The Young Man's Guide to the Harmonious
Development of Christian Character

by Harvey Newcomb, 1847

On Childhood and Youth

Nature and Objects of Education

Piety, as the Spring of Action, and Regulator of the Soul

Filial Piety

Treatment of Brothers and Sisters

Behavior at School

Behavior at Table

Behavior at Family Worship

Private Prayer


Education of the Body

On Useful Labor

Education of the Heart

Education of the Mind




On Doing One Thing at a Time

On Finishing What Is Begun

Choice of Society, and Formation of Friendships

Bad Company. Mischievousness

On Amusements

Government of the Tongue

On the Art of Agreeable and Profitable Conversation


On the Importance of Being Able to Say "No"

On Being Useful

On Being Contented

Union of Serious Piety with Habitual Cheerfulness



"Who reads a preface?" Many do not; but jump at once into the middle of a book. But it is well to know something about a book, before reading it; and who so likely to give you information respecting the contents of a book as the Author himself? I wish to see the youth of my country come forward upon the stage of life, models of excellence, with characters formed for the times in which they are to act. How much influence my book may have, in securing such a result, I cannot tell; but my design in writing it has been, to contribute something toward forming the character of some of those who are to be our future electors, legislators, governors, judges, ministers, lawyers, and physicians—after the best biblical model. And, from the kind reception of my former attempts to benefit American youth, I trust they will give a candid hearing to the few hints contained in the following pages. It is intended for young gentlemen—in early youth, from eight or ten to fifteen or sixteen years of age. It covers substantially the same ground occupied by a work for girls issued simultaneously with it; and some of the chapters are identical in the two books, while others are entirely different, and some partially so. It is the hope of the Author, that everyone who reads it, will strive to be a Christian man, in the highest sense of the term.