REVEREND PHILIP ST. LOUIS
PIONEER MISSIONARY OF NORTHEASTERN WISCONSIN
C. LUKE LEITERMANN
of the requirements for
the degree of Master of Arts
St. Francis Seminary, St Francis, Wisconsin
January 29, 1934
BIBLIOGRAPHY . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ii
INTRODUCTION - ST. LOUIS ANTECEDENTS . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
CHAPTER I - GADIOU, DIT ST. LOUIS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
CHAPTER II - PHILIP ST. LOUIS: YOUTH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
CHAPTER III - PHILIP ST. LOUIS: SERVITE . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
CHAPTER IV - PHILIP ST. LOUIS: MISSIONARY . . . . . . . . . . . 16
CONCLUSION . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
Green Bay Diocesan Archives, Green Bay, Wisconsin.
Letters of Miss Ethel St. Louis, Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Letters and documents of Reverend Philip St. Louis.
GENERAL AND SPECIAL WORKS:
Alphonse, Sister M., O.S.P., The Story of Father Van den Broek, O.P.,
(Chicago; Ainsworth & Company, 1907), 94p.
Dessureau, Robert M., History of Langlade County, Wisconsin, (Antigo:
Berner Brothers Publishing Co., c1922), 352 p.
Helyot, Reverend, Dictionnaire des Ordres Religieux ou Historie des Ordres
Monastiques, Religieux et Militaires, (Paris, 1849), 4 vols. These are
volumes 20-23 of Migne, Encyclopedie Theologique.
Heming, Harry H., History of the Catholic Church in Wisconsin, (Milwaukee:
Catholic Historical Publishing Company, 1895-98), xiv-1181 p.
History of Northern Wisconsin, (Chicago: The Western Historical Company, 1881),
Leitermann, C. L., History of St. John the Evangelist Church, Antigo, Wis-
consin, Golden Jubilee, 1880-1930, (Antigo: Berner Brothers Publishing
Company, 1930), 139p.
Marquette College, A Quarter Century: 1881-1906, (Milwaukee; 1906), 127 p.
McDonnell, Reverend P. J., Souvenir of the Solemn Dedication of St. Mels
Church, ... November 26, 1911, (Chicago, 1911), 84 p.
Moreri, Reverend Louis, Le Grand Dictionnaire Historique ou le Melange
Curieux de LHistoire Sacree et Profane, (Basle: Jean Louis Brandmueller.,
1711-1740), 6 vols.; Supplement, (Basle: Jean Christ, 1743-45), 3 vols.
ODonnell, Reverend John Hugh, C.S.C., The Catholic Hierarchy of the United
States, 1790-1922, (Washington, D.C., 1922), xiv - 223 p.
Our Lady of Sorrows, 1874-1924, (Chicago, 1924), 120 p.
Tanguay, Abbe Cyprien, Dictionnaire Genealogique des Familles Canadiennes
depuis la Fondation de la Colonie Jusoua nos Jours, (Montreal: Eusebe
Senecal & Fils, 1881-90), 7 vols.
Annals of St. Joseph, (De Pere, Wisconsin, 1888 - ).
The Metropolitan Catholic Almanac and Laitys Directory, (Baltimore:
Myres, 1834-37, Lucas, 1838-58; Murphy, 1859-61).
American Catholic Almanac, (New York: Dunigan, 1858-60).
Catholic Almanac and Ordo, (new York: Sadlier, 1864-66).
Catholic Directory, Almanac and Ordo, (New York: Sadlier, 1867-96).
Catholic Directory and Clergy List Quarterly, (Milwaukee: Hoffman, 1886-96).
Catholic Directory, (Milwaukee; Wiltzius, 1897-1905).
Official Catholic Directory, (Milwaukee; Wiltzuis, 1907-11).
Official Catholic Directory, (New York: Kenedy, 1912- ).
Antigo Daily Journal, (May 2, 1932).
Our Parochial Schools, (Phlox and Green Bay, 1887-1894).
Star of Bethlehem, (Milwaukee, 1869-71).
Mr. Arnold Menting, Phlox, Wisconsin, September 4, 1932.
Mr. John Menting, Antigo, Wisconsin, September 4, 1932.
Mr. John Mollen, Little Chute Wisconsin, September 6, 1933.
Mrs. Joseph Lenz, Little Chute, Wisconsin, September 6, 1933.
INTRODUCTION ST. LOUIS ANTECEDENTS
The unassuming little town of Little Chute, Wisconsin, lying on the north bank of the Fox River, has, during the past century, played a really remarkable role both in the civic and religious progress of the state. It was here that great projects were confected toward the development of the Fox River for river traffic; here the Reverend Theodore J. Van den Broek founded a pioneer Catholic parish out of a handful of Indians and white settlers; here Ephraim St. Louis settled in 1837 as one of the pioneers; and here also was born his son, Philip St. Louis, the subject of this sketch.
The early history of Little Chute is centered to a great extent around that saintly figure, The Reverend Theodore J. Van den Broek.1 Born and reared in Amsterdam, Holland, ordained and later received as a member of the Dominican Order, active for many years in pastoral work in Holland, he set out from Antwerp on July 5, 1832, for Baltimore, in the company of six other missionaries who deigned to consecrate their lives to heroic missionary work in America. He arrived at Baltimore on the fifteenth of August and then proceeded almost immediately to Ohio. After some pastoral work here Bishop Rese of Detroit sent him to Green Bay where he arrived on the fourth of July, 1834, finding here not more than nine or ten houses, but many Indians.2 He labored here over two years. What followed he himself informs us:
On the 6th of December, 1836, the Bishop [Rese] sent three Redemptorist Fathers in my place
(Fr. H. Haetscher, Simon Saenderl, Jas. Prost., C. SS. R.) And I betook myself 24 miles higher up the
river into the woods, to the Indians, at a place called La Petite Chute (Little Chute), a small waterfall near
Grand Cocalin [Kaukauna] - an Indian name meaning rapids. (In the Chippewa language it means the home of the pike Okakaning meaning pike). An Indian woman at once built me a hut or wigwam, about fifteen feet long and six feet high; it was finished in half a day. I lived in it from Pentecost to October (1837), meanwhile, with the Indians, I began to build a church and parsonage. For six months the wigwam was both my house and my church. My congregation soon increased to fifty Christians who heard Mass in the open air; it did not take long until the number had reached two hundred. You can easily imagine there was no dearth of timber here. In the meantime I succeeded, with the help of the newly converted, in building a church 30 feet long and 22 feet wide without any money. The first year, 1837, the church was under roof covered with bark.3
To the above might be added what Father Van den Broek wrote in another account:
I had to help the Indians myself to build. There were no carpenters to be had, and if one was to be had he asked 10 florins a day and board. I succeeded in making carpenters out of some of the Indians, so that it was not long before we had a little church erected although not finished. At first we had to use the floor joists for benches.
