Waugh, Beverly, Dd
Waugh, Beverly, D.D.
a bishop of the Methodist Episcopal Church, was born in Fairfax County, Va., Oct. 25, 1789. His father, Capt. James Waugh, was a substantial farmer, and headed a company of militia at the time lord Cornwallis invaded Virginia. Mr. Waugh's youthful days were guarded by pious parents, who screened him from the common follies of early life, and gave him the best education the country could afford. At the age of fifteen he embraced religion, and maintained his reputation as a consistent Christian through life. His Christian zeal attracted the attention of a pious merchant, who, finding Mr. Waugh well qualified in figures and penmanship, engaged him as clerk, and after a thorough trial gave him full management of a store in Middleburgh, forty miles from Alexandria, the home, of his employer.
Thus was laid the foundation of his well-developed business habits in afterlife. While in his mercantile life, he began exercising his gift as an exhorter, under the conviction that to decline laboring for the salvation of souls would bring a great peril upon his soul and frustrate his religious enjoyment. Prompted by such a motive, he quitted business in 1809, and, entering the Baltimore Conference, was appointed helper on the Stafford and Fredericksburg Circuit, Va. In 1810 he traveled the Greenbrier Circuit; and in 1811 was admitted into full connection, and stationed at Ebenezer, Washington city, tile only Methodist Church then in the national metropolis. On April 12, 1812, he was married to Miss Catherine B. Busby, of Washington city. The following eighteen years of his itinerant career were marked with all the peculiar lights and shades, joys and sorrows, of a Methodist preacher's life. In 1828 Mr. Waugh was elected assistant book-agent, and in 1832 principal book-agent, in the Methodist Book Concern in New York City. In 1836 he was constituted bishop. His views respecting the new office, as recorded in his private journal at the time, exhibit his characteristic strong sense of duty and his habitual diffidence and self-distrust. He says, "Much as I felt my utter inadequacy to the important work, I feared to take myself out of the hands of my brethren. I could not, therefore; see my way clear to do anything else than to throw myself and my all into the arms of Christ, and by his grace attempt the performance of the work to which God, by his Church, appeared plainly to call me." To follow bishop Waugh on his regular episcopal tours for twenty-two consecutive years, and review his travels and labors, would not be suitable in this brief sketch. Suffice it to say, in whatever locality his office demanded his presence during those twenty- two years he was never absent, and was so tenacious of performing his whole duty that, sick or well, he seldom called for a moment's relief. In considering bishop Waugh's character, there is much to impress and interest. His personal appearance was very striking. He was sedate and grave, but not sad; cheerful, but not trifling; proverbially neat; and his strength and meekness were happily blended. Christianity pervaded and a ennobled him. About two weeks before his death, the bishop went to Carlisle, Pa., to assist a brother minister in an interesting revival, where he labored with his usual zeal and success. He died suddenly at his home in Baltimore, of erysipelas, followed by an affection of the heart, Feb. 9, 1858. See Minutes of Annual. Conferences, 1858, p. 1-4, 6-8; Simpson, Cyclop. of Methodism, s.v.; Sprague, Annals of the Amer. Pulpit, vol. 7.