Russell Herman Conwell (1843-1925) was an American Baptist minister, lawyer, writer, and outstanding orator. He is best remembered as the founder and first president of Temple University in Philadelphia Pennsylvania, and for his lecture and book Acres of Diamonds (which he recited over 6,000 times). He was born in South Worthington, Massachusetts. He was buried in Founder's Garden at Temple University.
During the American Civil War he served in the union army from 1862-1864 and was commissioned a Captain. He studied law at the Albany Law School and became a lawyer. He was a writer for the Boston Evening Traveller (Newspaper), first visiting and writing on civil war battlefields and then on an around the world trip.
His name lives on, as well, in the present-day Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (with campuses in South Hamilton and Boston, Massachusetts and Charlotte, North Carolina). This interdenominational evangelical theological seminary was formed in 1969 by the merger of two former divinity schools (Conwell School of Theology of Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Gordon Divinity School in Wenham, Massachusetts).
The author Russell Conwell Hoban was named for him.