Whipple, Henry Benjamin, 1822-1901Variant names
First Episcopal Bishop of the Diocese of Minnesota.
From the description of Henry Benjamin Whipple papers, 1856-1879. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 664364247
Episcopal Bishop of Minnesota.
From the description of Papers, 1863. (State Historical Society of North Dakota State Archives). WorldCat record id: 18086096
Epithet: Bishop of Minnesota
British Library Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue : Person : Description : ark:/81055/vdc_100000000757.0x00013b
Episcopal Bishop, citrus plantation owner.
Bishop Whipple was the Bishop of the Diocese of Minnesota from 1859 to 1901 as well as the owner of a plantation in Maitland, Fla. that produced oranges and other citrus fruits.
From the description of Papers, 1887-1901. (University of Florida). WorldCat record id: 50481838
Henry B. Whipple was born February 15, 1822, in Adams, New York, the son of John Hall and Elizabeth Wager Whipple. He was educated at a private boarding school in Clinton, New York, and at Jefferson County Institute in Watertown, New York. In 1838 and 1839 he attended Oberlin Collegiate Institute, but his health failed and his physician recommended an active business life. During the 1840s he worked for his father, a country merchant, purchasing goods from local farmers. He became active in New York politics as a conservative Democrat, and made many political friends who later used their influence in support of his efforts to reform the United States Indian administration.
In March of 1848, Whipple began studying for the ministry in the Protestant Episcopal Church. He was ordained deacon in August, 1849, became rector of Zion Church in Rome, New York, in November, 1849, and was ordained priest in 1850. Whipple served as rector of Zion Church from 1849 to 1857, becoming known both for the size and wealth of his parish and for his work among the poor.
In 1857, upon the urging of Albert E. Neely and others of Chicago, Illinois, Whipple helped organize and became the first rector of the Church of the Holy Communion, on Chicago’s south side, the first free church in the city. He drew his parishioners from “the highways and hedges” -- clerks, laborers, railroad men, travelers, and derelicts -- sought converts among the city’s Swedish population, and regularly officiated in a Chicago prison.
On June 30, 1859, Whipple was elected the first Protestant Episcopal bishop of Minnesota, an office he held until his death more than forty years later. He was consecrated bishop on October 13, 1859, and in December of that year made his first visitation of his diocese, including the Chippewa missions of E. Steele Peake and John Johnson Enmegahbowh. In the spring of 1860 he moved his family to Faribault, establishing it as the see city of the diocese.
During his episcopate, Whipple guided the development of the Protestant Episcopal Church in Minnesota from a few missionary parishes to a flourishing and prosperous diocese. For many years, especially during the first two decades of his episcopate, he made regular missionary sojourns by wagon or coach through the rural areas of the state, often in mid-winter, preaching in cabins, school houses, stores, saloons, and Indian villages. Until the diocese was financially secure, he pledged himself to personally support several of its missionary clergy and assumed many other financial obligations of the church. He unified a diocese that at his election was divided into two quarrelling factions.
In 1860, Whipple incorporated the Bishop Seabury Mission in Faribault, building it upon the foundations laid by James Lloyd Breck and Solon W. Manney, who in 1858 had founded a divinity school and school for boys and girls. With the help of gifts from eastern donors, the mission developed into three separate but closely connected schools: Seabury Divinity School, Shattuck School for boys, and St. Mary’s Hall for the education of daughters of the clergy. Whipple also helped found the Breck School in Wilder, Minnesota, to educate the children of farmers.
Whipple was best known outside of Minnesota for his dedication to the welfare of the American Indians and for his missionary work among the Sioux and Chippewa of Minnesota. He returned from his first visitation of his diocese with a firm commitment to the establishment of Indian missions and the reform of the United States Indian system. He regularly included Indian villages on his visitations, built up the Episcopal mission to the Chippewa based at the White Earth Reservation, and appealed for support of Indian missions by addresses throughout the United States and in Europe.
As an outspoken and prestigious advocate of Indian administration reform, Whipple was looked to as a leader by individuals and organizations concerned with the Indians’ welfare. He corresponded with congressmen, army officers, officials of the United States Department of the Interior, and the Presidents of the United States, urging that the Indians be dealt with honestly, justly and humanely, and that the existing system of Indian administration be thoroughly revised to permit the Indian to live in dignity and decency. He made numerous trips to Washington, D.C., especially during the 1860s, to plead in person for Indian reform and to expose abuses in the Indian service, appealed for support through newspapers and church publications, and lectured on Indian affairs.
Whipple’s suggestions for reform of the Indian system included treating tribes as wards of the government instead of as independent nations; paying annuities in kind rather than in cash; providing practical industrial education for Indians and separate homesteads for those who wanted them; appointing honest Indian agents; dealing with Indians as individuals rather than as tribes; enforcing laws through the use of native police and through trial, by a United States Indian commissioner, of any white men who violated Indian Laws; concentrating different bands of a tribe onto a single reservation; and refusing to permit liquor to be sold to Indians.
