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church was taken with them by the settlers into their new abodes. The London 'Company for the first Colony in Virginia' and afterwards the colonial legislature, established in 1619, afforded the clergy of the church support by assigning them land, tithes and other sources of revenue.1

But when the later colonies were planted, a large proportion of the first settlers consisted of sectaries who had fled from England or Scotland to escape the persecutions of the state church. Thus episcopacy could at first gain no footing in the majority of these settlements. In the seventeenth century in New England the presbyterians and independents had the mastery; in Pennsylvania, the quakers; in Maryland —until at the end of the century (revolution of 1689; law of 1692) the protestant episcopalians obtained



Wilberforce, Hist. 30, 31.-State assistance was also granted to the clergy of the episcopal church elsewhere; for instance, in South Carolina about the middle of the eighteenth century; in Maryland 1691-2. The disestablishment of the church in Virginia was virtually effected by an act of the colonial legislature after the beginning of the war of independence and by the law of 1799; earlier endowments were recalled and the glebes sold by the act of 1802. Wilberforce, History 177, 273.

2 The first New England colony was founded by the puritans on Massachusetts Bay in 1621. În 1628 they received a royal charter. Connecticut was settled in 1637, New Hampshire and Maine soon afterwards, and all three continued, in religion and politics, to belong to the freer school. New England was a collective term for Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut.

The presbyterian canons of 1634 of the church of New England are printed in Collier, Eccles. Hist. Ed. 1852, IX, 383, Record No. 111 and (with further documents) in Neal, Hist. of New England, appendix, 2nd Ed. II, 294 ff.

In 1679 the first episcopal church (King's Chapel') was founded at Boston. Hawks and Perry, Doc. Hist. p. 3. The presbyterian-independent church was not abolished as the state church in the several states of New England until the earlier decades of the nineteenth century. See more in Lauer, l.c.

3 The district of what was afterwards New York was first settled in 1613 by Dutch presbyterians and called New Amsterdam. In 1664 New Amsterdam was conquered by the English. By the peace of Breda, 1667, it was finally ceded to them. The first episcopal church in New York (Trinity) was endowed by the state in 1696.

In Pennsylvania the first settlers (1638) were Swedes. Later, Dutchmen from New Amsterdam migrated thither. When the territory had fallen into the hands of the English, the quaker Penn by agreement with the English government obtained the town of Newcastle and the neighbourhood, emigrated thither in 1682, built the town of Philadelphia and established the supremacy of the quakers.

+ Settled in 1633 by English Roman catholics.

III. Church law.

Buck, Edward. Massachusetts Ecclesiastical Law. Boston, 1866. Revised edition, Boston, 1875 (cf. p. 283, conspectus of the laws of the several states in regard to the conferring of corporative rights on religious societies).-Hoffman, Murray. A Treatise on the Law of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States. New York, 1850.-The same. Ecclesiastical Law in the State of New York. New York, 1868. (Contains an account of the law, especially of civil enactments, in regard to all the more important religious societies in the state of New York.)

IV. Journal.

Journal of the proceedings of the Bishops, Clergy and Laity of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America. (Has appeared since 1784 every three years; contains in the later issues statistical accounts, the constitution in its form at the time being, and a systematically arranged collection of all the provincial canons prevailing; the date of the various regulations affecting the constitution and of the canons is given.)

ascendency-the Roman catholics; in Carolina,5 the quakers, until in 1701 episcopacy prevailed there also.


It was thus natural that in the seventeenth century very few clergymen of the church of England were to be found in North America; nor was local control by means of a bishop known. The consequence of this latter fact was that those who wished to officiate in North America in conformity with the church, had to seek orders of English bishops, and to make one or two special journeys across the sea. As early as 1638 archbishop Laud suggested the appointment of a separate bishop for North America, without, however, carrying his point. Lord Clarendon's effort in the same direction during the reign of Charles II remained, in like manner, without result. In spite of the facts that owing to the activity of the newly founded missionary societies the number of clergymen of the church multiplied and that the despatch of a bishop was repeatedly advocated, as, for instance, by archbishop Tenison in his will (1715) and in 1741 by Secker, bishop of Oxford, afterwards archbishop of Canterbury, yet no special bishop was sent out as long as the colonies were subject to England. About the year 1723 one Talbot, a missionary stationed in New Jersey, caused himself to be consecrated by bishops of the English sect of nonjurors and, along with another bishop of the same sect, Welton by name, repaired to America. Welton returned at the bidding of the English authorities and Talbot died in a few years, seemingly after he had conformed to the church of England. Thus even this attempt to secure protestant bishops for America proved fruitless.


