STYLES & CASH,
Steam Printers, Eighth Avenue and 14th Street.
At the urgent request of many friends I have reluctantly consented to print the following letters in a pamphlet form, in order to give them a wider circulation than they could possibly have in the columns of the Churchman, in which they originally appeared.
The following verbal change has been made in my letters; in the communication which the Clerical Deputy made to me on Wednesday, October 21st, 1874, respecting the charges which a Bishop had preferred against me, he doubtless did not mention the name of the Bishop, or the Diocese to which the Bishop belonged--nor could the slip of paper have contained such information, since this would have been a violation of the rules of secrecy, which the House had prescribed during the discussion of my case--hence the impersonal form is substituted, "it is charged," &c., for "the Bishop of Western New York, or Bishop Coxe charges." I knew instantaneously, however, who the accuser was, and so did every one else. It needed not that any one should tell me or others. This is the only verbal change. A paragraph has been added near the close of my second letter, which was written for publication in the Churchman, but which I omitted in consequence of the great length which the letter had reached; it is now inserted because it is worthy of consideration in forming an estimate of the character of the Bishop's assault upon me. The paragraph referred to occurs on page 61; it begins with the words, "To show the doubting, if there be any," &c., and concludes with the words, "But I must forbear." With these exceptions the letters are reprinted exactly as they originally appeared in the Churchman.
In an appendix I have added the letter of the Rev. E. M. Pecke, M.A., the letter of the Rev. Dr. Lewis of Washington, D. C., my letter, addressed to the House of Clerical and Lay Deputies, asking to be allowed to be heard in my own behalf, and the names of the Trustees of the General Theological Seminary who were present at the annual meeting in June, 1875, seventy-seven of whom, in the extraordinary language of Bishop Coxe, "seemed to have voted to make the new Dean."
I submit this correspondence to the judgment of my Brethren of the Clergy and Laity, with entire confidence that they will do me ample justice in this matter, and with the earnest prayer to God that He will overrule this miserable scandal, in which I am compelled to take so prominent a part, to the ultimate good of His Church.
GEORGE F. SEYMOUR.
GENERAL THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY.
West 20th Street and 9th Ave.,
October 11th, 1875.
MY DEAR SIR:
Nearly a year ago you and your fellow-Deputies gave solemn judgment in the Illinois case. Your personal support was given to that judgment, and in so doing you performed a great duty to the Church, or else you did a great wrong. Since that time you have never ceased to hear the accusation of injustice. The Church has been flooded with complaints, and the sympathies of the external public have been invoked. The aggrieved party has had this field to itself. Nobody has replied. In calm dignity or well-restrained disgust, the friends of order and discipline have found their strength in the "quietness and confidence" which can afford to sit still.
Though I have had the honor to share in these reproaches, I have steadfastly refused to pay any attention to the vociferations of abusive men. The Church has spoken once and again. If men will not "hear the Church," the Master has assigned them a place where we need not pursue them. I have confided in the good sense of the Church, and have pointed as my sufficient defence to the [5/6] very publications that were designed to injure me. Nobody can read them with candor and judgment without seeing that they refute themselves. Never before have men taken such pains to contradict their own stories, and to expose their own sinister practices. I have exhorted everybody to read their "sworn evidence," and to note not merely its astounding discrepancies, but the force it lends to every charge it endeavors to disprove.
But, I am told by judicious friends that this calm confidence may be carried too far: that while we mind our business and accept the Church's decisions, there are revolutionists at work who will not let the Church's voice prevail. Nay, it is said that by silence and indifference on the one side, and persistent activity on the other, the Church's authority is diminished, and opportunity is gained for fresh disturbances. It is urged, moreover, that hundreds, who take no pains to inform themselves, are persuaded that charges, in view of which the House of Deputies acted, have been disproved and virtually retracted; that our silence gives consent; that we have nothing to say; that "sworn evidence" has overborne and confounded all opposition. In these circumstances I have been appealed to show how futile are such outcries and how thoroughly established are the facts in view of which the Deputies acted. It is urged that, as many relied on my testimony in giving their judgment, I owe it to them to show how wisely they acted, and how strong they are alike in demonstrated facts and in the support of the Church. Influenced by such views, I address you as a Deputy and as a friend. I have been convinced, until now, that the facts speak sufficiently for themselves. Nor do I now suppose that it is in the power of wrongdoers permanently to darken counsel by words without knowledge.
But, I have always said that should any public occasion be given, so that having shunned all personal conflict [6/7] I might find myself called to support the Church's decisions against overt acts of a revolutionary character, I would not keep silence. For I have learned from that great master in theology, the colossal Bishop of St. David's, to follow St. Basil's maxim in all such cases: "We are not always to keep silence under calumnies; not, indeed, that by contradicting them we may avenge ourselves, but, lest we should give free course to falsehood.
I am informed that "free course" has been too long conceded to those who despise government, and that by their persevering efforts they are disturbing the peace of the Church and the operation of law. It is said that a successful stratagem has converted our "Trustees of the General Theological Seminary" into a third House and a Supreme Court of Appeal: and that, by ingenious contrivances, the action of a petty minority of this Board is made to appear to the public generally, and to hundreds of good men in the Church, to be a reversal of judgment: the voice of our entire Episcopate and of hundreds of picked men from all our dioceses, rebuking and overruling the House of Deputies. In proof of this, and in connection with evidence of the same sort, to which my attention has been directed, I have received from a respected presbyter of Illinois, as a specimen of what is going on in that quarter, the following extract from one of the newspapers of Chicago. .
BISHOP-ELECT OF CHICAGO.
"The majority of the Episcopal Church in Illinois, will be greatly pleased to learn that the Rev. George F. Seymour, D.D., was on last Thursday elected Permanent Dean of the General Theological Seminary at New York, by 77 out of 93 votes cast by the Trustees of that chief institution of the Episcopal Church in this country. The Board of Trustees embraces the Bishops and other prominent men of the Church from each diocese in the United States, and thus it will be seen that Dr. Seymour's election possesses great significance, especially considering the fact that his consecration as Bishop of Illinois was defeated last fall by the Lower House of the General [7/8] Convention. The result signifies a great change of sentiment in the Episcopal Church in favor of Seymour, and probably also in favor of Dr. DeKoven, for the two are said to stand together on doctrinal questions. Dr. DeKoven was elected Bishop of Illinois last February. The same influences that defeated Dr. Seymour's consecration undoubtedly induced many of the Standing Committees of dioceses to reject Dr. DeKoven; but the latter is still Bishop-elect of the diocese; and this action of the Bishops and other Trustees of the General Seminary at New York, in reference to Dr. Seymour, will undoubtedly have a strong influence to induce the Standing Committees that have hitherto acted adversely, to reconsider and give consent to DeKoven's consecration. Unless such shall prove to be the case, there will be a manifest inconsistency in the treatment of the two Divines."
"The action at New York would seem also to indicate that the Bishops are not in sympathy with the crusade that was set on foot against such great lights as Drs. Seymour and DeKoven."
To those who know anything of the facts, this is so absurd as to provoke nothing worse than a smile. But I am assured that few know the facts, and that many who see through the fallacy are unable to demonstrate it: while tongues and pens and presses are employed actively in circulating and exaggerating the impression that a great wrong has been done to Illinois, and to its first Elect, and that the Church is ready and anxious to reverse her decision. By taking advantage of popular ignorance, it is believed that it is in the power of the insubordinate to weaken the force of Canons and of Legislation, and to create a state of things which must prove disastrous in many ways to the peace and prosperity of the Church.
It may be so. I yield to the convictions of others, and most reluctantly accept a task so painful that I would take any honorable course to escape it. Moral cowardice is a very convenient fault, and I dare say I have my share of it: but, it is grossly criminal in a Christian Bishop, when any public interest of the Church is in peril, to prove indifferent to his trust, or to leave its burdens to [8/9] others. My share, in all this business, has been the product not merely of strong convictions, but of Providential circumstances, of thorough information as to facts, and of a humble prayer to God that he would support me in a work to which I have not called myself, and if need be, in
"patiently suffering for the Truth's sake."
So, then, it has come to this: the servant of the Church is to be made its Master. An appeal is made, from you Deputies, to the Trustees of the General Theological Seminary. Our Seminary Board, the creature of our Legislation, is to overrule our great Synod: it is to be erected into a third House, and a Supreme Court of Appeal; and the peaceful Academic Courts of Sacred Learning are to be turned into an arena of Church Politics. What an engine of mischief is thus created; what a perversion of Church funds and of holy trusts! What perils threaten us, if, to all the evils of internal mismanagement, is to be added such a prostitution of the corporate powers of the Seminary to the service of faction and party. Let us first come to the facts which are so cunningly made to appear as they are not.
The Journal of the late Annual Meeting of the Trustees of the General Theological Seminary is now before me. How delusive is the impression conveyed, in the Chicago paragraph, as to the significance and weight of their action, is apparent from the following facts: This Journal informs us that the number of Trustees is 421, inclusive of our 57 Bishops. Of these 400 Trustees, 77 seem to have voted to make the new Dean. There were but six Bishops present: of these how many voted for him does not appear. At all events, a mere fraction of the corporate body is responsible for a measure, of the importance of which I do not now propose to speak particularly.
Of the constitution of our General Seminary, few know anything at all; of its practical management, still less is understood. But it should be known that it [9/10] is in no respect whatever a representative Council of the Church. Of its 400 trustees, scattered over a continent from Maine to California, only a small number is able to attend the meetings of the Board. The local trustees and their near neighbors are the only members who are always able to be present; and supposing these to be about equally divided as to any measure, a few of the distant members, summoned for the purpose, can generally turn the vote in favor of a moiety which is organized and which is resolved to work the Seminary in its own interest. The only check on this operation is to be found in a large attendance of Bishops, who can insist upon a vote by Orders. Rarely, however, are the Bishops able, in the hottest days of the year, to assemble in New York, coming from great distances with peril to health, with large sacrifice of time and money, and with injury to their more immediate work at home. Formerly there was a triennial meeting, at the time of our General Convention, and this enabled a full Board of Trustees, once in three years, to give attention to business and to exercise some control. But this has been abolished. A full meeting of the Trustees is now a practical impossibility, and a fluctuating minority, too frequently swayed by the manipulation of a few persistent spirits, is virtually clothed with irresponsible power. Over and over again has it proved itself able to thwart the known wishes of the Church, and even the recorded votes of the Trustees, when, in exceptional cases, a fair attendance has been secured.
These facts, which are notorious, sufficiently explain the late action, and also the use which is made of it by those who brought it about. That its "significance" is widely different from the face that is put upon it, must be evident from the Journal itself; from its record of attendance and of the vote.
And thus observation is withdrawn from the real [10/11] state of the case, to which I now direct attention. The Illinois case was decided, in the House of Deputies, by a most significant and emphatic vote. It has been again decided by action still more deliberate and emphatic. This occurred after the most persevering efforts of partisans to create sympathy, while a patient silence was the only answer of those on whom they poured the vials of their calumny and abuse. This is the real history, and it must no longer be thrust out of view.
Considering its solemnity, and the painful nature of such a vote, the refusal of the House of Deputies to confirm the Illinois election is one of the most significant actions of that House in the records of our great Synod. To vote in favor of such a confirmation is easy and agreeable. Everybody is anxious to find an excuse for doing what everybody likes to do. To vote No is to make enemies, and to provoke the spite of the worst characters in the Church; of that class of men rebuked so often by St. Paul, and of whom we know, from our Lord's parable of the Tares, there shall always be specimens among the wheat till the end of the world. Now, nobody likes to be hammered upon the anvil of "Alexander the Coppersmith." The petty terrorism of such men is a real power. To resist them is to excite their unscrupulous animosity. It requires nerve, as well as principle, to defy them. In the Illinois case this class of men was known to be enlisted in behalf of the candidate. In the holy precincts of the Synod they were active night and day. They, and their innocent but deluded instruments, were able to practise on many gentle and unsuspecting natures. The motives which were addressed to the feeble and shallow were, in some cases, such as might be paralleled only by the tactics of political demagogues. I speak of what I know; others know it as well.
Far be it from me to censure those who voted for the confirmation. On the contrary I shall plead their [11/12] cause. While not a few were influenced by such operations, many good and true men were most honorably persuaded of the entire fitness of the candidate. Others, again, were amiably disposed to give the candidate "the benefit of a doubt." When I reflect on the issue that was made; on the many inducements that were presented to fair and sound minds; and on the perils and responsibilities assumed by every one who voted in the Negative, I consider the vote of the House solemn and significant even to sublimity. If, in the circumstances, any comfort can be extracted from the fact that this overwhelming decision lacked a few votes of the "numerical majority," by all means let that comfort be enjoyed.
I say, "in the circumstances"; and by this I do not merely refer back to what I have said to prove the heroic character of a negative vote. I have a more serious meaning than that.
How comes it to pass that many a true and worthy name is found recorded in favor of the Confirmation, when the same name is on the record in favor of "the Ritual Canon"? The answer is plain. Those who managed the struggle to obtain Confirmation did so, as you are well aware, by a persevering course of suppression and concealment. They resented the idea that their candidate was one of the class which the pending "Ritual Canon" was aiming to chastise. Good men voted for him, because they were lead to believe he was no "Ritualist." They believed he had no sympathy with the outspoken President of Racine. Who believes it now? "The two are said to stand together on doctrinal questions," according to the Chicago journalist, and that such is the case nobody will now deny.
But, observe, the entire plea which was made for their candidate in the House of Deputies, was based on the persevering denial of such an idea. Who stood up and took the fair ground, "Our candidate is as much a [12/13] Ritualist as his friend, for whose express benefit you are called upon to enact a Ritual Canon; but we mean to sustain Ritualism, and we demand his Confirmation in view of this position"? This is said now defiantly enough. But, at that time, their candidate was represented as an old-fashioned "Hooker" Churchman. A shrewd old Deputy observed, "I began to think him hardly High Churchman enough for me."
