladd buys a 200 acre farm on Center Minot Hill Rd in Minot, ME. The Ladd home was a large white two story mansion with an observatory on the roof. This home, built by the Washburn family (prominent builders of many homes in Minot during that era), was located across from the Center Minot Congressional Church and Cemetery. (All that remains of the William Ladd homestead is about two acres of land where the house & barns once stood, and the cellar hole to the house. The Town of Minot was deeded the land, and the Minot Historical Society was asked to be its caretaker.) Click here for source of this information.
July 4, 1814 - Ladd delivers at Minot, Maine, an oration, in the closing sentences of which occur these ringing words, "religion, virtue and knowledge shall rule and the Empire of Peace shall be established." Click here for source of this information.
February 18, 1815 - End of the War of 1812.
1815 - "In 1815, the following Peace Societies are created in the United States: The New York Peace Society, the first of its kind, organized as has been seen by Mr. David Low Dodge in August; the Ohio Peace Society, founded on December 2nd; the Massachusetts Peace Society founded December 26th, by the Reverend Noah Worcester, D.D., author of the tract entitled 'A Solemn Review of the Custom of War,' which appears to have converted Mr. Ladd to the ways of peace." Click here for source of this information. /// "Élie Ducommun credited the establishment of the first Peace Society in New York in 1815, and the concept quickly spread to Europe." David Low Dodge [1774-1852] founded the New York Peace Society in 1815, soon after the end of the War of 1812 [1812-1815]. It became an active organization, holding regular weekly meetings, and producing literature which was spread as far as Gibraltar & Malta, describing the horrors of war & advocating pacificism on Christian grounds. /// In 1828, the New York society will merge with others in New Hampshire, Maine & Massachusetts to form the American Peace Society (APS). June 14, 1816 - London (England). Society for the Promotion of Permanent & Universal Peace -- better known as the London Peace Society, the Peace Society or the International Peace Society -- is founded by Quaker William Allen [1770-1843] & Rev. Thomas Harper.
1816 - With Seth Chandler, Ladd is sent as a representative to the General Court, and on September 16 of that year he attends the convention at Brunswick to form a constitution if there should be five-ninths of the voters of Maine in favor of a separation. Click here for source of this information.
July 20, 1817 - Ladd joins the Second Congregational Church of Minot, Maine, and in 1837 he will be licensed to preach the Gospel of Peace. Click here for source of this information.
Dates? - Ladd continues to buy land in Minot until he owns 600 acres. He builds six barns to house animals & store hay and grain. He raised upwards of 700 Merino sheep, horses, oxen & cows. He also has a substantial orchard of apple, plum & cherry trees planted along the road so that hungry travelers could sample them. At the time, the Ladd farm may be the largest in the state of Maine. Click here for source of this information.
Dates? - Ladd is a disciplined church man, frequenting the services at the Center Minot Congressional Church across the street from his home. He even begins the first Sunday School at the congressional church. The church does not have any heat, and services last all day, so during the winter months the congregation is invited to Ladd’s house for lunch to eat & warm themselves. (The original Center Minot Church had been built in 1805, later being torn down in 1846. Lumber from the old church was reused when building the new church, which still stands today.) Click here for source of this information.
1819 - In 1819 Ladd visits Dr. Jesse Appleton [1772-1819], second president of Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. Appleton speaks with Ladd about the work needed to improve the state of the world & secure international peace. Click here for source of this information. /// In 1819, when Capt. Ladd is 41 years old, he sees the Reverend Jesse Appleton (age 47), President of Bowdoin College. Hemenway (Ladd's biographer) will quote Ladd as saying: "I had the privilege of witnessing some of the last hours of the Rev. Jesse Appleton, DD, President of Bowdoin College. In his joyful anticipations of the growing improvement of the world, and the enumeration of the benevolent societies of the day, he gave a prominent place to Peace Societies; and this was almost the first time I ever heard of them. The idea then passed over my mind as the day-dream of benevolence; and so every one views the subject, who does not examine it. It is probable that the impressions made at this interview first turned my attention to the subject, but it probably would soon have escaped from me, had not the Solemn Review, which came soon after into my possession, in a very singular way, riveted my attention in such a manner as to make it the principal object of my life to promote the cause of Peace on earth and good-will to man." Click here for source of this information. /// Appleton will die of tuberculosis soon after his meeting with Ladd.
