This edition is based on a longhand transcription of the original document with additional notes made by Father James Gibbons, CSC, that was later (April 1981) typed by Province Archives staff. This typed transcription was scanned into digital form by University Archives staff in January 1999, and then edited and compared line by line with the original text by Brother Ronald, CSC, in February 1999.
In the manuscript, dates have been written in the margins; we have printed dates written in the right margin in italics and dates written in the left margin in boldface.
Bro. Gatian (Urbain) Monsimer was born April 3, 1826, on a farm in Mayenne, France. At the age of fourteen, in August of 1840, he was received into the Congregation of Holy Cross at Le Mans, France. One year later Father Basil Moreau chose him to be one of the six Brothers, with Fr. Edward Sorin as their superior, to found a mission in Vincennes, Indiana. In the United States Brother Gatian learned English very quickly and within a few weeks began to teach in that language.
In November of 1842 he was among the first group to move north from Vincennes to Notre Dame, where he became a teacher of bookkeeping and arithmetic. Timothy Howard, recalling his days as a Notre Dame student in A History of St. Joseph County, wrote, "Brother Gatian was a genius, an incomprehensible Frenchman! He was capable of doing anything and everything. He was at that early day the intellectual soul of the institution. Peace to his ashes!" Father Sorin thought so well of Brother's abilities that in 1849 he sent him to New York to investigate and report on difficulties that existed at a school conducted there by the Brothers. In 1850 Father Sorin sent him along with three other Brothers and three laymen on an expedition to California to look for gold. Brother Gatian wrote several long and detailed letters describing the group's journey to California.
Brother Gatian left the Congregation of Holy Cross in California, where he continued mining. He also continued his correspondence with Father Sorin. In an April, 1860, letter from San Francisco he wrote, "I have lost all hope of recovery. Doctors have given me up and I am becoming daily weaker. . . . My father wishes to see me before I die, and it is for this reason I undertake a long voyage at the eleventh hour of my life. . . . pray for me that I may not die during the voyage and that I may carry my cross patiently." He returned to France. On July 29, 1860, he died at his father's farm where he had been born thirty-four years before.
The Chronicles of Notre Dame du Lac by Edward Sorin, CSC. Edited and annotated by James T. Connelly, CSC. Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 1992.
Holy Cross on the Gold Dust Trail by Franklin Cullen, CSC. Notre Dame, IN: Indiana Province Archives Center, 1989.
Notre Dame: One Hundred Years by Arthur J. Hope, CSC. Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 1948.
Journal kept by the Secretary to serve in the Composition of the Chronicles of N.D. du Lac ordered by the Council of Administration on the eleventh of January in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred & forty seven. Bro. Gatian Sec'ty
Feb. 8th 1847. On this day the Revd F. Superior assembled the Council of Administration to apprise them of the bargain made by Bro. Joseph at Indianapolis without any order. For Bro. Joseph, prevented by disease and the badness of the roads from finishing the peddling business which he had undertaken, stopped at Indianapolis with the Priest of the place. He there found 27 acres of good land with convenient buildings for sale & knowing that the Novitiate of the Brothers was to be moved to that place, he undertook to buy it and wrote to Fr. Superior. The Methodists, it seems, had a revival in order to induce the owner not to sell his property to Catholics, and Bro. Joseph, fearing their influence, concluded the bargain before he had received an answer. The counsellors were consulted and determined that bargain should be annulled, if it could be done without dishonor and that therefore some person should be sent to examine the case. After some hesitation, Fr. Gouesse, who had to go to Vincennes for his ordination, was charged with it. He found that we were bound irrevocably, and that we had but to find the money, viz. $4500.00. Bro. Joseph remained at Indianapolis in the quality of a teacher.
Fr. Gouesse, as I have already stated went to Vincennes for his ordination, but having no dimissory from the Bishop of Mans, he could not be ordained.
In the month of January, Revd Fr. Superior went to Detroit to make inquiries respecting Fr. V. Badin's donation, took measures for the recovery of the whole and chose Mr. Howard, a Presbyterian, for lawyer without however taking any decisive steps. A few weeks later a letter from X. [Dr.?] Cavalli, the only person who can serve as a witness in this affair, informed us of his indisposition towards us on account of the refusal of certain [illegible word] and made another journey to Detroit necessary.
Several weeks elapsed without any decision, the counsellors being equally divided. However, immediately after Fr. Gouesse's return from Vincennes, he was deputed as being a special friend of the Doctor, and indeed perfectly reconciled him and set everything on a good footing. The Doctor demanded that a certain amount should be allowed him for his services and that then he would receive from 10,000 to 15,000 dollars but that if the amount he required were not allowed him, he would not stir. It may be remarked here that the Doctor is a man void of every principle of religion. The affair was treated in the Minor Chapter and therefore I have not as yet been acquainted with the result of the deliberations of that body. Fr. Gouesse, the agent did not assist, as he was not then a member.
March 22nd 1847. It seems that a few weeks before the present date complaints were received from France respecting the organization of our Councils, stating that there should be no Council of Administration, and that the Minor Chapter alone should administer. Accordingly, the Council of Administration was abolished and the Minor Chapter now assembled every Monday at the hour first appointed for the Council of Administration. Bro. Theodulus was elected to take Bro. Joseph's place. Further informations were also sent for to the Mother House.
