G E N D E R A N D MISSION: T H E F O U N D I N G G E N E R A T I O N S OF T H E SISTERS OF SAINT A N N A N D T H E O B L A T E S OF M A R Y I M M A C U L A T E I N BRITISH C O L U M B I A 1858 -1914 by J A C Q U E L I N E K E N N E D Y G R E S K O B. A . Honours, The University of British Columbia, 1969 M . A . Canadian Studies, Carleton University, 1970 A THESIS SUBMITTED I N P A R T I A L F U L L M E N T OF T H E R E Q U I R E M E N T S FOR T H E D E G R E E OF D O C T O R OF P H I L O S O P H Y in T H E F A C U L T Y OF G R A D U A T E STUDIES (Department of Educational Studies) We accept this thesis as conforming [fta, the required standard T H E UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH C O L U M B I A June 1999 © Jacqueline Kennedy Gresko, 1999 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada DE-6 (2/88) ABSTRACT Most scholars who have researched on missionaries in British Columbia have not taken gender into account. This dissertation narrates and analyzes the biographies of the two founding generations of the Sisters of Saint A n n and the Oblates of Mary Immaculate. It compares their origins in Quebec and Europe, their life histories, their experiences teaching school, and their formation of the next generation of their religious communities in British Columbia. The role of gender in shaping these individuals' lives and identities can be seen in each aspect of the comparison. Both the Oblates and the Sisters experienced the asymmetry of the female and male organizations within the larger church. Over time two Roman Catholic missionary systems evolved in British Columbia: the Sisters' system of educative and caring institutions for the peoples of the province and the Oblates modified reduction system for Aboriginal peoples, known in academic literature as the Durieu system. School teaching, particularly work in residential schools for Aboriginal children, linked the two systems. The French Oblate leaders aimed to masculinize the missions and feminize school teaching. The Canadian Sisters of Saint Ann , however, set most of the educational policies within both their own institutions and those they ran at Oblate Aboriginal missions. Case studies of Oblate brothers and Sisters of Saint A n n work as teachers in 1881 show that the nuns, as members of a separate religious congregation, could negotiate wi th the patriarchs of the Roman Catholic church, whereas the Oblate brothers could not. Such factors affected generational continuity. The Canadian sisterhood reproduced itself in the region as a local family 'dynasty,' whereas the French Oblate order d id not. ii Taking gender into account in a study of pioneer missionaries in British Columbia does not simply reverse the standard history where the Oblates, as men, appear central, and the Sisters of Saint Ann , as women, appear on the margins. Rather the evidence of gender widens the range of discussion and increases awareness of the complexity of the province's social and educational history. iii TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT ii TABLE OF CONTENTS iv ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS vi CHAPTER ONE: GENDER AND MISSION 1 Genesis of Research 1 Concepts of Gender and Mission ; 4 The Generational Groups 6 The Force of Gender 13 Chapter Organization 15 CHAPTER TWO: INTERPRETING THE FABRIC OF MISSIONARY HISTORY 22 Scholarly Perspectives 24 Building on the Literature, Apply ing the Analogy 38 CHAPTER THREE: ORIGINS AND EXPECTATIONS 50 Origins of Religious Congregations of Women in Quebec 50 The Founding of the Sisters of Saint Anne in Quebec 56 The Sisters of Saint Anne's Expectations of Western Missions 62 Origins of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate 64 The Oblates of Mary Immaculate's Expectations of Missions to Vancouver Island and British Columbia 69 Comparison of Origins 74 CHAPTER FOUR: THE LIFE HISTORIES OF THE FIRST GENERATION 89 Lives of the First Twenty-Four Sisters of Saint A n n Leadership 90 The Sisters of Saint A n n as a Group 99 The Lives of the First Thirty Oblates of Mary Immaculate 106 Leadership 107 The Oblates of Mary Immaculate as a Group 112 Comparison 119 Conclusion 123 CHAPTER FIVE: A HALF CENTURY OF MISSION IN BRITISH COLUMBIA 136 A Model For Narration and Analysis 136 1858-1871, The Foundation Years: The Sisters of Saint A n n 138 1858-1871, The Foundation Years: The Oblates 142 1858 To 1871, The Foundation Years: Comparison and Analysis 145 1872 To 1887, The Expansion Years: The Sisters of Saint A n n 149 1872-1887, The Expansion Years: The Oblates 152 1872-1887, The Expansion Years: Comparison and Analysis 156 1888-1910, The Insitutionalization Years: The Sisters of Saint A n n 160 1888-1910, The Institutionalization Years: The Oblates 166 1888-1910, The Institutionalization Years: Comparison and Analysis 170 iv Conclusion: The Sisters' System and the Oblates' System 173 CHAPTER SIX: THE FOUNDING GENERATIONS IN ACTION AS TEACHERS. 