Famous 19th Century American Philosophers

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Vote for Your Favourite 19th Century American Philosophers

 1 
Ralph Waldo Emerson
(Famous For his Essay 'Nature' and Speech Entitled 'The American Scholar')

Ralph Waldo Emerson
9
Birthdate: May 25, 1803
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Died: April 27, 1882

Ralph Waldo Emerson was an American philosopher who led the transcendentalist movement that developed in the eastern United States in the 1820s and 1830s. He is credited with popularizing individualism through his numerous lectures and essays. Emerson influenced many thinkers and writers that followed him; he mentored Henry David Thoreau, who went on to become a leading transcendentalist.

 2 
John Dewey
(Philosopher)

John Dewey
8
Birthdate: October 20, 1859
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Burlington, Vermont, United States
Died: June 1, 1952

A staunch advocate of progressive education and liberalism, the American philosopher and psychologist was the founder of the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools. John Dewey’s famous writings included The Reflex Arc Concept in Psychology and Human Nature and Conduct. According to him, passion for knowledge and intellectual curiosity were central to a teacher. He called himself a democratic socialist.

 3 
William James
(Philosopher, Psychologist)

William James
4
Birthdate: January 11, 1842
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States
Died: August 26, 1910

William James was an American psychologist and philosopher. Widely regarded as the father of American psychology and one of the most influential American philosophers, James was the first educator in the United States to offer a course in psychology. He is also credited with co-founding a psychological school of thought called functional psychology and establishing a philosophical school called pragmatism.

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 4 
Henry David Thoreau
(Naturalist, Philosopher & Author Of 'Walden')

Henry David Thoreau
4
Birthdate: July 12, 1817
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Concord, Massachusetts, United States
Died: May 6, 1862

Henry David Thoreau was an American philosopher, essayist, poet, and naturalist. He is credited with popularizing transcendentalism and simple living. His philosophy of civil disobedience, which was detailed in his essay of the same name, later influenced world-renowned personalities like Leo Tolstoy, Martin Luther King Jr., and Mahatma Gandhi.

 5 
George Herbert Mead
(Philosopher)

George Herbert Mead
3
Birthdate: February 27, 1863
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: South Hadley, Massachusetts, United States
Died: April 26, 1931

American philosopher and social psychologist George Herbert Mead was one of the pioneers of pragmatism and symbolic interactionism. He taught at the University of Chicago, and his ideas later came to be known as the Chicago school of sociology. His notable lectures were published as books only after his death.

 6 
Charles Sanders Peirce
(Scientist, Philosopher)

Charles Sanders Peirce
3
Birthdate: September 10, 1839
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
Died: April 19, 1914

 7 
Alfred North Whitehead
(Mathematician, Philosopher)

Alfred North Whitehead
3
Birthdate: February 15, 1861
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Ramsgate, Kent, England
Died: December 30, 1947

Alfred North Whitehead was a British mathematician and philosopher, best known for his collaboration with his student Bertrand Russell on Principal of Mathematics, a three-volume work on the foundations of mathematics. Also known for his pioneering works on process philosophy and metaphysics, he is credited with developing a comprehensive metaphysical system that differs from most Western philosophies.

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 8 
Norbert Wiener
(Father of Cybernetics)

Norbert Wiener
3
Birthdate: November 26, 1894
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Columbia, Missouri, United States
Died: March 18, 1964

 9 
Lewis Mumford
(Architect, Historian of technology, Historian, Sociologist, Screenwriter, Literary critic, Philosopher, Journalist)

Lewis Mumford
3
Birthdate: October 19, 1895
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: New York City
Died: January 26, 1990

Lewis Mumford was an American sociologist, historian, literary critic, and philosopher of technology. He made significant contributions to American literary and cultural history, social philosophy, and the history of technology. His works also influenced a number of thinkers and authors like Jacques Ellul and Amory Lovins. Lewis Mumford also had a strong influence on American cellular biologist Barry Commoner.

