Born: October 15, 1784, Washington, Connecticut.
Died: May 15, 1872, New York City.
Buried: Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, New York.
Thomas was the son of Seth Hastings and Eunice Parmelee, and husband of Mary Seymour.
He grew up a farm boy, walking six miles to school in the winter. He began his career as a music teacher. In 1823, he became editor of the Western Recorder in Utica, New York.
From 1832 until his death, Hastings trained choirs and developed religious music, penning almost 1,000 hymn tunes and 600 texts.
His son, Thomas Samuel Hastings (1827–1911), who became president of Union Theological Seminary in New York City, said of him:
He was a devout and earnest Christian, a hard student, and resolute worker, not laying aside his pen until three days before his death.