John Henry Hobart, an American bishop, born in Philadelphia, Sept. 14, 1775, died in Auburn, N. Y., Sept. 10, 1830. He graduated at Princeton college in 1793, and entered a counting house, which he soon left to prepare for the ministry. He became a tutor at Prince-ton in 1796, and at the same time began there the study of theology, which he completed in Philadelphia, where he was admitted to deacon's orders in June, 1798, and took charge of two suburban parishes. He was pastor, for short periods, of churches in New Brunswick, N. J., and Hempstead, L. I., and in September, 1800, became assistant minister of Trinity church, New York, being ordained priest in 1801. He had already been secretary of the house of bishops, and was elected secretary of the convention of New York, deputy to the general conventions of 1801, '4, and '8, and was on the last two occasions secretary to the house of clerical and lay deputies. He was elected assistant bishop of New York in February, 1811. In 1812 he became assistant rector of Trinity church, and in 1816 was made bishop of the diocese and rector of the church. He was one of the founders of the general theological seminary of the Protestant Episcopal church in New York, in which in 1821 he became professor of pastoral theology and pulpit eloquence.
In 1823, on account of failing health, he visited Europe, where he made an especial study of the social, moral, and religious condition of the people. Finding that in England he was accused of insisting upon external forms, to the neglect of essentials in religion, he published two volumes of his sermons (London, 1824) to disprove it. He was rigid in denying the validity of any but Episcopal orders, and opposed the formation of the American Bible and tract societies, as well as every other such organization including Christians of different denominations. Among his works are: "Apology for Apostolic Order" (1807), "The State of the Departed" (1816; new ed., 1846), several devotional manuals, an edition of D'Oyley and Mant's "Commentary on the Bible" (2 vols. 4to, 1818-'20), and a volume of sermons (1824). His posthumous works, with a memoir by the Rev. William Berrian, D. D., appeared in 1833 (3 vols. 8vo).