University of Notre Dame

The Story of Notre Dame
Notre Dame: Foundations, 1842-1857 / by John Theodore Wack

Notes 1.1

1 Daniel Leeper, "Some Early Local Footprints," reprinted from the South Bend Daily Times (South Bend, Indiana: 1898).

2 Robert Trisco, The Holy See and the Nascent Church in the Middle Western United States, 1826-1850 (Rome: 1962, p. 42).

3 Sr. Mary Carol Schroeder, O.S.F., The Catholic Church in the Diocese of Vincennes, 1847-1877 (Washington: 1946), Ch. IV.

4 Canon Etienne Catta and Tony Catta, Basil Anthony Mary Moreau (Milwaukee: 1955), I, 492-493. There were only four priests in the diocese before this, but by 1839 there were twenty. Ibid., I, 494.

5 Herman J. Alerding, The History of the Diocese of Vincennes (Fort Wayne, Indiana: 1907), pp. 167-168.

6 Trisco, op. cit., p. 42.

7 For information on the foundation and early years of the Congregation of Holy Cross, see volume I of Catta, op cit.

8 Ibid., I, 496-497

9 See the letters of Bishop Celestine de la Hailandière to Father Moreau in these years in the University of Notre Dame Archives (hereafter cited UNDA).

10 Catta, op. cit., I, 500-501

11 Edward F. Sorin to Bishop Celestine de la Hailandière, Notre Dame de Ste. Croix, n. d., UNDA.

12 The Auxiliary Priests and the Brothers of St. Joseph were then being brought into existence as a religious community. Catta, op. cit., I, 452-453.

13 For information on the early life of Sorin, see the letters and other papers of Henri Lemonnier-Dubourg, a grand-nephew of Sorin, in UNDA. Cf. a letter of Rev. Louis Lemonnier, a nephew of Sorin, to an unnamed priest at Notre Dame, December 6, 1893, and the letter of the Rev. Eugene Pavardos, the Curé of Ahuillé, Sorin's family parish, to an unnamed priest, n.d., both letters in UNDA. For a further account of the early life of Sorin, see Arthur Hope, C.S.C., Notre Dame, One Hundred Years (Notre Dame, Indiana: 1943), pp. 7-10.

14 Letter of unnamed correspondent to the Scholastic, IV (January 14, 1871), 3.

15 Brother Anselm died by drowning in the Ohio River in July, 1845, while at the Brothers' school in Madison, Indiana. See Fr. Granger, "Obituary of the deceased members of the Province," UNDA.

16 Ibid.

17 Letter No. 32, Notre Dame, Indiana, April 5, 1873, Circular Letters of the Very Reverend Edward Sorin (Notre Dame, Indiana: 1894), I, 56-58.

18 Information concerning these original Brothers of St. Joseph comes from scattered sources, particularly the "Statistics of the Brothers of St. Joseph," in the Provincial Archives of Holy Cross (hereafter cited PAHC) and from various sources on the Brothers in UNDA.

20 Ibid., p. 3.

21 Account Books of Notre Dame du Lac, Ledger A, 1841-1847, UNDA (hereafter cited "Ledger A"). Father Sorin later wrote that the figure was less than 3,000 francs; cf. "Chronicles," p. 3.

22 Samuel Byerley was an unusual person. Born in England in 1796, he was orphaned at an early age and forced to educate himself. He served in the Napoleonic Wars as a dispatch carrier; after the war, he settled in Trieste where he married and later became a partner in a business firm. In 1832, he came to America with his wife, and, after ten years in New York, he moved west, settling near the University of Notre Dame, in South Bend, Indiana. He lived there to the age of seventy-four. He had no formal schooling, but he loved learning and he could speak several languages and read Latin and Greek. Cf. "Samuel Byerley," History of St. Joseph County, Indiana (plus: History of Indiana) (Chicago: 1880): cf. "Chronicles," p. 15.

23 Ledger A, UNDA.

24 "Chronicles," p. 17. The expense for this trip was carefully marked into the ledger -- $4.56. cf. Ledger A, UNDA.

25 "Chronicles," pp. 17-20. The trip across Indiana must have throughly unsettled them, for one of the first things which Sorin did in Logansport was to purchase a gun. Cf. Ledger A, UNDA. 26 "Chronicles," pp. 21-22. See also a certified extract from the deliberations of the General Council at Notre Dame de Ste. Croix on August 27, 1845, UNDA. 27 "Chronicles," pp. 21, 24. Six of these twelve remained in 1849.

28 Copy of advertisement in UNDA for "Seminary" at St. Peters; cf. Hope, op. cit., pp. 26-27. It should be remembered that, on their arrival, none of these men could speak English, and two of the French Brothers who were destined to be teachers were still in their teens.

29 "Chronicles," p. 29. Here for perhaps the first time, Sorin came up against the fact that conditions in America were not like those of France, nor were French methods always superior to those of America.