1819-1820 - "The Maine Constitution is unanimously approved by the 210 delegates to the Maine Constitutional Convention in October 1819. It was then ratified by Congress on March 4, 1820, as part of the Missouri Compromise, in which free northern states approved the statehood of Missouri as a slave state in exchange for the statehood of Maine as a free one. In this manner, northern representation remained in balance with southern pro-slavery influence in the Senate. Maine gains its statehood from Massachusetts on March 15, 1820." (Click here for source of this information.)
c.1821-1924 - By about 1821 Ladd becomes active in the peace movement, apparently encouraged by Dr. Jesse Appleton. He writes articles on peace for the Christian Mirror under the pseudo name of Philanthropos beginning in 1823 & gaves his first lecture in 1824 before the Peace Society of Maine. (Click here for source of this information.)
1823 - No account of William Ladd would be complete without mention of the rugged man who was his pastor & friend Elijah Jones [1790/91-1869], who became pastor of the church at Minot in 1823, and there continued for more than fifty years. To this man must be attributed the Christian -- if that term may be used -- touch of all of William Ladd's writings, for it must have been noted from the foregoing that William Ladd's conception of Peace was of a religious origin. This will be most clearly seen in his treatment of the Lovejoy episode [in 1837]. The idea of a Christian Peace will permeate his great essay on a Congress of Nations [in 1840]. Click here for source of this information.
July 1823 - William Ladd begins his first series of 'Essays on Peace and War,' thirty-two in number, in the Christian Mirror at Portland, Maine. In 1825, these essays will be collected & published in a volume. Click here for source of this information. /// Ladd writes the first of 32 Essays on Peace & War, published in the Christian Mirror of Portland, Maine, which lay out a Christian case for pacifism. Subsequent essays will criticize the slave trade." Click here for source of this information. /// During the summers in Minot, Ladd wrote many essays about the horrors of war & the need of peace. After the harvest each year, Ladd traveled from Minot by horse, boat, and trains to towns in Massachusetts &New York in order to read his essays – encouraging pacifists to unite. Click here for source of this information.
December 15, 1823 - "William Ladd [1778-1841] begins the Peace Society of Minot, Town of Minot, Maine (USA). The first meeting is held at the local blacksmith shop at Minot Corner. Ladd will eventually organize five additional peace societies, and in 1826 will initiate the thought to turn the peace society into a national organization. On May 8, 1828, the American Peace Society is formed in Boston, Masssachusetts. From 1911 to 1948, the American Peace Society headquarters will be located near the White House in Washington, DC. In 1974 the building was declared a historic landmark." [NB: Population of Minot was 2,607 in the census of 2010. Image shows backsmith shop in West Minot, c.1900.]
1825 - Ladd writes a review of Commodore [David] Porter's 'Journal of a Voyage in the Pacific Ocean in the United States Frigate, Essex' [during the War of 1812], in which he [Ladd] criticizes the 'War Trade' as well as the 'Slave Trade.' Click here for source of this information. 1825 - Ladd disapproves the erection of the Bunker Hill Monument [in Charlestown, Massachusetts] on the ground that future generations will look upon the column as a 'monument of the barbarism and anti-Christian spirit of our age.' Click here for source of this information.
July 4, 1825 - Ladd addresses the Peace Society of Oxford County at Sumner, Maine. In December 1825, he adresses the Massachusetts Peace Society, and in February 1824 he speaks before the Peace Society of Maine. Both of these addresses were reprinted in London. Click here for source of this information.
1826-1827 - Ladd eventually organizes five additional peace societies, and in 1826 initiates the thought to turn the peace society into a national organization. Click here for source of this information. On July 4, 1826, Ladd delivers an oration at Exeter, New Hampshire, in which his favorite note of peace predominates. Click here for source of this information. /// In 1827, appears in the Christian Mirror another volume of essays begun in 1825, thirty-seven in all. Click here for source of this information.
1828-1844 - Second & third incarnations of the New York Peace Society (1837-1844). On May 8, 1828, the society merges with others in New Hampshire, Maine & Massachusetts to form the American Peace Society. The society will be re-formed as an independent organization in 1837. Until 1844, it sought to prevent war against Mexico by advocating negotiation. It then dissolved. An attempt was made to re-create it, but this was short-lived."
