John Henry Newton, Jr. (July 24, 1725 – December 21, 1807) was an Anglican clergyman and former slave-ship captain. He was the author of many hymns, including Amazing Grace.
In 1767 William Cowper, the poet, moved to Olney. He worshipped in the church, and collaborated with Newton on producing a volume of hymns, which was eventually published as Olney Hymns in 1779. This work was to have a great influence on English hymnology. The volume included Newton's well -known hymns "Glorious Things of Thee are Spoken", "How Sweet the Name of Jesus Sounds!", "Come, My Soul, Thy Suit Prepare", "Approach, My Soul, the Mercy-seat", and "Faith's Review and Expectation" which became to be known by it's opening phrase, "Amazing Grace".
Many of Newton's (as well as Cowper's) hymns are preserved in the Sacred Harp.