Diocese of Marquette Collection
Scope and Content Note
This collection focuses primarily on the early years of the Diocese of Marquette (then known as the Diocese of Sault Sainte Marie and Marquette) under Bishop Frederic Baraga and later Bishop Ignatius Mrak. Included are the correspondence and papers of Ignatius Mrak; transcripts of letters written by Ignatius Mrak and Frederic Baraga; catechisms composed by Ignatius Mrak, Francis X. Pierz, and Reverend Nicholas Louis Sifferath in Ottawa; a manuscript polyglot dictionary of French, German, and Ojibwe; and a printed biography of Bishop Baraga in Slovene. Materials include newspaper clippings, correspondence, pamphlets, schedules, maps, marriage licenses, periodicals, transcriptions, and microfilm.
- Creation: 1808-1968 (bulk 1839-1895)
- Catholic Church. Diocese of Marquette (MI) (Organization)
Language of Materials
German, Ojibwa, Latin, English, French, Slovenian, and Hungarian.
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research. Advance notice is required.
In 1853, the area of Upper Michigan came under the jurisdiction of the missionary Frederic Baraga (1797-1868), Vicar Apostolic. In 1857, the Vicariate became the Diocese of Sault Saint Marie, with the transfer of the see to Marquette coming in 1864. Baraga requested the Vatican rename the Diocese and in 1865 it became the Diocese of Sault Sainte Marie and Marquette until 1937 when it was renamed the Diocese of Marquette. Baraga served as first bishop and Ignatius Mrak (1810-1901) as his Vicar-General. Baraga was born in the Duchy of Carniola in modern day Slovenia and was ordained in 1823. He traveled to the United States in 1830 and spent the rest of his life serving the Indigenous American people of the upper peninsula of Michigan. After Baraga’s death, Mrak succeeded him as the second bishop of the Diocese in 1870 until his resignation in 1879. Mrak was also born in the Duchy of Carniola and was ordained in 1837. He arrived at the Diocese of Detroit in 1845 and quickly learned multiple Algonquian dialects, including Ottawa. After his resignation, John Vertin (1844-1899), another Slovenian-born priest, became bishop until his death.
1 Cubic Feet (One half legal document case, one oversize legal document case, one microfilm reel.)
Mrak papers filmed from Mrak correspondence in the Diocese of Marquette collection in the Archives of the University of Notre Dame.
Reprocessed in June 2023 for folder-level description and reparative description.
translation missing: en.enumerations.subject_term_type.Genre / Form
Genre / Form
- autographs (manuscripts)
- Letters (correspondence)
- maps (documents)
- Newspaper clippings
- Diocese of Marquette Collection
- University of Notre Dame Archives
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Language of description note
- Edition statement
- Finding aid updated in 2023 by Morgan Lee Wilson