In the course of time some settlers from Canada.4 joined us; among these were some workmen so that wages were now one dollar a day (fl. 2.50).5
Such were the early activities and the humble beginnings of what promised to be in due time a thriving and truly Catholic community. Such also was the scene which greeted Ephraim St. Louis and his little family as they entered the settlement in the fall of 1837.6
Lured on by a great desire of adventure, Ephraim St. Louis, together with his wife and four children, left Canada, their land of birth, and journeyed in 1837 by way of the St. Lawrence River and the Great Lakes to Green Bay and thence down the Fox River to Little Chute. We can safely presume that Father Van den Broek gladly welcomed the newcomers, for the ensuing winter was passed in the missionarys own rude hut. Out of this early close association arose a lasting friendship, particularly between Father Van den Broek and Ephraim
St. Louis, which was outwardly manifested on no few occasions during their lives.
Ephraim St. Louis was pleased with the location, despite the large numbers of Indians who inhabited the locality, and took a claim on the north bank of the Fox River.7 Although the locality was well populated with Indians and had often been traversed by fur traders, missionaries, and homestead seekers, yet the signs of the white mans civilization were wanting considerably. It was almost like starting life anew, and thus Ephraim
St. Louis and his family were forced to endure all the hardships, inconveniences, trials, and difficulties that fall to the lot of a pioneer. He remained firm in his desire to found a new home for himself in a land of romance, and to this end was given considerable encouragement by his lately acquired friend, Father Van den Broek. It is pleasing to think thereon, to envisage that pioneer home with all its romance, and the children gaily prancing about at the waters edge, unaware of the hardships being undergone for their welfare by their beloved parents. That success awaited the loving labors of these pioneer parents is evident from what the future had in store for them, - the rearing of a large family, of which the youngest child became a priest, a civic and religious leadership, successful business undertakings, and finally longevity of life, breathed forth in the presence of their priest-son.
FOOTNOTES FOR ANTECEDENTS -
1. Sister M. Alphonse, O.S.D., The Story of Father Van den Broek, (Chicago, 1907); Note Book of Rev. Theo. J. Van den Broek, O.P., in Annals of St. Joseph, (De Pere, Wisconsin), XI (1899-1900), nos. 11, 12., XII (1900-01), nos. 1, 2 Life of Rev. Theo. J. Van den Broek, in Annals of St. Joseph, XII (1900-01),
nos. 5-12, XIII (1901-02), nos. 1-7.
2. Sister M. Alphonse, O.S.D., op. cit., p. 43; Annals of St. Joseph, XIII, 168.
3. Sister M. Alphonse, O.S.D., op. cit.., p.43, 44; Annals of St. Joseph, XII, 168.
4. In his narrative, Judge George W. Lawe writes; In 1839 I moved with my family from Green Bay to Kaukauna. I found living here with their families: Charles A Grignon and his brother Alexander, who traded produce with the Indians for hides; also Mr. St. Louis and his family, Joseph Lamure, Paul A. Beaubien, and some Germans whose names I do not remember. Mr. Beaubien had a new saw and grist mill on the south side of the Fox river, and this was very convenient for the settlers. - Quoted in: Sister M. Alphonse, O.S.D., op. cit., p.15; Annals of St. Joseph, XI, 76.
5. Annals of St. Joseph, XI 186.
6. Obituary of Ephraim St. Louis (a newspaper clipping apparently from a Kaukauna, Wisconsin paper.)
7. A United States Re-emption certificate (No.3867), dated May 10, 1848, in the name of Ephraim St. Louis, describes the claim as Lot number Four of Section Twenty-two, in Township Twenty one North of Range Eighteen East, in the District of Lands subject to Sale at Green Bay, Wisconsin Territory, containing Fifty Eight acres. (Original in Neville Public Museum, Green Bay, Wisconsin)
CHAPTER I GADIOU, DIT ST. LOUIS
The St. Louis relationship, introduced into Wisconsin upon the arrival of Ephraim St. Louis and his family at Little Chute in 1837, and since then increased to several hundreds, traces its ancestry to Brittany and Normandy. Here, and also for some time after the immigration to Canada during the latter half of the seventeenth century, the family bore the name Gadiou, later changed to St. Louis.1 It seems that the family was introduced into Canada, into the province of Quebec, in the person of Gilles Gadiou, who was born in 1649, and buried at Ste. Famille, Ile dOrleans, on the fourth of November, 1699.2 His wife, Marie Anne De Lougre, daughter of Jacques De Lougre and Marie Taupier, was born at Chateau Richer on the fourteenth of June, 1665, and was buried at Montreal on the third of June, 1704. To this marital union six children were born, namely, Francois, Jean Baptiste I, Charles, Marie-Madeleine, Louise, and Genevieve. Records show that of these children three were married: Jean Baptiste I to Marie Josette Duret at Quebec on the twenty-fifth of June, 1715; Charles to Angelique Baudoin at Repentigny on the seventeenth of October, 1729; and Marie-Madeleine to Francois Phenis at Repentigny on the sixth of October, 1721. Charles died without progeny, and
Marie- Madeleine is discounted here since thru her the Gadiou name would hardly be propagated. Thus to
Jean Baptiste I, son of Gilles Gadiou, devolves the credit for preserving and propagating the family name.
Jean Baptiste I Gadiou was born at Repentigny on the twenty-second of December, 1690, he was buried at Beauport on the fourteenth of January, 1760. As already noted, he married Marie Josette Duret at Quebec on the twenty-fifth of June, 1715. She was born at Quebec on the twentieth of March, 1695, the daughter of Jacques Duret and Catherine Jamein. This union was blessed with a numerous progeny, fifteen children, namely, Jean Baptiste II, Marie Joseph Francoise, Charles, Jacques, Marie Francoise, Dominique, Marie Angelique, Michel Marie, Jean Baptiste, Marguerite Louise, Jean Joseph, Anonymous child, Nicolas Joseph, Antoine, and Jean Roger.
In his scholarly work the Abbe Tanguay notes only Jean Baptiste II, Nicolas Joseph, and Antoine among the boys as having married. Only the last two, however, had male offspring. Nicolas Joseph was born at Quebec on the twenty-fifth of March, 1736, and married Charlotte Lemaitre Rivard, widow of Joseph Rivard and already the mother of four children, at Yamachiche on the fourth of November, 1760. Three boys were born to this union, all at Yamachiche; Joseph Louis (was baptized) on the nineteenth of January, 1762, Jean Baptiste III on the fourteenth of March, 1764, and Antoine on the thirteenth of July, 1766.
