University of Notre Dame

The Story of Notre Dame
Brother Aidan's Extracts


"The Island Cemetery at Notre Dame", poem by M.J. Canedo; written January 1856, when the burial place of the Community was on the mound between the lakes." SCHOLASTIC, September 20, 1873

See under "Novitiate"

"A number of iron crosses ordered to replace wooden ones in Community graveyard.

"Old cemetery was on site of present Community House where Priests, Brothers and Sisters were buried up to 1857 when Father Moreau gave orders that the Sisters should remove their dead to St. Mary's." 1857

Description of Cemetery in SCHOLASTIC of June, 1906 (39:34, 577)

"Father Michael Shawe blessed cemetery in front of novitiate according to Roman rite, also large cross erected in the cemetery for Jubilee of Pius IX." Favors of Holy See, PROVINCIAL ARCHIVES, April 25, 1847

"Brother Agatho (G.A.R.) will dig the graves in the new cemetery." L.C. (Notre Dame Archives), 1868

"Particular Council decided to remove the graveyard to the grounds near the Holy Sepulchre." October 21, 1867

"November 2, 1868, a new cemetery for Community blessed by Fr. Granger in a portion of the graves of St. Aloysius. Remains from former cemetery transferred." Provincial Visits, 1886-1881

"All Brothers and Sisters remains transferred to new Cemetery by November 19, 1868." Granger to Sorin, November 9, 1868

"Brother Francis Xavier has been engaged in laying out the ground lately added to cemetery." Mar. 30, 1868, SCHOLASTIC, 11:31, 490

"Several years the burial place for the Community of Notre Dame was on a beautiful mound that rose between two lakes called St. Mary's and St. Joseph's. About the year 1868 the bodies then resting in the "Island Cemetery" were removed to the present burial place." 1873

"As you draw to the edge of the oak belt, on your left lies God's -acre, with its needless paling. The men who lie here are brothers even in death. There are no lonely graves; these soldiers of the Cross lie shoulder to shoulder, as comrades should, with naught above them but the symbol of their faith -- the standard they bore in battle. Seven score of crosses, perhaps, and every one means a life freely given for Christ and Our Lady!" SCHOLASTIC, May 30, 1896

"At the northwest corner of St. Mary's Lake is a little plot of ground, guarded by a row of locust trees on the west and by a grove of oaks to the east, wherein slumbers the dust of the men who have made Notre Dame. It is a picturesque and holy spot. Removed from the bustle of the college town, it is nevertheless near to the heart of the community, for hither the seminarians from their beautiful home nearby, Brothers and Priest from the College and Sisters from St. Mary's frequently wend their way to say a prayer almost as much an invocation of the departed as in petition for the peace of their souls.

" . . . .There is still the simple cross at the head of each grave, signifying with quiet insistence the nature of the life led by the departed. The only graves that have a mark of distinction above the others are those of the men who were chaplains or soldiers in the Civil War. These have each a little marble foot-stone bearing their name, their military rank and the division of the army to which they belonged. And over each of these graves blows from Memorial Day the Stars and Stripes, reverently placed there by their comrades who still answer "Present" to the roll-call of the living . . .

"In the Brothers section we find a similar distinction accorded the grave of Brother Sebastian, who as Thomas Martin, Co. 1, 1st Penna. Cavalry; also the grave of Brother Richard, known in Co. A, 38th N.J. Infantry as William Stoney, and the last resting place of Brother Polycarp, James White, of the U.S. Navy. There is an interesting story in the life of Brother Polycarp, one that deserves repetition here." For continuation, see SCHOLASTIC, Vol. 39, p. 578, end of column 2, 1906

"We are now midway on the avenue and immediately in front of the "Field of the Dead." This is the Cemetery of the Congregation Parish immediately attached to the College.

"Among the tastefully designed monuments you observe one more conspicuous than the rest: it is the pretty little mortuary chapel, standing, as you see, in the middle of the consecrated ground. Let us pause here and enter it, if we can find the Brother Sacristan to open the door for us. This good Brother by the way, built the pretty chapel with his own hands. See its graceful little spire, symbolizing as it does to the thoughtful observer, the 'Sursum Corda'." GUIDE TO NOTRE DAME DU LAC, 1865

‹— Brother Aidan's Extracts —›