Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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CHANCHE, John Mary Joseph. R. C. bishop, born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1795 ; died in Frederick, Maryland, in 1858. He was educated at St. Mary's seminary, Baltimore, ordained in 1819, appointed professor in St. Mary's, and subsequently vice-president, and in 1834 succeeded Dr. Eccleston as president. He was offered the place of coadjutor to the archbishop of Baltimore and to the bishop of Boston successively, but declined. He was chosen as master of ceremonies to the second provincial council of Baltimore, and was chief promoter of the first national council. On the formation of the see of Natchez. Dr. Chanche was nominated bishop, and consecrated in 1841. He found his diocese without church or priest; but the Catholics in Natchez were generous and zealous, and by their aid he was enabled to begin the building of a cathedral in 1842. He also opened an academy for young ladies, and conducted missions among the colored people with success. He visited Havana in 1844 with the object of examining documents, which, he thought, would prove the title of the Catholic church to property in Mississippi, at the time in possession of the United States, but was unsuccessful. In 1848 he introduced the sisters of charity from Emmettsburg, and founded St. Mary's orphan asylum and school. He embarked for France toward the end of the year 1848, with the purpose of uniting the sisters of charity of the United States with the same order in that country, and his efforts were crowned with success. During his occupation of the see of Natchez he built eleven churches and established thirty-two missionary stations.
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