May 8, 1828 - The American Peace Society is formed in Boston, Masssachusetts. Click here for source of this information. /// "State & local 'peace societies' already existed in the 1820's, but in 1828 the American Peace Society is formed with Ladd as its first president. The first meeting is held in New York City. Ladd writes & publishes the society's newspaper, 'The Harbinger of Peace' (later 'The Calumet' - peace pipe) from his house in Minot, Maine." Click here for source of this information. /// The American Peace Society is formed in 1828. William Ladd is its first president. Its first meeting is held in New York City, May 8, 1828, and in that month & year Mr. Ladd issues the first number of a "Harbinger of Peace." This paper will be issued monthly & has a circulation of about 1500 numbers. The 'Calumet' will take the place of the 'Harbinger of Peace' in 1831 & will be continued four years. The latter publication appeared every two months. The writing & editorial work of these papers was done by William Ladd on the Minot hill-top where he made his home & had his study. Click here for source of this information. /// Image shows first issue (No.l. 1, Vol. 1, May 1828) of "The Harbinger." Its cover says "BLESSED ARE THE PEACE-MAKERS," published at New-York, Under the direction of the American Peace Society.
1828-1841 - Ladd is instrumental in the formation of the American Peace Society [APS] in 1828 & serves as its first president. He edits the APS publication 'Harbinger of Peace' 1828-1831 & writes for its successor the 'Calumet' 1831-1835. He correspondes with the leaders or various peace societies throughout the Eastern United States and England & will spent a great deal of the rest of his life traveling & lecturing. (Click here for source of this information.)
1829-1832 - Between 1829 & 1832 Ladd writes the following books on peace for the improvement of young people: 'The Sword or Christmas Presents,' 'Howard and Napoleon Contrasted,' 'The French *Introduction "An Essay on a Congress of Nations," Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, James Scott Brown, Page IX.WILLIAM LADD 57 Soldier," "History of Alexander the Great." /// In 1830, Ladd writes a tract published by the Minot Peace Society, 'Reflections on War.' /// In 1831, Mr. Ladd published a dissertation on a Congress of Nations in the 'Harbinger of Peace.' This also appears in pamphlet. This is, according to Hemenway, his biographer, the first work on a Congress of Nations ever printed in America. Click here for source of this information. ///William Ladd’s most prominent essay was titled “A Congress of Nations”. Its ideals were later used by President Woodrow Wilson to create a model for the League of Nations – now called the United Nations. Click here for source of this information. /// Portrait of William Ladd was made about 1830.
1834 - Headquarters of the American Peace Society are removed to Hartford, Connecticut. In 1834 [sic] to Boston, Massachusetts. In 1911 to Washington, DC. (The group is now based in Washington. Its official journal is 'World Affairs.') Click here for source of this information.
1834-1837 - In 1834 appears Ladd's 'Solemn Appeal to Christians in Favor of Peace.' In 1835 he issues his work on 'The Duty of Woman to Promote the Cause of Peace.' In 1836-37 he publishes in the Christian Mirror twenty-two essays entitled 'Obstacles and Objections to the Cause of Peace.' The essays afterward will appear in book form. Click here for source of this information.
1836 - Reverend Elijah Jones [1791-1869] became good friends with William Ladd. Reverend Jones’ family of nine eventually out grew their small home in Minot. In 1836, Ladd had a parsonage built for Jones & his family on the Ladd property next door to Ladd’s mansion. This parsonage remains standing & is currently in possession of the Minot Historical Society. You can see more information on the history of this building on the Elijah Jones House page. For information on the historical house renovations, please visit the Current Renovations page. Click here for source of this information.
1837 - "Due to Ladd's influence & against the arguments of other members, including the president of Bowdoin College, the constitution of the American Peace Society is amended to declare that all war is contrary to the Christian Gospel." Click here for source of this information. /// The Constitution of the American Peace Society is revised & the stand taken that all war is contrary to Gospel. This is in accordance with William Ladd's idea, and in the controversy which arose over the amendment he was opposed by President Allen of Bowdoin College. In the same year appeared nine articles in the Christian Mirror addressed to ministers in which Ladd sought to awaken & instruct them in their duty as to the Cause of Peace. Click here for source of this information.
1837 - The magazine "World Affairs" is first published in London (England). (Click here for source of this information.) See 2008.
November 7, 1837 - Death of Elijah Lovejoy [1802-1837] at Alton, Illinois, while defending his printing press against a mob. Ladd takes the ground that Lovejoy was not a martyr, that he did anything but right in resorting to violence, that his conscience would not permit him to say Lovejoy died like a Christian and justified his stand by ample quotations from the teachings and words of the Saviour." (Lovejoy is called the "first casualty of the Civil War.") Click here for source of this information.
