Search billions of records on


 Biographies Index  



California Genealogy and History Archives

Sacramento County



There is perhaps no more distinguished and revered personage in Sacramento and vicinity and throughout northern California than is Rev. John H. Ellis, who has been stationed since November, 1902, in various sections of the west and demonstrated his splendid power in his calling. He is ranked as a leader among those cultured, eloquent and scholarly men who are devoting their lives to the spiritual upbuilding of the Roman Catholic Church throughout the west. Endowed liberally by nature with the qualities that contribute to useful and successful service in the cause of suffering humanity, he was yet very young when he gave evidence of exceptional mental attributes and it was therefore determined to prepare him for the priesthood. His education was primarily acquired in Westmeath, Ireland, where he was born February 18, 1876, in the home of James and Ann Ellis. It was during 1894 that he completed the course of study which had engaged his attention at St. Mary's Christian Brothers College, Mullingar, Westmeath, where he carried forward the study of mathematics and literature. On December 24, 1899, he was ordained by Dr. Walsh, Archbishop of Dublin, in the Chapel of Holy Cross College, Clonliffe. He was graduated in 1900 with an exceptionally high standing, having made his philosophical and theological degrees at All Hallows' College. Dublin, and he was admirably qualified by culture and training for the important sphere of activity into which he entered. Coming to the United States in 1900, he proceeded directly to California and was assigned to assist the late Very Rev. C. M. Lynch, V. G., of Grass Valley. From that place in November of 1902 he was transferred temporarily to Nevada City, Nev., as assistant, but at the expiration of six months he was re- assigned to Grass Valley. At this time he began his long and distinguished connection with the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Sacramento, where he served as assistant until 1906, and then he of3Bciated as rector until 1912, when, having demonstrated his ability and unquestioned loyalty to the work, he was sent by Bishop Grace, at his return from Europe, to Jackson, Cal., where he took charge of the work of forwarding the Roman Catholic Church there. He also attends to the spiritual needs of the boys of the Preston School of Industry, where there are nearly two hundred Catholic boys. Since undertaking that work the Catholic boys have been exempt from attendance at Protestant Divine services and arrangements have been made for securing positions for the young men as they leave and for rendering them other religious and social aid. Father Ellis has bent all his energy to fulfilling the duties laid down to him with the utmost care and fidelity in order to procure the most splendid results, and already the response to his efforts has proven them not in vain and he has shown himself to be the worthy man for the situation. 

History of Sacramento County, California
Biographical Sketches of The Leading Men and Women of the County Who Have Been Identified With Its Growth and Development from the Early Days to the Present
History By: William L. Willis
Historic Record Company, Los Angeles, California (1913)

Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011