188 Oblate Brothers and Sisters of Saint A n n as Teachers in British Columbia 188 New Westminster 192 St. Mary 's Mission 197 St. Joseph's Mission, Williams Lake 201 Biographical Analysis of 1881 Teachers 205 Conclusion 209 CHAPTER SEVEN: CONTINUITY INTO THE NEXT GENERATION 222 Linkages Wi th Regional Families 223 Establishing Noviciates in British Columbia 225 Forming The Next Generation of Missionaries 228 The British Columbia Generation of Sisters of Saint A n n 230 The British Columbia Generation of Oblates 236 Conclusion 242 CHAPTER EIGHT: CONCLUSION 252 Gender and Mission and the Fabric Of History 258 BIBLIOGRAPHY 262 Manuscript Primary Sources 262 Printed Primary Sources 270 Bibliography: Secondary Sources 277 Map 1: Colonial British Columbia 321 Map 2: Major railway routes across British Columbia at the time of the First Wor ld War 322 Appendix 1: Glossary 323 Appendix 2: Sisters of Saint A n n Who Arrived in British Columbia by 1871 327 Appendix 3: Oblates of Mary Immaculate Who Arr ived in British Columbia by 1871 332 Appendix 4: Schools and Institutions Founded by the Sisters of Saint A n n in British Columbia, Yukon and Alaska, and the Founders 337 Appendix 5: Schools and Institutions Founded by the Oblates of Mary Immaculate in Oregon Territory and British Columbia, and the Founders 340 Appendix 6: Entrants to the Sisters of Saint A n n from British Columbia Families 345 Appendix 7: Entrants to the Oblates of Mary Immaculate from British Columbia Families 349 A C K N O W L E D G E M E N T S I would like to thank my advisor Professor Jean Barman and the other members of my committee, Dean Nancy Sheehan and Professor J. Donald Wilson, for their guidance in completion of this dissertation. The Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblates of Mary Immaculate provided archival access. I particularly appreciated the advice of Margaret Cantwell SSA, Edith Down SSA, Leo Casey O M I and the late Thomas Lascelles O M I . Archivists, librarians and historians at several institutions assisted research and writing. Special thanks go to Robert Fraser and the editorial staff of the Dictionary of Canadian Biography and Professor Raymond Huel , History Department, University of Lethbridge and director of the Western Oblate Project. Friends and colleagues also encouraged me, especially Tony Arruda, Anita Bonson, Helen Brown, Penney Clark, Norah Lewis, Ruth Sandwell, Joyce Shales, and the late Maurice Hodgson. M y cousins Anita Charpentier s.c.i.m., Lucienne Desautels r.j.m., and Diane Payment, gave me valuable insights from their writing. M y final vote of thanks goes to family members who helped out with domestic matters as well as research and writing: Robin, Genevieve and Brian Gresko, Suzanne Kennedy Eng, Lea and Jack Terpenning. vi CHAPTER ONE: GENDER AND MISSION This dissertation narrates and analyzes the biographies of two founding generations of missionaries in British Columbia, the Sisters of Saint A n n and the Oblates of Mary Immaculate. It compares their origins in Quebec and Europe, their life histories, their experiences teaching school, and their formation of the next generation of their religious communities in British Columbia. The missionaries to be discussed are the twenty-four Sisters of Saint A n n who went from the Montreal diocese to the Pacific Coast between 1858 and 1871, setting the pattern for the 103 nuns who followed them between 1872 and 1913, and for the 54 who trained in the Victoria noviciate between 1890 and 1914.1 The French-based Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, who had begun western missions in Oregon in 1847, moved northward to the adjacent British colonies in 1858. By 1871 a total of thirty Oblate priests and brothers had journeyed to the Pacific Coast from France or Ireland. These men also set the pattern for the 94 who followed from Europe or made their noviciate in British Columbia.2 The main research questions regarding the collective biographies are: how did members of the two orders shape their lives and identities and what role d id gender play in that process. The findings of the dissertation link into the broader history of gender, missions and education in British Columbia, and indeed Canada. GENESIS OF RESEARCH This dissertation grows out of two decades of personal research on Roman Catholic missionary effort and Aboriginal responses in the region.^ That effort, like most historical work, had focussed on the records of male organizations, particularly 1 the French Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate (founded in 1816) and the Canadian Department of Indian Affairs. Over time I also became interested in the history of the main female Roman Catholic congregation in British Columbia, the Sisters of Saint Ann , who were the western branch of the Sisters of Saint Anne of Lachine, Quebec (founded in 1850). These women religious, popularly called nuns or sisters, d id much of the mission work, especially the teaching of Aboriginal and settler children. I wanted to know how the western Sisters of Saint A n n functioned as a group of women educators within a patriarchal religion. Why did western historians, as Susan Armitage asked in 1986, focus on male leaders and treat women such as nuns like soldiers "mentioned in passing"? I began to believe that history might read quite differently if nuns' lives were taken into account, allowing gender to become "a central category of historical analysis.'"^ Dictionary of Canadian Biography assignments on three Oblates and on the first superior of the Sisters of Saint A n n in British Columbia oriented me to a collective biography project.