Antoine, the brother of Nicolas Joseph, was likewise born at Quebec, on the twenty-fifth of October, 1737; he was buried at Quebec on the twenty-first of April, 1764. At Beauport, on the nineteenth of October, 1761, he married Catherine Lamotte (dit Laramee), the daughter of Louis Lamotte and who was born on the thirtieth of May, 1732, at Beauport. Of their two children, Catherine and Noel, the later was born at Quebec on the twenty-sixth of December, 1763.
The reader might wonder at the reason for the enumeration of all these names and dates. The wonderment will soon vanish.
At this writing the name of the father of Ephraim St. Louis could not be determined. The line of descent has been traced above and by an elimination process only four names remain as the possible father of Ephraim St. Louis, namely Joseph Louis, Jean Baptiste III, and Antoine, the sons of Nicholas Joseph, and Noel, the son of Antoine. It is quite certain that one of these four is the father of Ephraim St. Louis, but only further investigation will determine this exactly. It is not a matter of a want of a name but rather of determining a particular name.
The change of the family name from Gadiou to St. Louis next merits consideration. As a note to the name of Jean Baptiste I Gadiou, Abbe Tanguay adds the phrase dit St. Louis.3 With him the additional appellation first appears, and is likewise shown in connection with the names of his several married children, among them Jean Baptiste II, from all of which it seem that with them St. Louis became the family surname. The exact reason for the change remains unknown. However, there is a tradition current among members of the St. Louis relationship which claims that one of the ancestors was at one time an officer in the French navy and had been decorated and honored as a Chevalier of the Order of St. Louis, and from this the family is said to have derived its new name.4
Under the name of Jean Baptiste II, Abbe Tanguay, in addition to the dit St. Louis, has a note that this gentleman was a sailor (navigateur), and in 1746, was a prisoner of war in England.5 This information seems to substantiate the family tradition. It seems very probable therefore that Jean Baptiste II Gadiou, a sailor and very likely an officer in the French navy, and in 1746, a prisoner in England, was for some outstanding achievement, heroic deed, or bravery, honored as a Chevalier of the Order of St. Louis.6 It seems that by the repeated use of the term St. Louis, in connection with Gadiou, the man and the honor were so closely identified that the real family name Gadiou was gradually dropped in favor of St. Louis. Another explanation for the change in name is suggested by the fact that in going from one country to another the immigrant often assumes a different surname. In Abbe Tanguays work, the dit appears rather frequently. In the case in question this explanation does not seem plausible.
Ephraim St. Louis was born in Canada in 1809, and as already noted, was a descendant of a family emigrated from France sometime during the latter half of the seventeenth century.7 His father, it is claimed, possessed vast estates, and dying while his son Ephraim was a child, the property was left in the custody of the oldest son who held it in trust for his brothers and sisters during their minority. Unfortunately this older son invested in a line of steamships to navigate the St. Lawrence river. On one occasion the sparks of one of the steamers set fire to the city of Three Rivers, Province of Quebec, Canada, a considerable portion of which was burned. This almost meant ruin for the family since a great part of their wealth went to pay for the ravages caused by this accident. Being comparatively impoverished, Ephraim, the youngest son, was apprenticed to a shoemaker. While quite a young man he traveled in the eastern states and after having learned his trade thoroughly he returned to Canada.8 Here, in 1831, he was married to Marie des Anges Manseau, likewise a descendant of an early French immigrant, and of this union twelve children were born, namely Joseph, Olivine, Mary, Helen, Thomas, Margaret, John, Angeline, and Philip. The first four children were born in Canada while the remaining eight were born at Little Chute, Wisconsin.9
As already noted, Ephraim St. Louis and his family first lived with Father Van den Broek upon his coming to Wisconsin. From this first close association sprang an intimate friendship which persisted even after the latters death. In 1847 Father Van den Broek journeyed to his home in the Netherlands. Before departing, however, he appointed his friend, E. H. St. Louis, in whom he had implicit confidence, as overseer over his property.10 A further indication of this intimate friendship is evidenced in the fact that Ephraim St. Louis acted as administrator of Father Van den Broeks effects after the death of the latter.11 He likewise acted as trustee of the St. John Nepomucene church at Little Chute for about twenty-seven years.12
Ephraim St. Louis was identified principally with lumbering, government contract work, and public improvements. He did much of the work connected with the improvement of the Fox fiver for river traffic. Politically he was a staunch democrat. By his integrity he accumulated considerable wealth. He reared a large family and gave his children all the advantages, educational and otherwise, that circumstances would permit. All his children save one were married, and had a prolific progeny, so that at the time of his death on the twenty-seventh of May, 1892, at Phlox, Wisconsin, whither he had moved in 1881, the descendants numbered ninety-nine grand children and eighty-six great grand children. Speaking upon a time at a meeting of the pioneers of Outagamie county he stated that these descendants were his gift to his country and he hoped that they would grow up to be true loyal American citizens.13 The mortal remains of Ephraim St. Louis are buried in the cemetery adjoining St. Joseph church in Phlox, Wisconsin, the grave being marked by a tin covered cross which was originally on the church.
FOOTNOTES --- CHAPTER I
1. Letter of Ethel St. Louis to C. Luke Leitermann, April 21, 1932.
2. Abbe Cyprien Tanguay, Dictionnaire Genealogique des Familles Canadiennes, (Montreal,
1881-90, 7 vols.) I, p. 244; IV, p. 117. The following genealogical data is taken from the same scholarly work.
3. Tanguay, op. cit., IV, p.117.
4. Letter of Ethel St. Louis, as above; Obituary of Ephraim St. Louis (newspaper clipping); Sketch of the life of Ephraim St. Louis (newspaper clipping).
5. Tanguay, op. cit., IV, p. 117.
6. The Chevaliers de l Ordre de Saint Louis originated in France in 1693 by King Louis XIV, whereby he wished to show his gratitude in a special way to the officers of his army and navy who distinguished themselves in a special way in victories and conquests. Only a Roman Catholic who had served in the capacity
as an officer for at least ten years, either on land or sea, and because of virtue, merit, and distinguished services showed himself worthy, could be a member. The honor was conferred by the King himself, and special insignia were given. Those admitted received special revenues and pensions, which increased in proportion as the individuals rendered themselves worthy by their conduct. Certain duties were prescribed for members, and if not performed, except for good reason, would result in a privation of the honor. The Order was permanently dissolved in July, 1830. cfr. R. P. Helyot, Dictionnaire des Ordres Religieux of Histoire des Ordres
Monastiques, Religieux et Militaires, (Paris, 1849, 4 vols.), II, col. 796-802; Reverend Louis Moreri, Le Grand Dictionnaire Historiques ou le Melange Curieux de LHistoire Sacree et Profane,
(Basle, 1711-1745, 9 vols.), VI, p. 242.
