In the next section I will discuss the sacramental record-keeping of the Catholic Church in VT. However there were only two VT Catholic Churches...in Burlington and St. Albans... before 1850, and both initially served a predominantly Irish congregation. Some French Catholics avoided "Irish" churches. I am reliably informed that as many as half of the VT Franco-American marriages before Catholic Churches were established, were performed by a Protestant minister or a Justice of the Peace. Further some sacraments, particularly baptisms, of VT Franco-Americans were performed in Quebec. At the ACGS Library in Manchester, NH there is a partial, indexed list of these missionaries, both from the U.S and Quebec, who regularly visited VT French settlements in the first half of the 19th Century for the purpose of saying Mass and administering sacraments. Unfortunately not all of the sacramental records of some of these missionaries have survived. A case in point is the fabled Rev. Pierre-Marie MIGNAULT of St. Joseph parish in Chambly, Quebec who made regular missionary trips to both sides of Lake Champlain from 1815 to about 1852 yet no record can be found of the sacraments that he administered.
Although the priests did not travel into VT, there are sacramental records of USA residents at the following Quebec parishes: From 1785 to 1845 at Ste-Marguerite-de-Blairfindie in L'Acadie, also recorded in LDS Reels 1,031,782 through 1,031, 787. The US residents went to L'Acadie to have the sacraments performed.
From 1801 to 1844 at St-Luc, Quebec, also recorded in LDS Reels 1,290,049 and 1,290,050. The priest made missionary trips in Quebec as far south as Lacolle. Some US residents went to either St-Luc or met the priest in Lacolle. From 1826 to 1876, at St-Malachie Church in Ormstown, Quebec, also recorded in LDS Reel 1,031,575. Sacraments, mainly baptisms, performed by Revs. Terence KIERNAN, J.H BIENVENUE and Edmond DOYLE as missionary priests. These records are apparently the originals of the 1857 to 1859 records are at the Valleyfield Courthouse; and for the 1838 to 1845 they are at St-Jean-Chrysostome parish, both in Quebec.
From 1826 to 1876 at St-Patrice at Hinchinbrooke, also recorded in LFDS Reel 1,031,553
From 1826 to 1834 and 1848 to 1860 at Sacre-Coeur-de-Jesus at Stanstead
From 1833 to 1852 at St-Georges in Henryville.
From 1838 to 1853 at St-Jean-Chrysostome, also recorded in LDS Reel 1.031,559
From 1846 to 1853 at Notre-Dam-des-Anges in Stanbridge, also recorded in LDS Reel 1,294,751. Rev. B.J. LECLAIRE, missionary to the Cantons-de-L'Est (eastern Townships), performed most of the sacraments.
From 1850 to 1876 at St. Romain in Hemmingford, also recorded in LDS Reel 1,031, 554
The sacraments administered to U.S residents in the above records were extracted by Virginia E. DEMARCE. They appeared in a series of the no-longer-published periodical "Lost in Canada", Joy Reisinger publisher and later indexed by Roger W. Lawrence in an unpublished document, "Quebec Parish & Missionary Records of Northern New York & Vermont: Baptisms, Marriages, Burials & Abjurations".
This section was designed primarily to assist those who need to have an idea where to look for sacramental (baptism, marriage and burial) records in the 19th Century in VT.
In 1801, Bishop CARROLL of Baltimore (VT was under the Baltimore Diocese at the time) accepted the offer of Bishop DENAULT of Quebec to care for French-speaking Catholics in VT. 1830-1847, Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington was the first full-time missionary of VT. Baptisms for the period 1830-1858 and marriages for the period 1830 to 1870 are held by the Burlington Diocesan Archivist. 1837-1854, Rev. John B. DALY performed missionary work in southern VT. The records of his baptisms for the period 1845-1848 and marriages from 1843 to 1847 are kept at the Diocesan Archives. 1853, The Diocese of Burlington, which covers all of the State of Vermont, was established with Louis DeGOESBRIAND serving as Bishop until 1899
The contact info of the Diocesan is: Contact Numbers:
P. O. Box 2226
South Burlington, VT 05407
55 Joy Drive
South Burlington, VT 05403
Addison did not have a particularly large Franco-American population until about 1840 when it became a magnet for the immigrating Quebecois. By 1850 it ranked behind only Franklin and Chittenden in the size of its Franco-American population. Father John B. DALY from Burlington was a particularly active missionary there.
