William Rainey Harper, the first president of the University of Chicago, was also a distinguished Semiticist and a member of the Baptist clergy. He believed that a great research university ought to have as one of its central occupations the scholarly study of religion. These commitments led him to bring the Morgan Park Seminary of the Baptist Theological Union to Hyde Park, making the Divinity School the first professional school at the University of Chicago. First chartered in 1865, the Divinity School was incorporated into the University soon after the latter's inception in 1890.