7. Obituary of Ephraim St. Louis (newspaper clipping).
8. Sketch of the life of Ephraim St. Louis (newspaper clipping).
9. Letter of Ethel St. Louis, as above.
10. Annals of St. Joseph, XIII, p. 53.
11. Ibid.. P. 103.
12. Obituary of Ephraim St. Louis (newspaper clipping).
13. Sketch of the Life of Ephraim St. Louis (newspaper clipping).
CHAPTER II PHILIP ST. LOUIS: YOUTH
In 1847 Father Van den Broek asked the superior of the St. Joseph Dominican Convent near Somerset, Ohio, for an assistant. The request was granted and the Reverend Mannes DArco, O. P., an Italian priest, accompanied by a lay brother named Peter, came to assist him.1 He then prepared himself and left for a visit to his home at Amsterdam in the Netherlands.
While Father Van den Broek was gone on his trip, the joy which reigned in the home of Ephraim
St. Louis a large brick house on the north bank of the Fox river and still standing, was now increased at the arrival of the twelfth child on April 15, 1848. Again displaying his loyalty to God, the father presented the infant boy for baptism to the Reverend Mannes DArco, O.P., on the next day, April 16, and the name Philip Manasses was given to the babe. Mrs. Charles Grignon of Kaukauna acted as godmother on this memorable occasion.
Concerning the childhood and early youth of Philip little is known. His elementary schooling was received at the district school since there was no parochial school in Little Chute at the time. The community was almost entirely Catholic and thus the district engaged two of the Sisters of St. Agnes, who resided in the old Van den Broek house.2 Some of his elementary training was also received under the tutelage of Mr. Martin Gerits, a very able teacher.3
Sometime between the years 1864 and 1872 we find the youth Philip attending the St. Gall academy 4 in Milwaukee conducted by the Jesuits and superintended by the Reverend J. F. Kuhlman, S. J.5 In 1869 two of Philips brothers, George and Thomas, began and conducted the publication of a monthly periodical, the Star of Bethlehem.6 Philip often helped in the printing office,7 originally located at the corner of what are now North Water Street and East Wisconsin Avenue in Milwaukee.8 It was here that he received his first experience in the field of journalism and printing which he so ably developed in later years.9
The youthful Philip was not one who catered to idleness. He was of a mechanical mind. He was especially proficient in woodwork, which is borne out by his increased activity in this line during his many years as a priest. For some time, perhaps about 1872, he worked in a nearby lumber mill at Little Chute.10 Miss Anne Mollen (now Mrs. Joseph Lenz), living two doors away, was wont as a girl to carry the lunch for her brother and Philip St. Louis who were working at the mill.11
An interesting incident is told by Mr. John Mollen of Little Chute. On one occasion Philip St. Louis was making some maple syrup and maple sugar in a woods across the river from Little Chute. A few young men, among them his brother, were good consumers of the precious product. Philip detected the thievery and resolved to put an end to it. He took a certain bark and some leaves and mixed them with some syrup, and the mixture, when taken, served as an effective laxative. The thieves partook freely of the mixture and suffered the natural consequences, much to the delight of Philip. He outwitted his playful thieves and henceforth remained unmolested.12
FOOTNOTES --- CHAPTER II
1. Annals of St. Joseph, XIII, p. 53; Catholic Almanac, (Baltimore), 1848,P.191.
2. Interview with Mr. John Mollen, Little Chute, Wisconsin, on September 6,1933.
3. Letter of Ethel St. Louis to C. Luke Leitermann, October 16, 1933.
4. Ibid., April 21, 1933, October 16, 1933.
5. Marquette College, a Quarter Century, 1881-1906, (Milwaukee, 1906), p. 6.St. Gall Academy, a secondary school, which might be considered a successor to the St. Aloysius Academy, was opened in 1864, and was located beside the St. Gall church on the property now occupied by the Public Service Building on Michigan Avenue between Second and Third Streets in Milwaukee.
6. The Star of Bethlehem, as it seems, was the first English Catholic periodical published in Wisconsin. It continued for two years, from October 1869 to September 1871, twenty-four issues, of sixteen pages each. It was then merged with the Catholic Vindicator, which in 1878 became the Catholic Citizen, still published in Milwaukee, the largest weekly paper in the state of Wisconsin in paid circulation figures. Early in 1871 the partnership between Thomas and George St. Louis was dissolved. Beginning with the issue for February 1871, the periodical was published by George St. Louis alone. A complete file of the Star of Bethlehem, recently acquired from Miss Ethel St. Louis, Colorado Springs, Colorado, daughter of the co-publisher, George
St. Louis, is to be found in the Salzmann Library, St. Francis Seminary, St. Francis, Wisconsin.
7. Letter of Ethel St. Louis, as above, October 16, 1933.
8. Star of Bethlehem, (Milwaukee, 1869-71), I. p. 8. During the year 1870 the office was located at 86 Mason Street and beginning with January 1871, at 112 Mason Street.
9. Our Parochial School, (Phlox and Green Bay, 1887-94).
10. The Bartow mill was originally built by George St. Louis as a hub and spoke factory and saw mill, with money received from a railroad company as compensation for an accident. The location was near the dam, on the north side of the river at Little Chute.
11. Interview with Mrs. Joseph Lenz, Little Chute, September 6, 1933.
12. Interview on September 6, 1933.
CHAPTER III PHILIP ST. LOUIS: SERVITE
In the summer of 1870 a group of Servite Fathers (Servants of Mary), the Reverends Austin Morini, Andrew Venturi, and Bonfilius Baldi, and a lay brother, Joseph Camera, arrived from Italy and established their first American convent on Doty Island, Menasha.1 To them Bishop Melcher assigned the property and entrusted the care of St. Charles church (later St. Patrick), over which they had charge until 1882, when the property was re-deeded to the Right Reverend Francis X. Krautbauer, Bishop of the Green Bay diocese.2 Philip St. Louis soon joined the group as a student and candidate.3 Under the able tutelage of the Reverend Fathers, especially Austin Morini and Andrew Venturi, he pursued his theological studies.4 We might presume that great care and attention were lavished upon him by the Fathers for he was to be the first priest ordained in America for the community. It must have been a most happy occasion, not only to his parents, brothers, and sisters, but also the Servite community, when Philip St. Louis was ordained to the priesthood on April 7, 1876, by Bishop Krautbauer of Green Bay, this being the first time since his elevation to the episcopate that the prelate had been called upon to perform that duty.5 A thankful and merry group participated at his first Mass celebrated in St. John Nepomucene church at Little Chute.6
In the early spring of 1874, Fathers Morini and Venturi and Brother Joseph Camera gave with the permission of Bishop Foley [of Chicago], a mission to the Italians of the city [Chicago]. This they held in the basement of St. Patricks church. It was quite a success, for at its conclusion Bishop Foley asked the Fathers to remain and form an Italian parish. This they did; but after several attempts they were forced to report to the Bishop that time was not propitious and nothing could be done for the present. The Bishop, however, urged the Fathers to locate in the diocese and suggested that they establish a place in the western part of the city, as yet undeveloped. Father Morini yielded to the suggestion and then made an inspection over the western prairie.7 Thus the parish of Our Lady of Sorrows was established on June 25, 1874, for on that date the deed for the property was signed.8
The task now devolved upon the Fathers, especially Father Morini, the superior and pastor, to supervise and complete the organization of the parish, erect suitable parish buildings, and quite naturally also provide a home for themselves. On August 30, 1874, the building of a combined church and house was started. The structure was of brick, two stories high, 102 x 38 feet. The church proper was 78 feet in length, the remaining 24 feet constituting a residence of the Fathers, Students, and Brothers, and comprising nineteen small rooms.9
The building was sufficiently completed to warrant its occupancy at Christmas time, 1874, and henceforth rapid strides toward success were made.