Think, then, of what was involved in a negative vote. It was a grave impeachment of the sincerity of all those representations. It was something more serious still: for the candidate himself was on solemn record. He had assured the House that certain statements as to his official conduct in the Seminary had no foundation in fact whatever. Now, it was comparatively easy to credit that those statements grew out of exaggerated impressions, the result of prejudices; of mistakes, honestly entertained, but capable of biassing the judgment and disturbing recollections. It was comparatively easy to think this, concerning men like Seabury and Vinton; but it was a hard thing to believe that there was any concealment, equivocation, or duplicity in the solemn denials of a candidate expecting immediate Consecration, and tendering a candid statement of facts, to a Council of the Church about to vote for or against him, under the Invocation of the Holy Ghost.
Such were the circumstances; such was the issue, and as such, I accept it. If it appears, that, in these circumstances the House of Deputies was honorably and fairly dealt with; if it appears that the candidate himself used no artifices, suppressed nothing which the House had a right to know, and in all respects satisfied the anxieties of the House, by a full statement of what he professed to state candidly, and for their entire enlightenment, as to the disputed facts; if all this appears, from what is now disclosed, then has an honest and true man [13/14] been made the victim of unfounded prejudice, and all who voted or counselled against him have done him a cruel wrong. I accept this issue.
And because I have been held responsible in large measure for the result, I consent to speak now, when the result is represented as reversed and repudiated, and when all who contributed to bring it about are subjected to such persevering insult and rebuke. I shall prove, then, from the publications of the defeated candidate himself, that he has contradicted his own solemn statements and refuted his own stories; has failed in making any one detailed statement to which he adheres, and has corroborated by the statements of others almost everything which he gave the House of Deputies to suppose untrue. All this I shall be able to show from an analysis of his affidavits, which I made immediately on the receipt of them, but which I trusted I might not be called to make public. I bore him no ill-will and wished to leave him to his own better disposition and calmer moments. I was not his prosecutor. I was satisfied with the result, and I was sorry for the man. It was plain to me that excitement and irritation had disturbed alike his memory and his judgment. For his self-stultifying oaths and affirmations I would not hold him entirely responsible, and I am truly pained that his injudicious friends have forced on a crisis which requires my further notice.
In the second Illinois case disguises were thrown aside. Those who had imagined that the original candidate was no "ritualist," and never had been one, and never had any sympathy with the class against which "the Ritual Canon" had been directed, were now amazed to find the true state of affairs, and to observe how coolly the old pretences were thrown to the winds. The same parties who had pressed the confirmation of their candidate because he was not a ritualist, were now resolved to re-elect him because he was. The extreme [14/15] party, with no effort to conceal their contempt for the House of Deputies, announced their ability to re-elect him, or, failing to secure his consent, then to choose another whose "election might re-assert the propriety of their original choice, and whose consecration as a Bishop would vindicate their former Elect and rebuke those who had contributed in any way to his defeat. With this avowed purpose they selected as their candidate the very person whose words and doings had called for the "Ritual Canon," and, by "a technical majority," they elected him In accepting the announcement, this second Elect gracefully pronounced it a virtual vindication of his friend, the former candidate. I ask, had the unity of their views been fairly stated to the House by this reverend gentleman during the discussion, what sort of a vote would have been recorded in his favor? As for the pretences then made, I ask again, who, believes them now? It is openly avowed and confessed, by the partisans of both candidates, that the two elections in Illinois were one in spirit and intent, and fell upon men of the same extreme school and party. And now, I say, as my second proposition, that the action of the House of Deputies has been sustained by action still more deliberate and emphatic. That this was done in spite of the most persevering efforts to create sympathy, and in the absence of all rejoinder, will hardly be denied. I have already shown that the second election in Illinois was an appeal to the Standing Committees to rebuke the House of Deputies, and thus indirectly to vindicate the candidate they rejected.
It was little doubted that the second candidate would be confirmed, and that thus a double triumph would be secured. The Church had been flooded with pamphlets and newspaper articles designed to overwhelm all opposition, and to bury opponents under a mountain of obloquy and reproach. These measures had not been without [15/16] their effect. It was conjectured, therefore, that the Standing Committees would be found less difficult to satisfy than the Deputies. They were plied with assurances that the silence of the other party was a confession of impotency. They were flattered; they were threatened. With some, the political process called "log-rolling" was unblushingly resorted to: "You vote for our candidate, and we will vote for yours." Under such a variety of influences, it was expected that the Standing Committees, removed from the excitements and the publicity of a Synod, would naturally yield to the temptation of passing the new candidate, by a mere routine vote on the regularity of the papers, throwing the whole responsibility on the Bishops.
I shared in this expectation. The case was a vexatious one, and the Standing Committees might well wish to be rid of it. The new Elect was a man entitled to respect, and encompassed with personal friends. He was, moreover, believed to be above trickery and deception. Nobody accused him of "paltering in a double sense." His position was unambiguous, avowed, and defiant. He was a man whom all parties would have welcomed to the Episcopate, had not his worse than doubtful theology made it impossible for us to reconcile his confirmation with fidelity to the Church's Law and Doctrine. But, the question was, would the Church, by confirming his election, stultify herself, and rebuke the House of Deputies for refusing a candidate of the same opinions and the same party? All who were not too stupid to recognize this issue, felt its magnitude, and awaited the result with anxiety.
God be thanked for the decisive response of the Church by her constitutional representatives. Diocese after diocese gave answer without wavering; the exceptions were easily accounted for; the decision was overwhelming. It amounted to a "vindication," not of the [16/17] rejected candidate, but of the Deputies who rejected him. For, as it was claimed that this case carried with it the other, and that the success of the second would be a virtual triumph and "vindication" of the first, so the defeat of No.2 was a fresh defeat of No.1; "the two being said to stand together on doctrinal questions." Thus it was understood by all parties; and so, while maintaining her doctrines undefiled, by her repeated and decisive action, has the Church rebuked all such as sully the sanctities of an Episcopal election, and pollute her councils by artifices and disingenuous manoeuvres.
I shall pass, in a succeeding letter, to other particulars.
A. CLEVELAND COXE,
Bishop of Western New York.
September 1, 1875.
BISHOP COXE'S SECOND LETTER,
From the Churchman, September 11th, 1875.
SECOND LETTER TO A DEPUTY.
My DEAR SIR:
It has been admitted that unless the House of Deputies was unfairly dealt with, they inflicted a wrong in refusing the confirmation of the elected Bishop of Illinois. In other words, I can account for their decision in no other way than this: They said, "There is proof of much that requires explanation, and the explanations proffered are ambiguous and unsatisfactory; we cannot confirm the election of a presbyter who, at such a crisis, fails to tell us all he knows about serious occurrences and abuses, and who leaves us under the profound impression that he equivocates and suppresses truth."
That not a few reasoned thus, I have been well informed [17/18] it is the natural conclusion that such were the impressions that produced so solemn and pregnant a result.
Were these impressions just? I answer, The Professor himself has proved that they were so, and has left abundant evidence in the hand of the future historian as to the unfortunate course--the product, perhaps, of bad advice--which he adopted in this serious crisis.
In the Professor's publications, since the adjournment of the House, he has directed public attention chiefly to one point as the Crux of his whole case. He claims to have been grossly misrepresented as to the words he used when the Bishop of Western New York asked him a certain question, at his official visitation in the Spring of 1873. Instead of the expressions which the Bishop recollects, he now makes oath to his own recollections as follows:
"At that visitation, the moment the fact of Father Grafton's lectures was mentioned, I stated to him, in terms too strong and clear to permit the possibility of mistake, that those lectures were delivered without my knowledge or consent, and that if I had known of them in time, I should certainly have prohibited them."
The italics are his own. This affidavit was solemnly made, about three weeks after he had sent in his explanations to the House. If his memory is good for anything, and if his story is artless truth, we shall find an entire agreement, therefore, between this testimony and the statement he had sent to the House, signed with his own hand. On the contrary, the two stories are flat contradictions; if this affidavit tells the truth, it is impossible that his statement to the House was a faithful account of facts. I am pained to direct attention to this dilemma; but my forbearance has at last ceased to be consistent with duty.
I must leave the Professor, therefore, in the situation he has made for himself. He swears he said certain [18/19] words to me, in 1873, about which there can be "no possibility of mistake." Observe, then, the issue is about words: all that he and others may swear about his doings may be true; but that is not the point, though he shifts his ground and makes it appear so. Whether through confusion or design, I cannot say; but he compiles his pamphlet on the assumption that this issue is one as to his conduct chiefly, whereas the primary point must be as to what he told the Bishop "at that visitation." Major Andre, when he was captured, might have told the scouts that he was travelling under a pass from General Arnold; had he done so, and produced it, he would have gone on unmolested; but he became confused, and let out a less convenient truth, which he did not mean to betray. So, allowing all that is now sworn to, to be true so far as
concerns his previous conduct, it is possible, at least, that the Professor became confused and said what he does not now recollect, because he is under the powerful impression of what he might have said. In the "issue of veracity" which he so gratuitously made, all turns on what
he said "at that visitation." Primarily, as to the issue he thus chose to make, this is the question: Are the Bishop's recollections less worthy of credit than the Professor's, admitting both to be sincere, and that a great mistake has been made by one or the other? This, then, is the only question in the "issue of veracity," so-called.
Let us take the Professor's own sworn statement. If his memory is correct, then, in the Spring of 1873, (1) he knew that "Father Grafton's" Lectures were a fact, and by accounting for them as a fact, he admitted it; (2) by using the title "Father," he admitted the somewhat anomalous position of "Father Grafton" among the presbyters of our Church; (3) by the use of the plural ("lectures"), he admitted that he had lectured on more than one occasion: (4) by his explanations, he further admitted that those "Lectures" should have been prohibited [19/20] if possible; (5) that he would have prohibited them if he had known of them in time; (6) that he had power to do so as acting Dean; and (7) that nothing but want of knowledge, in time to prohibit them, prevented him from so doing. Refer back to his words, as above, and you will see that they involve all these admissions.
Did he make these same admissions to the House of Deputies? On the contrary he flatly denied that anything of the kind had occurred; and he went on to give a detailed and circumstantial account of what did occur, which, on the supposition that this oath is true, must necessarily be the reverse of truth, in almost every particular. Such is the record.
Thus, according to the certified record now before me, he had been asked the following question:
"Did the Rev. Mr. Grafton, with your consent or knowledge, ever lecture to or address the students of the Seminary upon any subject, and under what circumstances?"
His reply is (1) "He never did, with my knowledge and consent;" after which, with a brief intervening ambiguity, he proceeds (2) to answer for "the circumstances," in the following words:
"The facts were simply these: The Rev. Mr. Grafton--on one occasion (1) called upon a student, at his room in the Seminary, and while there other students (2) in neighboring rooms (3) heard of his presence, and came in to see him, and requested him to tell them about Cowley, and the plan and purpose of the brotherhood of which Mr. Grafton is a member. The Rev. Mr. Grafton, as I was informed after the occurrence, had no design (4) when he called (5) of holding any such (6) conversation; it was (7) simply accidental. I did not learn of it (8) until some time after it took place, (9) and I had nothing whatever to do with it."
The italics, which are my own, and the numerals which I have introduced, mark particulars which deserve special attention.
In the most solemn crisis of his life, when it seemed impossible that the least suppression of truth could be resorted [20/21] to, or the slightest equivocation tolerated by one thus testifying before a Council of the Church, assembled under the invocation of the Holy Ghost--the Professor is responsible for having made this affirmation. Three weeks later he makes oath to a statement, which, if it be true, convicts this statement of equivocation or untruth, in almost every particular. According to the oath, he knew, and the Bishop had been told "in terms too strong and clear to permit the possibility of mistake," that Lectures had been delivered, that they were such lectures as should have been prohibited, and that he would have prohibited them himself, but for his want of timely information. But he not only gave the House of Deputies to understand that absolutely nothing of this kind had occurred: instead thereof he tried to make them believe that the whole story grew out (1) of a casual call (2) on one occasion, when (3) students in "neighboring rooms" (4) heard of his presence, (5) came in and had a conversation with the Rev. Mr. Grafton, (6) the whole being simply accidental. In short, he led them to imagine, so far as his statement was credited, that (1) nothing had occurred which he could have prohibited if he would, and (2) that nothing had occurred which he should have prohibited if he could.
I am amazed and mortified that this is matter of history. But, I quote the record as I find it, and will not aggravate it by printing these contradictory statements in parallel columns. Let the reader try this experiment. They defy explanation and all attempts to harmonize them.
For alas, the attempts I have made to reduce them to some possible solution, are blown to the winds by the "sworn evidence," which multiplies details and brings out facts of such irrepressible awkwardness as to dislocate the most ingenious contrivances. The professor has taken great pains to furnish this evidence against himself, and I mention it in all charity, because it indicates a confusion [21/22] of mind which may plead his apology. In the excitement and irritation to which he had been subjected, this is the very probable source of his otherwise unaccountable conduct.
The House of Deputies, however, was not merely trifled with by these detailed mis-statements of facts: it was yet further mystified by equivocations. It was publicly known that "Father Grafton" had been present at a "High Mass" celebrated by the "C. B. S.," had preached on the occasion and taken part in the business, as a member, offering an important Resolution; all which had been published by the Confraternity itself. That he was a member of the C. B. S. was a natural inference, and no apology is due for such an inference in view of these facts. The Bishop of Western New York had stated, very cautiously, that "an active agent of the C. B. S., or of the system it sustains, was permitted to lecture to students of the Seminary, in a private room, on his peculiar views of the Holy Eucharist."
