Thomas Hastings (1784-1872) is generally remembered as a compiler and composer of hymn tunes and anthems, but rarely is he spoken of as a prolific writer of hymn texts. Nor do many people refer to Hastings as an author, even though he penned several books and contributed numerous articles for newspapers and journals that were primarily, but not exclusively, related to his lifelong quest to reform the music used for Protestant services of worship.
All of these various aspects of Hastings career are addressed in this, the first published study of Hastings life and career. The book is designed to awaken interest in this musician's contributions and to serve as a foundation upon which future studies of nineteenth-century American sacred music can build. Of particular interest is the fact that much of the material for this biographical profile has been drawn from sources not previously investigated by scholars in the field.