March 25th 1847. Yesterday, two of the Professors, Revd E. Shaw and F. Cointet, went to Bertrand, and were not home timely for their classes today. It may be remarked that Bertrand has often occasioned disorder in the University.
March 28th 1847. Last night Mr. Wm. Richardville who had been sick for two months, died and was buried at the extremity of our land on the road which leads to South Bend, Fr. Superior intending to have a graveyard there for our boarders and all those not belonging to the Institution who might die at Notre Dame du Lac University. Mr. Richardville was an Indian orphan. His father was the chief of the Miami Tribe residing at Huntington near Fort Wayne. Mr. Wm. Richardville is the first Boarder that died here since the beginning of the University. The young man who was not over fifteen years old, had been sent to this Institution by his uncle Mr. Lafontaine, now the chief of the tribe. He was sickly even before he came to this place and did not learn much being rather stupid; he had, however, the happiness of receiving baptism, and is doubtless in heaven. The burial service was at 5 [illegible] o'clock. He was laid in a double coffin. The next day a solemn service was celebrated for him.
March 29th 1847. I perceived this evening that Fr. Gouesse had been elected a member of the Minor Chapter.
March 30th 1847 General Remark. Ever since its foundation the University was deficient in books, and also in Professors. The former deficiency being partly occasioned by the want of foresight and partly by the distance of places. See Council of Profs.
General Remark. Previous to the month of October all religious ceremonies even the longest were assisted at by the pupils of Notre Dame du Lac, but having had various complaints, it was then regulated that they should generally assist only at Mass and Vespers on Sundays. See Council of Profs.
General Remark. The fevers do again continue their ravages at the Novitiate as they did last year. Bro. Emmaus, Lewis, and William continue to be sick. Bro. Wm. is the only one sick now (June 1st 1847) and he has been sent to Pokagon in order to recover, if possible.
April 9th 1847. Our Boarders have been very insubordinate during the last season, and a particular friendship has subsisted between three pupils since the beginning of the year, and will probably result in their expulsion.
This extraordinary misbehavior is attributed to the frequent journeys of the Superior and to the frequent negligences of Masters which proceed from a want of good understanding between them and the Superior. Bro. Vincent informed the Brothers at the spiritual reading of Mr. Hobeck's sudden death after two days illness. Mr. Hobeck who was about 36 years old at the time of his death was a Belgian by birth and had been brought by Fr. Superior from Louisville in 1845. He spent a year here as a Postulant and a baker and gave general satisfaction. But he had a desire of going to settle certain family affairs. His Superior and his confessor said it was a temptation in as much as the Belgian Priest, his relative, whom he wished to see could do all by himself, but he would not abide by their decision, saying that he would return; but God disposed of it otherwise. Bro. Charles Borromeo who had unfortunately contracted a particular friendship with him, followed him, but death has now separated them. This according to Bro. Vincent, may give us two lessons: 1st to abide by the decision of our spiritual director, and 2nd not to form any particular friendship.
April 10th 1847. The Boarders and Apprentices who joined the archconfraternity on St. Joseph's day have heard Mass at the Novitiate and will do so every Saturday for the future.
April 13, 1847. On this day Revd Fr. Superior left secretly for Indianapolis and apparently without the orders of the Minor Chapter, for the members of the said body said they did not know any thing about his journey. He did not return before the 9th of May, having been obliged to go to Vincennes. During his absence Fr. Cointet also absented himself for 8 days in order to go to one of his missions, and left Fr. Gouesse alone and he was not willing to do anything besides his employment of Prefect of Discipline. The Boarders and Professors thus abandoned to themselves could not well succeed and the conduct of the boys which was already bad before Fr. Superior's departure, became worse. Fr. Cointet insisted upon having the examination, notwithstanding the repugnance of the Professors to interrogate during Fr. Superior's absence. On the following Friday Messrs Daniel Cooley, Chas. Desnoyers and H. Hale ran off and did not return before dark: they were punished and Master Cooley was privately dismissed on Saturday. After Fr. Superior's return, several Councils were held, and in order to suppress the general insubordination of the pupils more effectively, Fr. Superior took the discipline upon himself and promised to attend regularly to it.
May 13th 1847. Today Fr. Gouesse left for Vincennes for the second time in order to be ordained.
May 21st 1847. On the 9th inst. two young men arrived from N.Y. desiring to study for the priesthood, but one of them left a few days after, not intending to join the Community but to be a secular priest. The other, Mr. Hampston, remained and yesterday Fr. Superior gave him the 3rd Class to teach.
On the 19th inst. Mr. Phaler, Mr. J. Reckers, Mr. C. Reckers and a young German paid us a visit. The last named came in order to study Latin and remained, altho he intended to go home in order to get his clothes, if the ague had not detained him. Mr. J. Reckers came merely to accompany his brother and Mr. Phaler, the German priest of Fort Wayne. Mr. C. Reckers was the first boy who came to the community during the first Winter we spent here.
1842 y3-4 He was for some time numbered among our postulants, and afterwards became a Boarder. He was always a model of piety and good conduct, but unfortunately, very changeable. He left in 1845 after the distributions of premiums and went to Cincinnati. He has not been able to determine upon anything since that time, and has always been discontented and troubled in mind, as he has avowed to me: he cannot find any happiness in the world, has a continual longing after a religious life, but has not strength to embrace. This misfortune is , according to my opinion, owing to his not abiding by the advice of his Spiritual Directors.
Mr. Phaler came in order to get a Brother to teach in Fort Wayne. Bro. Basil was accordingly sent.