The Professor was asked, accordingly, as to this point, and he answered
"I never allowed or knew of any Priest of the C. B. S. being in the Seminary on any occasion whatsoever, since I have been in charge of the Seminary."
Could any Deputy conceive that this meant anything less than it seems to mean? Those who voted for the confirmation of the Professor, had a right to infer that the Bishop of Western New York was strangely and unaccountably mistaken; that "Father Grafton" had never been in the Seminary on any occasion whatever; or that, if he had, the Professor never knew it. Many did infer all this; were convinced that the mere accidental call was no real exception to this sweeping affirmation; they regarded the Professor as an injured man, and gave him their vote, and were grieved that he was not made a Bishop accordingly.
 But he now gives us sworn evidence that Father Grafton was actually domiciled in the Seminary by his official consent; lodged there and lectured there, and lectured, in part, on the Holy Eucharist, with many other aggravating circumstances. Admitting now that he never consented to this, directly or indirectly, how could he tell the Deputies that "he never knew of any Priest of the C. B. S. being in the Seminary, or lecturing to the students on any occasion." Yet he did so in circumstances the most solemn. To suspect an equivocation seemed uncharitable; and it is only by the great mercy of God that he escaped being consecrated, a few days later, with words in his mouth which he now swears were not strictly true.
How can it be explained that, Father Grafton's Lectures being such as he swears he knew them to be, in the Spring of 1873, he could now affirm that he only made a call on one occasion; and that he never even knew of a Priest of the C. B. S. being in the Seminary on any occasion? If he meant that he did not know that he was such, at that time, why did he not explain it so? If he meant that Father Grafton was no longer a Priest of the C. B. S., in spite of all appearances to the contrary, why was this point left in the dark? Was this dealing fairly with the House of Deputies? Was there no suggestio falsi in such a pregnant suppressio veri? The "sworn evidence" gives us the very narrow chink through which conscience makes an exit from the tight place in which it is compressed by such inquiries. The Rev. Mr. Grafton intimates as follows:
"Though a member of the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament when residing in England, I gave up all active connection with it on returning to this country," etc.
The answer is a plain one. However this may be, the fact of membership is thus confessed, and among all those who are not initiated into the school of "non-natural interpretations," preaching, sitting in business meetings, [23/24] and offering resolutions in any body, amount to active connection with it. I cannot credit that, in his cooler moments, the Professor will derive any comfort from the refuge he may have found, in a moment of agitation, from such a pretext as this.
I have no disposition to press these appalling facts. When I first read the Professor's petulant pamphlet, I was amazed at the inconsistencies and contradictions to which he was committed. I felt sure that everybody who would read and compare the various and conflicting stories would comprehend the case, and I rejoiced that no necessity seemed laid upon me to expose it. I made a careful analysis, however, of the whole mass of testimony, to satisfy myself whether I ought, in any respect, to qualify my own statements in view of it. If I had been convicted of any serious mistake in so important a matter, even that would have been crushing. I think God would have enabled me to seek relief in humble and frank avowal of my fault, and in zealous efforts to atone for it. But, on the most careful examination, I can see no reason why I should prefer the Professor's memory to my own, and I am strengthened in every impression which I entertained when I gave my brief unstudied note to a Deputy of my diocese. It was given with no idea, at the time, that it would ever be of any importance; except to the individual who wanted it, for his personal assurance only, in private intercourse with his friends. Though I afterward permitted its more open use, in case of necessity, as to which I was quite willing that my honored friend should be the judge, such was its history and original design. Thoroughly canvassed as it has been, I have no grounds for suspecting that it contains any considerable inaccuracy as to fact, while its essential truth has been circumstantially established by the Professor himself and his youthful compurgators.
I have observed that the Professor having gratuitously [24/25] raised an "issue of veracity," the first question to be settled was as to what passed between himself and the Bishop of Western New York, "at that visitation." He indignantly denied the account the Bishop had given of it; what, then, ought the Bishop to have said? I have already shown that if the Bishop had said the very words which the Professor swears he should have said--they would have made a worse case for the Professor than that of which he complains; they are more flatly contradicted by his (the Professor's) statement to the House. But as there were only three other persons present at that visitation it is evident that these three are the only competent witnesses in the case. Till these three are heard from, other testimony is irrelevant. All this "sworn evidence" goes for nothing, as to the matter in hand--however valuable in other respects, and it is most valuable to me--unless, first and foremost, we find the Professor calling in his colleagues, who were present at the visitation, and asking them what was said. How simple and inoffensive this process! Why did he not resort to it? If I was wrong I should have been convicted--not of intentional, but of very culpable error. Their testimony must settle the question whether my recollections or his own may be best relied upon. But instead of doing this, he raises a gratuitous "issue of veracity." He then makes out his own story, swears to it, and next looks around for support among his pupils and personal friends. Of the three competent witnesses, we find only one testifying. He, the youngest and a sympathizer, gives only a general approbation, which means nothing unless cross-examination can elicit particular and specific testimony. The other two witnesses, grave divines and experienced professors, are conspicuously absent. Why so? Either they were summoned or they were not. If they gave testimony, let us have it. If they did not, was it because they were not asked? That of itself is a cognovit, and finds its [25/26] only motive in conscious fears that their specific testimony might prove inconvenient and damaging. Now, the rule is, "against an elder receive not an accusation but before two or three witnesses." He brings but one against a Bishop, and that one says only just enough to make his testimony worthless. It is general approval, and it may mean everything or nothing. If the former, then it covers the whole of the Professor's affidavit. But, have a care! We have seen how fully the Professor himself has contradicted that. Besides, Mr. Welsh, who gave himself the trouble to consult the two witnesses who were left out by the negative, testimony strongly corroborating my own. I. have preferred to rely entirely on Professor, finds their positive, as well as their the Professor's own publications, however, and it is chiefly from them that I have made up my mind as to the unassailable position of those Deputies whose vote was equivalent to a want of confidence. Until the two witnesses, whom the Professor has not consulted, are found to agree in confirming his recollections, I am not even touched; and until he and his young allies can agree as to which of their various and manifold stories I ought to prefer to my own convictions, I do not see why I should give myself any personal concern in the premises.
Yet, it must not be forgotten, since the matter has been forced upon our attention, that the Professor, now permanent Dean of the Seminary, has furnished us with "sworn evidence" affecting his own statements, in which the following particulars are of vast significance. He proves:
(1) That instead of an accidental call, it was a case of lodging in the Seminary for two nights;
(2) That instead of his having nothing to do with it, the Professor, as acting Dean, had formally and officially consented to the "Father's" being thus entertained in the Seminary;
 (3) That instead of knowing nothing about it in time, he was applied to sometime before hand, to accommodate the "Father" with the use of a lecture-room;
(4)That though it was said that this room was to be used for social purposes, the Professor, by his prudence in refusing it, betrayed his conviction that this was said in an non-natural sense;
(5) That, the Professor having refused the use of a lecture-room, with full time and warning to prohibit such performances in any room, the student who had consulted with him felt himself at full liberty, nevertheless, to arrange for the social meeting in his own room;
(6) That, accordingly, "every student in the Seminary was invited;"
(7) That, "instead of a call, which those in neighboring rooms" chanced to hear of, these invited guests came as such, and heard, not a conversation, but a lecture;
(8) That in this Lecture the subject of the Holy Eucharist was introduced, a proposition with respect to it maintained, and certain objections met and answered by an anecdote of the miraculous efficacy of the Sacrament, in a particular case;
(9) That another Lecture was formally delivered; that some of the students took notes; that religious exercises attended these performances;
(10) That these Lectures were notorious in the Seminary, so much so that one of the professors formally warned the students against such teachings, and was derided for his pains;
(11) That those who were active in these insubordinate proceedings, so far from being reprimanded by the Professor, as acting Dean, seem to have enjoyed his special countenance, as they are evidently still distinguished by a high degree of his favor;
(12) That such being some of the essential facts of the case, nothing of the sort was communicated to the House, [27/28] in reply to its anxious inquiries; that the House proceeded to its vote under the most solemn assurances that nothing of this kind had occurred, and that the Professor was as ignorant of anything to justify my reference to such facts, as was the great majority of the Deputies themselves.
Here, then, if I make a pause, it is out of simple kindness and good will. I have not treated this matter as a personal grievance, nor with any design to place in a strong light all that might justly be exposed. It is the privilege of a Bishop to suffer wrong rather than to inflict it; and in all cases to be forbearing, considerate, and fatherly. I throw aside, then, a painful comparison which I have made of oath with oath, and page with page, of this "sworn evidence." I do not wish to make indelible the stain with which so many young clergymen have defiled their hands, nor to point out how little they seem to understand of the peril of that "vain and rash swearing" which our Thirty-ninth Article condemns. By a sort of poetic Nemesis, the very Journal which records the election of the new Dean of the Seminary, informs us, in a very significant report of the Examining Committee, that "the study of the true principles for determining cases of conscience" is entirely neglected in the Seminary. [*See Journal of 1875. p. 746.] So we might infer. The Professor and his young pupils seem quite ignorant of the fact that even among heathen moralists gratuitous oaths were held to be degrading. It is an impeachment of one's own credibility to offer an "oath for confirmation," so long as no magistrate requires it. Noblemen have enjoyed the privilege of testifying "upon their honor," and clergymen "upon their sacred Orders." Lawyers object to all extra judicial swearing as affording a convenient pretext to the worst characters, who can thus get up the appearance of a case without subjecting themselves to cross-examination. Must I rehearse [28/29] all this when any expositor of the Thirty-nine Articles is supposed to convey such knowledge to our merest tyros in Theology? Yet here is a pamphlet filled with "sworn evidence" the most contradictory and self-refuting, and the person who is responsible for it is the person selected by seventy-seven Trustees, out of four hundred, to form the manners, and mould the characters of our future clergy, as permanent Dean of our General Theological Seminary.
By another coincidence of poetical justice, the Professor's collection of unfortunate oaths was supplemented by an appendix of note-worthy character. It contains the testimony of a young graduate of the Seminary, who, being in England, and more anxious to come to the aid of the Professor than to inform himself of the real state of the case, volunteered an affidavit which has proved of great service to me and of none at all to his friend. In this attempt, however, he seems to have had his attention turned, for the first time, to one of those "true principles for determining cases of conscience," which are so much neglected in the Seminary. He found that the majesty of English law regards such oaths as profane; and so this intending swearer was only able to get in a "declaration." It is made, under an amendment to repeated Acts of Parliament, "for the more effectual abolition of oaths and affirmations,...and to substitute declarations in lieu thereof, and for the more entire suppression of voluntary and extra judicial affidavits, and to make other provisions for the abolition of unnecessary oaths." The Professor prints his friend's "Declaration," under this legal title, [* See Appendix No. 1] every word of which brands shame upon his whole pamphlet. This fact lends further countenance to the excuse I have found for him, as nothing but confusion of mind can account for such self-exposure and practical fatuity.
 I close by directing him and the young brethren whom he has so seriously compromised, to one of those "true principles for determining cases of conscience," which seems, indeed, to have been "entirely neglected" in their education. It is not found in the impure pages of Liguorian casuistry, which might seem to have suggested the greater part of their testimony; but in a "neglected" book called the Bible; and it is as follows (see Eccles. v. 2-6): "Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God;...neither say thou before the angel that it was an error; wherefore should God be angry at thy voice, and destroy the work of thine hands?"
A. CLEVELAND COXE,
Bishop of Western New York.
Sept. 2, 1875.
DR. SEYMOUR'S REPLY TO BISHOP COXE.
From the Churchman, September 25th, 1875.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE CHURCHMAN:
It is with inexpressible grief that I have read in your paper the recent letters of the Bishop of Western New York, making a fresh and vindictive assault upon me. I would not trouble you or your readers with a reply, were the writer not a Bishop in the Church of God. His office gives weight to his utterances, and hence one is forced to notice what otherwise he would treat with silent indifference. Let me begin by bespeaking for the Bishop the generous and merciful consideration of your readers and the Church at large. He is the victim of a craze now, as he has been before. This must be so, or he would not have been guilty, within the past year, of repeated acts of injustice and outrage [30/31] toward me, which all honorable men must condemn, and his own conscience and heart in calm moments would not approve. In no other way can one account, for instance, in a manner consistent with the preservation of the Bishop's character as a Christian man, for his course during the last General Convention. From rough notes, or from recollection merely, of a desultory conversation which took place more than a year before, he framed what he considered to be very serious charges against a Presbyter of the Church--charges which he knew would be regarded, amid the excitement which then prevailed, as very damaging to him at a momentous crisis in his life. And these charges, of the truth of which he was not certain, and which have since been proved to be false, he sent in, through a Delegate, to the House of Deputies, to be used against that Presbyter in secret session, where the accused was not present. He did this when a brief interview with the Presbyter, whom he was clandestinely assailing, would have satisfied him of the groundlessness of his assertions, and have saved him from doing what has proved to be a great wrong. Even had these charges been true, the Bishop of Western New York had his own House in which to prefer them, and where he would have enjoyed the same protection, in the absence of the party whom he was assailing, as sheltered him in the secret session of the House of Clerical and Lay Deputies.