In 1855, The Assumption Church was founded in Middlebury with Rev. Francis PICARD probably the first resident pastor. The town was visited by Rev. Paul McQUADE as early as 1822. Middlebury was VT's most populous town when Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN arrived in VT in 1830. In the 1830's the town had visits by Fathers DALY, FITTON, WALSH and O'BEIRNE.
In 1886, St. Paul, a French parish, was founded in Orwell with Rev. Alfred E. LANGEVINE first resident pastor. The parish owes its origins to Canadians who came in 1840 to work along Lake Champlain. Rev. Pierre-Marie MIGNAULT of St. Joseph Church, Chambly Quebec said the first Mass here. The first mass at Leicester Junction was celebrated in 1869 by Rev. George CAISSY who in 1872 became the first resident pastor of St. Albans' Holy Angels parish.
In 1877, St. Genevieve, a predominantly French church, was founded in Shoreham; however, it wasn't until 1901 that there was a resident pastor, Rev. L.A. VEZINA. There may have been a church serving the French community at the Chimney Point section of Bridgeport between 1730-1749.
In 1881, St. Peters, a predominantly French church, was founded at Vergennes with Rev. Joseph KERILOU first resident pastor. Tradition holds that a Montreal priest said Mass here about 1816. The first recorded Mass was said by Rev. Paul McQUADE in 1822. Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN visited here from 1830.
In 1893, St. Ambrose was founded in Bristol with Rev. Michael CARMODY first resident pastor. In 1854, the first Mass was celebrated in nearby Starksboro by Rev. Thomas RIORDAN of Burlington. The first church at Bristol was built in 1877 by Rev. Patrick CUNNINGHAM.
In 1854, St. Francis De Sales, predominantly French, was founded in Bennington with Rev. Z. DRUON first resident pastor. Local tradition indicates that Rev. SHANAHAN of Troy, NY first offered Mass here in 1830 and continued to 1834. Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington came regularly from October 1832 until Rev. John DALY arrived in 1837.
In 1868, St. Jerome was founded in East Dorset with Rev. Thomas J. GAFFNEY first resident pastor. First Mass here in 1839 by Rev. John B. DALY until 1854 when pastors from Rutland and Bennington provided services.
In 1875, St. Columban was founded in Arlington with Rev. Frederick PAQUET first resident pastor. Rev John DALY undoubtedly said the first Mass here.
In 1885, St. John the Baptist was founded in North Bennington with Rev. Charles E. PREVOST first resident pastor. First Mass said here possibly as early as 1839 by Rev. John B. DALY until 1854 when pastors from Bennington provided services.
In 1892, Sacred heart of Jesus, a French-language parish, was founded in Bennington with Rev. Philias PREVOST first pastor. Prior to 1800 this congregation attended the local St. Francis De Sales church, and from 1885 to 1891 the congregation was attached as a mission to the St. John the Baptist church.
In 1895, St. Joachim, a French & Italian parish, was founded in Readsboro with Rev. William PLAMONDON first resident pastor. One hundred Canadians and Italians attended the first Mass ion this town celebrated by Rev. LEDUC of MA. Rev. Frederick PAQUET of Arlington was active in the town from1891^to 1893.
In 1896, St. Paul, an "English" parish, was founded in Manchester with Rev. John DWYER the first resident pastor. Rev. John B. DALY first offered Mass here sometime in the 1839-1854 period. The congregation attended Mass and received the sacraments at East Dorset before the church was founded.
In 1858, Notre Dame des Victoires, a French church, was founded in St. Johnsbury with Rev. Stanislaus DANIELOU first resident pastor. From 1831 to 1854 occasional Masses were said in this town by Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN from Burlington and Rev. HARPER from Canada. NOTE: This parish was decommissioned and the records are now at St John the Evangelist Church in St Johnsbury, VT according to Bill Gauthier of Trumbull, CT (9/28/03)
In 1891, St. Elizabeth was founded in Lyndonville with Rev. Joseph PAQUET first resident pastor. The first Mass in this town was by Bishop De GOESBRIAND in 1854.