30 Extract from the deliberations of the General Council at Notre Dame de Ste. Croix, August 27, 1845, UNDA.

31 For example, see Celestine de la Hailandiere to Father Moreau, August 26, 1840, UNDA.

32 A good example of this is to be found in the case of Brother Vincent. He was intended to be a novice master and a teacher of the new Brothers, but the Bishop insisted that he be left in Vincennes to teach at a new school there, and, when Sorin continued to object to this, the Bishop wrote to him implying that his concern over Brother Vincent was unwelcome, if not insulting. De la Hailandiere to Sorin, Vincennes, December 19, 1841, UNDA; cf. "Chronicles," pp. 26-27.

33 Sorin to Moreau, November 13, 1841, as quoted in Catta, op. cit., I, 510; cf. "Chronicles," p. 26.

34 For a more complete account of this controversy, see Catta, op. cit., I, 506-510.

35 Ledger A, UNDA.

36 "Chronicles," p. 26.

37 De la Hailandiere to Sorin, December 28, 1841, UNDA. The controversy is confusing to follow from this distance. The Bishop seems to have felt that the value of St. Peters and the equipment and buildings there more than covered the cost of outfitting and travel. Sorin seems to have felt that St. Peters was to be given them in addition to the other costs.{13}

38 "Chronicles," p. 28.

39 Ledger A, UNDA. This seems to be all of the Delaune collection which was received by Sorin, although the sum is about $400 less than the three-quarters promised.

40 In all, about $1,900 (10,120 francs, including the initial sum of 3,600 francs given them by Moreau on their departure) was received directly by the community at St. Peters from the Motherhouse in France by August 1, 1843. Ledger A, UNDA.

41 Entries in Ledger A, UNDA, concerning money received from the Society read "By Bishop de la Hailandiere" and "By Rev. Moreau," sometimes both in the same year.

42 Ledger A, UNDA. The Archives at Notre Dame University have the letters of the Society on microfilm.

43 "Chronicles," p. 30.

44 Ibid. p. 32.

45 Sorin, even as late as 1849, had little hope for securing native Americans as members of his community. After noting the difficulties of making Brothers of the Irish, because of their lack of stability, and of the Germans, because of their pride, he added: "As to genuine Americans, there is no hope of finding subjects amongst them for a religious house of this kind. We might look upon it as a miracle of grace for a young American to persevere in the humble and difficult employment of a Brother of St. Joseph. The spirit of liberty as it is understood in the United States is too directly opposed to the spirit of obedience and submission of a community to leave any hopes for a long time to come of any addition of subjects in a country in which the nature of the men appears to offer so few dispositions towards the religious life. Hence it comes to pass that the young men who spend some time amongst the American soon imbibe their spirit and manners, and become in reality all the more unfitted for the religious life the more years they have passed in the New World." "Chronicles," pp. 24-25.

46 Unfortunately, there seem to be no copies of these letters in existence, but there are several letters in the Archives at Notre Dame from the bishops in answer to Sorin. From these it can be reconstructed that the original letter had put three questions to the bishops, the third of which concerned a national system of Catholic education based on a university at Notre Dame. The Bishops generally approved of the notion; all of them could have used a number of trained teachers in their dioceses. Only Archbishop John Hughes, then Bishop of New York disagreed: "I who am unusually sanguine, have not as yet been strongly convinced of the possibility of carrying out your design in this country in the same manner as it has been done in France & other Catholic nations of Europe. I fear that the genius of the country will come to disturb the peace of mind that would render teachers content with their situation, from the moment that they will find themselves as being capable of filling higher & more important situations whether in the Church or in the State." Hughes to Sorin, New York, April 20, 1844. Cf. letters to Sorin of Rt. Rev. Richard V. Whelan, Bishop of Richmond, April 2, 1844, Rt. Rev. Francis P. Kenrick, Bishop of Philadelphia, March 18, 1844, and Rt. Rev. Richard P. Miles, Bishop of Nashville, April 9, 1844, all in UNDA.

47 "Chronicles," p. 30.

48 Ledger A. UNDA. The funds from the sale of St. Peters farm, some $300, were used to help pay off this debt. This incident is an intimation both of Sorin's impulsiveness and of his independence, two qualities which will cause him estrangement from his superiors (and some of his associates) in later years.

49 Father Louis was the Superior in France of the Eudist priests who were in charge of St. Gabriel College at Vincennes. Francis Cassidy, Catholic College Foundations and Development in the United States (Washington.: 1924), pp. 50-51.

50 Bishop de la Hailandiere to Father Sorin, October 9, 1842, UNDA. St. Gabriel College, which also served as the diocesan seminary, failed in 1846 after a disagreement between the Eudists and the Bishop. Cassidy, op. cit., pp. 50-51; "Chronicles," pp. 32-33.

51 "Chronicles," p. 33.

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