 10 

Elbert Hubbard
5
Birthdate: June 19, 1856
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Bloomington, Illinois, United States
Died: May 7, 1915

 11 
Dwight L. Moody
(Editor, Philosopher, Writer, Evangelist, Hymnwriter)

Dwight L. Moody
3
Birthdate: February 5, 1837
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Northfield
Died: December 22, 1899

Dwight L. Moody was an American publisher and evangelist. He is credited with founding the Moody Church which went on to become the most well-known religious outreach of its kind. He gave up his lucrative shoe business to focus solely on revivalism. He played an important role in the Civil War, working with the United States Christian Commission of YMCA.

 12 
Mary Parker Follett
(Social Woker)

Mary Parker Follett
4
Birthdate: September 3, 1868
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Quincy, Massachusetts, United States
Died: December 18, 1933

 13 
Lysander Spooner
(Lawyer, Journalist, Essayist, Philosopher)

Lysander Spooner
3
Birthdate: January 19, 1808
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Athol
Died: May 14, 1887

 14 
Hans Kelsen
(Jurist, legal philosopher and political philosopher)

Hans Kelsen
3
Birthdate: October 11, 1881
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Prague, Czechia
Died: April 19, 1973

Hans Kelsen was an Austria-born jurist, legal philosopher and writer on international law, known especially for his Pure Theory of Law and his defense of democracy. Author of the 1920 Austrian Constitution, he left his homeland in 1930 due to rising totalitarianism. He went to the USA, where he taught at well-known universities, concurrently producing important works like Principles of International Law.

 15 
Edward B. Titchener
(Philosopher, Psychologist, University teacher)

Edward B. Titchener
3
Birthdate: January 11, 1867
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Chichester
Died: August 3, 1927

 16 
Alain LeRoy Locke
(teacher, philosopher)

Alain LeRoy Locke
3
Birthdate: September 13, 1886
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Pennsylvania
Died: June 9, 1954

 17 
Kenneth Burke
(Philosopher, Literary critic, University teacher, Sociologist, Journalist, Writer)

Kenneth Burke
3
Birthdate: May 5, 1897
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Pittsburgh
Died: November 19, 1993

 18 
Benjamin Tucker
(Journalist, Philosopher, Economist, Translator, Anarchist)

Benjamin Tucker
2
Birthdate: April 17, 1854
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Dartmouth
Died: June 22, 1939

 19 
Henry Hazlitt
(Journalist, Economist, Philosopher)

Henry Hazlitt
3
Birthdate: November 28, 1894
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Philadelphia
Died: July 9, 1993

 20 
Hugo Münsterberg
(Psychologist, University teacher, Philosopher)

Hugo Münsterberg
2
Birthdate: June 1, 1863
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Gdańsk
Died: December 16, 1916

 21 
Nicholas Murray Butler
(Philosopher, Educator)

Nicholas Murray Butler
2
Birthdate: April 2, 1862
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Elizabeth
Died: December 7, 1947

 22 

Frederick T. Gates
2
Birthdate: July 22, 1853
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Maine, New York, United States
Died: February 6, 1929

 23 
Josiah Royce
(Philosopher, University teacher)

Josiah Royce
2
Birthdate: November 20, 1855
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Grass Valley
Died: September 14, 1916

 24 
Charles Hartshorne
(Philosopher)

Charles Hartshorne
2
Birthdate: June 5, 1897
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Kittanning, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: October 9, 2000

 25 
James Mark Baldwin
(Philosopher, Psychologist, University teacher)

James Mark Baldwin
2
Birthdate: January 12, 1861
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Columbia
Died: November 8, 1934

 26 
John Fiske
(Philosopher)

John Fiske
2
Birthdate: March 30, 1842
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Hartford, Connecticut, United States
Died: July 4, 1901

 27 

Arthur Oncken Lovejoy
1
Birthdate: October 10, 1873
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Berlin, Germany
Died: December 30, 1962

 28 

Herbert Croly
2
Birthdate: January 23, 1869
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Manhattan, New York, United States
Died: May 17, 1930

 29 

Alexander Meiklejohn
1
Birthdate: February 1, 1872
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Rochdale
Died: December 17, 1964

 30 

Lawrence Joseph Henderson
1
Birthdate: June 3, 1878
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Lynn, Massachusetts, United States
Died: February 10, 1942

A Harvard alumnus, Lawrence Joseph Henderson was associated with the Harvard Medical School for almost four decades. His chief contribution as a biochemist was his proposal of the Henderson–Hasselbalch equation, which calculates the acid–base equilibria of substances. He also penned the iconic work The Fitness of the Environment.

