Fourth Bishop and second Archbishop of New York, and the first American cardinal. After attending schools in Brooklyn and New York he entered Mount Saint Mary’s College at Emmitsburg in 1822, finishing his studies in the Seminary twelve years later. He was ordained in old Saint Patrick’s, New York, on 12 January 1834, and taught philosophy in the new seminary at Nyack, New York until its destruction by fire the same year. Student at Gregorian University in Rome, Italy from 1835 to 1837. On his return he became pastor of Saint Joseph’s in New York, leaving it temporarily in 1841 to organize Saint John’s College in Fordham. He was named co-adjutor bishop of New York, and titular bishop of Axieri, on 21 November 1843. First bishop of the diocese of Albany, New York on 21 May 1847, and built the existing cathedral there. He co-operated in the founding of Saint Joseph’s Seminary at Troy, New York in 1852. Named second Archbishop of New York on 6 May 1864, he was installed in Saint Patrick’s Cathedral on Mott Street. Attended the First Vatican Council in 1869 and 1870. He was named first American cardinal by Pope Blessed Pius IX on 15 March 1875, the investiture taking place in old Saint Patrick’s on 21 April 1875. In August he took possession of his titular church, Santa Maria sopra Minerva, in Rome, and when he went to Rome again for the coronation of Pope Leo XIII he received the cardinal‘s hat from that pontiff on 28 March 1878. He dedicated the present Saint Patrick’s Cathedral on 25 May 1879. Through an appeal to President Arthur in 1885, he was instrumental in saving the American College at Rome from spoliation by the Italian government. The New York Catholic Protectory is one of his many monuments.
- “Cardinal John McCloskey“. CatholicSaints.Info. 16 January 2017. Web. 26 February 2017. <>