John Hughes, Eagle of the Church
John Hughes was an Irish immigrant who played a significant role in the establishment of the Church in northeastern United States before the Civil War. As Bishop and then Archbishop of New York, he was the leader and protector of his people during the Nativist and Know-Nothing movements, constantly reminding his flock by word and deed of their duties as American citizens. Intensely devoted to his adopted land, the Archbishop responded loyally when asked to perform any public service. One of his admirers was Abraham Lincoln who sent him to the court of Napoleon III in France to win support for the Northern cause in Civil War.
“He was like an eagle, whether fighting for souls or defending his beloved country—a vigorous American who stood ever ready to uphold the principles of freedom.”