The question has been asked again and again, why the Bishop was guilty of a breach of privilege and propriety, in intruding, during a debate, his accusations and opinions before a body of which he was not a member; and when he, as a member of the House of Bishops, had his own legitimate sphere in which to wield his influence and make known his views. He has answered it, I am credibly informed, by saying that the House of Bishops would undoubtedly have confirmed me, and that I must by all means be crushed, or words to that effect. What [31/32] else would account for such conduct on the part of a Christian man and a Bishop, but the solution which I have suggested--that he is the victim of a delusion? His suspicions and prejudices and passions have unbalanced his judgment on this one subject, and turned his head. Or again: What else can account for his conduct now, in gratuitously assailing me, after well nigh a year's profound silence, in the two letters which have recently appeared in the columns of The Churchman? He first gratuitously and wantonly assailed me before the House of Clerical and Lay Deputies, in October, 1874, with charges which were unfounded in truth. To these I calmly and quietly replied, in the early part of the next month, November. The Bishop, however, preserves the strictest silence for nearly a year, when he, in his own selected time, and for reasons best known to himself, bursts forth with the reaffirmation of his old charges, and with fresh ones of even greater gravity and heinousness. The thunderbolt falls from a clear sky. Surely the Bishop is the victim of a craze, and is not to be regarded in this matter as ordinary men would be, or he, under ordinary circumstances, would be. I am not without hope, too, that he will, when the excitement and heat under which he now labors have passed, come to a better mind, and endeavor, in his own eccentric way, to make me the amende which is due to me. I am the more encouraged to take this favorable view of the future, from the fact that the Bishop seems to have relented in the case of the Rev. Dr. DeKoven, and to be awakening to a just appreciation of his noble character. In a letter of the Bishop of Western New York, now before me, written in the Spring of 1874, he speaks of the Rev. Dr. DeKoven as guilty of "Jesuit practices," and implies that he is leagued with others, in England and this country, "to destroy the Reformation and Jesuitize the Church." Now, in the Autumn of 1875, the Bishop, referring to [32/33] the same Rev. Dr. DeKoven, says of him: "He was a man entitled to respect, and encompassed with personal friends. "He was, moreover, believed to be above trickery and deception. Nobody accused him of 'paltering in a double sense.' His position was unambiguous, avowed, and defiant. He was a man whom all parties would have welcomed to the Episcopate, had not his worse than doubtful theology made it impossible for us to reconcile his confirmation with fidelity to the Church's law and doctrine." After this radical change in the Bishop's estimate of the Rev. Dr. DeKoven's character, there is some little hope for even me. Be that as it may, however, I am satisfied that the Bishop deserves in such escapades as the present, rather pity than censure. Our only grief is that, where his eccentricities are not known, his unfortunate victims may suffer, and the Church, of which he is a Bishop, must be scandalized.
I do not propose to follow the Bishop through his two letters, occupying more than twelve columns of The Churchman. It would be tedious and unnecessary. It will be sufficient for me to relate, briefly, my connection with the Rev. Mr. Grafton's visit to the Seminary, before and after his coming; the circumstances under which I gave my answers, which were read in the House of Deputies; to print these answers and my affidavit, together with the letters of the Bishop of Western New York, in order that the public may make the comparison which the Bishop suggests; to endeavor to bring the Bishop back to the real issue, from which he tries to escape; and then, with a few words of explanation, to close the correspondence.
The Rev. Mr. Grafton visited the Seminary in the month of December, 1872. Prior to his coming, Mr. Torbert, a student, requested of me, as acting Dean, permission to entertain him. This he did in accordance with the regulations of the Seminary, which prescribe [33/34] that no student shall allow any one to share his room with him, as a guest, without the special permission of the Dean, or in his absence, of a resident Professor. Some days after this request was made by Mr. Torbert, the Rev. Mr. Grafton paid his anticipated visit to the Seminary, remained two nights, Tuesday and Wednesday, and on Thursday, about one or two o'clock, P.M., called upon me at my house, and after a brief interview, left. Up to the hour the Rev. Mr. Grafton called, I was not aware that he was in the city, much less in the Seminary. Nothing was said by him about the length of his visit, or his intercourse with the students. Subsequently, after the lapse of about a week, I learned that the Rev. Mr. Grafton had, at the request of a number of the students, delivered an informal lecture or discourse., precisely in the way in which I stated in my answers, which were read in the House of Clerical and Lay Deputies. The gentleman who gave me the information was present on only one of the evenings, and referred to but one, and up to October, 1874, after my answers to the House of Deputies were submitted, and my case was decided, I supposed that the Rev. Mr. Grafton's lectures had been delivered on one evening, and that his stay had not exceeded one night. Subsequently, after October 22d, 1874, I was led to make minute inquiries into the matter, in order to meet the charges of the Bishop of Western New York, and then, for the first time, I became acquainted with the additional information which I introduced into my affidavit of November 6th. When I learned in the Winter of 1872, what the Rev. Mr. Grafton had done, I remonstrated with Mr. Torbert, and pointed out to him that it was an impropriety for any one, unless with the knowledge and consent of the Dean and Faculty, to deliver lectures or give instruction in the Seminary; that unless such a rule were laid down and enforced, serious abuses might arise. He acknowledged the truth of this, [34/35] and promised that the thing should not occur again. Now, it may be said that I did not go far enough, that I ought to have convened the students, and in a public and very emphatic way have rebuked them; nay, perhaps, invoked the action of the Faculty, suspended the young men in a body, notified their Bishops, and created a great stir and excitement throughout the entire Church. It may be so, but this is not my way of governing young men, and at the most, it was only an error of judgment. My mode of dealing with the matter was effectual. The offence has never occurred since, nor would it have been likely to occur ever again, even though the Bishop of Western New York had not made it the subject of grave, and, as it turned out, false accusations against me, in the recent session of the House of Deputies.
Let it then be distinctly understood, that on December 10th and 11th, 1872, I was not aware that the Rev. Mr. Grafton was in the city of New York and in the Seminary. On one of these evenings, I was at the house of my aged father, whom I was accustomed to visit twice a week, on Tuesdays and Fridays; on the second I was engaged up to a late hour in a distant part of the city, in arranging for the transfer of a student to St. Stephen's College, Annandale. On the 12th of December, Thursday, I first became aware of the Rev. Mr. Grafton's presence in the city, when, just on the eve of departure, he kindly called upon me. In the course of the next week, I was told that he had met a number of the students informally, and given them an account of Cowley and its work. When Bishop Coxe visited the Seminary in the Spring of 1873, I knew all this; and to this extent and no further my information went, when I made the answers which were read in the House of Deputies on the 21st and 22d of October, 1874. After that date I learned on inquiry additional details of the Rev. Mr. Grafton's visit, and heard for the first time an outline of his discourses, [35/36] from notes which one of the students who was present had made at the time. Some portion of the additional information which I had thus gained, I naturally and properly embodied in my affidavit, which was prepared and sworn to on the 6th day of November, 1874. The differences between my answers to the Deputies and my affidavit will be found to be simply in the way of additional information which I had gained from others, and the additions thus made will be found, on examination, in no respect to conflict with the previous statements. As regards what I adduce as of my own personal knowledge, there is not the slightest discrepancy from first to last.
It may be asked why I did not give the subject full investigation, and spread the results before the House of Clerical and Lay Deputies. My answer is, because I had no time to do so, and this brings me to the second point of which I proposed to speak: the circumstances under which my answers were prepared which were laid before the House of Deputies.
On Wednesday, the 21st of October, after two o'clock P.M., just as I was leaving my house to go to the House of Mercy, of which I am Chaplain, for the purpose of holding my usual week-day service, the door-bell rang violently, and on my opening it a Clerical Deputy, in great excitement, and covered with perspiration, presented himself, and handed me a slip of paper, and bade me read what was on it, and make my answer with the utmost despatch, or else he would not be able to get back to the House of Deputies before the final vote in my case would be taken. It was fixed for four o'clock of that day. The Deputy informed me that just before the hour of recess, at one or half past one o'clock, an entirely new phase had been put upon the question of my confirmation by charges which had been made against me in a letter which had been sent to the Lower House, and which, at almost the last moment, was read by an Honorable Lay [36/37] Deputy from the Diocese of Virginia. The drift and purport of the charges, he added, are on that paper; what is your response? The slip of paper has doubtless been destroyed but, as nearly as I can recall the words, they were these: "It is charged that a Priest of the C. B. S. was allowed, with the knowledge and consent of Professor Seymour, to lecture to the students in a private room in the Seminary. Is that true?" I had not the time to look for another piece of paper, such was the haste of the Deputy. I simply reversed the original slip, which I held in my hand, and wrote my brief reply as best I could on the other side. I knew at once who the accused was. Had I been charged with murder or burglary, I could not have been more surprised, since I was as guiltless of the offence of which Bishop Coxe accused me, as I was of those crimes.
My reply was prepared in reference to the question propounded, and were that question in existence it would be seen that my response was a legitimate and truthful answer. The gravamen of the Bishop's charges was, as I understood it then and understand it now, not that lectures were delivered, but that they were delivered with my knowledge and consent. My imagined complicity with the lectures constituted my offence. Hence, in the Bishop's letter, the words, "with his knowledge and consent," are italicized. It was to this point, the substance of the charge, that my attention was directed, and I endeavored to make my reply meet just this allegation. Had I been allowed time even to read over my answer, so hastily written, I would probably have seen that the word "knew," in the connection in which I used it, was ambiguous, and I would have added "at the time," or something to that effect, in order to determine its meaning. As it was, however, I did the best I could under the trying circumstances. Nothing was further from my mind than the idea of deception. The Deputy snatched [37/38] the paper from my hand, and ran from the Seminary, in order to reach St. John's Chapel, where the House of Deputies was sitting, full two miles away, before the final vote was taken. He succeeded in doing this; but only after considerable opposition was he allowed to read my replies.
The hour for taking the vote in my case had been fixed by resolution, previously adopted, at four o'clock on Wednesday, the 21st of October, the day on which the Hon. Judge Sheffey, of Virginia, at one or half-past one o'clock, P.M., read Bishop Coxe's letter (which I am informed he had in his possession several days), for the first time to the House. After the reading of my answers to the charges of Bishop Coxe, the Clerical and Lay Deputies kindly postponed action until the next day, Thursday, at three o'clock. On the intervening evening, Wednesday, several Clerical Deputies, in a spirit of true, fraternal regard, waited upon me, and presented in writing, on their own responsibility, certain questions which they had prepared. In the meantime, I had endeavored to recall, as far as I was able, the circumstances connected with the Rev. Mr. Grafton's visit to the Seminary nearly two years before. The result of my efforts is embodied in my answers, which were read to the House of Deputies on the following day (Thursday), and which will be found in my second letter. To one point I addressed myself in these answers, namely, to make it perfectly clear that no one, with my knowledge and consent, had ever been permitted to deliver lectures or discourses, or give instruction to the students in private. In reference to this matter, which falls within my own personal knowledge, I was entirely sure, since it has been, from the outset of my connection with the Seminary, a fixed principle in my administration to allow nothing that is clandestine or concealed. All that I say besides, in my replies, as to the incidents of the Rev. Mr. Grafton's visit, [38/39] was drawn from information given to me by others many months before. I was not present at the lectures, nor did I know personally anything about them. It is possible for one to be misinformed; it is also possible for one, after the lapse of nearly two years, not to bear in mind all the minute details of a narrative which was told to him. If any one thinks, with the Bishop of Western New York, that in these answers, the inaccuracies as to details which I learned from others, and tried to recall to the best of my ability, after a long interval, constitute "a suggestio falsi and a pregnant suppresio veri," he is welcome to his opinion. In regard to all such persons I would only say, that I sincerely hope that they may never be judged by the same rule. Let it be remembered, that when all these answers were prepared by me, I had not seen the letter of Bishop Coxe. The nearest I could get to the indictment preferred against me by a Right Reverend Father in God, before a secret session of the House of Clerical and Lay Deputies, from which I was excluded, was what others thought it contained. I saw Bishop Coxe's letters, for the first time, after my confirmation was refused.
A few words must be devoted to the C. B. S., about which the Bishop of Western New York says so much, and the Rev. Mr. Grafton's connection with it. In the first place, I am not now, nor ever have been, a member of this association. I was approached upon the subject once, and only once, in 1864, and declined to join it, simply because it did not commend itself to my approval. I never saw but one of its papers, and that was after the close of the General Convention in November last. I have never yet seen a list of its members. Strange as it may seem, I had not read or heard of the Rev. Mr. Grafton's officiating and preaching at a service of the C. B. S., until I saw the account when reproduced in the daily edition of THE CHURCHMAN. In my answers, written in [39/40] such terrible haste, they are the first two in the series, and under great pressure the C. B. S. and its concerns were not prominent in my mind; the Rev. Mr. Grafton's name had not yet been mentioned. I knew with certainty, that never, with my knowledge and consent, had any one been permitted to lecture in private to the students, and, therefore, I could safely say that no priest of the C. B. S. had ever been so allowed. I did not know then whether the Rev. Mr. Grafton was a member of the C. B. S. or not, nor did it matter, since I had never permitted him, nor invited him, nor introduced him, to lecture to or indoctrinate the students, and, therefore, the prolix remarks of the Bishop of Western New York on that subject are entirely irrelevant.
It remains for me, in my next letter, simply to present the questions which were addressed to me during the secret session of the House of Deputies, and my answers to the same; the letters of Bishop Coxe, containing his charges and my affidavit, in order that my brethren of the clergy and laity throughout the Church, may make the comparison which the Bishop suggests, and judge between him and me, with all the original documents before them to enable them to come to a righteous decision; and then to conclude with a few explanatory remarks. Praying that God may overrule this unhappy discussion, which the Bishop of Western New York has re-opened, to the good of the Church, and may bring my assailant to a better mind, so that he may lay aside his fierce anger toward me, and allow me to prove by act, as I now assure him by word, that I can bury and forget the past, and treat him with the reverence and respect, and love even, which are due from a son to a Father in the Church of God.
I am, very truly yours,
GEORGE F. SEYMOUR.
Gen'l Theol. Seminary, Sept. 1, 1875.
 DR. SEYMOUR'S REPLY TO BISHOP COXE.