In 1892, St. Michael was founded in Greensboro Bend. Rev. William CROSBY of St. Norbert in nearby Hardwick said Masses here starting in 1911.
In 1896, St. Aloysius, an English-speaking church, was founded in St. Johnsbury with Rev. Michael J. CARMODY first resident pastor.
On 15 Oct 1815, Rev. Francois A. MATIGNON of Boston baptized 18 children in Burlington.
In 1830, St. Mary's of Burlington , now Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, was founded with Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN as first resident pastor. The first Masses were said in Burlington in 1815 by Rev. Francis A. MATIGNON of Boston. He remained until the Diocese of Burlington was established in 1853 when Bishop De GOESBRIAND became pastor. Fr. O'CALLAGHAN also performed missionary work particularly in northern VT. In 1830 there were an estimated 1,000 Catholics in and around Burlington, probably half were French. Fr. O'CALLAGHAN did not speak French well. He was assisted in missionary work in outlying areas by Rev. Auguste PETITHOMME (Fr. AMABLE) in 1834 and 1835
In 1850, St. Joseph, the first French National Church in New England, was founded in Burlington with Rev. Joseph QUEVILLON as first resident pastor. He also performed missionary work, particularly for the French communities, in northern VT. Masses in French were celebrated in Burlington as early as 1818.
In 1858, Our Lady of Mount Carmel was founded in East Charlotte. Masses were said in nearby Hinesburg earlier than 1858.
In 1859, St. Anne, a predominantly French parish, was founded in Milton with Rev. Francis PICARD as first pastor. Masses were said in Milton by Burlington's Fr. O'CALLAGHAN as early as 1844.
In 1865, Our lady of the Rosary was founded in Richmond with Rev. James QUINN as the first resident pastor. Masses were said in this town as early as 1857 by Bishop De GOESBRIAND of Burlington.
In 1868, St. Francis Xavier, a French church, was founded in Winooski with Rev. Jean-Frederic AUDET as first pastor. He remained pastor until 1917. The French founders of this parish were members of Burlington's St. Joseph Church. This French parish became a favorite for many Chittenden County Franco-Americans.
In 1872, St. Thomas was founded in Underhill Center with Rev. Pierre SAVOIE as first pastor. Masses were said in this town as early as 1833 by Rev. O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington. Bishop De GOESBRIAND visited this town in 1853.
In 1893, Holy Family, a French church, was founded in Essex Junction with Rev. Ernest CAMPEAU as first pastor. The earliest record of a Mass in this town was one celebrated by Rev. Pierre SAVOIE of Underhill Center in 1874.
In 1871, St. James the Greater was founded in Island Pond with Rev. Amedee DUFRESNE first resident Pastor. Rev. John DALY of Canada said the first Mass here in 1856. Rev. J. GERMAIN was in this town 1859-1861.
In 1879, St. Stanislaus was founded in nearby Bloomfield.
In 1887, St. Bernard was founded in Norton with Rev. J.B. POULIOT first resident pastor. He is believed to have said the first Mass in this town in 1887.
In 1847, St. Mary's, now Immaculate Conception, a predominantly Irish church, was founded in St. Albans with Rev. George HAMILTON as first pastor. Rev. Pierre-Marie MIGNAULT, pastor of St. Joseph's in Chambly, St. Jean County, Quebec is believed to have made regular visits to St. Albans as early as 1818. Rev. O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington had visited St. Albans at regular intervals from 1830 until 1841 when Rev. William IVERS took charge of the congregation.
In 1854, Nativity of the Blessed Virgin, a predominantly French church, was founded in Swanton with Rev. L.L. LIONET as first pastor. St. Albans priests attended the Swanton congregation prior to 1854. Indian tradition reports a visit of a priest in Swanton in 1613. The Swanton Methodist Episcopal Church had visiting ministers as early as 1806 and the church was formed in 1816. The Congregational Church was organized in 1801 and a church erected in 1822-1823. The Episcopal Holy Trinity Church had services as early as 1820 but no real progress was made until 1867 with the first church built in 1876.
