Johnson Oatman, Jr. was born on April 21, 1856 in New Jersey. He grew familiar to the hymns due to the singing ability of his father. When 19, he joined the Methodists and He was ordained a Methodist Episcopal minister and worked local churches, doing full time retail and insurance work.
Some of the hymns he wrote were:
He wrote over 5,000 songs during his 66 years. He was not a talented singer and was not recognized as an outstanding preacher, but was effective through his hymns.
He died in Oklahoma, September 25, 1922.
He had three children: Rachel, Miriam, and Percy.
His great grandson lives just six blocks north of the World Trade Center, and is considered to be a very talented writer. "Count Your Blessings" was much used during aftermath of the disaster there.
K. W. Osbeck, 101 Hymn Stories (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications, 1982). Page 55.
Drawing is from The Cyberhymnal found at: http://www,cyberhymnal.org/bio/o/a/oatman_j.htm
Oatman Family Links for November, 2001 found at: http://home.rochester.rr.com/woatman/links/Issue11.htm
K. W. Osbeck, Amazing Grace (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Kregel Publications, 1990). Page 350.