 31 
Walter Terence Stace
(Civil Servant)

Walter Terence Stace
1
Birthdate: November 17, 1886
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London, England, United Kingdom
Died: August 2, 1967

 32 
C.I. Lewis
(Philosopher)

C.I. Lewis
1
Birthdate: April 12, 1883
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Stoneham, Massachusetts, United States
Died: February 3, 1964

 33 

Zechariah Chafee, Jr.
1
Birthdate: December 7, 1885
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Providence, Rhode Island, United States
Died: February 8, 1957

 34 

William Torrey Harris
1
Birthdate: September 10, 1835
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: North Killingly, Connecticut, U.S.
Died: November 5, 1909

 35 
Moshe Feinstein
(Theologian, Rabbi, Philosopher)

Moshe Feinstein
2
Birthdate: March 3, 1895
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Uzda
Died: March 23, 1986

 36 

Moncure D. Conway
1
Birthdate: March 17, 1832
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Falmouth, Virginia, United States
Died: November 15, 1907

 37 
Arthur F. Bentley
(Political Scientist)

Arthur F. Bentley
1
Birthdate: October 16, 1870
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Freeport, Illinois, United States
Died: May 21, 1957

 38 

George Trumbull Ladd
1
Birthdate: January 19, 1842
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Painesville, Ohio, United States
Died: August 8, 1921

 39 
Edwin Holt
(Professor)

Edwin Holt
1
Birthdate: August 21, 1873
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Winchester, Massachusetts, United States
Died: January 25, 1946

 40 
Ralph Barton Perry
(Philosopher)

Ralph Barton Perry
1
Birthdate: July 3, 1876
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Poultney, Vermont, United States
Died: January 22, 1957

 41 
Edgar S. Brightman
(Philosopher)

Edgar S. Brightman
0
Birthdate: September 20, 1884
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Holbrook, Massachusetts, United States
Died: February 25, 1953

 42 
Felix Adler
(Professor)

Felix Adler
2
Birthdate: August 13, 1851
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Alzey, Germany
Died: April 24, 1933

The son of Reform Judaism pioneer and rabbi Samuel Adler, Felix Adler was a German-American educator who had taught at Cornell and Columbia universities. He established the Ethical Culture movement, focusing on tying all human beings with the thread of universal morality. He also worked to abolish child labor.

 43 

Phineas Parkhurst Quimby
1
Birthdate: February 16, 1802
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Lebanon, New Hampshire, United States
Died: January 16, 1866

 44 
Helen Lynd
(Sociologist)

Helen Lynd
0
Birthdate: March 17, 1896
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: La Grange, Illinois, United States
Died: January 30, 1982

 45 

John Herman Randall Jr.
0
Birthdate: February 14, 1899
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States
Died: December 1, 1980

 46 

Alexander Bryan Johnson
0
Birthdate: May 29, 1786
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Gosport, England
Died: September 9, 1867

 47 
Rufus Matthew Jones
(Religious leader)

Rufus Matthew Jones
1
Birthdate: January 25, 1863
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: South China, China, Maine, United States
Died: June 16, 1948

 48 
John Stallo
(Philosopher)

John Stallo
0
Birthdate: March 16, 1823
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Sierhausen, Germany
Died: January 6, 1900

 49 
Boyd Henry Bode
(Philosopher)

Boyd Henry Bode
0
Birthdate: October 4, 1873
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Ridott, Illinois, United States
Died: March 29, 1953

 50 
Samuel Hirsch
(Philosopher)

Samuel Hirsch
0
Birthdate: June 8, 1815
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Thalfang, Germany
Died: May 14, 1889