Mr. St. Mar has been appointed Director of the gymnastic exercises. A part of the gymnasium has been put up this week (May 20). Bro. Bernard was appointed Secretary to the Council of Agriculture in my place (B.G.) that I might attend to the recreations on Sundays.
May 30th 1847. 1st Whereas the Catholics of South Bend had long expressed the desire of having a Brother and whereas Bro. Bernard not succeeding with the Boarders, it seemed proper to try him elsewhere, it had been decided in the Council of the Brothers last Tuesday that he should be sent to South Bend to teach there, but Revd Fr. Superior altered the resolution since for the following reason: The pupils of the small study-room had become so desperately rebellious that they had attempted to whip Bro. Stephen, who naturally has not great influence over boys. It was thought absolutely necessary to remove him, and there being nobody to take his place, Bro. Bernard was appointed.
May 30th 1847. In order to excite the pupils' devotion towards the Blessed Virgin, Revd. Fr. Supr. has established an association among them in her honor called St. Mary's Association having for its primary object the honor of the Blessed Virgin. The Vice President, Mr. J. Williams; the Secretary, Mr. Gillespie, the two smartest pupils of the college, tho unfortunately not always well conducted, having contracted a dangerous familiarity and particular friendship, were elected by their fellow pupils. Mr. G. Campau, the oldest of our pupils, aged 24 years, being born to command and of a remarkable goodness of heart and activity, was appointed President, tho not elected by his fellow pupils, there being undoubtedly no other pupil worthy of the charge. Messrs Campau's and Williams' relatives live in Detroit, Mr. Gillespie's in Lancaster (Ohio)
June 1st 1847. The statue of the Blessed Virgin which was formerly in the chapel of the Novitiate and which has been replaced by the group of the Seven Sorrows brought from France in 1846, was at the end of April placed on a pedestal in the island of the Novitiate in the middle of a ring sown in grass, the pedestal being also covered with turf. A few weeks before a large wooden cross of about 20 ft raised on a pedestal of 6 feet had been planted in the graveyard on the same island.
The month of Mary had not yet been performed here in so imposing a manner. At the fall of night, whenever the weather permitted, all the members of the Institution and all the pupils assembled around the statue in St. Mary's island and there listened to a pathetic exhortation generally delivered by Revd. M. E. Shawe. The exhortation was preceded by a canticle and followed by night prayers.
May 24th 1847. It had been decided that Mr. Thos. Bracken of Chicago should be dismissed and a letter had accordingly been written by Mr. E. Shawe. His father expressed nothing but satisfaction towards the faculty, and required that his son should be dismissed without delay. However, Mr. M. E. Shawe who is naturally too indulgent so urged the equally indulgent and more temporizing Superior that the boy was detained notwithstanding the decision of the Professors, and as it might naturally have been expected, he did not do any better since.
June 24th 1847. Great preparations were made for Corpus Christi and two repositories were made, one on the island (St. Mary's) and the other at the Southwest corner of the college. The 1st was under the superintendence of Mr. St. Mar, a professor of drawing and a member of the Society of the Priests. The other was entrusted to the President and Vice President of St. Mary's Association. Fr. Gouesse was expected to celebrate but a delay caused by a misunderstanding between two lines baffled our expectations. Fr. Gouesse arrived only on Corpus Christi day, in the afternoon. The next day, i.e. the 7th, he celebrated his first Mass in the Chapel of the Congregation at 9 o'clock. The boys had a walk in the afternoon in his honor, and to show their sincere regard for him, the Members of the Association presented him with a beautiful stole.
The joy of the community for the possession of a new priest had scarcely subsided, when a new subject of joy presented itself. The Mother House had sent a colony to Canada, consisting of fifteen persons, consisting of Priests, Brothers and Sisters accompanied by Fr. Saunier, who was destined to Notre Dame du Lac in case the establishment of Louisville for which he was destined did not succeed. Fr. Saunier accompanied the company to Montreal, and then came to Notre Dame du Lac where he arrived on the 10th about 5 o'clock.
He gave the Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament at 1/2 past 6 where he related a part of his journey and expressed his joy upon meeting old friends. Immediately after supper, he summoned the members of the Minor Chapter, at which Bro. Gatian was introduced. Fr. Saunier then acquainted the members present with the new nominations for the said Chapter: They were as follows: Revd. Fr. Superior, E. Sorin, Fr. Cointet, Assistant, Fr. Granger, Bro. Vincent, Bro. Theodulus and Bro. Gatian. A document sent by the Revd Fr. Rector and his Council was then read. That Document expressed various reproaches, addressed to Notre Dame du Lac upon the accounts, etc. The Minor Chapter thought proper to answer but in general terms lest the particulars should still create greater difficulties. In order to satisfy the Revd. Fr. Rector and in order to show that there was no danger of our becoming bankrupt, the balance of the account was made as well as the inventories, a copy of all the deeds in favor of Notre Dame du Lac was translated by Bro. Gatian and sent to France. Fr. Saunier did not come here as a visitor, tho he acted in many circumstances as if he were so. Bishop Chabrat, having invited Fr. Saunier to pay a visit [illegible] to Louisville, in order to render an account to the Mother House of whatever may regard the said establishment of Louisville. - Fr. Saunier accordingly left for Louisville on the 17th of June about 3 o'clock.