1838-1839 - Aroostook War.
1838-1839 - During the so-called Aroostook War (a confrontation between the USA & the United Kingdom over the international boundary between the British colony of New Brunswick & the US state of Maine), Ladd calls attention to the fact that the situation shows the want of a competent tribunal to settle the disputes between Nations. Click here for source of this information. The bloodless dispute will be resolved by the Webster-Ashburton Treaty in 1842.
1840 - "Ladd proposes a plan for a World Congress & Court of Nations, somewhat similar to the later League of Nations or United Nations. He publishes 'An Essay on the Congress of Nations.' He is partly influenced by the military build-up the year before in his home state of Maine because of a border dispute with Britain, the so-called Aroostook War." Click here for source of this information. /// In 1840 appeared the 'Prize Essays on a Congress of Nations,' together with a sixth essay. The American Peace Society offered a prize of $1,000 for the best essay on a Congress of Nations. The committee (Joseph Story, William Wirt & John C. Calhoun) could not agree as to the best effort. Another committee (John Quincy Adams, James Kent & Daniel Webster) was selected, and it could not agree. The Peace Society then concluded to accept the proposal of the first committee to publish five of the best essays. To these five, Mr. Ladd, at the request of-the Peace Society, wrote and added a sixth essay, which was printed & bound with the five prize essays. This volume was distributed among distinguished persons in Europe & America. It is this essay which is William Ladd's greatest claim for enduring fame. It was written at his home in Minot, Maine. In it he gave a new idea to the law of international relations which found expression in the great Peace Congress at Brussels, Paris, London & The Hague. In his Advertisement to his Essay on a Congress of Nations, William Ladd says: 'In reading over these Essays, I noted down every thought worth preserving; and I present them here in a body, with such reflections, additions and historical facts as occurred to me during my labor; so that my claim to originality, in this production, rests much on the thought of separating the subject into two distinct parts, viz: 1st. A congress of ambassadors from all those Christian & civilized nations who should choose to send them, for the purpose of settling the principles of international law by compact & agreement, of the nature of a mutual treaty, and also of devising and promoting plans for the preservation of peace, meliorating the condition of man. 2nd. A court of nations, composed of the most able civilians in the world, to arbitrate or judge such cases as should be brought before it, by the mutual consent of two or more contending nations: thus dividing entirely the diplomatic from the judicial functions, which require such different, not to say opposite, characters in the exercise of their functions. I consider the Congress as the legislature, and the Court as the judiciary, in the government of nations, leaving the functions of the executive with public opinion, "the queen of the world." This division I have never seen in any essay, or plan for a congress or diet of independent nations, either ancient or modern; and I believe it will obviate all the objections which have been heretofore made to such a plan." Click here for source of this information.
1840-1841 - Capt. Ladd lectures on his favorite topic in Albany & Troy, New York, Worcester, Massachusetts, Auburn, New York, Rochester, and other places in western Massachusetts & New York. It is recorded that in some instances he is unable to stand, but addresses his audiences on his knees. Click here for source of this information.
January-April 1841 - Ladd is taken ill while in Canandaigua, New York, in January 1841, while on a lecture tour, but still continues on the tour, giving his last lecture in Boston, Massachusetts. (Click here for source of this information.)
April 1841 - Ladd leaves New York for his home in Minot, Maine. He reaches Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on the 9th of that month. As he retired his wife said, 'now let us kneel down and thank God that you are safe returned.' They knelt & prayed. On lying down he felt the approach of death, but before help could be called he passed beyond. Click here for source of this information.
April 9, 1841 - Death of William C. Ladd in Portsmouth, New Hampshire (USA) at age 62. Click here for source of this information. /// Ladd returned to Portsmouth after giving a speech in New York. He arrived at his family home (now called the Moffatt-Ladd House) & died that night. He was 63 years old [sic]. The Moffatt-Ladd house remains standing in Portsmouth as a national landmark, open to the public. /// Ladd is buried in the Old South Cemetery in Portsmouth New Hampshire. Click here for source of this information. /// On his tomb appears: 'Born May 10, 1778. Died April 9, 1841. Blessed are the Peace Makers for they shall be called the Children of God. Erected by the American Peace Society.' Click here for source of this information.