From the Churchman, October 2d, 1875.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE CHURCHMAN :
I proceed now to lay before your readers my statements which were read to the House of Deputies in response to what I was told were the charges of Bishop Coxe; the Bishop's letters, which I was not allowed to see until the day after my confirmation was refused; and my affidavit, drawn up and sworn to after I had read the Bishop's letters, and inquired, with some degree of minuteness, into the circumstances of the Rev. Mr. Grafton's visit to the Seminary, in December, 1872, and about which, up to the time of the reverend gentleman's departure, I knew no more than Bishop Coxe himself. I propose, also, to add the affidavits of the Rev. Professor Hall and the Rev. Mr. Grafton. It is a sad pity that the Bishop did not introduce these documents into his own letters, in order to make clear to his readers the contradictions and falsehoods which he alleges that they contain, and which he undertakes to establish by a plentiful use of Arabic numerals. A learned Professor is said, on taking leave of a favorite pupil, to have given him, with great impressiveness, this advice: "Verify references," and to have repeated it, after the example of Demosthenes, three times, in order to add to its force. The probability of the Bishop's suggestion being acted upon by one out of a hundred of his readers, in looking up the papers and pamphlets of a year ago, and making a laborious comparison, which would be very tedious to all but experts, is vastly less than the likelihood of a man or woman verifying references; and who verifies references? The Bishop informs us that he does not exhibit the alleged contradictions and falsehoods, which my statements would disclose, if they were printed in parallel [41/42] columns, out of mercy to me. Does he believe this himself? Was this the reason? Well, then, I shall be more cruel to myself than the tender-hearted, gentle, loving Bishop of Western New York is disposed to be, and spread these documents, in full, before the readers of The Churchman, and I beg them, for my sake, to do what the Bishop suggests, read them carefully, and compare them, and, taking into account the circumstances under which they were severally produced, answer to their own consciences, not whether there is any contradiction or falsehood, for no such thing will appear, but whether there is any attempt at evasion, or prevarication even.
It may be well to explain here that, the Bishop of Western New York made his visitations to the Seminary in the Autumn of 1872 and the Spring of 1873, as a member of the Committee of Seven, appointed under a resolution of the Bishop of North Carolina, passed at the annual meeting of the Board of Trustees in June, 1872, "to draught a practical plan for the development and improvement of the Seminary." In making his visitations, Bishop Coxe announced that it was his object in doing so, to gain information which would aid him, and his colleagues, in their labor of preparing the plan which was requested by the Trustees. At the visitation held in the Autumn of 1872, the Bishop submitted a series of written questions, which were answered in writing. In the following Spring, his visitation was not formal, but the interview was taken up with a desultory conversation between the Bishop and the Professors who were present. Whether the Bishop took written notes of what passed, or trusted entirely to his own memory, I know not. If he took notes, he never submitted them to me, or read them to me, in order to ascertain whether he had reported me correctly; if he trusted to his own memory, he never intimated to me that he had learned anything which he intended to treasure up, and when the suitable [42/43] opportunity presented itself, produce against me, and ask me whether he was right in his understanding of what had been said. We had met together as Bishop and presbyters in the Church of God, to take counsel together for the benefit of its great theological school. The Bishop manifested toward me, on that occasion, I thought, an inimical spirit, but I left the room, where we had been in conference, without the most distant suspicion that the Right Rev. Father had drawn from what had passed anything which would aggravate the ill feeling which I knew he entertained toward me, much less which he would formulate into charges, and present as accusations against me in the future. I was utterly unconscious of his purpose. But the weapon, it seems, he had forged and sharpened and kept in reserve for his victim, to be used, as he hoped, with fatal effect, when the favorable opportunity offered. That opportunity came eighteen months afterward. I was elected Bishop of Illinois, and in accordance with the provisions of the Canons, my papers came before the two Houses of the General Convention for confirmation. The popular mind had been wrought up to fever heat on the subject of Ritualism, and the excitement which infected the masses, influenced more or less the members of the General Convention. At once it was determined to seize upon me, and make me the representative of the odious and dreaded evil, and then crush me for my imaginary offences. Every effort was made to connect me with extreme men and ultra associations and when all these labors were likely to prove unavailing, then, at the last moment, the golden opportunity, which the Bishop of Western New York had long coveted, was presented, and was improved to the utmost. This is the Bishop's account of the matter: "It" (his note to Judge Smith) "was given with no idea at the time that it would ever be of any importance, except to the individual who [43/44] wanted it for his personal assurance only, in private intercourse with his friends; though I afterward permitted its more open use in case of necessity, as to which I was quite willing that my honored friend should be the judge." The italics are mine.
On the seventh day of the secret session, when every resource to defeat my confirmation had, as was generally supposed, failed, and the hour for taking the final vote, which had been previously fixed by resolution for four o'clock P.M., was drawing near, then the case of necessity, anticipated by Bishop Coxe, had, in the judgment of his honorable friend, arrived. At one or half-past one o'clock, on the day when the final vote was to be taken at four o'clock, at a point full two miles distant from my house, and without any intimation to me that such charges would be preferred against me, the Hon. Judge Sheffey, of Virginia, as the mouth-piece of Bishop Coxe as to the charges, and the exponent of Bishop Coxe, Judge Smith, and others, as to the time chosen for producing it, read the letter for the first time, which had been in private circulation among certain selected Deputies for several days. These Deputies doubtless believed the charges of Bishop Coxe, and thought that they were doing God service in resorting to any method, even though in cool moments they would have seen that it was discreditable, to keep a dangerous, if not unworthy, man, out of the Episcopate. Perhaps their excitement and intense partisanship for the moment blinded their eyes to the cruelty with which they were treating me. Judges, who sit upon the bench, should know at least that the law does not condemn a man until he is allowed an opportunity of being heard on his own behalf, and honorable laymen, and a Bishop and presbyters, should not only be just but generous, and take special pains to give the party whom they intend to accuse of what they conceive to be grave offences every advantage of time and place, for defending [44/45] himself. These matters have been now alluded to in order, in connection with what was said in my last letter, to explain the circumstances under which the first two answers in the list which follows, were given.
When the Clerical Deputy presented himself after two o'clock, on the day on which the final vote was to be taken at four, with the slip of paper containing what was believed to be the substance of Bishop Coxe's charges against me, I was taken utterly by surprise. The only thing which I could recall, which could in any way suggest such an accusation, was the visit of the Rev. Mr. Grafton almost two years before, and as I had fully explained to Bishop Coxe that I had had no connection whatever with his talks with the students on that occasion, I was at a loss to conjecture to what he could possibly refer. I was perfectly certain, however, that I had never allowed any one to deliver lectures, or give instruction to the students in private, since I had been in charge of the Seminary, because I am, on principle, as much opposed to such an impropriety as Bishop Coxe, or any one else, could possibly be. The entire time that the Deputy was in my house could not have exceeded eight minutes; within that brief interval, I was obliged to read the statement on the paper handed to me, and make the replies which follow as best I could. The paper contained, as I have said, as nearly as I can remember, the following words: "It is charged that a priest of the C. B. S. was allowed with the knowledge and consent of Professor Seymour, to lecture to the students in a private room in the Seminary. Is that so?" My answers (see THE CHURCHMAN, Daily Edition, p. 197,) are these:
"1. I never allowed or knew of any priest of the C. B. S. being in the Seminary, or lecturing to the students on any occasion whatsoever, since I have been in charge of the Seminary. I have never permitted any one to lecture, or address the students in any case whatsoever, without the consent of the Faculty.
 "2. I also affirm that I never permitted any one to address the students, or lecture to them on any occasion, without the knowledge and consent of the Faculty, and that if such things have been done, they have occurred without my knowledge and consent, and in case I had known them, would have been prevented by me."
In the first answer, I ought to have added, after the word "knew," the words "at the time," or some equivalent expression, so that the sentence would read, "or knew at the time of" etc., in order to make my meaning perfectly clear; but I imagine that no unprejudiced person would misunderstand the answer as it now reads. Bishop Coxe insists that I ought, in these answers, to have incorporated all that I knew about the Rev. Mr. Grafton's visit, and kindred occurrences, which ever took place within the Seminary, otherwise I was endeavoring to deceive the Deputies. In the first place, I reply, that it would have been utterly impossible for me to do so, since I had no time: the eight minutes were entirely consumed in doing the little which I did. In the next place, I reply, that even had I had the time, it would not have been necessary for me to enter into such particulars, since the only point, which the Deputies were concerned to determine, was whether I had had any complicity with such transactions, if they ever occurred, and when I answered that I had not, I met directly and exhaustively the charge which I understood had been made against me. Lastly, I reply, that, just as soon as I had the opportunity, on the evening of the day on which the two answers quoted above were given (Wednesday, October 21st), I did tell the Deputies all that I could then recall of the circumstances of the Rev. Mr. Grafton's visit, as I had up to that time learned them from others. I knew no more of those interviews at the time when they took place than did Bishop Coxe, or any member of the House of Deputies, that is, just nothing at all. The sum and substance of my knowledge of the affair, on the night [46/47] of October 21st, and up to Saturday, October 24th, 1874, when I enquired of several of the students as to the details of what took place, is embodied in the necessarily brief answers which follow. These are five in number, and complete my answers on this subject (seven in all), which were communicated to the House of Deputies:
Questions to and Answers from Dr. Seymour Presented
by Dr. Stringfellow.
"3. Q. Did you ever receive any gentleman or gentlemen well known either as agents of the C. B. S., or the system it sustained, or were any such person or persons permitted by you to lecture to the students of the Seminary in a private room in (on) his or their peculiar views of the Holy Eucharist?
"A. No person or persons, male or female, have ever been permitted by me to deliver lectures or addresses in private or in public to the students, since I have been connected with the General Theological Seminary, without the knowledge and consent of my colleagues. So far as I can remember, the following persons only, with my knowledge and consent, have delivered lectures or addresses to the students, viz.: November 1, 1872, the Rt. Rev. A. C. Coxe, D.D., LL.D., Bishop of Western New York; Lent, 1874, the Rev. James Long, M.A., on India, of the Archdiocese of Calcutta, India, two lectures; June, 1874, Professor Charles Short, LL.D., on the Vulgate translation of the Bible, one lecture. The Bishop of New York delivers each Winter lectures to his candidates, and to such other members of the senior class as choose to attend.
"4. Q. Did the Rev. Mr. Grafton, with your consent and knowledge, ever lecture to, or address, the students of the Seminary upon any subject, and if so, upon what subject, and under what circumstances?
"A. He never did with my knowledge and consent.
"5. Q. Did you confess or acknowledge the affirmation of these facts to any person, Bishop, priest, deacon, or layman, as specified in Question No. 4?
"A. I never did so confess or acknowledge, since such a confession or acknowledgment would have been contrary to the truth. The facts were simply these: The Rev. Mr. Grafton on one occasion called upon a student at his room in the Seminary, and while there other students in neighboring rooms heard of his presence, and came in to see him, and requested him to tell them about Cowley, and the plan and purpose of the brotherhood of which Mr. Grafton, [47/48] is a member. The Rev. Mr. Grafton, as I was informed after the occurrence, had no design when he called of holding any such conversation; it was simply accidental. I did not learn of it until some time after it took place, and I had nothing whatsoever to do with it. All the interviews I have ever had with the Rev. Mr. Grafton, since I have known him, would not amount in extent of time to four hours. I was introduced to the Rev. Mr. Grafton years ago, when he was assistant to the Rev. Dr. Wyatt, of St. Paul's church, Baltimore, Md., and have seen him only occasionally since.
"6.Q. Did any person, Bishop, priest, deacon, or layman, ever challenge your acknowledgment or confession to having permitted the Rev. Mr. Grafton, or any other person not connected with the Seminary, to listen to or address the students?
"A. I never acknowledged or confessed to having done so, and hence, I do not see how any one could ever have so challenged.
"7. Q. Did any person speak to you upon the subject; if so, who?
"A. Yes; Bishop Coxe, in a visitation which he held in the Seminary in the Winter or Spring of 1873, inquired about the visit of the Rev. Mr. Grafton, and I gave him, in substance, the information which I have submitted in my answers as above. (See Answer 5.) At that visitation the charge was made that a presbyter had been prowling about the Seminary for several days. On inquiry, I found that reference was made in this allegation to a presbyter who had come to the Seminary for the purpose of being with the mourners, and attending the funeral of the daughter of the late Professor Seabury, and while in the Seminary was the guest of the widow Seabury, then residing in the Seminary grounds."
These answers were read to the House of Deputies on the morning of Thursday, October 22, 1874; and be it remembered, at this time, and up to Friday evening, October 23d, the day after my confirmation was refused, I was not allowed to see the letters of Bishop Coxe containing my indictment, or obtain copies of them, although I earnestly requested to be allowed access to them. That I received copies of them as soon as I did, was chiefly due to the courtesy of Tazewell Taylor, Esq., of Virginia, to whom I desire to return my thanks for his kindness.
The following are the letters of Bishop Coxe: The first was read, for the first time, to the House of Deputies on Wednesday, the 21st of October, within three hours of [48/49] the time originally fixed for taking the final vote; it is dated, New York, October 17th; the remaining two were read on Thursday, the 22d of October, the day on which my confirmation was refused:
NEW YORK, October 17, 1874.
My Dear Judge Smith:
The facts are substantially as they have been reported to you. I could say many things in favor of this candidate with entire truth, and testimonials might be multiplied in his favor without any duplicity. But the whole truth would reveal another class of facts, and I suppose that Dr. Seymour himself would not deny that, as a Professor in the Seminary, he has steadfastly resisted the noble efforts of his colleagues, such as Drs. Seabury and Vinton, who have labored to maintain the doctrine of this Church, respecting the Holy Eucharist, and the provisions of the Rubric for its solemn celebration, pure and undefiled.