The insubordination of the pupils continues to be very great. Six of them went to town without permission yesterday and one of them bathed naked in the river. One of them was dismissed but not the one that has bathed naked, because he had not paid for his board. One of them, Mr. Gillespie, who was secretary to the St. Mary's Association, was publicly degraded, and Mr. John Hays was elected Secretary and E. Kilroy Treasurer. On this occasion the President and Vice-President showed a great deal of zeal for the good conduct of their associates.
Today the Apprentices were separated from the Boarders at the request of their Master's, because the Boarders were the cause of some of their faults, and they shall for the future take their recreations in the backyard under the conduct of one of their masters.
Fr. Superior deeming Bro. Stephen unfit to oversee, and Bro. Gatian too severe for the present circumstances, has appointed Mr. Hampton to oversee in their stead during the recreations.
Considering the lamentable discussions existing between the Mother House and this establishment, the members of the Minor Chapter, resolved to depute Bro. Vincent to the Major Chapter on the 23rd inst., but on the 24th the resolution was changed in consequence of the receipt of a letter which announced that Bro. Joseph had lost, by the slowness of Fr. Superior, the opportunity he had found to give a mortgage on the property of Indianapolis. For the said Minor Chapter thought that in conscience they were obliged to pay the said property, and that consequently they should save the expenses of a journey to France.
The Minor Chapter having thus decided that Bro. Vincent should not be sent to France, resolved that he should make a collection among the Irishmen of the railroad with the assistance of Bro. Stephen for the benefit of the orphans of Bertrand.
Novitiate . Bro. Louis and Mr. Charles Nadler make but very little progress in their studies at the Novitiate and their professor resigned at the beginning of the month for the want of good understanding. Bro. Emmanuel has them under his care at present.
The weather has been uncommonly cold for the season, and so much so that our Boarders have not bathed as yet.
July 3rd [1847.] On this our Boarders bathed for the first time this year.
To attract the attention of the population great preparations were made for the celebration of the Fourth of July which falling on Sunday was observed on Monday. The theatre was magnificently painted for Mr. St. Mar under the new shed where a number of seats were prepared for the spectators. The celebration was announced in the three newspapers of Niles thru the kindness of Judge Brown. A comic piece representing the youthful days of young Henry IVth, according to Shakespeare was played by the pupils. The performance was preceded by gymnastical exercises. Between the acts of the play, our band of Music, lately formed purposely for the Fourth of July, discoursed excellent music for the first essay. The concourse of people was as great as last year. There were about 80 carriages and four stages, upwards of 700 persons.
July 8th 1847. This morning the Minor Chapter was convoked what answer should be made to a letter of A. Saunier which requested us to send him four Sisters. After some deliberation, it was resolved that nothing should be done until Fr. Rector should have allowed it. In the assembly it was also resolved that 4 Sisters should be sent to the kitchen.
Bro. Vincent and Bro. Stephen returned from their collecting tour - the 1st, 8 days after his departure and the 2nd, 15 days. The proceeds were $4l.40. They were disappointed as to the number of workmen - their being but 200 instead of 500 persons.
July 14th 1847. On the 13th instant, a tall Boarder, Mr. Wm. M. Ord, having grossly insulted the Professor of Drawing, Mr. St. Mar, the latter resolved to leave the Institution, if the said Mr. Wm. Ord were not immediately dismissed. All our Boarders emboldened by impunity have become exceedingly saucy to their professors and overseers, and the latter seeing themselves thus slighted have become so exasperated that they resolved to leave the Institution if matters were not soon set on a better footing. Messers Refour, Dussaulx, St. Mar and Hampton show this disposition. Others who are not determined to go to such extremes are not the less indisposed and among the latter are Fr. Gouesse and Bro. Gatian, Bro. Stephen and Bro. Augustus, men truly devoted to the house. Fr. Superior, Fr. Cointet and Bro. Gatian considering these circumstances and also that Mr. St. Mar's loss at present would be irreparable, have unanimously dismissed Mr. Wm. M. Ord, who left last night.
July 18th 1847. The discipline of the University is so low that the half of our boys are suffered to lose their time with impunity, and go to class when they have a mind to. This Sunday at Vespers, Bro. Gatian exasperated by G. Taylor's conduct and being forbidden to give notes dragged him from his pew in the presence of the Congregation, and nothing was said either to him or G. Taylor.
The harvest which was begun last Monday and nearly finished yesterday went on very well. There were from forty to fifty cradlers or nikers every day. The cost of the harvest, i.e. the payment of the hands amounted to about $120 including our workmen. About a dozen of Brothers helped in harvesting. And our Catholics gave fifteen days for nothing.
Mr. J. Miller left his kiln half-burnt but returned upon his being told of it. Fr. Superior made him lose $6 on that account.