1843 - Congress of Peace, London (England). "To coordinate the advancement of world peace, the British convened the first Congress of Peace in London in 1843, inviting delegates from peace movements from around the world." "Convened by the London Peace Society [image] on the initiative of the American Peace Society. The participants, most of them Anglo-Saxons, mainly discussed matters relating to Christian humanitarianism. A few social issues, which were subsequently to take on much more importance, did appear, however, together with a proposal that conflicts be settled by mediation." "Following a preparatory congress at London in 1843, a series of congresses called International Congress of the Friends of Peace or more informally 'International Peace Congress' were organised from 1848 until 1853."
1848-1858 - Judge William Jay [1789-1858] is President of the American Peace Society. Click here for source of this photo. December 29, 1855 - Sophia Ladd dies [on December 29] 1855. (Click here for source of this information.) /// Ladd’s wife Sophia lives to the age of 75 & is buried next to him in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. They did not have any children. Click here for source of this information.
1861-1865 - American Civil War.
1861 - "The [peace] societies for the first time are confronted with the classic pacifist dilemma when the American Civil War breaks out. The American Peace Society sees slavery as a greater evil than war & supports the Northern war effort, while the London Peace Society protests against violence in all circumstances." (Source: Santi, 1991.)
1872 - "Un Congrès pour la Paix tenu en 1872 à Philadelphie (USA) par l' Universal Peace Union" (UPU). Only information about this conference is from description of the "Charrue de la Paix" / "Plow of Peace" in Geneva (Switzerland). According to the Swarthmore College Peace Collection, "this militant band [the UPU] grew out of reaction against compromising tactics which the American Peace Society adopted during the Civil War. The new movement was launched at Providence, Rhode Island, in 1866. Taking leading parts were Joshua P. Blanshard, Adin Ballou [1803-1890], Henry C. Wright [1797-1870], Alfred H. Love [1830=1913], and Lucretia Mott [1793-1880]... The UPU held its annual meetings at Mystic Grove, Connecticut [sic - not found on-line], for many years. At the first meetings only about 60 people were present. However, in the 1880's and 1890's the number of attendees soared to close to 10,000."
1872 - "Memoir of William Ladd" by John Hemenway with an introduction by Elihu Burritt [1810-1879]. /// "Burritt joined the American Peace Society in 1843, but quickly took issue with its direction & approach. He aligned himself with the 'radical' element, which rejected all war, including defensive war. By the mid 1840's, he had gained recognition as one of the leading peace advocates in the USA. In 1846, he edited the 'Advocate of Peace,' the journal of the American Peace Society, but he became increasingly disenchanted with the APS, and resigned from the executive committee when it tried to justify the Mexican War as a defensive action. Click here for source of this information.
1890 - "The Ladd Family: A Genealogical and Biographical Memoir of the Descendants of Daniel Ladd, of Haverhill, Mass., Joseph Ladd, of Portsmouth, R.I., John Ladd, of Burlington, N.J., John Ladd, of Charles City Co., Va." compiled by Warren Ladd of New Bedford.
1892-1915 - Benjamin Franklin Trueblood is secretary general of the American Peace Society & editor of the periodical "Advocate of Peace." (Click here for source of this graphic.) /// A Quaker, Trueblood was educated at Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana (AB 1869 & AM 1875) & at the State University of Iowa (LLD 1890). He was president of Wilmington College in Wilmington, Ohio (1874-1879), president of Penn College in Oskaloosa, Iowa (1879-1890), & general secretary of the American Peace Society in Boston & Washington (1892-1915). B
1897 or 1899 - "The Federation of the World" is published by Benjamin Franklin Trueblood [1847-1916]. Image shows Trueblood with Georgia Birdsall, office secretary, in Boston office of the American Peace Society. (Click here for source of this photo.) Click here for more photos of Trueblood.
August 12-16, 1897 - 8th Universal Peace Congress (aka World Peace Congress), Hamburg (Germany). Group photo includes Bertha von Suttner, Benjamin Franklin Trueblood & W. Evans Darby (secretary of the Peace Society in the UK). Click here for other photos from the Swarthmore College Peace Collection, including peace conferences in 1901 (Glasgow), 1906 (Milan), 1907 (Munich), 1908 (London), 1910 (Stockholm) & 1912 (Geneva).
April 1899 - 'Captain William Ladd - The Apostle of Peace' by John Witham Penney, Collections & Proceedings of the Maine Historical Society, Second Series, Vol. 10, Page 113.
