Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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JARVIS, Abraham, P. E. bishop, born in Norwalk, Connecticut, 5 May, 1739; died in New Haven, Connecticut, 3 May, 1813. He was graduated at Yale in 1761, and soon after learning college became lay-reader in the parish at Middletown, Connecticut, meanwhile studying theology. He was ordained priest in England, 19 February, 1764, by the Bishop of Carlisle, and on returning to Connecticut was settled as rector of Christ church, Middletown. At the beginning, of the Revolution he was subjected to great Inconvenience and many trials, as he did not hold that the Declaration of Independence dissolved the ecclesiastical obligations of his church to the Church of England. On 23 July, 1776, a convention of the Episcopal clergy of Connecticut was held at New Haven, over which Mr. Jarvis presided. It was resolved to suspend all public worship in the churches, it being held that it would be unsafe to continue the reading of the entire liturgy. Shortly after the declaration of peace he took an active part in the movement which resulted in the consecration of Bishop Seabury (q. v.), most of the official papers on the subject which were sent to England being written by him. On the death of Seabury in 1796, Mr. Jarvis was elected to succeed him, but declined. On being again elected in June, 1797. he accepted and was consecrated by Bishop Provoost, of New York Bishop Bass, of Massachusetts, and Bishop White. He continued at Middletown for two years after his consecration and then removed to Cheshire, and in 1803 to New Haven, where he remained until his death. Bishop Jarvis was didactic and often recta-physical in the pulpit. He published a" Sermon on the Death of Bishop Seabury" (1796), and another on "The Witness of the Spirit."--His son, Samuel Farmar, clergyman, born in Middletown, Connecticut, 20 January, 1786; died there, 26 March, 1851, was graduated at Yale in 1805, and ordained priest, 5 April, 1811. The same year he took charge of St. Michael's church, Bloomingdale, New York, and in 1813 was also made rector of St. James's church, New York city, retaining both parishes until May 1819. In the latter year he was appointed professor of biblical learning in the recently established New York general theological seminary, but he resigned in 1820 on being elected the first rector of St. Paul's. Boston, Massachusetts Here he remained six years, when he gave up his charge to sail for Europe, with a view of qualifying himself for certain works that he had projected, relating to the history of the church. During a nine years' absence he visited all the important libraries and explored every accessible source of information on the subjects to which his attention had been directed. On his return in 1835 he accepted the professorship of oriental literature in Washington (now Trinity) College but resigned in 1837 to become rector of Christ church, Middletown, Connecticut Having been appointed church historiographer by the general convention of 1838, he resigned his charge in 1842, and devoted the remainder of his life to literary labors. He received the degree of D. D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1819, and that of LL.D. from "Trinity in 1837. Dr. Jarvis was a trustee of Trinity college and of the General theological seminary, secretary and treasurer of the Christian knowledge society, and secretary of his diocese. He was a fine classical and biblical scholar, and also took a great interest in art, having collected during his residence abroad a gallery of old paintings, mostly of the Italian school. These were exhibited on his return for the benefit of a charitable association, but were finally sold after his death, together with his valuable library. Dr. Jarvis's principal publications are "A Discourse on the Religion of the Indian Tribes of North America" (New York, 1820); "A Discourse on Regeneration" (1821); "A Sermon on Christian Unity" (1837); "Two Discourses on Prophecy" being a Refutation of Millerism" and "No Union with Rome" (1843); "A Chronological Introduction to the History of the Church" (London, 1844; Boston, 1845); "The Colonies of Heaven," a sermon (1846); "A Reply to Dr. Milner's 'End of Controversy'" (New York, 1847); and "The Church of the Redeemed," only the first volume of which was published (Boston, 1850), Dr. Jarvis's last illness preventing further literary work. He was one of the editors of the "Gospel Advocate" from 1821 till 1826, contributed articles to the "Church Review," and edited the American edition of Thomas H. Horne's "Mariolatry" (1844).
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