Immediately after the harvest, nearly the whole of the members of the Institution were attacked with the fever and ague - for three or four weeks from 15 to 20 were sick at the same time and there were scarcely any left to take care of the sick. The apartments of the Infirmary, tho spacious, became insufficient, and one of the Boarders' dormitories was consequently changed into a kind of hospital. The disease spared neither superiors or inferiors and, whether we attribute it to the insalubrity of the place or to a trial or scourge from Divine Providence, it was certainly worse here than anywhere around. The College was deprived of all its professors but one during the last week of the scholastic year and several of the pupils were also attacked. It was indeed a very sad spectacle to see two or three pale and dejected professors presiding at the distribution, and to hear it whispered through the assembly - when a pupil was called to receive his premiums - that he was sick and in bed. Things were left undone, and the same individual had often five or six employments, each of which had been sufficient to keep him busy. The intended building of a chapel, as well as several other projects, was consequently abandoned for the present. The retreat was put back to the 23rd of August in order to suit the sick, who were then beginning to recover, and nearly the whole of them, tho yet very ill, assisted at it. The disease continued in its vigor for over two months, tho none were sick for that length of time except Fr. Superior and Bro. Gatian, who were sick more or less for three months. These two fell sick on the same and at the same hour (23rd July 1847) not with the fever and ague but with the bilious fever. Both were in danger of death. The latter (B.G.) is still sick and indeed it has been found very hard to cure him, he being too fond of work. Fr. Granger, the Master of Novices, and Fr. Cointet had an attempt [sic] of the fever and ague. The former had the fever forty eight times and when he left for Indianapolis, he was still unwell. I am informed (Nov. 4th) that he has been taken sick again. Bro. John, already worn out by labor, had a partial attack of the cholera morbus that brot [sic] him to the brink of the tomb, but he has now perfectly recovered.
None, however, died except Sister of Mount Camel who expired on the 5th of Aug. at the age of 52 after a long disease which she had borne with great patience. She was remarkable for her courage and devotedness and it was indeed edifying to see with what alacrity she fulfilled her employment of Washer Woman at the lake, poorly sheltered, thru the coldest weather and with her great Rheumatism. She was of Irish origin, had long been an exemplary domestic to Fr. Nicolas of N.Y. and had joined the Community in 1843. She was professed - She was buried in the graveyard of the Novitiate.
Our disorderly scholastic year had an end worthy of itself: the pupils behaved indeed very badly on that day, talking and hissing during the distribution of the premiums. Happily Divine Providence did not permit that many persons should witness the sad spectacle of disorder and disease. The plays were poorly executed. Not over a hundred strangers were present. Perhaps the late feast of the fourth and the harvest occasioned the absence of a great many. The premium of Honor was awarded to Mr. G. Campau by the joint suffrages of the professors and pupils.
The Retreat began on the 23rd of Aug. as I have already mentioned and seems to have produced some salutary fruits. It went on very well notwithstanding the general indisposition of the Brothers. Fr. Superior, however, spoke against the correspondence of the Brothers with Fr. Rector in a manner that troubled and scandalized the French Brothers. His speech prohibited every correspondence with Fr. Rector, which is absolutely unconstitutional. The same discourse has been repeated since in stronger terms. Fr. Saunier who came here somewhat after, was consulted in order to know what ought to be done, and he answered that the Rector should be informed without delay, which accordingly has been done.
The Sisters who had not been so terribly scourged with the fever and ague devoted themselves with great zeal to the service of the sick. The Mother herself became the chief infirmarian whilst the Superior was sick. There was a sister (generally, the mother) in perpetual attendance by his bed, whilst there were but two attending on the rest of the sick.
Towards the middle of September Fr. Saunier appeared on a sudden at Notre Dame du Lac as if he had been sent for by the Minor Chapter. It seems that Fr. Superior had sent for him secretly intending to make a journey and perhaps to take Fr. Saunier with him. Bro. Gatian, however, a bold member, told him plainly that he did not act properly in thus creating expenses and absenting himself without the consent of his chapter: the journey did not take place. Several conferences were held in which Fr. Saunier highly praised his establishment of St. Mary's. The Chapter considering the insalubrity of N.D.L. , the little prospect of having Boarders, their pecuniary embarrassment, and being on the other hand uncertain whether the Mother House would undertake Louisville, desired a union between these two houses and proposed sending four Sisters, two Brothers and a Priest to St. Mary's. A petition was consequently made and sent, in spite of Fr. Saunier.
Fr. Superior and Fr. Saunier proposed that a provincial should be established in America, in order to manage American affairs, because the Chapter said that experience proved that the Mother House could not govern properly. A plan was drawn, but they refused to send it, lest the Mother House be frightened; they said they would send the proposal next year.
At the Retreat, Fr. Superior having declared without taking the advice of his council, notwithstanding the contrary decision of the Mother House that [Brother Vincent] should go to Ind. - Bro. Gatian arose against him, and said that he had not the right of thus changing the rules of the Mother House, but as the other counselors durst not speak, the resolution passed. But a few months later, when Bro. Gatian repeated the observation, it was consequently resolved that the Mother House should be apprised of the fact.
Fr. Superior three or four times, very unconstitutionally threatened those who wrote to Fr Rector and said he would put a stop to all correspondence with Fr. Rector. This angered the Brothers very much and they endeavored to defeat his plan.
Bro. Vincent was appointed Master of Studies and Bro. Theodulus, Steward. The latter suffers a great [deal] in his employment because Fr. Superior is always meddling.
The Class of Mathematics was not taught because the Professor was sick.
When the question was presented of sending Sisters to ["Bertrand" seems to be crossed out] Louisville, some wished to have the payment of their expenses made in advance, but the majority was against it.
The foundation of Indianapolis took place in September. Fr. Granger was appointed to preside - Bro. Lewis and Bro. Anselm went with Fr. Granger. Bro. [Francis] de Sales went to Vincennes, Bro. Bernard to Madison, Ind., Bros. Basil and Emmanuel to Fort Wayne and Bro. Benedict to Washington, Daviess Co. Ind.