May 18-July 29, 1899 - First Hague Peace Conference, Orange Hall/Oranjezaal, Huis ten Bosch/House in the Wood, The Hague (Netherlands). "The 18th of May, 1899! This is an epochal date in the history of the world. Peace Conference! For ten long years the words and the idea have been laughed to scorn..." [from diary of Bertha von Suttner]. May 21, 1899 - Benjamin Franklin Trueblood, president of the American Peace Society, arrives three days after the opening of the First Hague Peace Conference -- according to the Memoirs of Bertha von Suttner. (Click here for source of this information.) /// Image shows "James Tryon (on right) with Benjamin Trueblood, Assistant Secretary (1908-1912) of the American Peace Society [sic]." (Click here for source of this undated photo.)
1905 - Benjamin Franklin Trueblood, secretary general of the American Peace Society, is one of the earliest members of the American Society of International Law (ASIL), being elected to its executive council in 1905. (Click here for source of this information.) /// "The Society was a product of the American peace movement of the late 19th Century & the conviction of a number of leading international lawyers that international disputes should be resolved through formal dispute settlement mechanisms rather than war. Starting in 1895, members of the American foreign policy establishment began meeting annually at Lake Mohonk in upstate New York to discuss these ideas, and at the 11th Mohonk conference in 1905, the idea of a permanent society & journal of international law is born.." (Click here for source of this information.) /// Image shows Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz, New York, site of the Mohonk conferences.
June 15, 1907 - Second Hague Peace Conference, Binnenhof, Hall of Knights, The Hague (Netherlands). "It is a little known fact that the initiative for the Second Hague Peace Conference came from civil society in the USA. Prompted by a petition in 1903 from the American Peace Society in Boston, the Massachusetts legislature passed a resolution requesting Congress to authorize the President of the USA to invite the governments of the world to join in establishing a regular international congress to meet at stated periods to deliberate upon the various questions of common interest. The idea was taken up in St. Louis in 1904 [year of the St. Louis Worlds Fair] by the Interparliamentary Union (IPU) that recommended a conference to deal with the subjects postponed at The Hague in 1899. It led to the negotiation of a series of arbitration treaties among the various nations and the consideration of plans for a series of congresses-the kind recommended by the Massachusetts legislature. President Theodore Roosevelt [1858-1919] responded to this invitation by convening the Second Hague Peace Conference. It was held on June 15, 1907, after being formally convened by the Czar. This time, Russia proposed an agenda limited to improvements in arbitration and humanitarian law, while America suggested discussing the limitation of armaments and the use of force in the collection of debts." //// N.B. Cornerstone of the Peace Palace was laid by Andrew Carnegie on July 30, 1907 (midway through the conference).
May 2-5, 1909 - Second National Peace Congress, Chicago, Illinois (USA). German-born Anna B. Eckstein [1868-1947] took an active part in this congress. Click here for congress proceedings edited by Charles Edward Beals, Field Secretaty, American Peace Society, 31 Beacon Street, Boston. This on-line document contains a very long list of officers & attendees. (In 1916, Beals wrote "Benjamin F. Trueblood: Prophet of Peace, 1847-1916.") May 8-11, 1910 - New England Arbitration & Peace Conference, Hartford, Connecticut (USA). Yale Law School dean Henry Wade Rogers [1853-1926] presided. Benjamin Franklin Trueblood of the American Peace Society was a principal speaker. Click here for NY Times article of May 10, 1910.
1911-1948 - American Peace Society House, 734 Jackson Place, NW, Washington, DC (USA). A Late Victorian 3-story brick house with a hexagonal bay that was the headquarters of the American Peace Society from 1911 to 1948. Constructed in 1878 for financier & philanthropist Charles C. Glover [1846-1936]. Declared a National Historic Landmark in 1974. Included in the Lafayette Square Historic District. Currently used as offices for the White House Council on Environmental Quality. The American Peace Society was founded in 1828 and moved to Washington from Boston in 1911. What happened in 1948? (Stephen Norman [1918-1946], last descendant of Theodor Herzl [1860-1904], jumped off the Charles C. Glover Memorial Bridge three weeks after learning that his parents had died in the Holocaust.) /// The American Peace Society headquarters is located near the White House in Washington DC. In 1974 the building was declared a historic landmark. The house is currently used as offices for the White House Council on Environmental Quality, located at 734 Jackson Place, NW in Washington, DC. Click here for source of this information.
