George Thomas Montgomery
George Thomas Montgomery (December 30, 1847 - January 10, 1907) was the first American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

-born Bishop of the Diocese of Monterey-Los Angeles (now the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles
The Archdiocese of Los Angeles is an archdiocese of the Roman Catholic Church in the U.S. state of California. Headquartered in Los Angeles, the archdiocese comprises the California counties of Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and Ventura. The diocesan cathedral is the Cathedral of Our Lady of the...

), serving in that capacity from 1896-1902.

Bishop Montgomery was born in Saint Lawrence, Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

. He was ordained a priest
A priest is a person authorized to perform the sacred rites of a religion, especially as a mediatory agent between humans and deities. They also have the authority or power to administer religious rites; in particular, rites of sacrifice to, and propitiation of, a deity or deities...

 in December 1879 and became a bishop
A bishop is an ordained or consecrated member of the Christian clergy who is generally entrusted with a position of authority and oversight. Within the Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox Churches, in the Assyrian Church of the East, in the Independent Catholic Churches, and in the...

 in January 1894. He assisted his predecessor (Bishop Francisco Mora y Borrell
Francisco Mora y Borrell
Francisco Mora i Borrell was a Catalan American Roman Catholic priest, serving as the Bishop of Monterey-Los Angeles from 1878 to 1896.Francisco Mora was born in Gurb , Spain on November 25, 1827...

) as coadjutor of what was then referred to as the Diocese of Monterey-Los Angeles, and became the ordinary
In those hierarchically organised churches of Western Christianity which have an ecclesiastical law system, an ordinary is an officer of the church who by reason of office has ordinary power to execute the church's laws...

 of the diocese when Mora retired in May 1896. During his term Bishop Montgomery faced significant bigotry, but he proved to be both a capable church and civic leader. Among other contributions, he demanded that government recognize the right of parents to send their children to schools of their choice. Bishop Montgomery High School
Bishop Montgomery High School
Bishop Montgomery High School is a Catholic high school serving twenty-five parishes in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles. BMHS was founded in 1957, and staffed by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, Conventual Franciscans, and lay faculty...

 in Torrance, California
Torrance, California
Torrance is a city incorporated in 1921 and located in the South Bay region of Los Angeles County, California, United States. Torrance has of shore-front beaches on the Pacific Ocean, quieter and less well-known by tourists than others on the Santa Monica Bay, such as those of neighboring...

 is named in his honor. Bishop Montgomery was a relative of Zachariah Montgomery
Zachariah Montgomery
Zachariah "Zach" Montgomery was a publisher, lawyer, politician, and author, particularly known for his skills as an orator....

 and noted aviation pioneer John J. Montgomery
John J. Montgomery
John Joseph Montgomery was an aviation pioneer, inventor, professor at Santa Clara College.On August 28, 1883 he made the first manned, controlled, heavier-than-air flights of the United States, in the Otay Mesa area of San Diego, California...

 who both also lived in California.

In September 1902 Bishop Montgomery was named coadjutor to Archbishop Patrick William Riordan
Patrick William Riordan
Patrick William Riordan was a Canadian-born clergyman of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as Archbishop of San Francisco from 1884 until his death in 1914.-Early life and education:...

 of San Francisco
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco is an ecclesiastical territory or diocese of the Catholic Church in the northern California region of the United States. It covers the City and County of San Francisco and the Counties of Marin and San Mateo...

. He led the archdiocese in caring for the victims of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake
1906 San Francisco earthquake
The San Francisco earthquake of 1906 was a major earthquake that struck San Francisco, California, and the coast of Northern California at 5:12 a.m. on Wednesday, April 18, 1906. The most widely accepted estimate for the magnitude of the earthquake is a moment magnitude of 7.9; however, other...

. Archbishop Riordan had departed San Francisco on Easter Monday before April 18, 1906, leaving Montgomery in charge of the Archdiocese. During the fire Bishop Montgomery and Monsignor Charles A. Ramm put out the fire in the bell tower of St. Mary's Cathedral at Van Ness Avenue and O' Farrell Street. The fire was stopped at Van Ness Avenue. Bishop Montgomery died unexpectedly the following January. He is buried at Holy Cross Cemetery
Holy Cross Cemetery, Colma
Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery in Colma, California is an American Roman Catholic cemetery operated by the Archdiocese of San Francisco. Established in 1887 on of a former potato farm, it is the oldest and largest cemetery established in Colma to serve the needs of San Francisco...

 in Colma, California
Colma, California
Colma is a small incorporated town in San Mateo County, California, at the northern end of the San Francisco Peninsula in the San Francisco Bay Area. The population was 1,792 at the 2010 census. The town was founded as a necropolis in 1924....


External links

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