Bro. Thomas was appointed professor at the college. To Mr. Shawe was given a division of the Latin Class. Revd Mr. Shawe had like[d] to be dismissed on account of various irregularities which he had occasioned in the college and also on account of rumors of which he was accused to be the author. The last charge remaining unproved, he was kept after long deliberations.
Mr. Hampston, Mr. St. Mar, and Mr. Refour left our community in the beginning of September. The latter went to Canada, as did also Sr. Mary of Providence. Sr. Mary of Providence not being wanted, was sent back to the lake.
Three postulants for the Brothers arrived since the retreat, and one for the Priests, Mr. Wm. Delaney, a postulant for the Priesthood was dismissed towards the end of August, because he had [not] the means of paying.
Two postulants took the habit at the retreat, viz. Mr. Staples, now Bro. Anselm and Mr. McCarting now Bro. Ambrose.
A few weeks ago F. Shawe was thrown out of his carriage by his horse. Mr. Shawe was pretty badly hurt, and his horse still more so, for there is no certainly of his surviving.
The church of Bertrand during the night of the seventh and eighth was robbed. The sacred particles to the number of about forty with the ciborium, a chalice and another silver vessel were taken away. The robber has not been discovered yet.-Two men were lately killed at Bertrand. One was shot and the other had his throat cut. Both of the murderers have been taken up.
Bro. Gatian was expelled from the Minor Chapter on the 15th of Nov. 1847 for speaking his mind too freely.
Bro. Ambrose and Mr. Callen left for Indianapolis on last Thursday, the 18th of Nov. 1847, in order to perform their Novitiate.
Nov. 20th 1847. On today we were informed that the King of the French, Louis Philippe and his Queen had given $151.54 for the Novitiate of Indianapolis.
Revd. M.E. Shawe has finally become a burden to the house. Unable and unfit to teach any class, he has last of all abandoned his class twice without saying a word and at his request, the Council of Prof[essors] decided on the second of Dec. 1847 that F. Cointet should teach all the Latinists. Fr. Shawe has nothing to do at present.
Mr. Wm. Butler who was never very firm in his vocation, after having idly roamed about a long time, left the Community on the 1st of Dec. 1847.
Father Gouesse was appointed Prefect of the Apprentices on the 4th of Dec. Bro. Vincent having no time to attend to them.
Patrick Smith, the apprentice, is dismissed. Bro. Theodulus is sent to Louisville. The Postulant, Robert Sidley is sent to Indianapolis.
A woman that had come from France with the Sisters was also sent to Indianapolis to cook. After a delay of three days, they left on the ninth of December 1847.
Dec 10th/47 Revd Mr. Nightingale, an English Priest of some reputation came to the University to remain for a short time. The class of the apprentices i.e. 2nd division was given to him. Mr. Morris their actual teacher being found incompetent. Mr. Williams, a young boarder of great abilities has taken the first division under his care.
March 24, 1848. Revd Mr. Nightingale is still at the University and he has been teaching the second division of the English Course since December in Bro. Thomas' place - the latter having been sent to Indianapolis to teach the Novices. Bro. Thomas returned from Indianapolis on the 15th inst and he has again taken up his class and his employment as overseer both in the dormitory and in the yard. Mr. Nightingale is now employed in the mission and Bro. Matthias is liberated from his employment as overseer in which he had no authority. He was so far abused as to be struck by one of them, viz. John Bracken. The discipline is exceedingly mild this year: pupils may almost do anything with impunity. There is indeed almost no other law than that of nature. Yet great many pupils have abused the authors of this laxity, such as Bro. Vincent who has not the least authority and who has been several times positively disobeyed and whom they have hissed two or three times; which hissing they had done but once to Bro. Francis de Sales in the whole of four preceding years.
We are getting several pupils from South Bend and vicinity but they all want rooms. There are already four rooms occupied in which most foresee great evils. One of these rooms has been given to Giles Taylor, son E.D. Taylor, President of the Branch Bank, Michigan City. The boy is insupportable to every one and there is not a single individual who would not wish to have him dismissed, but the Superior wants to keep him for reasons best known to himself.
Mr. John Campau who should have been dismissed two years ago has at last been sent home by Fr. Superior.
Mr. Geo. Speake, an apprentice of Bro. Augustus, tailor, has been secretly dismissed for some immoral actions. It is a general belief among the Professors that there exists a good deal of immorality among our boys, especially the pupils.
The Novitiate of Indianapolis has obliged the Institution to great expenses. An acct drawn out by the secretary shows a total amt. of $3475.29 which might have been spared if the Novitiate had remained at Notre Dame du Lac. Moreover, they do not get any postulants there and they do indeed very poor business.
Disease still continues to afflict the members of the Institution. Thus Bro. Gatian, for instance, is still obliged to take his meals in the infirmary. Bros. John, Cyprian and Jerome have also been sick, most of them with a certain weakness in the side or a pain in the head. They are recovering but slowly. Fr. Baroux of Pokagon has been very sick with the miserere, and being in danger of death, he made his profession in Fr. Superior's and Fr. Gouesse's presence - he is not out of danger yet.
March 24th, 1848 The Secretary has at last brought his accts to the 1st of January and closed them; they will doubtless be sent to France.
The Minor Chapter chose not to send the secretary's accts to France because some accounts were given out as doubtful.
Mr. Nightingale continues to be on the Mission, most of the time. Our boys have greatly increased of late and now amt to 36.
