Scope and Contents
This subseries consists of the records of the Missouri Mission, from its establishment within the Maryland Province in 1823 until Missouri was designated a Vice-Province in 1840. Materials consist of letters addressing the transfer of Houses, churches, and schools by the diocese of New Orleans to the Society, as well as administrative documentation and financial reports. Slavery is discussed throughout the letters, as the Missouri Mission derived income from plantations near Florissant, Missouri and depended upon the labor of enslaved people, including several individuals who were transferred from the Southern Maryland plantations to work as domestic and agricultural laborers. This correspondence was primarily sent by the Superiors, Rectors, and Consultors of the Missouri Mission to the Maryland Provincial and his Consultors. In addition to the letters sent to the Provincial, there is also a Consultors’ Diary documenting the meetings of the Mission’s Consultors (November 28, 1831-April 9, 1832) and an annual financial report from the mission residence in St. Charles, Missouri (January 1, 1859).
The Missouri Mission was founded by a group of Jesuit Belgian emigrés to continue the work of French missionaries who evangelized among the Native Americans during the eighteenth century. The Missouri Mission encompassed missions and work among Native Americans at St. Ferdinand Church, Florissant (1823); the Novitiate of St. Stanislaus, Florissant (1823); St Louis College (1829); St. Charles Borromeo Church, St. Charles, Missouri (1828) and its work with the Osage Native Americans; missions among the Kickapoo and Pottawatamie in Indiana (1836); and St. Charles College, Grand Coiteau, Louisiana (1837). This work was carried out during a period defined by the expansion of slavery and the dispossession of Native American lands in the United States.
**Please note: the finding aid contains Scope and Contents notes for each folder. This folder-level description has been imported from an older finding aid. Researchers may encounter outdated or potentially offensive terminology and occasional inaccuracies. If you would like to notify Special Collections of any issues that need correcting, please contact us.**
Some materials in this subseries contain references to slavery, slaveholding, and enslaved individuals. Relevant folders are noted in the finding aid.
This material was part of the 1977 deposit. It is arranged chronologically.
- 1823 - 1859
Conditions Governing Access
The Maryland Province Archives is on deposit at Georgetown University and is the property of the Maryland Province of the Society of Jesus. Access to the Archives is governed by the Maryland Province. As stewards of the Archives, the Georgetown University Library’s Booth Family Center for Special Collections is responsible for managing access to the material based on policies set forth by the Maryland Province.
The Maryland Province Archives represents a crucial primary source for the study of the Society of Jesus from its arrival in the English colonies in 1634 through its expansion along the eastern seaboard, and, more broadly, for the study of Catholicism in America; the history and development of Georgetown University; and of particular significance and interest at the current time the Jesuits’ and Georgetown University’s connection to slavery, most notably the documentation of the 1838 sale of 272 slaves by the Maryland Province, proceeds of which benefited Georgetown College (now Georgetown University). The Georgetown Slavery Archive, a project initiated by the Archives Subgroup of the University’s Working Group on Slavery, Memory and Reconciliation, currently is digitizing and making available online relevant documents from the Maryland Province Archives and elsewhere.
Georgetown University Library and the Maryland Province are committed to providing access to the Maryland Province Archives to scholars, the public and especially to descendants of the Georgetown 272. To date, 71 linear feet of records of the Maryland Province, housed in 136 manuscript boxes, are processed and available for research. Descriptions of this material are available in this finding aid. Researchers may view these materials in the Reading Room of the Booth Family Center for Special Collections. General policies for using Special Collections can be found here.
Access to the Archives is governed by the Maryland Province and is subject to all Library and Special Collections policies and procedures in addition to the specific guidelines below. These guidelines are a summary of access policies -- the Archives may include materials that fall outside the scope of these general guidelines. For information on access to specific materials, please contact the Special Collections staff.
1. All Archives materials dated or bearing solely on events occurring before January 1, 1940, shall be open for review unless otherwise restricted, subject to Library policies and procedures.
2. All unpublished Archives materials dated or bearing solely on events occurring on or after January 1, 1940, shall be open for review upon request subject to a decision by the Provincial or someone designated by the Provincial.
3. Researchers may quote from the materials.
4. Researchers may take their own photographs of the material for scholarly and research purposes. Allowing photographs is not an authorization to publish or to deposit the material in another library or archive.
5. Written permission from the Maryland Province is required for the publication of substantive portions of any material or publication-quality reproductions of any material.
6. Material not yet processed is not available to researchers; permission will not be granted to access any unprocessed material.
7. Audiovisual, microfilm and other material in the Archives, the original of which is held in another archive, may be consulted and transcribed only. Written permission from the archive holding the original material is required for any duplication, reproduction, or publication of that material.
8. Use the Permission Request Form to request permission (i) to access any restricted processed material or (ii) to publish reproductions or quote substantive portions of the material. Send the completed form by email to the Booth Family Center for Special Collections (firstname.lastname@example.org).
From the Collection: 292 boxes (292 total boxes, plus 14 card catalog drawers (201 regular boxes, 25 oversized boxes, 53 restricted regular boxes, 13 restricted oversized boxes, 14 card catalog drawers))
Language of Materials
From the Collection: Multiple languages
Part of the Georgetown University Manuscripts Repository
Lauinger Library, 5th Floor
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