^ When I first drafted a collective biography of the founding Sisters of Saint A n n in the West, I included comparisons with the pioneer Oblates. One essay in that project, a comparison of teaching Sisters and brothers, was presented to a symposium on the history of the Oblates in Western and Northern Canada at Saint Boniface in 1995.6 Another essay, "Taking the Vei l West: The Sisters of Saint A n n in British Columbia 1858-1914," was presented to the Canadian History of Education Association meeting in Toronto, October 1996. Historians attending both conferences remarked on the nuns' relative autonomy in British Columbia compared wi th the domination of female religious institutes by male ecclesiastics in Quebec. These comments and those of my advisor, Professor Jean Barman, made me change direction. 2 I realized I could not discuss the Sisters' lives and careers without also discussing those of the male missionaries. The comparisons and the role played by gender thus have become central rather than peripheral in my dissertation. Race is a theme that might also be explored in discussing the biographies of Roman Catholic missionaries to the Aboriginal peoples of British Columbia, and particularly as regards their work in Indian residential schools. However, two decades of research on that topic has made me recognize how gendered those historical situations were. While Canadian scholars have explored a range of records on gendered aspects of public school systems, such as the feminization of teaching, they have, for the most part, looked only at the archives of male missionaries and governments on Indian residential schools. I think it is important and timely to consider the female missionaries' lives and archives, in order to effect a more balanced interpretation. M y work here draws on the larger project of including women and gender in British Columbia history led by Gil l ian Creese and Veronica Strong-Boag. They contend that "scholarly debate" about the province "has focused on .... the dynamics of race and class" while ignoring gender. Furthermore, the polarized debate, "like the tradition of 'malestream' thought in academic research" has made it difficult for "[fjemale and feminist scholars ... to enter a contest whose terms have already largely excluded their contribution."^ It is not just nuns and female missionaries, but all women who have been left out of most historical discussions to date. Gai l Cuthbert Brandt, in her presidential address to the Canadian Historical Association in 1992, makes similar remarks. Some historians, she says, lament that national political history has been left aside for specialized research on women, or 3 working class, or ethnic or regional history. Yet Brandt, using themes from women's history, suggests that rethinking social and political history connections could integrate the two fields and come to better reflect Canadian complexity. She calls for a reconceptualization of politics to include activities and actors neglected earlier, for example unions and women.8 Brandt remarks that studying the links between political institutions and feminine social movements can give us a better understanding of politics. For example, Canadian women's organizations founded institutions of the welfare state but their contributions are overlooked by historians studying its origins. Brandt cites Joan Scott's comment that, "Political history has, in a sense, been enacted on the field of gender," as part of her challenge to historians of Canada to re-examine their premises and categories. 9 CONCEPTS OF GENDER AND MISSION Joan Scott's essay, "Gender: A Useful Category of Historical Analysis," gives the definition basic to this dissertation. Scott defines gender as "a constitutive element of social relationships based on perceived differences between the sexes, and gender is a primary way of signifying relationships of power." Subsets to the social relationships of gender are symbols, normative concepts, social institutions and subjective identity. Scott recognizes that psychoanalysis "offers an important theory about the reproduction of gender," but argues historians ought "to examine the ways in which gendered identities are substantively constructed and relate their findings to a range of activities, social organizations, and historically specific cultural representations." She recommends historical biographers' efforts on this topic and "collective treatments," for 4 example, "studies of the terms of construction of gender identity for British Colonial administrators in India."10 Joan Scott's advice suits my inclination as an historian to research and write history as informed by feminist theory, rather than to test some theory or device in manipulating an historical data base. Scott's recommendation has been taken up in Canada by Joy Parr, among others, in her collective biography, The Gender of Breadwinners: Women, M e n and Change in Two Industrial Towns 1880 - 1950. Extending Scott's use of gender as a category, Parr argues for examination "of the ways in which social identities are simultaneously formed from a multiplicity of elements," . and "forged in particular spatial and temporal settings." Identities, Parr maintains, are multifaceted and relational in time and space. H Mission as a concept in this dissertation and in British Columbia history needs definition too. Mission refers to the efforts of male and female members of Roman Catholic religious congregations in British Columbia during the late-nineteenth century