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Timeline Event


1739 - 1741

In September 1739, Brainerd enrolled at Yale University, but was sent home suffering tuberculosis the following year. He returned in November 1740, to a controversy over spiritual excitement among the students in the wake of visits from Great Awakening preachers. Students were censured for making any remarks on the spiritual fitness of the trustees or tutors, and in early 1741, Brainerd was expelled for negative comments about a tutor. His expulsion was a blow, for the law at the time barred any man from entering ministry unless he had graduated from Harvard, Yale, or a European university.

Key people


David Brainerd

David Brainerd was born on April 20, 1718 in Haddam, Connecticut, the son of Hezekiah, a Connecticut legislator, and Dorothy. He had nine siblings, one of whom was Dorothy’s from a previous marriage. He was orphaned at the age of nine, as his father died in 1727 at the age of forty-six and his…

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