Until 1855, St. Louis of Highgate was a Mission of St. Mary Church in St. Albans. It was a mission of Nativity of the Blessed Virgin of Swanton from 1855 until late 1886 when it became a parish with Rev. Joseph TURCOTTE first resident pastor.
In 1858, St. Patrick was founded in Fairfield with Rev. Rev. Thomas RIORDAN as first pastor. The spiritual needs of this community, predominantly Irish, were attended to by periodic visits of Rev. MIGNAULT of Chambly, Quebec as early as 1815.
In 1872, Holy Angels, a predominantly French church, was founded in St. Albans with Rev. George N. CAISSY as first resident pastor. As noted under St. Mary's Church, REV. MIGNAULT of Chambly Quebec made regular visits to the French-speaking Catholics of St. Albans from 1818 to probably as late as 1846. After the Civil War, St. Albans became a center speaking out for the French Canadian cause.
In 1874, St. John the Baptist, a predominantly French parish, was founded in Enosburg Falls with Rev. Joseph BREVILET the first resident pastor. Rev. O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington offered Mass here in 1848. Between 1848 and 1874 the Catholic community here was ministered to by priests from Quebec (including Bishop Amadeus RAPPE) and from Fairfield and St. Albans.
In 1858, a chapel was established in Alburg. The parish of St. Amadeus was officially founded in 1886. "The oldest congregation in VT was that of a Catholic Church organized in 1731 in what is now Alburg."
In 1871, St. Joseph was founded in Isle Lamotte.
In 1895, St. Rose of Lima was founded in South Hero with Rev. Joseph TIRCOTTE the first resident pastor. A house was converted into a church here in 1858 and regularly attended from Plattsburgh, NY, Milton, Burlington, and Alburg.
In 1888, St. Theresa was founded in Hyde Park with Rev. Jean Marie COATHUEL first resident pastor. Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington visited this town probably as early as 1830 and then for twenty years the people here were attended by priests from Underhill, Fairfield, Highgate and Burlington
No churches before 1903.
From 1826 to 1834 and from 1848 to 1860, Revs. J. HOLMES, M. POWER, H. PAISLEY, and H. ROBSON performed missionary work mainly in Orleans County. The register of Sacre-Coeur-de-Jesus of Stanstead, Quebec, as recorded in LDS Reel 1, 031, 751, contains the records of the sacraments, primarily baptisms, administered by these missionary priests. John
From 1838 to 1840, Revs. John MOORE, John FALVEY and Joseph DALLAIRE performed missionary work in Orleans County near the Quebec border. The register of St-Jean-Chrysostome of Chateaugay County, Quebec, as recorded in LDS Reel 1, 031, 559 contains the sacraments, primarily baptisms, administered by these missionary priests.
In 1873, St. Mary Star of the Sea, a predominantly French church, was founded in Newport with Rev. John S. MICHAUD, later the second Bishop of Burlington, first resident pastor. The first Mass was said here in 1840.
In 1875, St. Columban was founded in Lowell.
In 1893, Conversion of St. Paul was founded in Barton with Rev. Joseph TURCOT first resident pastor. The first Mass was said here in 1851.
In 1855, St. Peter was founded in Rutland with Rev. Z. DRUON first resident pastor. In 1830 Rev. Jeremah O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington offered the first Mass in this city. Rev. John DALY administered to 400 Catholics in the area.
In 1857, St. Bridget was founded in West Rutand with Rev. Francis PICARD first resident pastor. Rev. John DALY offered Mass here from 1839 to 1854. Rev. Zephyrin DRUON purchased land for a church in May 1855.
In 1867, Our lady of Good Help was founded in Brandon with Rev. Thomas HALPIN first resident pastor. Earlier Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington, Rev. John DALY and Rev. OLIVETTI of Whitehall, NY attended Brandon Catholics.
In 1866, St. Louis and then Our Lady of Seven Dolors (commonly referred to as St. Mary's), both predominantly French were established in Fairhaven with Rev. John O'DWYER first resident pastor. In 1836 Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN celebrated Mass here. Rev. Louis GAGNIER had organized a French-language parish here in 1869 and built the no longer existing St. Louis Church. In 1869, Immaculate Heart of Mary, a predominantly French church, was founded in Rutland with Rev. Rev. Louis GAGNIER the first resident pastor. Many Canadians found refuge at Rutland during Quebec's 1837 Papineau Rebellion. The first known Mass in Brandon was in 1853 by Rev. Joseph QUEVILLON of Burlington.