Because of the poverty of the Green Bay diocese and the greater possibilities held out to the community in Chicago, the Fathers now desired to transfer their novitiate from Menasha to Chicago. A rescript of the Sacred Congregation of the Propaganda dated February 28, 1875, granted the necessary permission.10
To this end, however, the present accommodations were insufficient, and hence more adequate provisions were required, which of course involved the building of a separate convent. The necessary preparations advanced slowly, so that it was only on June 2, 1878, that the new convent, three stories high, 31 x 43 feet, was started. It was completed on January 4, 1879.11 Toward the close of the year 1878 the novitiate was thus transferred from Menasha to Chicago.12
In September, 1876, following his ordination, Father St. Louis went upon assignment to the Servite convent in Chicago on West Jackson boulevard. Here he made his home and this was the scene of his activity for the next few years until 1880.13 His ability and ambition for work had not waned and of this his superior was well aware, for he was soon engaged in drawing the plans and later superintending the erection of the above mentioned new convent. Nor was this all. He likewise drew the plans and superintended the erection of
St. Philip Benizi church in Cicero, Illinois, and during this time likewise acted as pastor of St. Mary church at Lyons, Cook county, Illinois.14
All this work, while undertaken and accomplished in a truly unselfish spirit, nevertheless must have been a considerable strain on the young priest. He sought a change of atmosphere wherein he could relax and rest a bit after the trying days in Chicago. He gives his own impressions, writing; I thought I was tired - tired in body and in mind - attending a congregation ten miles from Chicago, building a church and a large convent, looking to the masons and carpenters, working until midnight drawing plans, and (without explanations) I was sacristan, treasurer, and procurator; work and responsibility weighed heavily upon me. A man strong in mind and body could have borne it, but not I. Perhaps it was a want of will, but I thought I was tired.15
His superior granted his request for a removal and apparently during the later part of 1879 or early 1880 he returned to the convent at Menasha where he was stationed until 1882.16 While he made his home and headquarters at the convent in Menasha, he was henceforth busily engaged in Missionary work at nearby and outlying missions. His return to Menasha marks the beginning of the missionary career with which most of his life was henceforth occupied. Beginning in April, 1880, he attended monthly from Menasha the missions at Phlox and Antigo, which he started, and for a time also that at Tigerton, and continued to do so until the early summer of 1882 when he was relieved of all except that at Phlox, of which parish he became the first resident pastor.17
Before considering his missionary activities we will yet treat the subject of his secularization. Sometime during the year 1885 the Very Reverend Appoloni, O. S., Visitator General of the Servites, was in the United States visiting the houses of the community.18 To him Father St. Louis confided his desire to quit the Servite community and become secularized. What his reasons were we do not know. Could it have been that his aged parents, now living at Phlox, needed his help and support? The matter was arranged between the Visitator General and Bishop Krautbauer, who in turn referred it to the General of the Servites in Rome. What followed is contained in a letter of the Reverend Austin Morini to Bishop Krautbauer: I have the honour to forward to Your Lordship the enclosed Rescript of the S. C. De Propaganda sent to me by our Most Rev. Fr. General. The Rescript has reference to the secularization of Rev. Fr. Philip St. Louis, of which the V. Rev. Fr. Appoloni, O.S., Visitator General, spoke to Your Lordship. From the Contents of the Rescript I have judged that the document has to be forwarded to your lordship.19
Bishop Katzer, successor to Bishop krautbauer, apparently because he had been insufficiently informed on the matter, wrote to the Reverend Austin Morini. The reply letter to Bishop Katzer is rich in information and we quote at length: In answer to your venerated [letter] of March 30th I beg to say that the matter of the secularization of Fr. St. Louis was arranged between the Visitator General and the late Bp. Krautbauer, and I had nothing whatever to do with it and know nothing about the understanding arrived at between our Visitator General and the late Rt. Rev. Bishop. I know however that said Rev. St. Louis wrote the petition to Propaganda for secularization, as it is manifest from the Rescript of Propaganda reported by Your Lordship in the letter. I received the document from our Fr. General with order to send it to the Bishop for the execution, which I did send him. Not seeing any acknowledgment of said document I wrote to Rev. St. Louis asking him if he received any communication from the Bishop. He answered me that the only communication he had was that the Bishop wrote to him that he should not wear any longer the religious habit, but he should dress as a secular priest. It seems to me that having Rev. St. Louis asked and obtained the faculty of becoming a secular priest, and the late Rt. Rev. Bishop having kept the Rescript of Propaganda and given orders to said Rev. St. Louis to dress as a secular priest, it remains with the Ordinary to see that he conforms himself to the general discipline of reciting the Roman breviary and wearing the dress of a secular priest.20
That the secularization was carried out is quite evident, for the remainder of his life Father St. Louis spent as a secular or diocesan priest, having only few associations with the Servites during this time. The Catholic Directory as late as 1894 adds the letters O. S. to his name, yet this can be discredited, since much of the data was carried over from year to year.
FOOTNOTES --- CHAPTER III
1. Green Bay Diocesan Archives (henceforth, G.B.D.A.): Two letters of introduction from
the Reverend Joannes Angelus M.., Prior General, dated June 22, 1870; Harry H. Heming,
History of the Catholic Church in Wisconsin, (Milwaukee, 1895-98), p. 690; History of Northern Wisconsin, (Chicago, 1881) p. 1180.
2. Heming, loc. cit.; G.B.D.A.: Letters of Reverend Austin Morini to Bishop Krautbauer, dated March 31, May 10, May 18, June 3, 1882.
3. This was very probably in 1872, since the Catholic Directory for 1873 (data for 1872) on page 204 indicates one novice as present at the Servite convent in Menasha.