These things became known to me in the discharge of official duty as a "Visitor" and a member of a Committee, and I regret to say that the learned Professor was forced to confess to me that, with his knowledge and consent, a reverend gentleman, well known as an active agent of the C. B. S., or of the system which it sustains, was permitted to lecture to students of the Seminary, in a private room, on his peculiar views of the "Holy Eucharist."
It is with extreme regret that I mention these facts which I have desired an opportunity of stating in the Board of Trustees of the Seminary, and only there. As you well know, however, the impossibility of assembling that Board, or any fair proportion of them, has operated to render the investigation of facts an impossibility for many years. The facts ought to be known, however, and the Church must be awakened to her responsibilities in such momentous concerns.
(Signed) A. CLEVELAND COXE,
Bishop of Western New York.
The HON. JUDGE SMITH.
Mr. William Welsh, of Pennsylvania, on Thursday, October 22d, introduced the following correspondence:
NEW YORK, October 21, 1874.
My Dear Bishop:
By a remarkable Providence, a letter of yours dated October 4, 1873, came into my possession this evening. I enclose it to you, and [49/50] ask permission to use it at my discretion. If you ever conversed with any of your students about the visits of the Rev. Mr. Grafton to the Seminary, or have any particulars of such visits, and the knowledge that the Rev. Dr. Seymour had of them, pray oblige me with such particulars.
Yours, very sincerely,
To the RT. REV. A. C. COXE, D.D.
NEW YORK, October 21, 1874.
My Dear Mr. Welsh:
I do not feel at liberty to refuse you the use of my letter of October 4, 1873, the existence of which I had quite forgotten. But consult with my friend Judge Smith, who knows the extreme reluctance with which I have permitted my testimony to be used in your discussions.
I might have made my statement much stronger and more detailed; for the case was a very gross abuse of power. We do not send our candidates to the Seminary to be instructed by emissaries from foreign societies; but when I expressed my surprise to Dr. Seymour that a volunteer Professor had been introduced by him within the walls of the Seminary, he defended himself on the general ground that the person was "a presbyter of the Church."
In reply to another question, I must add that in examining one of my candidates, who reluctantly admitted his knowledge of the facts, I found that he had been present at one of these volunteer lectures, in which extravagant and false views of the Holy Eucharist were inculcated. Nothing but a very extraordinary duplicity can put any construction on these facts, which good men can accept as satisfactory.
A. CLEVELAND COXE,
Bishop of Western New York.
WM. WELSH, ESQ.
BUFFALO, October 4, 1873.
My Dear Dr. Forbes:
Nothing could be more opportune--nothing more ad rem--than the publication, at this moment, with historical notes, of this very valuable document. I send it by the same post that takes this, having obtained Professor Seabury's permission to hold it, against some such emergency, which I foresaw must arise before our reform work is much further advanced. I was sorry I could not see you when I was last in town; but things have gone on well, in some respects, and this explosion of the "C. B. S." will work much good.
 I think historical notes are needed, and the whole should be prefaced by an extract from that document, showing the nature of their intrigues, and how they glory in stultifying the discipline and destroying the official relations of the Dean to the students.
I have the present (acting) Dean's own acknowledgment that he, permitted "Father Grafton" to visit and indoctrinate the students last Winter.
If you don't publish the accompanying document, please give it back to Professor Seabury; only asking him to consider my permission to make further use of it as not withdrawn. We may have to convince the whole Church of the impossibility of working the Seminary as it is now going on.
A. CLEVELAND COXE,
Bishop of Western New York.
The REV. DR. FORBES, etc.
On the Saturday following the decision as to my case in the House of Deputies, I gathered about me a number of the students, who had been present on the occasion of the Rev. Mr. Grafton's visit to the Seminary, in December, 1872, and learned from them certain particulars which I had not before known, as for instance that his sojourn extended to two nights instead of one, and I then heard for the first time an outline of the talks which he had had with the students. Some of this information, which I had thus obtained, I embodied in my affidavit of November 6th, which will be found below, together with the affidavits of my colleague, Professor Hall, and the Rev. Mr. Grafton.
Dr. Seymour's Affidavit in Reply to Dr. Coxe's Charge.
IT is NOT TRUE that I ever "introduced" Father Grafton as "a volunteer Professor" "within the walls of the Seminary,"--having never introduced or even invited him to the Seminary in any capacity.
IT IS NOT TRUE that I "permitted" Father Grafton "to visit and indoctrinate the students last Winter," or at any other, time, having never been asked for, and having never given, any permission of the kind.
 IT IS NOT TRUE that he was "permitted" by me "to lecture to students of the Seminary in a private room," as if I were ashamed or afraid to ask him to do it openly. No person has ever been permitted by me to Lecture to the students except openly in the Chapel or Library, and with the knowledge of the Faculty.
IT IS NOT TRUE that I ever "confessed" to or "acknowledged," any such action as is denied in the above three paragraphs, for I have never thought it honest to confess or acknowledge what I never had done.
IT IS NOT TRUE that I was "forced" to confess it: for no compulsion can well draw from me, to my own prejudice, a false confession of a thing which I never had done. Every statement ever made by me at any time on this subject, has been freely and voluntarily made.
IT IS NOT TRUE that the Bishop has "my own acknowledgment that I permitted 'Father Grafton' to visit and indoctrinate" as aforesaid, for I never made any acknowledgment of the sort.
IT IS NOT TRUE that Father Grafton lectured at the Seminary "with my knowledge and consent," for I knew nothing of his lecturing until some days after it was all over, and never gave any consent thereto.
IT IS NOT TRUE that the object of Father Grafton's lectures was to inculcate "his peculiar views of the .Holy Eucharist," for the students who were present testify that there was only one incidental allusion to the Holy Eucharist during the two evenings.
IT IS NOT TRUE that, in this incidental allusion, "extravagant and false views of the Holy Eucharist were inculcated, unless it be "extravagant and false" to say that the benefit received in the Holy Communion will be in proportion to the intensity of the faith of the devout receiver, conducing sometimes even to the recovery from bodily disease. This remark was made in disproof of the assertion of Romanists that sacramental grace among us is without efficacy. The explanation here given is drawn from notes of Father Grafton's lectures, taken at the time by one of the students present, but which I never saw or heard of until after my Confirmation was defeated.
IT IS NOT TRUE that in this matter there was "a very gross abuse of tower" on my part; for there was no exercise of power at all, nor any knowledge, at the time, on which any power could be exercised.
IT IS NOT TRUE that Bishop Coxe obtained his version of the matter when he was in the Seminary as a "Visitor" of the same in the Spring of 1873. For at that Visitation, the moment the fact of Father Grafton's lectures was mentioned, I stated to him, in terms [52/53] too strong and clear to permit the possibility of mistake, that those lectures were delivered without my knowledge or consent, and that if I had known of them in time I should certainly have prohibited them. The Bishop then asked how such a man was allowed to set foot upon the Seminary grounds at all; and used very harsh language touching Father Grafton, saying that I ought to have "taken him by the neck and marched him off the grounds," or words to that effect. It was in reply to this denial of a right even to visit a student whom he happened to know, that some things were said, which have been altogether misapplied. It should be remembered that the Seminary students are almost all college graduates; and that the Seminary course corresponds to a post-graduate course. No American college undertakes to prevent students from ever receiving a friend as a visitor in their private rooms, unless previous permission has been received from the President. In a post-graduate course such a severity of exclusion would not be submitted to for a moment, and ought not to be, by any body of American young men. It would be more absurd, if possible, to require it of young men preparing for the Holy Ministry than of those preparing for any other profession, such as the Law or Medicine. It has never, at any time, been attempted in the General Theological Seminary, since its foundation to the present day. And when the Bishop stated that it was my duty to eject Father Grafton summarily by physical force, I ventured to remind him that the Rev. Father Grafton was a Presbyter of the Church, in good standing, that he was second to no man in the Church or out of it in all that appertains to personal character, social position or holiness of life; and that every respectable person--Bishop, priest, deacon or layman--had the free entree to visit his friends among the students, as in every other American Seminary, without obtaining special permission for each special visit. This was the only connection in which anything was said of Father Grafton's right as "a Presbyter of the Church."
I would add here that, such extemporized private meetings among the students, though rare, have not been unprecedented. Some years ago, the Rev. Dr. Breck found himself beset by a crowd of young men in the room of a student whom he was visiting, and they persuaded him to relate the history of Nashota, though the Dean and Professors knew nothing of it until some days after. Still later, a similar thing took place during a visit by Bishop Tozer; and on neither occasion was any fault found by the Dean or Faculty, though no permission had been asked or given.
IT IS NOT TRUE that I have "steadfastly resisted the noble efforts of my colleagues...to maintain the doctrine of this [53/54] Church respecting the Holy Eucharist." This construction of the course which I pursued in opposing an entirely novel, despotic, an un-American policy of discipline, was energetically disclaimed by me at the beginning, was reiterated by me at every stage of our unhappy controversy on the subject, and was finally abandoned by the very colleagues who made it, when, in the presence of the Bishops as Visitors, they signed their names to a declaration that what they had done "was not intended to impeach the general conduct and teaching of Dr. Seymour, either as a Professor of the Seminary, or as a Presbyter of the Church."
It may be true that Bishop Coxe has "desired an opportunity of stating in the Board of Trustees, and only there," his version of the Grafton incident. But he has been present at all the three meetings of the Board held since his visitation, and has never given the slightest evidence of his desire, by word or deed.
It is now left to all unprejudiced and candid persons, to consider the above, together with the sworn evidence which follows, and then say whether, in regard to my acts, there be any foundation for Bishop Coxe's assertion that "nothing but a, very extraordinary duplicity can put any construction on these facts, which good men can accept as satisfactory."
GEORGE F. SEYMOUR.
Sworn to before me, the 6th day of November, 1874.
O. P. SMITH
Notary Public, New York County.
The Rev. Professor Hall's Affidavit.
"I, Randall Cooke Hall, a Presbyter of the Diocese of New York, and a Professor in the General Theological Seminary, was present at the visitation held by Bishop Coxe in the Spring of 1873, referred to by Professor Seymour in his above affidavit, and I hereby testify under oath that, to the best of my recollection, knowledge, and belief, Professor Seymour's statement of what took place on that occasion is substantially correct.
RANDALL COOKE HALL.
Sworn to before me, the 6th day of November, 1874.
O. P. SMITH,
Notary Public, New York County."
The Rev. Mr. Grafton's Affidavit.
"I, Charles C. Grafton, of Boston, Massachusetts, Presbyter Rector of the Church of the Advent in that City, on oath say: [54/55] I have been informed that the Rev. Dr. Seymour, acting Dean of the General Theological Seminary, New York, has been charged with inviting or permitting me to deliver, or in some way countenancing me in the delivery of a lecture or address on the subject of the Holy Eucharist, or on the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament, in private, to the students of the Seminary. I hereby declare this to be untrue.
I would further say that, the only visits I have ever made to the Seminary, since Dr. Seymour's connection with it as Dean or Professor, are the following: When I was in this country for a few weeks in 1867, I spent two evenings in a friend's room in the Seminary. Dr. Seymour was not Dean, and had nothing whatever to do with my visits by invitation or otherwise. I talked with some of the students who came in to see me on the Religious Life, and said nothing concerning the Holy Communion. I never learned from any one that my visit was objectionable to any of the Faculty.
I was there again in 1872, on my return to this country from England, under the following circumstances: Having occasion to be in New York while my brother's house was closed, I was asked by a student whom I had invited to become one of my curates, and who was considering the matter, to come and occupy, for a night or two, a vacant bed-room that was at his disposal, his room-mate being absent. I did so, and quite informally, and without any previous arrangement or plan on my part, several of the students came in (some invited by him, others at their own motion); and, at their request, I talked to them on the Spiritual Life and its temptations. I believe I said something afterward against the claims of the Roman Church, and I may have answered a question about the Holy Communion. I have forgotten what.
I am the better able to recall the subject of the evening's topic, because I stated it to the students of the Protestant Episcopal Seminary at Cambridge, Mass., in the presence of one of the Professors, the Rev. Dr. Wharton, when I visited that Institution and addressed the students, at his invitation and in his presence. I have no reason whatever to believe that Dr. Seymour had any knowledge of this interview, in my friend's room, with the students.
My acquaintance with Professor Seymour is very slight; and on the one or two occasions when we have met, I have never mentioned to him the fact that I had an interview, such as I have described, with the students, for I never supposed it a matter of importance.
Since 1872 I have been at the Seminary but twice, each time on private business only, and on neither occasion having any conference [55/56] with any of the students on religious matters. These are all the visits I have made to the Seminary.
I have spoken of visits to the Seminary. It may be proper to add that I have never had any conference with any of the students away from the Seminary, by the invitation, permission, or procurement, directly or indirectly, of Dr. Seymour.
I will further state that, although a member of the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament when residing in England, I gave up all active connection with it on returning to this country, and left it, declining, on this ground, an invitation extended to me by the Confraternity here to join it; and on no occasion have I talked to the students concerning this Society, its organization, workings, or belief.
CHARLES C. GRAFTON.
COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS, SUFFOLK COUNTY: At Boston, in said county, this 6th day of November, A. D. 1874, personally appeared the Rev. Charles C. Grafton, and made solemn oath that the foregoing affidavit, by him subscribed, is true, before me.
[Seal.] N. AUSTIN PARKS, Notary Public."
In addition to all this I submit the following letter from my honored friend, the Rev. Dr. Burgess, of Springfield, Mass., which he kindly sent to me in response to an inquiry which I addressed to him on the subject of the Rev. Mr. Grafton's visit, as I learned that he was accidentally present, at the time, on the Seminary grounds. This letter has not yet appeared in print, and deserves the special attention of all who desire to reach a decision as to the issue of fact between Bishop Coxe and myself.
The Rev. Dr. Burgess's Letter.
