Birthdays on March 19
Birth of Pilgrim leader William Bradford. Early adopting separatist views, he was with the Pilgrims from the start, signing the Mayflower Compact. His leadership was so respected that he was elected governor of Plymouth thirty times. His tireless efforts and good sense helped the colony survive and flourish and he wrote the history of the plantation.
David Livingstone (left) was born in Blantyre, near Glasgow. He was converted at 17 and soon after dedicated his life to Christian missions. In 1840 he was sent to Robert Moffat's mission in South Africa by the London Missionary Society. In 1845 he married Moffat's daughter Mary, and soon became more of an explorer than a missionary and aroused much controversy because of his mistatements. He discovered Victoria Falls in 1855. He returned to Africa for the last time in 1865 and spent his last eight years of life there. It was during this exploration, in 1871, that Henry M. Stanley of the New York Herald found him at Ujiji, when all the world thought he was lost. Livingstone traveled over 30,000 miles in Africa. He was awarded many honors. His body was buried in Westminster Abbey, but his heart was buried in Africa.
Birth of William Jennings Bryan, the best-known fundamentalist in America's public life between the Civil War to the Great Depression. A Presbyterian layman, and a thoroughly Christian politician, he began his political career as a newspaper editor, became a congressman from Nebraska, and came to national recognition for his speech at the 1896 National Democratic Convention. He was nominated for President three times, but did not win; was appointed Secretary of State under Woodrow Wilson, where he was responsible for more than 30 international agreements designed to solve problems between nations. But when Wilson refused to apply these principles to Germany, Bryan resigned rather than compromise his principles. It is regrettable that he is remembered mainly for his defense of the Bible in the 1925 Scopes trial in Dayton, Tennessee, for he was strong in defense of righteousness in many other areas. Bryan College was erected to his memory.