Desiderata (something desired as essential) is still sometimes thought to have been found at Old St. Paul's Church in Baltimore and to date to 1692. It was actually written in the 1927 by Max Ehrmann (1872-1945), a lawyer from Terre Haute, Indiana. Like most of Ehrmann's writings, Desiderata failed to attract much attention during his lifetime. Three years after his death, his widow had it and some of his other works published as "The Poems of Max Ehrmann" (p.165).
During the Lenten season of 1959 or 1960, Rev. Frederick Kates, the rector of St. Paul's Church in Baltimore, Maryland, used the poem in a collection of mimeographed devotional material for his congregation. Someone reprinting it later, separated from its original credit, erroneously describing it as having been found in old St. Paul's Church dated 1692, misinterpreting the church letterhead. The year 1692 is in fact the founding date of St. Paul's Church and has nothing to do with the poem.
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