Andrew, James Osgood, Dd

Andrew, James Osgood, D.D., a bishop of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, was born in Wilkes County, Ga., May 3, 1794. His father, the Rev. John Andrew, was one of the early itinerant Methodist preachers. His mother's maiden name was Crosby. She was possessed of a strong intellect, fine taste, and deep piety elements that strongly marked the bishop's character. He was an extensive reader from his childhood, joined the Church at the age of thirteen, soon became class-leader, and when eighteen was licensed to preach. His first pulpit efforts were among the negroes, and were crowned with success. His first attempt before his friends was considered a failure, and he concluded to never attempt again to preach; but his presiding elder secured his entrance into the South Carolina Conference in 1812, and he began his regular ministry as assistant on the Saltketcher Circuit. In three years he began to fill the best appointments in the Conference, and thus continued, with growing popularity, until 1832, when he was elected bishop. He entered upon his work as bishop with great reluctance, fear, and trembling, saying, "The Conference has laid upon me a work for which I am not prepared, and have had no experience whatever." In 1866 he superannuated, but continued to preach as health would permit until his death, March 2, 1871.

Bishop Andrew through his third wife became an owner of slaves, although he had no pecuniary interest in them. His ownership was so arranged that he could not liberate them had he wished. However, because of such ownership, the Northern majority of the General Conference suspended him from his office. This action caused a division in the Methodist Episcopal Church. He would gladly have resigned to preserve the union, had it not been sanctioning, as he considered, a false, fanatical, and unconstitutional principle, and had it not been for the earnest protests of the Southern delegates. The plan of separation was therefore agreed upon, and the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, was organized, with bishop Andrew at its head. In the meridian of life bishop Andrew was a noble- looking man, somewhat under six feet in height, well proportioned, and sallow of countenance — the prevailing type of his region. His features were chiselled with marked outlines of strong expression. His voice was strong and melodious. He was warm and devoted in his friendships, liberal in his benefactions, sympathizing in spirit, and a special friend of the colored people. He wrote much for the Church papers, and published a valuable work on Family Government, and a volume of Miscellanies. See Minutes of Annual Conferences of the M. E. Church, South, 1871, p. 643; Simpson, Cyclop. of Methodism, s.v.

 
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