Early, John, Dd
Early, John, D.D.
a bishop of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, was born in Bedford County, Virginia, January 1, 1786, of Baptist parents. He was converted in 1804; licensed to preach in 1806; and in 1807 entered the Virginia Conference, wherein he continued laboriously and faithfully till 1815, when the growing necessities of his family obliged limn to locate and engage in secular business. In 1821 he re-entered the effective ranks, and labored with marvellous success until 1846, when he connected himself with the Church Sonth, and devoted his energies to establishing and operating the Southern Book Concern. In 1854 he was elected to the episcopacy; in 1866 was granted a superannuated relation, and died in Lynchburg, November 5, 1873. Bishop Early was full of the missionary spirit, and everywhere awakened missionary zeal; was one of the chief founders of Randolph-Macon College; was a man of great energy and devotedness, and held a high position in the esteem of the Church. See Minutes of Annual Conferences of the M.E. Church South, 1873, page 914; Simpson, Cyclop. of Methodism, s.v.