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Harris, Thomas Lake,, 1823-1906

 Person

Thomas Lake Harris, a Christian mystic and poet, was born in Ferry Stratford, England, on 15 May 1823, and died in New York, NY, on 23 March 1906. At the age of five his family emigrated to American and settled in Utica, NY. Although raised in a strict Calvinist family he was converted to Universalism in 1843, whereupon he entered the ministry and was pastor of the Fourth Universalist Society in New York City. In New York Harris became acquainted with Andrew Jackson Davis who introduced him to mysticism. He wrote numerous articles on the topic and founded a monthly journal, The Herald of Light (1857 - 1861). After travels and lectures in England he returned with Lady Oliphant to upstate New York and founded a spiritual community called "The Use". "The Use" went west to Santa Rosa, CA in 1875 and founded a vineyard, "Fountain Grove". In 1891, after the death of his second wife, he married his secretary and moved to New York City where he spent the remainder of his life.