</tr></tr></tr></tr></tr></tr></tr></tr></tr></tr></tr></tr></tr> </table> Samuel Eccleston, P.S.S. (June 27, 1801—April 22, 1851) was an American clergyman of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as the fifth Archbishop of Baltimore from 1834 until his death in 1851.

Early life

Raised in an Episcopalian family, Samuel Eccleston was born near Chestertown, Maryland, to Samuel and Martha (née Hyson) Eccleston.[1] His grandfather, John Eccleston, was from Preston in North West England, and came to the United States in the middle of the 18th century.[2] His father, who had three children from a previous marriage, died when Samuel was a young boy.[3] Following his father's death, his widowed mother remarried a Catholic gentleman named Stenson.[4] While a pupil at St. Mary's College in Baltimore, he converted to Catholicism on May 29, 1819.[5]


Following his conversion, Eccleston decided to join the priesthood, and entered St. Mary's Seminary in July 1819.[2] He was later ordained a priest by Archbishop Ambrose Maréchal on April 24, 1825.[5] Later that year, he entered the Society of Saint-Sulpice, more commonly known as the Sulpicians, and was sent to continue his studies at the Grand Seminary of Saint-Sulpice in Issy-les-Moulineaux, France.[1] After visting England and Ireland, he returned to Baltimore in July 1827, and became a faculty member and vice-president at his alma mater of St. Mary's College.[2] He was made president of the same institution in 1829.[4]


On March 4, 1834, Eccleston was appointed Coadjutor Archbishop of Baltimore and Titular Archbishop of Thermae Basilicae by Pope Gregory XVI.[5] He received his episcopal consecration on the following September 14 from Archbishop James Whitfield, with Bishops Benedict Joseph Flaget, P.S.S., and Francis Patrick Kenrick serving as co-consecrators, in the Cathedral of the Assumption.[5] Upon the death of Archbishop Whitfield on October 19, 1834, Eccleston succeeded him as the fifth Archbishop of Baltimore.[5] At the age of 34, he is the youngest cleric to become Archbishop of Baltimore in the history of the archdiocese.[1] He also became apostolic administrator of the Diocese of Richmond, Virginia, an office in which he remained until the appointment of Richard Vincent Whelan in 1840.[5] He received the pallium, a vestment worn by metropolitan bishops, on November 1, 1835.[1]

Under Eccleston's encouragement, the Sisters of the Visitation increased the number of their academies, the Brothers of St. Patrick came to direct a manual labor school near Baltimore, and the increasing German Catholic population was confided to the care of the Redemptorists.[6] The Brothers of the Christian Schools founded Calvert Hall School in 1845, and St. Charles College was established in 1849.[4] Between 1837 and 1849, he held five Provincial Councils of Baltimore; he invited the exiled Pope Pius IX to preside over the Seventh Provincial Council in 1849.[1] Several new churches were erected during his administration as well.[6]

Eccleston died in the Georgetown section of Washington, D.C., aged 49.[4]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 "Most Rev. Samuel Eccleston S.S.". Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Baltimore. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Shea, John Gilmary (1890). A History of the Catholic Church Within the Limits of the United States: From the First Attempted Colonization to the Present Time. New York. 
  3. Fuller, Horace W., ed (1894). The Green Bag: An Entertaining Magazine for Lawyers. VI. Boston: The Boston Book Company. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 "Samuel Eccleston". Catholic Encyclopedia. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 "Archbishop Samuel Eccleston, P.S.S.". 
  6. 6.0 6.1 Clarke, Richard Henry (1872). Lives of the Deceased Bishops of the Catholic Church in the United States. I. New York: P. O'Shea Publisher. 

The Most Reverend<small/></span> 
Samuel Eccleston
Archbishop of Baltimore
See</th> Baltimore
Enthroned</th> October 19, 1834
Reign ended</th> April 22, 1851
Predecessor</th> James Whitfield
Successor</th> Francis Patrick Kenrick
Ordination</th> April 24, 1825
Consecration</th> September 14, 1834
Other</th> Coadjutor Archbishop of Baltimore (1834)
Apostolic Administrator of Richmond (1834-1840)
Personal details</th></tr>
Born</th> June 27, 1801(1801-06-27)
Chestertown, Maryland
Died</th> May 22, 1851 (aged 49)
Georgetown, Washington, D.C.
Denomination</th> Roman Catholic Church
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
James Whitfield
Archbishop of Baltimore
1834 – 1851
Succeeded by
Francis Patrick Kenrick


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