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Archdiocese of Saint Louis Collection

Identifier: ASL

Scope and Content

Letters of the Vincentian John Timon to Joseph Rosati, 1822-1891, and letters, 1841-1842, from Pierre Jean De Smet, SJ, missionary to the Indians, to his religious superiors; pamphlets and papers concerning the St. Louis World Fair of 1904; clippings about Bishop Kenrick's Golden Jubilee, 1891; and photostats of transcripts of letters, mostly to Rosati, from Simon Bruté, Gabriel Richard, Stephen T. Badin, and others.

On microfilm: nineteen reels of diocesan correspondence involving Dubourg, Rosati, Kenrick, and Kain, priests and laymen of the diocese, and many members of the American hierarchy, with records of synod and council meetings; one reel concerning the Sisters of Loretto, mostly material in the 1820s and 1830s; and three reels of historical material collected by Henry van der Sanden (d. 1910), Chancellor of the Archdiocese of St. Louis and diocesan historian.


  • Creation: 1764-1912.


Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

Permission to publish any letters or other historical data contained on the microfilms must by obtained in writing from the Archivist of the Archdiocese of St. Louis.


The Sulpician Louis William Valentin Dubourg, who had been the administrator of the Louisiana Territory since 1812, was named Bishop of Louisiana in 1815. Joseph Rosati was consecrated his coadjutor in 1825. When Dubourg resigned in 1826, the diocese was divided into the dioceses of New Orleans and St. Louis with Rosati as first bishop of St. Louis.

Peter Richard Kenrick was named Rosati's coadjutor in 1841, and succeeded him in 1843 to begin a 52-year term as bishop and archbishop. (St. Louis was elevated to an archiepiscopal see in 1847). Upon Kenrick's return from attending Vatican Council I (1869-1870) where he had voiced strong opposition to the doctrine of papal infallibility, he went into seclusion leaving diocesan affairs in the hands of his coadjutor, Patrick John Ryan.

When Ryan was named archbishop of Philadelphia in 1884, Kenrick resumed full control of the diocese. In 1893 Bishop John Joseph Kain of Wheeling, West Virginia, was named coadjutor and succeeded Kenrick in 1896.


1 linear foot. 23 reels of microfilm.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Archives of the Diocese of St. Louis.

Some items were gifts of Sister M. Lilliana Owens, S.L.

Processing Information

Films were made of the diocesan records by Francis P. Clark in 1966.

Archdiocese of Saint Louis Collection
University of Notre Dame Archives
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Script of description
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Repository Details

Part of the University of Notre Dame Archives Repository

607 Hesburgh Library
Notre Dame Indiana 46556 United States
(574) 631-6448