Leonard Bacon, 1802–81, American Congregational minister, b. Detroit, Mich. He served for 41 years as pastor of the First Church of New Haven, one of the leading Congregational churches in the country. Bacon was a noted antislavery leader, although not an abolitionist. His Slavery Discussed in Occasional Essays (1846) made a great impression upon Lincoln. He was a founder and editor of the Independent and author of the widely known Pilgrim Hymn (1833) and The Genesis of the New England Churches (1874).