4. Letters of Ethel St. Louis, as above, February 17, 1931, October 16, 1933; Heming, op. cit., p. 635.
5. Heming, op. cit., p. 635; Bishop Krautbauer was consecrated by Archbishop Henni in Milwaukee on June 25, 1875. cfr. Reverend John ODonnell, C.S.C., The Catholic Hierarchy of the United States,
1790-1922, (Washington, D.C., 1922), p.172. A nephew of Philip St. Louis, the Reverend Francis Laurent, the first of the Servite scholastics to be ordained from the convent in Chicago, sang his first Solemn Mass on Pentecost Sunday, June 5, 1881. His, however, was a short life as a priest, for on January 23, 1882, at 7:17 A.M. he died a victim of smallpox, contracted while administering to the sick during one of the epidemics raging at the time in Chicago. cfr. Our Lady of Sorrows, 1874-1924, p.50.
6. Interview with Mr. John Mollen, Little Chute, Wisconsin, September 6, 1933.
7. Our Lady of Sorrows, 1874-1924, (Chicago, 1924), p.19.
8. Ibid., p.19.
9. Ibid., p. 20.
10. G.B.D.A.: Morini to Krautbauer, September 27, 1878.
11. Our Lady of Sorrows, 1874-1924, p. 46.
12. G.B.D.A.: Morini to Krautbauer, September 27, 1878; Catholic Directory, 1879 (data for 1878) states on page 275: The Servite Fathers have transferred their Novitiate from Menasha to Chicago on account of the poverty of this diocese [Green Bay].
13. Heming, op. cit.; p. 635; Catholic Directory, 1877-80.
14. Heming, loc. cit.; Our Parochial Schools, X (1894), p. 145; Catholic Directory, 1877-83; Reverend P. J. McDonnell, Souvenir of the Solemn Dedication of St. Mels Church,
(Chicago, 1911), p. 5, 45.
15. Our Parochial Schools, X (1894), p.145.
16. Ibid., p. 145; Catholic Directory, 1880-84.
17. Heming, op. cit., p. 635, 710; Catholic Directory, 1880-84; G.B.D.A.: Reverend Philip St. Louis, Ms. Account of activities from 1880-1893 (henceforth MsA); Reverend Philip St. Louis, Ms. chronological outline of activities and major expenditures from 1880-92 (henceforth MsCA), (original from Miss Ethel St. Louis).
18. G.B.D.A.: Morini to Krautbauer, September 26, 1885; Morini to Katzer, May 31, 1887.
19. Illegible Footnote
20. G.B.D.A.: Morini to Katzer, May 31, 1887.
CHAPTER IV PHILIP ST. LOUIS: MISSIONARY
His departure from Chicago and his transfer to the Servite convent in Menasha in late 1879 or early 1880 marks the beginning of a new period in the life of Father St. Louis. Henceforth he manifested his labors and zeal as a missionary, not indeed in the sense that he now left his homeland and departed for a foreign land, but as one who traveled into parts of our own state hitherto unvisited by a shepherd of souls. His home indeed was the convent at Menasha but the scene of his labors was among the sparsely scattered settlers in the timber regions about one hundred miles to the north and northwest. His cherished mission was Phlox, no doubt because many of his relatives lived here; his parents moved there in 1881. He was closely associated with the early development and history of Phlox, especially in the religious phase.
The village of Phlox in Langlade county of today is hardly an apt picture of the Phlox of fifty or more years ago when trees abounded everywhere and the lumbering industry served to boom the village. Its early history is unique. In May, 1877, Joseph St. Louis, Moses St. Louis [sic?], Louis Bergeon, and Joseph Bergeon, residents of Little Chute, Outagamie County, cut a trail through the wilderness from Leopolis, Township 27, Range 14 East, to Township 30, Range 12 East. These four prospectors staked homesteads in county infested by nothing but animals - the deer, wolf, bear, and lynx. Only an occasional Indian trail gave any evidence of man. Returning to Little Chute these adventurers told of the country in the north woods and in August, 1877, Albert Menting, Joseph St. Louis, John Menting, and Mr. And Mrs. Frank St. Louis (Mrs. St. Louis was the first white woman in Norwood) moved in with teams. . . . . Arriving at section 26, all the newcomers began building the first log cabin in Norwood township on section 26 the old Frank St. Louis homestead. All these pioneers lived in the St. Louis dwelling until they could roll up cabins on their own homestead claims.1 Within the next few years many others settlers arrived from Little Chute, Menasha, Buchanan, Bay Settlement, and other southern communities.2 These first settlers, most of whom were Catholic, comprised the community first known as Town 30, Oconto county, but in due time designated as Norwood and eventually as Phlox. The name Norwood was used as late as 1886, although the name Phlox was also used as early as 1883.
In the spring of 1878 a number of these people endeavored to reach Little Chute, a distance of eighty miles, for the purpose of attending Mass, but the roads were in such an execrable condition that the attempt proved unsuccessful and they were compelled to return.3 The roads in those early days were but jagged trails, only wide enough to permit a wagon to pass, which had been cleared of trees and logs but with no attempt at grading, and with the stumps not uncommonly standing a foot above the ground. To ride meant to be jostled along after an ox team in the heaviest timber wagon, and be jolted by the wheels catching a tree now on this side and then on that side over root and stump.