In addition to being consulted on Indian affairs by government officials, Whipple served on several commissions authorized to negotiate treaties or to oversee the Indian’s welfare, including the Sioux Commission (1876), the Northwest Indian Commission (1887), several commissions appointed to oversee annuity payments to the Chippewa of Minnesota (1860s), and the United States Board of Indian Commissioners (1895-1901). He also attended several Lake Mohonk Conferences of Friends of the Indian and served on the Episcopal Church’s Joint Committee to Secure Protection of the Civil Law for the Indians (1878-1883).
In the early years of his episcopate, Whipple’s espousal of Indian reform and commitment to Indian missions earned him the enmity of many whites who hated Indians, and led some of his fellow bishops to look upon him as a fanatic. His attitude was denounced most bitterly after Minnesota’s Sioux Uprising of 1862, when, in appeals to the President and in the public press, he opposed wholesale executions and extermination or deportation of the Sioux.
Whipple was acquainted with most of the Episcopal Church leaders of his day, and with many Anglican bishops of the British Isles and Canada. He made several trips to Europe for his health and to attend ecclesiastical conferences. Although a high churchman in doctrine, he preached tolerance of all views which fell within the scope of the church’s basic teachings. Urging that the church’s task was to “preach Christ crucified” and that sectarian quarrels hindered this mission, he pled for unity among all branches of the Episcopal and Anglican communions and for harmonious relations among members of all Christian denominations. Both in Chicago and in Minnesota, he worked closely with ministers and communicants of the national Swedish Church. His interest in the church’s missionary efforts was reflected in his presidency of the Western Church Building Society (1880-1893), his service on several committees and commissions of the General Convention concerned with missionary affairs, and in special missions to Cuba and to Puerto Rico. During the 1880s and 1890s, his health compelled him to spend several months each year at his winter home in Maitland, Florida, where he held missionary services and built the Church of the Good Shepherd. Whipple married Cornelia Wright, daughter of Benjamin and Sarah Wright of Adams, New York, in 1842; they had six children. Cornelia Whipple died in 1890 from injuries suffered in a railroad accident, and in 1896 Whipple married Evangeline Marrs Simpson, widow of industrialist Michael Hodge Simpson.
Henry B. Whipple died on September 16, 1901.
February 15, 1822:
H.B. Whipple born in Adams, New York.
1838- 1839: Attends Oberlin Collegiate Institute.
ca. 1840- 1848: In mercantile business with his father. Active in New York politics.
October 5, 1842:
Marries Cornelia Wright.
October 1843- May 1844: Spends winter traveling in the South.
Secretary of New York State Democratic convention.
Begins study for Protestant Episcopal ministry.
August 26, 1849:
Ordained to diaconate.
Becomes rector of Zion Church, Rome, New York.
Ordained to the priesthood.
1853- 1854: Mrs. Whipple ill with typhoid. They spend the winter in St. Augustine, Florida, where Whipple serves as temporary rector of Trinity Church.
Becomes rector of Church of the Holy Communion, Chicago, Illinois.
June 30, 1859:
Elected Protestant Episcopal Bishop of Minnesota.
October 13, 1859:
Consecrated bishop at St. James Church, Richmond, Virginia.
November 10, 1859:
Holds his first service in Minnesota, at Wabasha.
First visitation of his diocese.
Makes permanent residence at Faribault.
May 22, 1860:
Bishop Seabury Mission incorporated.
May 27, 1861:
Elected chaplain of the 1st Minnesota Regiment. Declines.
July 16, 1862:
Lays cornerstone of the Cathedral of Our Merciful Savior, Faribault.
July 17, 1862:
Lays cornerstone of Seabury Hall, first permanent building of Bishop Seabury Mission.
Sioux Uprising. Whipple helps care for the wounded at St. Peter.
Goes to Washington to plead mercy for the Sioux. Writes “The Duty of Citizens Concerning the Indian Massacre.”
Whipple and Alexander Faribault take the families of loyal Sioux to Faribault.
May 9, 1863:
Appointed to Board of Visitors to the Chippewa, to attend annuity payments.
Visits Lincoln, to whom he gives an account of the Sioux Uprising, and presents a petition on behalf of the Indians signed by attendants at the Protestant Episcopal Church General Convention.
Chippewa treaty ceding Red River Valley to whites.
1864 March- April 1864: Goes to Washington with Chippewa chiefs of Red Lake and Pembina to plead for more favorable treaty.
Seabury Hall opens, housing boys’ school and divinity department.
