Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
and Company, 1887-1889 and 1999. Virtualology.com warns that these 19th Century
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CONWELL, Henry, R. C. bishop, born in Armagh, Ireland, in 1748; died in Philadelphia in 1842. He was ordained in 1776. When vicar-general of Armagh he received notice of his appointment to the see of Philadelphia in 1820, and was consecrated in London. Shortly after his. arrival in Philadelphia he had difficulty with the trustees of the cathedral church of St. Mary's, who insisted on retaining a priest of doubtful character, contrary to the desire of the bishop. The result was a schism. Dr. Conwell and the clergy of his household were obliged to abandon the cathedral, and retired to the church of St. Joseph's in the neighborhood. The efforts of Bishop England and other prelates, who offered themselves as mediators, were unavailing, and in 1828 Dr. Conwell went to Rome. The papal authorities endeavored to dissuade him from returning to the United States, and, fearing he might be detained in Rome. he suddenly went to Paris. Here the papal nuncio used every effort to prevail on him to resign his see, but only with the result of alarming the aged prelate still further, who forthwith sailed for New York. He was present at the council of Baltimore in 1829, but took no part in its deliberations. He was persuaded by the assembled bishops to accept the Rev. Francis P, Kenrick as a coadjutor, and spent the remainder of his life in retirement.
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