In July, 1879, the Reverend Amandus Masschelein, resident pastor at Keshena, Shawano county, was called to visit a sick person, Mrs. Louis Morrison, and while at Phlox celebrated Mass in the little log cabin of Henry St. Louis. The distance from Keshena to Phlox at that time was thirty miles over rough Indian trails, which was traversed by the good priest on horseback.4 This is perhaps the only time that the settlement was visited by him, although the Catholic Directory for 1880 and 1881 (data for 1879 and 1880 respectively) shows Town 30, Oconto county, as being attended from Keshena.5
In May 1879, Father St. Louis, while on a visit to his home at Little Chute, undertook a visit to relatives in Town 30, and administered to the spiritual wants of the people.6 Concerning this visit he wrote in a letter addressed to Miss Anna Deleglise of Antigo, dated February 27, 1893, as follows:
I came here for the first time in the month of May, 1879, and said Mass in Mr. Joseph St. Louis old log house. I left Little Chute in the train and went as far as Clintonville [at that time the northern limit of the railroad] and there took a team and wagon and drove to Phlox. It took us two days and had to sleep in the woods.7
According to the statement of Mr. John Menting of Antigo, we must credit Father St. Louis with a second visit in 1879. He states that it was in July 1879 when mother came here for the first time to visit. On the way coming here we stopped and stayed over night at Jones. While we were unhitching the horses we heard some crackling in the brush, and we soon found out that Father St. Louis, walking from Menasha, had caught up to us. We asked him to stay over night with us at Jones and share with us the few simple rations we had left. The next morning we got up at 5 oclock to continue our journey, but Father St. Louis had already left and maybe was many miles ahead at this early hour. His very first visit to our little village was in May of 1879, and this time he walked [sic? see above] from Clintonville.8
In the latter part of April, 1880, he paid his next visit to Phlox. One account states that he came this time to administer religious comfort to the settlers who had been afflicted with an epidemic of diphtheria, and that he remained for a period of four weeks, saying Mass and administering the Sacraments in the house of John Jansen.9 The nearest doctor in the surrounding territory was located at Clintonville, and because of slow communication between settlements, the toll of lives taken by the epidemic was very heavy. He had in the meantime learned of the settlement at Antigo, twelve miles to the northwest, and on this trip paid it his first visit. He said the first Mass there in the log cabin of Mr. Francis Deleglise on May 2, 1880, which cabin and the bureau used as an altar are still preserved on the grounds of the public Library in Antigo.10 Mr. Arnold Menting, still residing at Phlox, acted as altar boy for this memorable occasion.11
At the time of his first visits the railroad reached only to Clintonville, and the remaining forty miles to Phlox had to be traversed on foot, or if so fortunate, with horse and wagon. Twice he made this trip on foot.12 Late in 1880, when the railroad had advanced to Eland Junction, the walking distance was reduced to twenty-four miles and in 1881, with the railroad reaching Elmhurst, the distance was reduced to fourteen miles. During these first years until his permanent residence at Phlox, he carried the necessary articles for the celebration of Mass and the administration of the sacraments in a rubber cloth upon his back. His jaunts through the wilderness must have been quite romantic, yet on no few occasions caused him considerable anxiety.13
The truly heroic zeal and determined effort of Father St. Louis on such occasions is aptly exemplified in the following account from his own pen, wherein he describes his experience on a trip from Appleton to Phlox.
I left Appleton on Friday on the train and went as far as Eland Junction. Thence I walked to Birnamwood, there being no railroad then, and slept there at Mr. McDermotts boarding camp. It was a stormy night and there was fear that some trees would be blown down on the camp. In the morning the weather was raw, and a cold rain was drizzling. The McDermott family tried hard to detain me from going to Phlox on that day, (a distance of 24 miles), but mass had to be said at Phlox on Sunday: I was determined to go. The kind woman lent me a short but waterproof cloak which was found of great service. With this cloak and my bundle I started on the surveyors line for the right-of-way of the Lake Shore railroad, and at about ten oclock I reached the place, where is now the village of Elmhurst. There, seeing the marks of the Governments survey on a tree, and thereby knowing that Phlox could be reached by traveling straight east, I turned to that direction. By that time the rain had turned into snow, and it was falling thick and fast: I was soaked clear through my clothing except the shoulders protected by the welcome cloak. It was no easy task to keep in the right direction; a small compass, in my possession was not working on account of being soaked with water. . . . .
Having entered a large swamp and advanced a short distance I took the pocket compass, shook it, and bit it, trying to take out the crystal, and finally lost it in the snow and moss. It was a thoughtful moment; wet and cold, without matches to light fire, and the probability of passing the night in such a place . . . . . . . The swamp seemed endless, in fact I did not cross it but followed it in all its length, having arrived, after four hours traveling half a mile out of my way. I had traveled at the rate of one mile per hour. I now found a settler, and from there was a road to Phlox, where I arrived after dark.14
Because of the loss of his compass, his return trip was made with considerable difficulty also, yet by his ingenuity he survived the ordeal. He left Phlox early in the morning and walked to Eland Junction. Here he waited till midnight for the freight train which he boarded, and arrived at Appleton at six oclock the following morning, - one day spent in traveling a distance now negotiated in two or three hours.15
A further incident is recounted in a letter to Miss Anna Deleglise under date of February 27, 1893. On one occasion I had a sick call six miles beyond Antigo; that was the first time a cutter ventured from Phlox to Antigo. We capsized once, and came very near it many other times. We left Phlox at 2 p. m., arrived at the sick person after dark, returned to Antigo at 10 p. m. I walked to Phlox and arrived at 2 a. m. I could give a whole volume of such experiences if they were interesting.
According to his own statement, Father St. Louis said the first Mass in Antigo on May 2, 1880, and attended it monthly until May, 1882.16 At the time he relinquished the mission in May, 1882, in favor of the Reverend Peter J. Lochman of Clintonville, he had already commenced the erection of a frame church. He made the plans and superintended the erection of the greater part of the church himself. He writes of it as follows:
As I expected that Antigo would grow to be a city I favored a small church because the people could not build large enough for even the immediate future. The church therefore was about 24 x 40 feet, with two rows of windows, to be used later on for a school house, by dividing it up into two stories,17
For some time he also attended the mission at Tigerton, commenced in 1881 by the Reverend Theodore Richard from Wausau. Here too he started the erection of a church, but did not see its completion because the mission passed to the care of the Reverend Peter Lochman shortly before the mission at Antigo also passed to the care of the latter.18
During the year 1880, five acres of land were donated at Phlox for church purposes, of which one-half acre was cleared during the same fall.19 The Catholic families in this settlement numbered twenty-four at the time, which number however was more than doubled during the next ten years. All of them, though very poor, were earnestly interested in the progress of church affairs. With considerable difficulty they brought together sufficient funds and means for the erection of a church, 34 x 50 feet. Quite differently from what he had done in Antigo, Father St. Louis wished to build the church in such a way that it could be conveniently enlarged when needed. He had to use a great deal of tactics to gain his point, because the people wanted a log church 20 x 30 while he insisted upon a building 34 x 60. A compromise was brought about at 34 x 50, and for such a sized church Father St. Louis immediately drew the plans.20 In 1881 the frame of this building was erected, roofed, and enclosed in rough, and a portion finished off for use during the winter of 1881-82. During the summer of 1882 the church was quite well completed and equipped within and without. In the course of the next years, an addition was made, a stone foundation put under the whole church, and the outside brick veneered, and other improvements made so that at the time of his departure on September 12, 1893, Father St. Louis could leave a well equipped and completed church to the custody of his successor.21
His heart was further set on Christian education. Seeing that, as quite generally occurs in new places, the young people were very profligate, he thought that one of the best remedies was to raise a pious generation by attending assiduously to the moral education of the young and therefore he wished to have the children under his immediate supervision. For this reason he conceived the necessity for a parochial school. The idea seemed ridiculous to the majority of the people. A Catholic schools for a handful of scattered Catholic families! Yet in the summer of 1883 was seen the completion of a two story school building, 26 x 27. Several years later its size was doubled. The public school committee, being all Catholics, suggested a union of the Catholic and the public schools, but over this Father St. Louis refused his authority. The Catholic school was, therefore, maintained by the congregation for two years, after which public money was received without derogation to the authority of Father St. Louis over the school. This continued until 1891, when the parish again was obliged to support its own school.22 The first teacher in the parochial school was Miss Zoe Grignon, now Mrs. Edwin Strong of Milwaukee.
