|History On Amazing Grace
"Amazing grace, how sweet the sound..." So begins one of the most beloved hymns of all times, a staple in the hymnals of many denominations. The author of the words was John Newton, the self-proclaimed wretch who once
was lost but then was found, saved by amazing grace. Newton was born in London July 24, 1725, the son of a commander of a merchant ship which sailed the Mediterranean. In 1744 John was impressed into service on a man-of-war, the H. M. S.
Harwich. Finding conditions on board intolerable, he deserted but was soon recaptured and publicly flogged and demoted from midshipman to common seaman. Finally at his own request he was exchanged into service on a slave ship, which took
him to the coast of Sierra Leone. He then became the servant of a slave trader and was brutally abused. Early in 1748 he was rescued by a sea captain who had known John's father. John Newton ultimately became captain of his own ship, one