Philip Phillips

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Born: 1834

Died: 1895


Philip Phillips was born in Chautauqua County, New York. He showed talent as a child, singing in the church choir, and began teaching singing school at age nineteen. With Wm. Sumner & Co. he formed a partnership of Philips & Co. and sold pianos and organs and published Sunday-school singing books. He travelled town to town with a melodeon in a vehicle, parking on a street corner singing and playing. His business became very successful and he published many volumes of music. He relocated to New York City after a fire destroyed his inventory. He issued his most successful book “Singing Pilgrim.” He toured Great Britain with one hundred evenings, and then toured Australia with stops in many parts of the world. It is estimated he presented over 4,000 services for benevolent purposes throughout the world. He himself became known as the Singing Pilgrim. In response, he authored the book “’Round the World with Descriptive Songs.” He was invited to sing at a large meeting held by the Christian Commission in Washington, DC. The meeting was presided over by Secretary of State Seward and attended by President Abraham Lincoln. He sang his song “Your Mission.” The song and performance were so significant that Lincoln, writing on a scrap of program, requested Phillips to repeat the song. He died in Delaware, Ohio.

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