After the declaration of independence (1776), the wish of the Americans naturally grew stronger to be no longer restricted to the bishop of London and the other English bishops as the sources from which they might obtain priest's or deacon's orders. After the recognition of the independence of the United States (1783) there was another obstacle: the English rules of ordination required the civil oath of supremacy and allegiance to be taken; and it was believed in England that, even in the case of the subjects of now independent states, that requirement could not be dispensed with except by express statutory authorisation. Such authorisation was first given by 24 Geo. III sess. 2 (1784) c 35, to the bishop of London. The clergy of the episcopal church in Connecticut were the first

5 Founded in 1663, divided into North Carolina and South Carolina in 1732. See a contemporaneous statement printed in Wilberforce, History 93.

7 Cf. Porteus, The Works of Secker Ed. 1825, Introd. pp. xxxiii ff. For further efforts of the kind compare Hawkins, Hist. Notices 375 ff.

8 On the sect of the nonjurors cf. § 7, note 81.

The nonjuring bishop Taylor consecrated Welton 1723-4 and soon afterwards Talbot and Welton together. The orders of the two latter were, however, not recognized as valid by the rest of the nonjurors. Welton on his recall repaired to Portugal, where in 1726 he died. Lathbury, History of the Nonjurors, London, 1845, p. 364. Talbot died in 1727. Hawkins, Historical Notices, 147.-Perceval, An Apology for the Doctrine of Apostolical Succession with an Appendix on the English orders, London, 1839; p. 224 has the note: Talbot took the oaths and submitted.

to take advantage of the altered circumstances. They chose one of their number, Seabury, as their bishop and sent him in 1783 to England to receive consecration. But in England he did not succeed in removing the scruples which existed. He therefore addressed himself to the Scottish bishops and was consecrated by them in the year 1784, upon which he returned to Connecticut to enter upon the duties of his office.10


After a preliminary meeting in 1784, on the 1st of May, 1785, there assembled at Philadelphia the first American general convention, consisting of deputies, both clerical and lay, from the states of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia and South Carolina. A resolution was passed to apply to the English bishops to consecrate such persons as shall be chosen and recommended to them for that purpose from the conventions of this church in the respective states.'11 In consequence of the request made to them, the English bishops, to remove once for all the legislative difficulties which hampered them in acceding to it, effected the passing of 26 Geo. III (1786) c 84. The act empowers the archbishop of Canterbury or the archbishop of York for the time being, with such other bishops as either may call to his assistance, to consecrate as bishops persons who are subjects of foreign states; but the archbishop must first obtain for each person to be consecrated the royal licence by warrant, and must satisfy himself of the sufficiency in good learning, soundness of faith and purity of manners of each; on the other hand the king's licence to elect is not needed in such cases, nor his mandate for confirmation and consecration, nor the taking of the oaths of allegiance and supremacy nor of the oath of obedience to the archbishop. Further negotiations between the American convention and the English bishops led the former to agree to recall part of the already accepted changes in respect of the creeds and of the liturgy.12 Subsequently the English archbishops and two English bishops consecrated (1787) William White and Samuel Provoost, who had been elected in the conventions as bishops of Pennsylvania and New York. Madison, elected in Virginia, was likewise consecrated (1790) by English bishops. In 1789 bishop Seabury and the episcopal church of New England had taken part in the general convention. In 1792 Seabury and the three bishops who had been consecrated in England jointly laid hands on a bishop for Maryland; from that time consecration of American bishops by American bishops became the continuous practice.13

10 In 1784 John Wesley consecrated, though himself only a priest, one Dr. Coke as superintendent of the methodist communities in America. The title superintendent was soon changed to bishop. Wilberforce, History 179.

The resolution is printed in Perry, Hist. of Engl. Church III, 140 c 7, notes and illustrations.

12 As a result of these negotiations the American church restored the Nicene creed to its place, and also the 'He descended into hell' clause in the Apostles' creed. (The use of the clause, left optional at the time, was ordered in the revisions of 1886, 1889.) It, however, rejected the liturgical employment of the Athanasian creed. Wilberforce, Hist. 218, 230.

13 Wilberforce, Hist. 232.

The general convention of bishops, clergymen and laymen held at Philadelphia in 1789 passed resolutions which permanently determined the form of the protestant episcopal church in the United States of America. A constitution was agreed on, which, with later alterations in detail, is still in force. The convention also adopted a prayer-book for American use, which was closely related to the English book of common prayer.14

According to the constitution devised, the general assembly, which meets for ordinary sittings once every three years, consists of a house of deputies and a house of bishops. The former is composed of clerical and lay delegates sent by the dioceses. The voting in the house of deputies is by dioceses. Upon the motion of the lay or clerical representatives of a diocese, the voting is by orders, that is the clergy and the laity vote separately; a resolution is only passed by the house of deputies when it is supported by majorities -reckoned by dioceses-of both orders. The house of bishops may expressly refuse assent to a resolution of the lower house; otherwise, the resolution is binding even without the express approval of the bishops.