A great distress having for sometime existed between the apprentices and their overseers, and the latter having bitterly complained of their conduct, Fr. Superior thought best to remove them all, and to appoint Bro. Mary in their place. Consequently, for the future they shall have but one overseer.
On the 22nd of May, which followed the removal of the overseers, Bro. Bennet [Benedict] repented for his conduct in the yard of recreation and for what he had said on several occasions. Consequently, an extraordinary Chapter was convoked, and he made his accusation.
The recreations of the Brothers are not generally what they ought to be. They murmur against and criticize their Superiors etc. who, however, generally deserve the reproaches made to them.
Fr. Superior was absent during the whole month of April. He went to Detroit where he paid several debts, and collected some small sums, chose a new agent instead of D. Cavalli, against whom he instituted a suit for the collection of a rate due by him. He returned after an absence of eight days. On the very next day he started for Vincennes where he found Bishop Bazin well disposed to the Institution. He obtained that the Novitiate should be removed back to Notre Dame du Lac, and the land of Indianapolis resold. The Bishop also granted that the sum of $3000 and its interest should alone be paid to Bishop de la Hailandiere, and that the Donations of $600 made to the Churches of Mishawaka and South Bend should be applied to the Building of our New Church. He also settled with him for the school of Vincennes, and found that he owed $122.89.
Father Superior also went to Louisville to see our establishment there. He found that we should take care of it ourselves, or else abandon [it]. Hence he promised to make arrangements as soon as possible, submitting them, however to the Mother House. Fr. Gouesse was promised. Fr. Superior also went to Cincinnati and made a purchase of groceries: sugar, apples, coffee and rice (10,000 lbs) amounting to about $600. He visited the establishment of Madison and returned through Fort Wayne, where he found Mother Superior very sick. At his return, Fr. Superior ordered a Novena, but before it was over Mother Superior had breathed her last at Fort Wayne in excellent dispositions.
The death of Bishop Bazin has been severely felt.
May 24th Bro. G., Revd Fr. Granger and his novices have already been 15 days here. They have returned from Indianapolis, Bro. Joseph alone remaining there. Bro. Gatian has been appointed to teach for an hour every morning at the Novitiate. There are now three students: Bros. Anselm, Aloysius and Louis. A new postulant has arrived Mr. Thos. Jno Walsh who is well instructed.
Fr. Superior ordered that all the exercises should be performed at the Novitiate even by the collegians.
Mr. Touchan has succeeded in burning a good kiln of lime.
The New Church has been commenced - May 25, 1848. The following incident shows how carefully every one ought to watch over the affections of his heart and also that too great a severity is blameable. Bro. Gatian was laboring for a whole year in desperate agony (and his soul for the same cause is still languishing) on account of the alienation of John Hays's heart from him caused by Bro. Gatian's too great severity. For the latter, strange to say, who idolizes and still idolizes J. Hays - was exceedingly harsh and unjust towards him.- At last, Bro. Gatian became so desperate, at the beginning of June, that he began to play the fool and determined rather to go to hell than to give up the idea of obtaining an interview from J. Hays.
The Superior threatened him and said he would have him taken up. Put he heeded not. At last, the Superior sent him John Hays who forgave him and Bro. Gatian promised to play the fool no more. But B.G. is not at rest until he has received some testimonies of affection from J. Hays and I am afraid he will never be saved if he does not obtain said feelings from J. Hays. Then B.G. was crazy; he would break the panes of glass, swear, not say any prayers, go to the lake up to his neck and by various ways attempt to kill himself. He is now in his senses June 8, 1848.
June 9th/48 We have received from the Revd Fr. Rector, a circular for the death of Bro. Theodosius, aged 16 years - It was dated April 16th 1848 and made some allusion to the French Revolution, recommending everyone to remain faithful to his post and not to preoccupy their minds with the stirring events that are taking place. He advised them to use their rights as electors.
Rev. Wm. Nightingale has the direction of the Play and Speeches. He did not get along very well, he was often or thought he was vexed. The apprentices, being disgusted with the nature of the piece they had to play, refused to learn it and it was not learned nor played.
The Right Revd Bishop Purcell of Cincinnati was present at the Distribution and gave Confirmation on the following day, July 5th at 9 o'clock A.M. There were very few persons at the distribution and it had never passed off so badly. It rained the whole morning and in the afternoon nothing was ready. The Musicians would not play and Mr. Nightingale, disgusted, left his boys to play alone.
Though the boys though abandoned, to their credit be said, played the piece alone. Again when the Premiums were distributed, the boys were absent. In fact, the whole was botched. The Apprentices, who had several times threatened to run away on the fourth of July, could and would not do anything when the day came.
For the first time, several speeches were delivered and some of them were very good, especially Mr. McGean's. Mr. Neal H. Gillespie distinguished himself and got several premiums.
The Mother House having perpetually refused to lend assistance to the establishment of Louisville, it is fast going to ruin. Mr. Delaune who had promised to remain there till vacation, will leave as soon as the distribution will be over and very likely Fr. Saunier and the Sisters will also return home immediately after the distribution, everyone despairing of ever being able to found an establishment there. Fr. Superior has requested Fr. Saunier, however, not to start before receiving orders. Fr. Superior is himself gone to Louisville but he will, perhaps, meet them on their way home. He is also going to visit Cincinnati where Bp. Purcell would like to have Brothers.
Mr. Nightingale, it is rumored, has left the Institution. Mr. Dussaulx is gone to spend his vacation at Pokagon.