September 1864- June 1865: Vacations in Europe as guest of R. B. Minturn, resting from overwork. Travels in England, Paris, Italy, Egypt, Palestine. Almost dies of Syrian fever.
Shattuck School organized.
July 26, 1866:
Foundation laid for Shattuck Hall.
Attends meeting of Board of Missions in New York. Refuses to accept resolution offering its “cordial sympathy” but with no appropriation for Indian missions. Bishops Whipple, Randall, Clarkson assigned to prepare report on condition of North American Indians.
November 1, 1866:
St. Mary’s Hall opens in Whipple’s home.
Shattuck Hall built.
Whipple’s report on “The Moral and Temporal Condition of the Indian Tribes” presented to Board of Missions and read at Cooper Institute, New York City.
Whipple and Dr. Jared W. Daniels buy and distribute goods to Sisseton and Wahpeton Sioux in Dakota.
June 24, 1869:
Cathedral of Our Merciful Savior, Faribault, consecrated.
October 1869- May 1870: Travels in England and Spain.
Offered bishopric of Sandwich Islands. Declines.
Investigates moral and religious conditions of foreigners in Cuba, and holds its first Protestant service.
June 21, 1871:
Cornerstone of Shumway Memorial Chapel (“Memorial Chapel of the Good Shepherd”) laid.
Edward Kenney sent to Cuba as resident missionary under Whipple’s supervision.
September 24, 1872:
Shumway Memorial Chapel consecrated.
November 18, 1872:
Seabury Hall burns.
Elected a trustee of the Peabody fund for Education in the South.
Seabury Hall rebuilt. Whipple Hall built to house Shattuck School. Divinity school and Shattuck School permanently separated.
Counsels with government officials and Chief Flatmouth to settle Leech Lake timber controversy.
Preaches triennial sermon in New York for Society for the Increase of the Ministry.
Preaches opening sermon at synod in Rupert’s Land, Canada.
1876 September- October 1876: Visits Sioux bands on Missouri River as member of Sioux Commission.
Writes “The True Policy Toward the Indian Tribes” and “The Present Montana Indian War.” Confers with government officials regarding the Sioux and Nez Perce.
June 19, 1882:
Cornerstone of new St. Mary’s Hall laid.
September 1884- April 1885: Travels in England and Europe.
Appointed member of Northwest Indian Commission.
June 10, 1886:
Mahlon Norris Gilbert elected Assistant Bishop of Minnesota.
August 22- September 1, 1887: Visits Alaska. Urges missionary jurisdiction and bishop.
Shumway Hall built.
May 15, 1888:
Lays cornerstone of Johnston Hall for Seabury Divinity School.
1888 June- August 1888: Attends Lambeth Conference, London, England.
July 3, 1888:
Preaches opening sermon, Lambeth Conference, on “The Church of the Reconciliation.”
October 2, 1889:
Preaches opening sermon at centennial of the Protestant Episcopal Church in New York.
November 23, 1889:
Railroad accident near Albany; Mrs. Whipple injured.
July 16, 1890:
Mrs. Whipple dies.
November 1890- May 1891: Travels in England, Europe, Egypt.
December 7, 1890:
Private interview with Queen Victoria.
Diocese of Minnesota is divided, and Missionary District of Duluth created.
Appointed to Board of Indian Commissioners.
General Convention of the Protestant Episcopal Church held in Minnesota.
October 22, 1896:
Marries Evangeline Marrs Simpson.
1897 May- September 1897: Presiding bishop of the American Church at Third Pan-Anglican (Lambeth) Conference, London. Travels and preaches in England.
1899 April- May 1899: Represents Protestant Episcopal Church at celebration of the centenary of the Church Missionary Society of England, and delivers opening address.
Publishes Lights and Shadows of a Long Episcopate.
February 1, 1900:
Visits Puerto Rico for the Board of Missions.
March 2, 1900:
Bishop Gilbert dies; Whipple reassumes sole management of diocese.
June 6, 1901:
Samuel Cook Edsall elected Coadjutor Bishop of Minnesota.
September 16, 1901:
Whipple dies in Faribault, Minnesota, aged 79.
From the guide to the Henry B. Whipple papers., 1833-1934., (Minnesota Historical Society)
|Place Name||Admin Code||Country|
|Lower Sioux Indian Community (Minn.)|
|Lindley, West Riding of Yorkshire|
|White Earth Indian Reservation (Minn.)|
|Indians of North America--Missions|
|Episcopalian theological seminaries|
|Indians of North America--Government relations|
|Ojibwa Indians--Pictorial works|
|Dakota Indians--Pictorial works|
|High church movement|
|Church work with Indians--Episcopal Church|
|Indians of North America--Pictorial works|
|Indians of North America--Portraits|
|Dakota Indians--Missions--Minnesota--Pictorial works|
|Clergy member--North Dakota.--dot|