Mitchell, William H, Dd

Mitchell, William H., D.D.

an American divine and educator of the Presbyterian communion, was born September 7, 1812, at Monoghan, Ireland. His early training he received in his native town, and even then distinguished himself by superior abilities and unwearied application. In his early manhood he was a practitioner in law. In his twenty-seventh year, a little more than a year after his marriage, he came to this country, and settled at Montgomery, Alabama. For a number of years after this he was engaged as teacher. In 1843 he was licensed to preach by the presbytery of East Alabama, and shortly after he was installed pastor of the Presbyterian Church at Wetumpka, Alabama. Possessing abilities of a high order, and being in all respects exemplary and pious, faithful, untiring, and devoted to his ministerial and pastoral duties, he enjoyed the confidence and esteem of all who knew him. In August, 1850, Mitchell removed to Florence, Alabama, and became the pastor of the church in that place. He remained in this pulpit till June 1871, when the onerous and accumulating duties and cares of the Synodical Female College of that place, of which he had become president, in connection with his pastoral responsibilities, rendered it necessary that he should devote himself more entirely to the care and interests of the college. He died October 3, 1872, after having held the presidency of the synodical college for over sixteen years. Personally, Dr. Mitchell was a finelooking man, rather low of stature, pleasing in his address, and courteous and dignified in his deportment; sometimes grave and serious, and at other times humorous and entertaining. When among his most intimate acquaintances and friends, he was free and unreserved, and abounded in anecdote and wit. In ecclesiastical bodies he was usually a calm and quiet listener, speaking but seldom, and modest and diffident in advancing his opinions, but always wise, prudent, and conservative, yet decided and firm in his convictions. His sermons were written with care, and preached almost always from his manuscript; but his delivery was fluent and easy, and his oratory, without very much action, was earnest, solemn, tender, and impressive. See Memphis Presbyterian, November 9, 1872. (J.H.W.)

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