Mr. John Sottocasso has been hired for $225 a year for two yrs, for to teach music.
The Est. of Louisville has finally failed. Bro. Theodulus returned towards the end of July with Fr. Superior and informed us that Bros. Bernard and Mary Joseph have left the Institution and had joined the Jesuits of Cincinnati. Bro. Mary Joseph was on his way back to the Institution, but was deterred from it by Bro. Bernard. We have also learned that Fr. Saunier who had gone to Louisville had joined the Jesuits. This Fr. Superior would gladly have concealed, but it transpired in spite of him.
Two sisters have also arrived from France through Canada; and they have announced to us the coming of the Visitor, Fr. Drouelle. The Sisters of St. Mary's, Lebannon, will remain there for a year. During his journey, Fr. Superior hired Mr. Jerome Hackett, a young man of 18 yrs for a prof of Mathematics. The Plan of Studies has been altered and we shall for the future follow that of St. Louis, Mo. We have also acquired a new professor in Mr. Masterson who has been a vice-President at Mobile and (illegible) He is, however, somewhat deranged. Aug. 29, 1848
Sept 1st/48. Fr. Drouelle, appointed Visitor of the American Colonies, by the General Chapter of the Association has arrived at 6:30 P.M. in good health after having visited Canada.
Sept. 2nd [1848.] The Mass of the Holy Ghost was sung for the opening of our school. Fr. Drouelle said Mass and preached in French upon the subject of his coming.
Sept. 3rd  Fr. Drouelle preached at Mass. We assembled the Brothers at 5 P.M. to give them an account of events passing at the Mother House as he had done on the preceding day to the Priests.
Sept. 4th  On this day, Fr. Drouelle opened his visit at 6 o'clock in the Chapel of the Novitiate. He also read a decision concerning the appointment of Sister Mary of the Redemption, Superior during Vacation, Sister Mary of the Seven Dolors for Canada, and Sister Mary of the Savior for Notre Dame du Lac - the whole, however, is to be subjected to the approval of the Rector.
Sept. 14,  The Visitor heard the French Brothers in Direction yesterday, and assembled them at 1/2 past 6. He observed that as to the various changes which he had seen in the house, Fr. Rector had given Revd E. Sorin full power to modify the Rules and that the Brothers should never take it upon themselves to criticize Fr. Superior's Administration. He produced a letter of Fr. Rector to prove what he advanced, and promised to do all in his power for the welfare and the regularity of the House.
" [Sept.] 15, [1848.] Fr. Visitor held a chapter at 6 P.M. at which he reminded the Brothers that they were in no instance allowed to criticize their Superiors.
" [Sept.] 16, [1848.] Fr. Visitor and the Minor Chapter sat nearly the whole day. Yesterday Bro. Bennet was signalized as having the worst spirit and as not being devoted. This, the majority of the French Brothers found false.
" [Sept.] 22, [1848.] On this day, Fr. Supr. and Father Visitor left for New York. Their purpose in going to that place has not been divulged.
Oct. 14th 1848. On this day, Revd Fr. Visitor and Fr. Superior returned from New York, where they made arrangements with the Bishop and the Priests of Brooklyn to have an establishment and even two of the Brothers there. Upon their return, the Minor Chapter resolved to send Bro. Vincent as Director of those Schools and also Bros. Aloysius, Basil, Ignatius and Mr. Welsh.
Revd. Fr. Superior hired two new professors, Mr. M. Girac and his son, Leon Girac. They are both natives of France and cannot speak English.
Oct. 22nd 48. Dominick, Charles Borromeo, Jerome and Michael made their profession at 8 P.M. in the Chapel of the Novitiate, Fr. Drouelle, Visitor, being present. Mr. Thos. John Walsh, a native of Dublin, took the religious habit, and received the name of Bro. Victor.
The Brothers destined for the Brooklyn Schools left on the 27th Inst. at 7 A.M.
Fr. Visitor has deemed it necessary to allow various ameliorations in the rules, which have not yet been proclaimed. The Secretary has been allowed to make the alterations he might deem necessary in his accounts.
Nov. 2, [1848.] On this day, Fr. Visitor left, having terminated his visit the preceding day. Bros. James and Cyprian and also Bro. Augustus made their profession on the preceding day at 6 o'cl P.M. He published some of the articles of his ordinance and others not. On the 23rd Fr. Gouesse returned to [the] Novitiate, and Fr. Cointet has the charge of the Seminary, already formed of Messeurs Schilling, Voors, Kilroy, Nemeth, Dougherty and Ed McGean.
Dec. 25, [1848.] On this day was baptized Andrew Swinley an apprentice of Fort Wayne, learning the Carpenter trade. Mr. Hackett had also an illumination, but in my opinion inferior to his first illumination.
Jany 10, 1849. Last Saturday, January 7th the Institution was greatly scandalized by Bro. Gatian who, pushed on by an irregular affection and his violent passions began playing the fool during the Litany of the Blessed Virgin and continued at supper when Mr. G. Campeau, a boarder of muscular strength, by the orders of the Superior, endeavored to seize him, but it required six men to take him out of the room. He swore most horribly. Mr. Campeau came very near breaking his (Bro. Gatian's) neck - however Bro. Gatian calmed down and the next morning having obtained of the Superior what he desired, took the resolution of correcting himself. He also begged pardon of the Institution on the 9th Inst.