The general convention is regulated by a 'presiding bishop.' Though he has certain small privileges, he does not possess archiepiscopal rights.15

In 1893 there were in the United States fifty-three bishoprics with complete constitutions, seventeen in which the constitution was being developed.

The American church has also sent missions to foreign lands, and

14 The American prayer-book of 1789 (The Book of Common Prayer according to the Use of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America) underwent frequent alterations in detail. Several times a Standard Prayer Book was published officially under the direction of the general convention (e.g. 1844, 1871). A thorough revision began to be made in 1880, and its results were accepted in 1886 and 1889 by the general convention. Procter, Hist. of Prayer Book c 5 appendix.

15 The constitution further lays down: Prayer-book, rules for ordination and articles of belief are the same for all dioceses. Like the constitution itself, they can only be changed by two consecutive general conventions. Bishops may only be judged (and that according to more precise rules to be issued by the general convention) by bishops. The punishments for bishop, priest or deacon, viz. reprimand, suspension and degradation, can only be pronounced by a bishop. Before ordination the following declaration is to be subscribed: I do believe the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testament to be the word of God; and to contain all things necessary to salvation; and I do solemnly engage to conform to the Doctrines and Worship of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States.

From the canons (Digest of Canons, 1874) the following provisions may be mentioned: In dioceses with a complete constitution bishops are to be chosen by the diocesan convention and need, before they are consecrated, the confirmation of the house of deputies (in case it is not sitting, of a majority of the standing committees of the several dioceses) and of the house of bishops. In every diocese there is a diocesan convention, also a standing committee chosen by that convention to advise the bishop. The standing committee chooses a president from its members. Several dioceses within one state may form a federate convention or council, whose rights can only be fixed by consent of the general convention.

at an early period took the step of placing some of these missions under separate bishops. Thus American episcopal sees were founded in 1844 for China, in 1866 for Japan.1


The first Roman catholic bishop was consecrated to Baltimore in 1789; sees of New York, Philadelphia, Boston etc. were afterwards established.

16 In 1893 there were the following bishoprics in the United States and the American missionary field (Church Year-Book 1894, pp. 359 ff.) :—

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31. Newark

32. New Hampshire
33. New Jersey

34. New York

35. North Carolina
36. Ohio
37. Oregon

38. Pennsylvania
39. Pittsburgh
40. Quincy

41. Rhode Island

42. South Carolina
43. Southern Ohio
44. Southern Virginia
45. Springfield
46. Tennessee

47. Texas

48. Vermont

49. Virginia

50. Western Michigan
51. Western New York
52. West Missouri
53. West Virginia

Missionary Bishoprics.
54. Alaska
55. Montana

56. Nevada and Utah
57. New Mexico and

58. North Dakota

59. Northern California 60. Northern Michigan 61. Northern Texas

62. Oklahama

63. Olympia

64. South Dakota

65. Southern Florida

66. Spokane

67. The Platte

68. Western Colorado
69. Western Texas
70. Wyoming and Idaho
71. China (Shanghai and
Yang Tse Valley
[see § 12 note 25
No. 63])

72. Japan (see § 12 note
25 No. 64)

73. Western Africa (Cape Palmas and Parts adjacent)

[There are also missions for Haiti, Mexico, Cuba, Brazil and for the American churches in Europe. A bishopric for Greece which existed in 1891 seems not to have been continued.]

Of these the oldest foundations (see conspectus prefixed to Wilberforce, Hawkins, Historical Notices, app. F.) are:-Connecticut (1784), Pennsylvania (1787), New York (1787), Virginia (1790), Maryland (1792), South Carolina (1795), New Hampshire and Massachusetts (1797; this district was expanded in 1811 into the Eastern Diocese' by the addition of Rhode Island and Vermont), New Jersey (1815), Ohio (1819), North Carolina (1823), Vermont (1832), Kentucky (1832), Tennessee (1834), Illinois (1835), Indiana, Wisconsin and Iowa (1835), Michigan (1836), Louisiana (1838), Western New York (1839), Georgia (1841), Maine and Rhode Island (1843), New Hampshire (1844), Alabama (1844), Missouri (1844), Arkansas (1844), Amoy [China] (1844), Turkish Dominions (1844). Many districts did not express their adhesion to the general convention at the time of the foundation of the see; others joined it before the foundation.

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