In 1876, Our Lady Mother of Mercy mission church was dedicated at Mount Holly. St. Patrick church was dedicated at nearby Wallingford in 1866. In 1910, Rev. Thomas O'DONOGHUE became first resident pastor of St. Patrick with Our Lady Mother of Mercy as a mission.
In 1884, St. Raphael was founded in Poultney with Rev. Jerome GELOT first resident pastor. There is no record of priests visiting here before Rev. John B. Daly in 1846.
In 1885, St. Ann was founded in Middletown Springs near Poultney.
In 1892, St. Alphonsus Liguori was founded in Pittsford Mills with Rev. Thomas R. CARTY first resident pastor. Rev Patrick BYRNE had visited this town in 1828. The first Mass was said shortly thereafter by Rev. James Fitton of Pittsford. Fathers Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN and John B. DALY said bimonthly Masses here through 1845. Fr. CARTY said mass at nearby Florence about 1895.
In 1893, St. Dominic was founded in Proctor with Rev. Patrick J. LONG first resident pastor. In 1844, the Apostle of Southern VT, Rev. John B. Daly - a Franciscan missionary - said the first Mass here.
In 1899, St. John the Baptist was founded in Castleton with Rev. GILLIGAN first pastor. A Rev. Walsh visited her in 1831. Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN said Mass here in 1832 and visited thereafter 3 or 4 times yearly.
In 1850, St. Augustine was founded in Montpelier with Rev. Hector DROLET the first resident pastor. The first Mass here was said by Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington.
In 1857, St. Patrick, a predominantly Irish church, was founded in Moretown. The parish later became a mission of St. Andrew in Waterbury.
In 1865, St. John the Evangelist was founded in Northfield with Rev. Francis CLAVIER first pastor. Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN of Burlington said Mass here in 1846 in the home of a Northfield railroad worker when the Central Vermont Railroad was being built from Essex to White River Junction.
In 1869, St. Andrew was founded in Waterbury with Rev. John GALLAGHAN first pastor. Rev. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN said Mass here in 1847 for Irish workers constructing the Central Vermont Railroad. Apparently there was a St. Vincent Ferrer Church erected in Waterbury in 1857 that was replaced by St. Andrew in 1869/1870.
In 1892, St. Monica, was founded in Barre with Rev.Joseph BREVILET first pastor. Rev. J.M. DUGLUE of Montpelier had celebrated Mass here in 1881.
In 1899, St. Sylvester was founded in Graniteville with Rev. Thomas DONAHUE the first resident pastor. Mass was first offered here about 1885; by 1889, Barre and Northfield priests conducted services here twice monthly.
In 1855, St. Michael was founded in Brattleboro with Rev. Charles O'REILLY the first resident pastor. The first Mass was offered here in 1848 by father SHAW who remained for some time. Revs. Jeremiah O'CALLAGHAN and John DALY visited here at irregular intervals.
In 1871, St. Charles was founded in Bellows Falls. Rev. John DALY said the first Mass here in 1848. Revs. DALY and Zephyrin DRUON visited here regularly.
In 1855, Holy Name of Mary was founded in Proctorsville with Rev. Charles O'REILLY coming from Brattleboro. Rev. John B. DALY first visited here in 1848. The parish is now attended by the pastor of St. Joseph in Chester.
When searching for a Franco-Vermonter baptism, marriage or burial the first guide is to search first in Quebec. This is particularly true if the event occurred before about 1840. Quebec marriages can usually be found in the blue Drouin volumes or the Loiselle Index. To search for a Quebec baptism or burial one would have to know the parish and then look in the microfilmed records of that parish.
If an event likely occurred in VT, the first place to look is the VT Vital Records, then the city/town records, and finally in the records of the Catholic Church if there was one in the area at the approximate time of the event. U.S Censuses can be of some help when trying to construct a family, as well as to obtain the approximate year and place each member of the family was born.
Last revision: 02/2002
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