Besides the church and the school, Father St. Louis building activities also included the erection of a priest house, a hall for the young men and boys, a home for himself which he later sold, and also a printing office. He was an indefatigable worker, ever ready to be of service at the call of a parishioner or of any member of the community. He exerted himself to the utmost when a matter of a spiritual or a physical nature presented itself. He founded and organized a number of societies among his parishioners, societies for the ladies and the men, the young ladies and young men, and even for the children, all of which were intended to raise the congregation to a good moral condition and increase the spiritual life of his people. At the time of his departure the members of the III Order of St. Francis alone numbered about seventy. The monthly communions ranged between fifty and seventy. During his thirteen years at Phlox, Father St. Louis had but one mixed marriage and one to patch up. He likewise organized a library of which he printed a catalogue listing one hundred and thirty volumes.23
Besides performing the regular duties as a pastor, Father St. Louis undertook an enterprise of unusual significance both in his own life and in the history of the village of Phlox, namely the establishment of the Pioneer Press in 1882. An ambition of many years was realized when, on March 1, 1877, the first issue of Our Parochial Schools appeared, - a Catholic journal devoted to Catholic religious elementary education. Shortly thereafter the Langlade County Special made its initial appearance. This was a weekly newspaper and contained much of the local news. The Special, begun by Father St. Louis and printed in his presses, later had Mr. John Menting as its publisher. In 1891 several gentlemen from Antigo bought out the paper, moved it to Antigo, and here continued its publication. In August, 1898, it was discontinued as a distinct publication, being merged with the Weekly News Item of Antigo. The Our Parochial Schools, originally a monthly, was published as a weekly for a time. Its existence, however, was a precarious one, and it was only with the greatest of sacrifice and patience that Father St. Louis published it so long as it continued.24
FOOTNOTES --- CHAPTER IV
1. Robert Dessureau, History of Langlade County, (Antigo, 1922), p.222.
2. Dessureau, loc. cit.
3. Heming, op. cit., p.710.
4. Heming, loc. cit.; Interview with Mr. John Menting, Antigo, Wisconsin, on September 4, 1932.
5. Catholic Directory, 1880, p. 275; 1881, p. 297.
6. Heming, loc. cit.; Dessureau, loc. cit.; Our Parochial Schools, X (1894), p. 146;
Interview with Mr. John Menting, September 4, 1932.
7. Letter in possession of Mrs. Thomas Morrissey (Anna Deleglise), Antigo, Wisconsin.
8. Interview, September 4, 1932.
9. Heming, loc. cit..
10. Letter of Reverend Philip St. Louis to Reverend Conrad Saile, dated December 3, 1897; Heming, loc. cit.; Dessureau, loc. cit.; C. Luke Leitermann, History of St. John the Evangelist Church, Antigo, Wisconsin, Golden Jubilee, 1880-1930, (Antigo, 1930), p. 27-28.
11. Interview with Mr. Arnold Menting, September 4, 1932.
12. Letter of Reverend Philip St. Louis to Miss Anna Deleglise, Dated February 27, 1893.
13. G.B.D.A.: MsA; Letter of Reverend Philip St. Louis to Mrs. Sophia Leslie of Antigo, dated July 14, 1924; Our Parochial Schools, X (1894), p. 146.
14. Our Parochial Schools, X (1894), p. 192-93.
15. Ibid., p. 170-71.
16. St. Louis to Saile, as above.
17. G.B.D.A.: MsA.
18. Heming, op. cit., p. 711.
19. Heming, op. cit., p. 710;G.B.D.A.: MsA, MsCA.
20. G.B.D.A.: MsA.
21. G.B.D.A.: MsCA; Heming, loc. cit.; Dessureau, loc. cit.
22. G.B.D.A.: MsA.
23. G.B.D.A.: MsA., MsCA; Heming, loc. cit., Dessureau, loc. cit.
24. G.B.D.A.: MsCA; Heming, loc. cit.; Dessureau, op. cit., p. 145;
Antigo Daily Journal, May 2, 1932.
On September 12, 1893, Father St. Louis was transferred, upon request of his ordinary, to Green Bay. He moved his presses and paper to this city and here established the printing department in connection with the St. Joseph Orphanage. His failing health, however, soon sounded the death knell for his school journal which appeared for the last time on May 1, 1894, after seven years of a struggling existence. His love for the orphans is immortalized in his many benefactions for them, both material and spiritual. For two years he supervised the orphanage printing shop, at the same time acting as chaplain at the Our Lady of Charity convent (Good Shepherd) in Green Bay. Finding all this work harder than that pertaining to parochial duties, he obtained an appointment as pastor of the Immaculate Conception parish at Florence, Wisconsin, the duties of which he assumed on October 10, 1895. In 1899 he was transferred to St. Patrick church at Lebanon, from which place he attended St. Bridget church, a mission at Northport. Two years later he took charge of Holy Cross church at Mischicot where he remained until he was transferred to St. Patrick church at Stiles, in Oconto county, in 1909. From this place he attended a station at Abrams, also in Oconto county.
Father St. Louis health was failing rapidly and in 1914, having received the necessary permission from Bishop Fox of Green Bay, he repaired to Colorado Springs, Colorado, where he spent the last years of his earthly sojourn. The dry invigorating air of Colorado, combined with the altitude, was of great benefit to him. He received a new lease on life and renewed strength to labor for fourteen more years in the vineyard of the Lord. To his energy and zeal is due the erection of several churches and also a large school for the Mexicans.
But as with all else mortal, such intense activity could not be forever. During Holy Week and on Easter Sunday, 1928, he assisted at the services held in St. Mary church in Colorado Springs. On Easter Monday he was taken ill. For six weeks he lingered between life and death, but finally on May 25, following a heart attack, at the advanced age of eighty years, the angel of death called him to his Maker. Almighty God has granted his oft repeated wish to die in the harness, serving his Master until the end. His mortal remains were interred in the priests lot in the Evergreen cemetery at Colorado Springs. The memory of him, however, was not interred with his bones, for many people are now wont to speak of him as that wonderful old man, or dear old saint.
The above is but a cursory life picture of Father St. Louis, - the man, the priest, the missionary. From the morning of his life even until its evening, his was a living labor of sacrifice. But it was a sacrifice of love, a sacrifice undertaken for love of his Creator and God, a life consumed for love of hungry hearts and thirsting immortal souls.1
1. Antigo Daily Journal, May 2, 1932.