1913-1916 - Benjamin Franklin Trueblood [1847-1916], secretary general of the American Peace Society, is nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1913 -- after translating Immanuel Kant's "Perpetual Peace" & authoring numerous pamphlets & books, including "The Federation of the World" (1899) which contains his two Adin Ballou lectures & "The Two Hague Conferences And Their Results" (1914). (Click here for source of this information.) /// Image shows Trueblood in 1914 "after his illness" in his office at the American Peace Society. (Click here for source of this photo.) /// Trueblood retires in 1915 & dies in 1916.
1914-1918 - First World War.
1916 - 'Prize Essays on a Congress of Nations,' together with a Sixth Essay. 'An Essay on a Congress of Nations' by William Ladd. Reprinted from the original edition of 1840 with an introduction by James Brown Scott, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
August 30, 1921 - Albert K. Smiley Memorial Tower, Sky Top Mohonk, above Mohonk Mountain House, New Paltz, New York (USA). "Smiley's Quaker beliefs led him to...the cause of peace. In 1895, he convened the first of many annual conferences on International Arbitration, held at Mohonk Mountain House. Their purpose was to provide a forum for national & international leaders to meet & discuss world problems in an effort to find alternatives to war. The conferences continued through 1916, & included notable attendees such as President William Howard Taft, William Jennings Bryan & Secretaries of State of successive administrations. These conferences highlighted a concern for peaceful conflict resolution that has been credited with giving impetus to the Hague Conference movement. The United Nations of today can trace its roots back to the Hague Conferences." Click here for source of this information.
January 1922 - Vol. 81, No. 1 of "Advocate of Peace Through Justice," periodical of the American Peace Society. Its cover says "SPECIAL CONFERENCE NUMBER." November 12, 1921-February 6, 1922 - Washington Naval Conference, Memorial Continental Hall, Washington, DC (USA). Also called the Washington Arms Conference. A military conference called by the administration of President Warren G. Harding. Conducted outside the auspices of the League of Nations. Attended by nine nations having interests in the Pacific Ocean and East Asia. Soviet Russia was not invited to the conference. The first international conference held in the USA and the first disarmament conference in history. Studied by political scientists as a model for a successful disarmament movement. Resulted in three major treaties: Four-Power Treaty, Five-Power Treaty (more commonly known as the Washington Naval Treaty) and the Nine-Power Treaty and a number of smaller agreements. These treaties preserved peace during the 1920's but are also credited with enabling the rise of the Japanese Empire as a naval power leading up to World War II."
November 1927 - "William Ladd: May 10, 1778-April 9, 1841" by Arthur Deerin Call, "Advocate of Peace through Justice," Vol. 89, No. 11, pp. 608-611. "While many of his writings are still available, his chief claim to interest in our day is his work of 1840, "An Essay on a Congress of Nations for the Adjustment of International Disputes without Resort to Arms," highly praised in his time and still respectfully referred to by writers on internaitonal affairs as his abiding title to fame... "
May 7-11, 1928 - First World Conference on International Justice, Cleveland, Ohio (USA). Attended by 13,000. "'There never has been a gathering in the US so cosmopolitan as this Conference, nor one in which so many diplomats from foreign countries participated,' said Congressman Theodore Elijah Burton [1851-1929], president of the American Peace Society, at its centennial meeting in Cleveland. The five days of the Conference were called Ohio Day, Centennial Day, Neighbors Day, World Day & Report Day. On the last day, five Commissions reported their findings on how the fields of Commerce & Industry, Justice, Education, Religion & the Social Agencies could better be utilized to insure world peace & international understanding. Speakers at the Conference included ambassadors, ministers & official representatives from England, France, Germany, Norway, Poland, Russia, Canada, Cuba, Nicaragua, Japan, Finland, Hungary, Lithuania, China, Ireland, Roumania, Czechoslovakia & Italy. Prominent churchmen, educators, clubwomen, judges, business men & social workers also spoke. The excellent work accomplished by this Conference brings the world a step closer to the goal of world peace." Burton
July 21, 1928 - The town of Minot celebrates the 100th anniversary of the founding of the American Peace Society & the 150th anniversary of William Ladd’s birth. The town dedicates a plaque to Ladd & the American peace society & places it on a boulder chosen from Amos Giddings Farm on Center Minot Hill Road. The boulder is moved by several strong men & eight horses to the top of Center Minot Hill Road & placed in front of the Center Minot Congregational Church. Click here for source of this information.
