Carroll, John,1735–1815, American Roman Catholic churchman, b. Maryland. He studied as a child with Jesuits at Bohemia, Md., and later at Saint-Omer in Flanders, since Catholic secondary education was not allowed in Maryland. He joined the Jesuits in 1753, studied at Liège, and was ordained in 1769. After the suppression of the Jesuits he returned to America and traveled about, ministering to scattered Catholics. He maintained a private chapel, for Catholic churches were forbidden by law. He ardently supported the American Revolution and accompanied Benjamin Franklin (his close friend) on an unsuccessful mission to Quebec (1776) to persuade the Canadians to join the Revolutionary cause. Believing that American Roman Catholics should be free of supervision by the vicar apostolic of London, he led in petitioning Rome for the appointment of a priest in America with some episcopal powers. In 1784, Father Carroll was made superior of the missions in the United States. In the same year he published a controversial pamphlet, An Address to the Roman Catholics of the United States of America, to combat a paper impugning the loyalty of Catholics. In 1790 he was consecrated bishop of Baltimore. He welcomed the Sulpicians, who opened a seminary at Baltimore, and he founded Georgetown Univ.Georgetown University,
in the Georgetown section of Washington, D.C.; Jesuit; coeducational; founded 1789 by John Carroll, chartered 1815, inc. 1844. Its law and medical schools are noteworthy, and its archives are especially rich in letters and manuscripts by and about persons
..... Click the link for more information. Carroll fostered many communities and founded schools throughout his diocese. In 1808 he became archbishop, with suffragans at Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, and Bardstown, Ky. His last years were somewhat clouded by disputes with Catholic communities in Pennsylvania, Virginia, Georgia, South Carolina, and Maryland over his episcopal jurisdiction.
See biographies by J. G. Shea (1888), P. K. Guilday (1922), and A. M. Melville (1955).
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Carroll, John(1735–1815) bishop; born in Upper Marlboro, Md. Born to a family of prosperous Catholic Maryland planters, he studied in Europe, where he entered the Jesuit order (1753) and was ordained. In 1774, a year after the Jesuits' suppression, he returned to Maryland to do pastoral work as a secular priest. A supporter of the patriot cause, he joined in an unsuccessful mission to obtain a promise of Canadian neutrality in the American Revolution (1776). Named head of the U.S. Catholic clergy (1784), Carroll was consecrated as the first American Catholic bishop (of Baltimore) in 1790; he was named an archbishop in 1808. As the church's leader during a crucial early period, he brought in European missionaries, cofounded a college that became Georgetown University (1789), started three seminaries, and labored to establish internal order and counter anti-Catholic discrimination, in part by stressing Catholic commitment to democratic ideals.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.