"In the early part of the Winter of 1872. I was at the General Seminary; I met in the Hall of the Western Building a near relative, at that time a student in the Seminary. After some remarks he said, 'Whom do you think I have just seen?' I said, 'Whom?' He replied, 'Father Grafton, of the Advent, Boston.' I said, 'Has he come here to lecture at the request of the Dean or Faculty?' He replied, 'Oh, no, he is making a little visit, and a few of us have been talking with him and listening to him.' I said, 'I hope he is not presenting strange ideas about the Eucharist, or recommending unusual [56/57] or fanciful ways while at service.' He replied, 'Oh, no, he has been telling us about the Fathers, and their plans for preaching and doing good he has not mentioned the Eucharist at all.' I said something as caution about the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament, and the importance of getting doctrine from the appointed professors, and the reply was, 'Nothing has been said about the Confraternity, and the address has been conversational and very practical, tending to help us to greater faithfulness and purity; you or any one might properly come and say all that he has said.'
The idea, too, was received by me very clearly that Mr. Grafton was at the Seminary, as I was, on a visit to one or more students, and not at the request of the Dean or any Professor. Where I have mentioned language as used by myself or the student, as above, I believe that I have recalled very nearly the words. Witness my hand at Springfield, Mass., the 17th day of March, A.D., 1875.
(Signed) ALEXANDER BURGESS, Presbyter."
The charges of Bishop Coxe, if they had any drift and purpose, amounted to this: that I had invited, and introduced, the Rev. Mr. Grafton to lecture to the students in a private room in the Seminary, and that with my knowledge and consent he had done so. That I should have known of the transaction, after it took place, in no way commits me to complicity with it, any more than it commits my colleagues, or any one else. The Bishop tries to escape from the awful position in which he finds himself: he intimates that, after all, it is only a question of accuracy and fidelity of memory between himself and me, and that he prefers to trust his own memory rather than mine. I have no doubt he tells the honest truth when he says that he so prefers; but, unfortunately for him, that was not the issue which he raised before the House of Deputies; in his letters written deliberately and spontaneously, and intruded before a body with whose deliberations he had no right to interfere, he volunteered, among others, these positive accusations, without any qualification or limitation, namely, that I had permitted, invited, and introduced the Rev. [57/58] Mr. Grafton to lecture in a private room to the students. There is no intimation that such assertions rest upon the writer's recollection merely of what occurred more than eighteen months before, unsupported by any corroborative evidence. Every one would suppose, when a man of any character and position in the community made such charges against a fellow-man, behind his back, in a secret session of a body which was weighing that man's fate in the balance, at a very important crisis in his life--any one would suppose, I say, that under such circumstances, the self-appointed accuser would be able, in the most convincing and satisfactory manner, to prove his charges. But no, the Bishop had not one particle of evidence to adduce in support of these positive assertions at the time he made them, and now, after the lapse of a year, he breaks forth again, and in the face of demonstration against him, he repeats his charges, and suggests that, even if they be not true, it is of no consequence, it is a mere question of words, an issue as to whether his memory is more to be depended upon than mine.
Fortunately it is not such an issue, even if we allow the Bishop to have his own way in the matter. For consider what follows, if the Bishop's memory be correct why nothing less than this: that I confessed to a charge which I knew was false, and which was damaging to myself, and which I knew, in the Bishop's hands, would be used by him to do me all the harm which he could possibly accomplish. Now be it observed, a man may be forced to confess an unwelcome truth, which tells against himself; but it is scarcely within the limits of belief that any one in his senses would be compelled, by anything short of bodily torture, to acknowledge a falsehood, which was personally injurious; yet such must have been the case with me, if the Bishop's memory is correct. This would go to establish a charge, which the Bishop suggests against me in his letters, that I am an idiot.
 But leaving this point, when we come to the relative value of our respective memories, without wishing to make any boast as to my own, the Bishop's is notoriously treacherous. I can adduce abundant proof to sustain this statement; but I will go no further than to say that I prefer to explain the Baltimore scandal relative to Bishop (then Doctor) Coxe by attributing the solution, however large a demand it may make upon our credulity and charity to a very treacherous memory. The Standing Committee of the Diocese of Maryland, however, at the time of the Doctor's election to the Bishopric of Western New York, seemed to take a different view, for, although they agreed with him in churchmanship, they refused to give their consent to his Consecration. And then again, the bitter and intense hatred, which the Bishop of Western New York has for years borne toward me, has predisposed him to seize eagerly upon anything which he could use to my disadvantage; to treasure it up; turn it over in his mind; and with his diseased imagination to exaggerate it, and dress it up to suit his fancy, until at last he persuaded himself into the belief that it was really so. That Bishop Coxe has cherished toward me, for a long time, fierce animosity, is a melancholy fact. How to account for it, I am at a loss, since we were once friends, and took sweet counsel together. For several years we edited jointly the Churchman's Calendar. The Bishop, for reasons best known to himself, withdrew himself from me, and has pursued me since with relentless hate, watching his opportunity to do me harm, and improving every occasion, when he could conveniently and safely do so, to speak to my disadvantage.
As an illustration of the Bishop's eagerness to discover something which he could employ to my hurt, I quote the following extract from a letter of a presbyter, now in a position of high trust and usefulness, who was while in the Seminary a candidate from the Diocese of [59/60] Western New York, and consequently under the jurisdiction of Bishop Coxe. He was, moreover, ordained both to the Diaconate and the Priesthood by Bishop Coxe. He wrote to me spontaneously, under date of October 27th, 1874 as follows:
"During my Seminary course Bishop Coxe came several times to the Seminary to visit me. He never left without trying to find out in some inquisitorial way whether Dr. Seymour did not teach so and so, etc. I always gave him very indefinite answers as to the affairs of the Seminary. He has tried several times since I left the Seminary to draw out of me something which would in some way or other fasten upon you the charge of Ritualism, that horrid bugbear...I answered Bishop Coxe's questions emphatically, No. I told him once that Dr. Seymour was the strongest opponent that the Church of Rome had in the Theological Seminary."
This is a very sad disclosure, but it is in perfect harmony with much that went before, and all that has followed. I am grieved, but not surprised, nor shall I be in the future with any fresh displays of the same malicious and vindictive spirit. But to come back to the issue between Bishop Coxe and myself. It is not, it never was, a question of words, or of memory; it is a question of fact, of stern, sober fact. The Bishop asserted as positive facts and wrote them out under his own official signature, "A. Cleveland Coxe, Bishop, Western New York," and caused them to be presented as charges against me to the House of Deputies, that I had done certain things. These charges are absolutely and without qualification untrue. I have demonstrated this. The burden of proof rested upon the Bishop. Still I felt that it was due to myself, and to the institution of which I was a Professor, to go beyond what was required of me, and refute, as I fortunately was able abundantly to do, the Bishop's false accusations. I have done this so effectually as to demonstrate beyond the possibility of just cavil their utter worthlessness. Still, in the face of the clearest evidence which must carry conviction to every unprejudiced mind, [60/61] after nearly a year's interval for reflection and repentance, the Bishop reaffirms these charges, and heaps upon me abuse, which in one point of view brings relief, since it suggests that the Bishop must be beside himself with excitement, or he would not be guilty of conduct so unworthy of a Christian gentleman, not to speak of a Bishop in the Church of God. I have not attempted to answer the Bishop's letters in detail, it would take up too much valuable space in THE CHURCHMAN, and tax the patience of its readers, beyond endurance; besides it is not necessary. The only matter of importance is the issue of fact between the Bishop of Western New York and myself. I am not in the least degree excited. I am not conscious to myself of entertaining the slightest feeling of unkindness toward the Bishop. I mean the Bishop no disrespect when I say that my only feeling toward him is that of unfeigned pity.
To show the doubting, if there be any such, that it would be a very easy matter to refute the irrelevant assertions of the Bishop, let me refer to a specimen of his logic. Bishop Coxe says of me, commenting on my affidavit, "by using the title Father, he admitted the somewhat anomalous position of Father Grafton among the Presbyters of our Church." Now the facts are these, I never used the title, "Father," until with the letters of Bishop Coxe before me I copied his language, thus when he charges, "that I permitted Father Grafton, &c.," I reply, quoting his words, "it is not true that I permitted Father Grafton, &c." In my answers to the Deputies, who waited upon me, I uniformly call the gentleman, "the Rev. Mr. Grafton." Even if I had used the title spontaneously, it would not commit me to anything, any more than when Bishop Coxe calls Pius IX, "Pope," it commits him to the doctrine of the supremacy, or styles Archbishop McClosky, "Cardinal," it commits him to the dogma of infallibility; or when one speaks of the months as [61/62] January, February, March, &c., or the days of the week as Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, &c., it commits him to the systems of heathen mythology, which these names respectively represent.
Even the date of the Bishop's first letter is a poetic fiction. At the time the Bishop informs the readers of THE CHURCHMAN, that he wrote his letter September the First, the issue of September 4th, which contained the letter, was not only in type, but actually in the mail on its way to the subscribers. Curiously enough with a false date for the beginning of his letters, and false charges and rash vindictive assertion as their characteristics throughout, the Bishop closes with a dissuasive against Liguorian casuistry, and a recommendation of truth, and sobriety of speech. This is indeed wonderful, one is forcibly reminded of the passage in the "Fortunes of Nigel" where King James I, relates to George Herriott his experience, "O Geordie, Jingling Geordie, it was grand to hear Baby Charles laying down the guilt of dissimulation, and Steenie lecturing on the turpitude of incontinence." Were it not so infinitely sad, it would be equally grand to hear the Bishop of Western New York discoursing on the sins of prevarication, slander, deceit, treachery, falsehood and rashness in word and deed. But I must forbear.
No one can regret more than I do the sad necessity which has constrained me to follow the Bishop of Western New York before the public. But let it be remembered that he spontaneously and gratuitously assailed me, in the first instance, and that I simply acted on the defensive, and calmly refuted his charges. Now again, after the lapse of nearly a year, he suddenly breaks silence, and without any provocation from me or any one else; so far as I am aware, he has assailed me once more. Whether he has been goaded on by injudicious sympathizers, or of his own volition has indulged in this wanton attack, [62/63] I neither know nor care, the fact remains that he has so done, and that he is a Bishop in the Church of God.
In conclusion, I wish to say two things; first, that in reference to these charges of Bishop Coxe against me, I challenge investigation at the hands of any responsible body, provided such investigation is open and public, where I can meet my accuser face to face. I fearlessly challenge such investigation, whether it be before the House of Bishops, the Trustees of the Seminary, a Commission of Presbyters, or the Civil Courts. The other thing which I wish to say is this: that I rejoice that the bitter experience of last Autumn, and of the present time has fallen upon me, rather than upon any other Presbyter of the Church. I have been in a better position, in some respects, than almost any one else could have been, to endure it; and God has given me strength to bear my trials with composure, and a quiet mind; and when this tyranny is overpast, as soon it will be, we shall doubtless all see that it was good for me to be in trouble. If in my letters I have been unduly severe, in speaking of or to my Rt. Rev. antagonist (alas! that I should be obliged to call him so), my language has misinterpreted my heart. His letters are of such a character, that in dealing with them, it is difficult to avoid catching their spirit; and the wrongs, which I have suffered at his hands, have been so wanton and cruel, that in thinking of them, or speaking of them, it is not easy to keep from being provoked; yet in a moment this feeling passes, and I can sincerely say, God bless the Bishop of Western New York and turn his heart.
Very respectfully yours,
GEORGE F. SEYMOUR.
New York, Sept. 22d, 1875.
From the Churchman, September 11th, 1875. THE ILLINOIS CASE IN THE HOUSE OF DEPUTIES.
LETTER TO A BISHOP.
To the Bishop of Western New York:
RIGHT REVEREND SIR--I have read your "Letter to a Deputy," under the above caption, in THE CHURCHMAN of September 4, 1875, the letter bearing date September 1, 1875, and, therefore, presumably, written for publication, rather than for the instruction of "a Deputy."
With a Bishop's letter to one of his cure, I could have nothing to do, and could have nothing to say. But a Bishop's letter in a newspaper, so furnished as to be read by the public, nearly as soon as it could have been read by the "Deputy" to whom it is addressed, is public property; and the Bishop, who so furnishes it, lays aside his mitre, and enters the lists on equal terms with any other correspondent.
Suppose that everything that you have written and published in your letter of September 1st, were true--suppose that you could prove it by the kind of evidence that would be received in a court of justice; why should you, a Bishop of this Church, write such a letter as that for publication?
If you have been assailed by the "vociferations of abusive men," why should you now, after a year of patience, break silence? "If men will not hear the Church," which has "spoken once and again, "why should you, just now, on the 4th of September, 1875, consign them to [64/65] the place "which the Master has assigned them?" Can it be because the Illinois Convention meets this month?
"Tantoe ne iroe in animis coelestibus?"
But, even granting the emergency, could it have been your duty to wash such dirty linen, in public, as you claim to have found?
I beg you to review these epithets, quoted from your own letter: "Sinister practices;"--"astounding discrepancies in sworn evidence;"--"wrong doers"...seeking to "darken counsel by words without knowledge;"-- "overt acts of a revolutionary character;"--"free course has too long been given to those who despise government;"--"to provoke the spite of the worst characters in the Church;"--"the petty terrorism of such men;"--"their unscrupulous animosity;"--"In the Illinois case, this class of men were known to be enlisted in behalf of the Candidate;"--"political demagogues;"--The Candidate's "self-stultifying oaths and affirmations;"--"logrolling;"--"worse than doubtful theology;"--"artifices and disingenuous manoeuvres."