July 21, 1928 - William Ladd Boulder, Center Minot Congregational Church, Minot, Maine (USA). Monument created for the 100th anniversary of the founding of the American Peace Society & the 150th anniversary of William Ladd’s birth. Rests on granite from every state in New England, as well as stones from 14 other countries." Inscription on plaque: "In honor of William Ladd, the Apostle of Peace, born May 10, 1778, died April 7, 1841. Organizer and founder of the American Peace Society one hundred years ago. Citizen and resident of Minot, Maine, author of 'An Essay on a Congress of Nations' , an outstanding contribution to world peace. This tablet erected July 21, 1928, in response to a joint resolution of the 83rd legislature of the State of Maine authorizing a commemoration of the memory and services of William Ladd. Blessed are the peace makers for they shall be called the children of God." Click here for source of this information.
1939-1945 - Second World War.
1988 - William Ladd Papers, 1798-1849 - MS017. Provenance: Papers were found in the Moffatt-Ladd House, now owned by the Colonial Dames. Placed on deposit at the Portsmouth Athenaeum in 1988. Citation: William Ladd Papers, National Society of the Colonial Dames in the State of New Hampshire, MS017, on deposit at the Portsmouth Athenauem. (Click here for source of this information.)
2001 - "The Minot Historical Society (MHS) is formed to preserve the history of Minot, Maine. The group is very active & looking to preserve some notable land gifts. One large estate was owned by William Ladd, the Apostle of Peace, who founded the American Peace Society in 1828, which was a forerunner of today's United Nations [sic]. Another estate was owned by the Crosby Noyes family. Mr. Noyes left Minot to pursue a journalism career & became the owner of the Washington Star newspaper." (Click here for source of this information.)
January 2008 - "World Affairs" (“A journal of ideas & debate”), an American right-leaning bimonthly magazine covering international relations, is relaunched as a new publication. It is an official publication of the American Peace Society [and] has been published since 1837. Each issue contains articles offering diverse perspectives on global issues and US foreign policy. World Affairs is headquartered in Washington, DC. Prior to 1932, the magazine was published monthly and under a variety of names, including 'The Advocate of Peace.'" (Click here for source of this information.) /// "The journal was first published in London in 1837." (Click here for source of this information.)
Today - The American Peace Society (APS) is now based in Washington, DC. Its official journal is "World Affairs." (Click here for source of this information.) N.B.: No website found for the American Peace Society. /// "Established in 1837, "World Affairs" is a bimonthly international affairs journal that argues the big ideas behind US foreign policy... Building on this tradition, we launched "WorldAffairsJournal.org" in January 2010. Updated throughout the day, this site highlights news, opinion & research from media, governments & think tanks around the world... "World Affairs" & "WorldAffairsJournal.org" are published by the World Affairs Institute, a newly formed nonpartisan 501(c)3 organization, located in Washington D.C., established to promote public education & awareness on international issues related to war & peace." (Click here for source of this information.) N.B.: World Affairs website does not mention the American Peace Society. Today - "The records of the American Peace Society (APS), housed at the Swarthmore College Peace Collection [Swarthmore, Pennsylvania], consist of meeting minutes, branch material, correspondence, reports, articles, periodicals, pamphlets, scrapbooks, memorabilia, photographs, & personal material from Benjamin Trueblood & his daughter, Lyra Wolkins. The Society's most famous leader was Benjamin Franklin Trueblood [1847-1916]." (Click here for source of this information.)
Afterword - "Such were the activities of William Ladd, the Apostle of Peace, and during the years which he gave so much to the cause of peace, he also found time to carry on his large farm at Minot. He improved the general conduct of agriculture in the neighborhood, he planted orchards, he moved among his neighbors, respected & much liked. He contributed to every good cause. He became an advocate of temperance. He lectured to his fellow-townsmen on that subject. What he preached he practised. /// The homestead of William Ladd at Center Minot is now in the hands of strangers. The elegance of his mansion house is no more. The white church in which he worshiped yet graces the Minot hill-top, and nearby in the churchyard sleeps Elijah Jones. But the idea that William Ladd gave to the world in his great essay yet lives & grows greater & more sublime as men of our day seek a World Peace under its benign & simple doctrine, & as it becomes more & more evident that the better ordering of the world lies in a Congress of Nations & a World Court. Among Maine men who have a claim to fame, none have a greater and sounder cause for respectful memory than William Ladd of Minot, 'The Apostle of Peace.'" Click here for source of this information.
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