John Henry Hopkins, an American bishop, born in Dublin, Jan. 30, 1792, died at Rock Point, Vt., Jan. 9, 1868. He came to America with his parents in 1800, and was intended for the law; but after receiving a classical education he passed a year in a counting room in Philadelphia, assisted Wilson the ornithologist in the preparation of the plates to the first four volumes of his work, and about 1810 embarked in the manufacture of iron in the western part of Pennsylvania. The iron business was prostrated by the peace of 1815, and in October, 1817, he quitted it bankrupt in property, and after six months' study was admitted to the bar in Pittsburgh; but in 1823 he left the bar for the ministry, and in 1824 became rector of Trinity church, Pittsburgh. A new building being needed, he became its architect, studying Gothic architecture for the purpose. In 1826 he was sent as clerical deputy to the general convention, and again in 1829, taking in both a prominent part in the debates. In 1831 he accepted a call to Trinity church, Boston, as assistant minister. A theological seminary was at the same time established in the diocese of Massachusetts, in which he became professor of systematic divinity.
In 1832 he was elected the first bishop of Vermont, and was consecrated in New York, Oct. 31. He immediately proceeded to his diocese, accepting at the same time the rectorship of St. Paul's church, Burlington. He soon began a boys' school, and in erecting the needed buildings became involved to a degree which resulted in the sacrifice of his property. He resigned his rectorship in 1856, in order to devote himself to the work of the diocese, and the building up at Burlington of the "Vermont Episcopal Institute." Besides pamphlets, sermons, and addresses, he published " Christianity Vindicated, in a Series of Seven Discourses on the External Evidences of the New Testament" (Burlington, 1833); "The Primitive Creed Examined and Explained " (1834); " The Primitive Church compared with the Protestant Episcopal Church of the Present Day " (1835); " Essay on Gothic Architecture " (1836); "The Church of Rome in her Primitive Parity, compared with the Church of Rome at the Present Day"(1837); "Twelve Canzonets," words and music (New York, 1839); "The Novelties which Disturb our Peace" (Philadelphia, 1844); "Causes, Principles, and Results of the British Reformation" (Philadelphia, 1844); "History of the Confessional" (New York, 1850); " A Refutation of Milner's 'End of Controversy,' in a Series of Letters" (2 vols., 1854); "The American Citizen, his Rights and Duties" (1857); " A Scriptural, Ecclesiastical, and Historical View of Slavery," sustaining that institution (1864); "History of the Church in Verse" (1866); " Law of Ritualism Examined " (1867); and " Candid Examination whether the Pope is the Great Antichrist of Scripture" (1869). He was a strong champion of the high-church party.