My Dear Bishop, if you were not a Bishop, writing about Churchmen, you could not print such things with impunity, though they were as true as Gospel. But, conceding their truth, where is the sorrow and shame with which a Christian Bishop should make such charges against priests and laymen? It is not in your letter. Your letter rings with defiance, resentment, partisanship, and wrath. It is calculated to stir up strife, divisions, variance, and every evil work. It arraigns a considerable portion of the Church in Illinois as "worst characters." It arraigns two presbyters, at least, as guilty of the most dishonorable practices; and they two, who have been nominated to the Episcopate.
Suppose it were all true. Had you no recourse, in [65/66] the discharge of your duty as a Bishop in the Church of God, but to rush into the newspapers, and to publish our shame to the world? You have alleged enough, if you can prove it against any clergyman in any diocese, to ensure his degradation from Holy Orders, and his subjection to the contempt of every right-minded man. If it be the only duty of a watchman on the walls of Zion to blow a trumpet, you have done it; but I fear that men will fall to fighting without asking the cause of the alarm.
But suppose it should turn out that it is not all true. Suppose that even a Bishop is liable to misconceive and misinterpret men; that even a Bishop may harbor a prejudice, or think that wisdom shall die with him. Suppose that Dr. Seymour, or Dr. DeKoven, should happen, by some strange accident, to be Christian gentlemen, notwithstanding the fact that their theology differs considerably from that of the Bishop of Western New York. Suppose that they two should be as ready to deplore any questionable "artifices" of indiscreet and self-constituted champions of their cause, as the Bishop of Western New York is to nail them to the counter; is it not a rather serious breach of charity, to use the weight of your office to emphasize assertions which, however you may believe them to be true, are scarcely capable of demonstration, unless you can so demonstrate their truth as to drive these men out of the Priesthood and out of society, into the infamy and obscurity which belong to such characters?
I do not discuss the main question as to the "soundness" of Dr. DeKoven or of Dr. Seymour in their theology. I do not symbolize with either of them in doctrinal definition, as I understand their definitions. But I am thoroughly aggrieved and scandalized by the whole tone and temper of your letter, as I read it in THE CHURCHMAN, [66/67] and, if you were ten Bishops, I should say so as publicly as possible.
JOHN VAUGHAN LEWIS.
St. John's Parish, Washington, D. C., Sept. 4th, 1875.
From The Churchman of September 11th, 1875. ELECTION OF DEAN IN THE GENERAL THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY.
To the Editor of THE CHURCHMAN:
In the last issue of THE CHURCHMAN there appears a letter from the Bishop of Western New York in which these words following are used, viz.:
"This Journal [Proceedings of the Board of Trustees of the General Theological Seminary, at their Annual Meeting, June 24, 1875], informs us that the number of Trustees is 421, inclusive of our fifty-seven Bishops. Of these 400 Trustees, seventy-seven seem to have voted to make the new Dean. There were but six Bishops present: of these how many voted for him does not appear. At all events, a mere fraction of the corporate body is responsible for a measure, of the importance of which I do not now propose to speak particularly."
Of course it is quite impossible that the Bishop of Western New York should intentionally mislead the readers of THE CHURCHMAN; and yet some who do not know all the facts necessary for the deduction of a right conclusion may be misled by the words which I have quoted. For the information of all who care to have a right estimate of the action of the Trustees of the General Theological Seminary, I would ask you to publish the following table made up from the official minutes of the Board of Trustees of the last twenty meetings during the ten years last past.
 There were present:
June 27, 1866--3 Bishops and 55 other Trustees
June 26, 1867--1 Bishop and 52 other Trustees
June 23, 1868--1 Bishop and 39 other Trustees
June 25, 1868--2 Bishops and 56 other Trustees
February 3, 1869--3 Bishops and 76 other Trustees
April 7, 1896--4 Bishops and 81 other Trustees
June 24, 1869--8 Bishops and 99 other Trustees
October 12, 1869--16 Bishops and 97 other Trustees
January 19, 1870--7 Bishops and 72 other Trustees
June 30, 1870--7 Bishops and 103 other Trustees
October 20, 1870--2 Bishops and 32 other Trustees
October 28, 1870--13 Bishops and 94 other Trustees
May 25, 1871--1 Bishop and 34 other Trustees
June 29, 1871--8 Bishops and 110 other Trustees
June 27, 1872--9 Bishops and 120 other Trustees
November 7, 1872--13 Bishops and 94 other Trustees
June 26, 1873--10 Bishops and 113 other Trustees
June 23, 1874--12 Bishops and 65 other Trustees
June 25, 1874--8 Bishops and 92 other Trustees
June 24, 1875--6 Bishops and 108 other Trustees
From this table it is evident that all the business of this Board of Trustees for ten years last past has been transacted by "a mere fraction of the corporate body."
That at only three meetings during the same period has the number of Trustees present been greater than at the meeting at which the Dean was elected.
That the only meetings which have brought together more than one hundred Trustees, other than the Bishops, have been the annual meetings in June.
There are other facts, desirable to be known, contained in the proceedings of this Board at these twenty meetings above noted, to which I desire to call attention, viz.:
Three times has there been an election of Dean: (1) In June, 1869, the Rev. Dr. Lyman received the votes of 7 Bishops and of 53 out of 93 other Trustees; (2) in October, 1869, the Rev. Dr. Forbes received the votes [68/69] of 15 Bishops and 52 out of 90 other Trustees; (3) in June, 1875, the Rev. Dr. Seymour received the votes of 77 out of 93 Trustees, the Bishops not voting separately.
Nine times has there been an election of Professor, and twice an attempt to elect: (1) In February, 1869, the Rev. Dr. Vinton was elected Professor of Ecclesiastical Polity and Law, by a majority vote (no numbers are given), 79 Trustees being present; (2) in April, 1869, the Rev. Dr. Walton was unanimously elected Professor of Hebrew and Greek, 85 Trustees being present; (3) in October, 1869, the Rev. Dr. Mahan was elected Professor of Systematic Divinity receiving the votes of 15 Bishops and 68 out of 96 other Trustees; (4) in June, 1870, the Rev. Dr. Mahan was again elected Professor of Systematic Divinity, receiving the votes of 7 Bishops and of 48 out of 85 other Trustees; (5) in October, 1870, the Rev. Dr. Cady was elected Professor of Systematic Divinity, receiving the votes of 7 Bishops and 43 out of 76 other Trustees; (6) in June, 1871, the Rev. Dr. Buel was elected Professor of Systematic Divinity, receiving 71 votes out of 107, the Bishops not voting separately; and (7) at the same time the Rev. Mr. Hall was elected Professor of Hebrew and Greek, receiving 75 votes out of 105, the Bishops not voting separately; (8) in June, 1873, the Rev. Dr. Oliver was elected Professor of Biblical Learning, etc., receiving 57 votes out of 95, the Bishops not voting separately; and (9) at the same time the Rev. Mr. Seabury was elected Professor of Ecclesiastical Polity and Law, by 45 votes out of 89, the Bishops not voting separately. In the two attempts at election which failed in result, the largest number of ballots cast was 88.
From all this it is evident that the 77 votes which were cast for the present Dean of the Seminary would have been a majority in any ballot which has been held for any officer for ten years; and is a greater number of [69/70] votes than any Dean has ever before received, and also greater than any Professor has received, excepting only the Rev. Dr. Mahan, and possibly the Rev. Dr. Walton.
E. M. PECKE.
Richfield Springs, N. Y., Sept. 4th, 1875.
From the Churchman, Daily Edition, October 31st, 1874, page 198. PROFESSOR SEYMOUR'S LETTER TO THE HOUSE OF CLERICAL
AND LAY DEPUTIES OF THE GENERAL CONVENTION.
Reverend Brethren and Brethren of the Laity.
The unprecedented course, which has been adopted and pursued by the House of Clerical and Lay Deputies, in reference to the question of my confirmation to the Episcopate, justifies me, I venture to submit, in addressing this note to your Reverend and Honorable Body, to crave the privilege of being allowed to be present on the floor of your House to answer for myself the charges which may be made against me, as to anything that I have ever said or done.
Vague rumors reach me of serious accusations, which, so far as I have been able to ascertain the drift of them, are without exception founded on mistake, and are easily corrected and refuted. But in most points they touch upon things fully known only to myself, or to others who are not members of your House, so that no explanations sent through third persons can be entirely satisfactory to you, or just to me.
I can truly say from my heart that I never sought or desired the Episcopal office. My present painful position as a Bishop-elect, is one into which I was suddenly forced by circumstances over which I had no control. Gladly would I, had I the power, replace myself where I was when the Diocese of Illinois elected me, but this I cannot do at this stage of the proceedings.
 For nineteen years and more I have served the Church as Deacon and Presbyter, and I leave it to my Bishop, and my Brethren of the Clergy and Laity, who have known me from the first, to tell how I have lived, and how I have labored. But I will say for myself that the Protestant Episcopal Church has never had a more loyal son than she has in me. I will say for myself, and all who know me will bear me witness that it is true, that there is nothing which is further from my nature than concealment or evasion.
The question with me is not whether I am to be made a Bishop or no. My anxiety is altogether for my life and usefulness as a Clergyman, and my character as a man.
With great respect,
Very faithfully and truly yours,
GEORGE F. SEYMOUR.
GENERAL THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY,
New York, Oct. 22d, 1874.
This letter was read by the Secretary to the House, but the request was not granted.
At the Annual meeting of the Board of Trustees of the General Theological Seminary of the Protestant Episcopal Church, held in the City of New York, on Thursday, June 24th, 1875, the following Trustees were present. (See Proceeding, Vol. IV., pp. 715, 716.)
The Rt. Rev. the Bishops of New York, Maine, Long Island, Albany, Massachusetts, and New Jersey.
The Rev. Drs. T. Edson, E. M. P. Wells, N. Hoppin, A. Burgess, P. Williams, J. L. Clark, D. H. Short, F. J. Hawley, W. G. Spencer, E. N. Mead, J. H. Price, W. E. Eigenbrodt, I. H. Tuttle, Alfred B. Beach, T. A. Eaton, C. R. Duffie, R. S. Howland, M. Dix, F. Ogilby, T. M. [71/72] Peters, G. H. Houghton, S. Hollingsworth, C. E. Swope, J. B. Gibson, S. H. Weston, G. F. Seymour, S. Buel, A. Oliver, W. H. Moore, D. V. M. Johnson, T. S. Drowne, S. Cox, J. A. Paddock, N. H. Schenck, J. H. Hopkins, F. Harison, W. T. Gibson, W. Ayrault, J. A. Williams, A. Stubbs, R. M. Abercrombie, W. G. Farrington, E. B. Boggs, E. Y. Buchanan, H. Stanley, J. S. B. Hodges, S. C. Thrall, J. De Koven, and F. W. Boyd.
The Rev. Messrs. S. Upjohn, F. W. Smith, R. H. Paine, R. Whittingham, L. French, W. A. Johnson, S. Clark, C. Clapp, W. W. Olssen, Randall C. Hall, E. D. Cooper, W. A. Snively, G. W. Smith, E. M. Pecke, F. M. Cookson, J. Cary, R. Weeks, R. N. Merritt, J. H. Smith, S. W. Sayres, S. Parker, E. K. Smith, N. Pettit, A. U. Stanley, H. S. Bishop, A. B. Baker, T. G. Littell, Richard C. Hall, W. F. Brand, A. J. Rich, M.D., J. Chipchase, E. G. Weed, and J. H. Knowles.
Messrs. T. H. Canfield, Dr. G. C. Shattuck, C. Curtiss, E. Butler, H. Drisler, S. P. Nash, A. B. McDonald, J. Buckley, W. A. Davies, C. Livingston, John A. Dix, T. W. Ogden, W. C. Gilman, H. E. Pierrepont, J. A. King, O. Meads, J. C. Harison, J. Forsyth, G. C. McWhorter, H. V. Bostwick, J. C. Garthwaite, G. C. Hance, W. B. Mott, H. Burgwin, L. B. Otis, and W. F. Whitehouse.
Of these Trustees 93 voted in the election of permanent Dean, and of the 93 votes thus cast, 77 were given for the Rev. Dr. Seymour, and 16 for various candidates as follows: the Rev. Dr. Eigenbrodt, 6; Rev. Dr. Alfred B. Beach, 4; Rev. Dr. E. A. Hoffman, 3.; Rev. Dr. Henry A. Coit, 1; Rev. Dr. A. Burgess, 1; Blank 1.
I have been informed that the Bishop of Western New York intended to continue the correspondence which he began in the Churchman of September 4th, 1875. I have delayed, in consequence, the issuing of the present publication, in order that I might include his forthcoming letter or letters, with such remarks as I might deem it necessary to make in reply. As much more than a month, however, has now elapsed, and the Bishop has not again renewed his assault, I submit that I have good reason to assume that the correspondence is closed.
I think there are very few who will not agree with me that, newspapers are, as a rule, a very unsatisfactory channel through which to argue a question involving personal issues; and when, as in the present instance, the parties concerned are a Bishop and a Presbyter in the Church of God, let the merits of the case be what they may, the discussion is prejudicial to the best interests of religion, and devolves a very grave responsibility upon him who provokes and compels it.
A Bishop is in a peculiarly favorable position for bringing any one whom he may believe to be delinquent to trial, and I am providentially in a situation where it would be pre-eminently easy for any Bishop to institute proceedings against me.
I have only to say that, if the Bishop of Western New York, or any other Bishop, or any one else, should deem it necessary or advisable to pursue this course, I should heartily welcome such an investigation, and would afford every facility in my power for making it thorough and exhaustive; and moreover, I can well understand that a Presenter, under such circumstances, might act from a high sense of duty, and without any personal animosity, and hence I could meet him before the tribunal as a friend, who was seeking at the cost of what might be exceedingly painful to himself to benefit the Church, and who would rejoice with me, were I able to make my righteousness, through God's help, as clear as the light, and my just dealing as the noon-day.
GEORGE F. SEYMOUR.
GENERAL THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY,
November 10th, 1875.