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Digital Indiana Catholic History

In 1898, Colonel Charles Blanchard published a two volume work entitled The Catholic Church In Indiana – Historical and Biographical. Volume two was a subscription book where prominent (at least prominent enough to purchase space) Catholics told others of their virtues and trials. That was the Biographical part. The first volume, however, was the Historical. Col. Blanchard apparently didn’t have too much to do with this part since the preface says that:

“The history proper was prepared by M.W. Carr of Indianapolis and Rev. Bonaventure Hammer of Lafayette ably assisted by Very Rev. Chancellor Denis O’Donaghue, rector of St. Patrick’s church, Indianapolis.”

Although the volume does not begin with Indiana Catholic history, but rather, with a claim that St. Brendan discovered America, it does give a lot of information about the Catholic Church in Indiana including biographies of the bishops, some priests and all the parishes. My copy was given to me about 28 years ago. I have seen it available from antiquarian booksellers for as much as $200, however, you can get it online in PDF format for free.

Go to this link and download it. It makes for some interesting reading. This books was scanned as part of the Microsoft project. Others items have been scanned by the Google project, but either way there are some very nice books available, including The History of the Catholic Church in the Diocese of Vincennes by Herman Alerding, published in 1883. You can also download a PDF index of Alerding’s book which I created in 1984. It is available on this web site.


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