Edward Pearson Pressey

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Edward Pearson Pressey (28 June 1869 - 1934)

Pressey was born in Salem, New Hampshire. After attending the Harvard Divinity School for two years, Pressey was ordained and served in Montague and Turners Falls.

At Montague he founded New Clairvaux, a utopian community based on the "Arts and Crafts" ideal. He advocated a return to the self-sufficient, pre-industrial age in which the dignity of labor was revived and service to all honored. The community never consisted of much more than six families, students, and apprentices who shared common work areas but had privately owned residences.

In 1910 the New Clairvaux Press under Carl Rollins published his History of Montague. His community, however, fragmented. Following a 1911 fire in his home, he left Montague to farm in Vermont and finally settled in Schenectady, New York, where he became Associated Press editor of the Schnectady Gazette.