to establish or, given earlier activities in the fur trade period, to extend their religion and its institutions. Like many other contemporary missionaries they volunteered for service. However, the congregation members were different from most non-Roman Catholic missionaries as they belonged to organizations founded by francophones and lived communally under vows of poverty, celibacy and obedience. Roman Catholic and francophone missionary activity w i l l not be considered as a simple subset of British "colonial conquest" of the Pacific West. Rather, the dissertation w i l l attempt to contribute, as British Columbia scholar Gail Edwards proposes, to the "reintegration of religious and missionary history into the broader constructs of social and cultural history through an examination of the ways in which religious beliefs shape and are 5 shaped by social and cultural identity." The goal is greater understanding of how "religious activity," "British imperial hegemony," and gender identities intersected. 12 THE GENERATIONAL GROUPS By the time of British Columbia's entry into Confederation in 1871, the group of women religious known in Quebec as 'les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne,' and in British Columbia as the Sisters of Saint Ann , and the Oblates of Mary Immaculate had each firmly established their tradition of service in the province. The Sisters of Saint A n n had begun select and charity schools, orphanages, some nursing, and Native mission schools. The western houses of the congregation had been organized as a Vicariate, and the Victoria convent had become the western Motherhouse. Fortunately, for my purposes, the twenty-four Sisters of Saint A n n who had arrived in British Columbia by 1871 had lives and careers which encompass the range of the sisterhood's experience: select academies, parochial schools, orphanages, elementary schools for boys as well as girls, care of the sick and elderly, and Indian residential schools. This group of women religious provided foundresses for convents and schools throughout the province. Two of this group went into St. Joseph's Hospital, Victoria, after 1876, one as superior, one as laundry and geriatric coordinator; and others went to Alaskan missions after 1886. By the years 1914-1920, all but a few of the founding group of Sisters in the west had died. In religious terms, the women who joined the congregation of the Sisters of Saint Anne in Quebec between its founding in 1850, and the First Vatican Council , 1869-1870, received a different formation, and had a different cultural orientation than those who joined later.13 jo A n n Kay McNamara remarks that the culture or way of life of Catholic sisterhoods became more rigid and formalized after the First Vatican Council as the "Roman congregation of Bishops and Regulars aimed to fit their statutes into a 6 common mold, often with little regard for their initial charism [founding purpose and culture]." In the politics of the late nineteenth-century church, "the hierarchy began to treat women religious as at least auxiliary to the clerical elite," distinguishing them from "the rest of the laity." These women's "subaltern status was confirmed by the reservation of the term 'missionary' to ordained priests." 14 It was in this religious life context that the twenty-four Sisters of Saint A n n negotiated the spirit and works of their congregation in the West. They lived out their lives under pre-1917 Canon Law, a pioneer hierarchy and devotional Roman Catholicism. Their congregation would not mature as a religious institute until the latter years of their lives. That maturity came from both external and internal sources, as the congregation attained full papal recognition (1884), and promoted a study of the holiness of its mother foundress.15 The rationale for using 1871 as the terminal date by which pioneer Oblates arrived in British Columbia parallels that for the Sisters of Saint Ann . By mid-century a group of Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate had come from Europe, especially from France, and laid the foundation of the congregation's works in western Nor th America. Conflicts with the French-Canadian bishops and Oregon and Washington territory settlers led the Oblates to move their Pacific Coast operations north to British colonial territory in 1858.16 Oblates focussed on evangelizing the Aboriginal peoples, although they also established parishes for white settlers and some schools. By 1871 the Oblates had organized central missions for serving the districts of Fraser.Valley and Coast, Okanagan-Kamloops, Kootenays, Cariboo-Chilcotin and Northern Interior. The Oblates headquartered their missionary and diocesan efforts at St. Peter's, New Westminster. This parish was also the centre for St. Charles Mission 7 serving the Salishan peoples of the Fraser Valley and adjacent Coast. In 1863 the Oblate superior had become the Roman Catholic bishop for the mainland of the colony. 17 After British Columbia joined Canada in 1871 Roman Catholic church organization d id not change much. The Victoria-based ecclesiastical see of Vancouver Island remained separate and tributary to the American archepiscopal see of Portland, Oregon until 1903. Thus Victoria developed as part of an American diocese. 18 Unti l 1908-1909, the mainland, the diocese of New Westminster, led by Oblate bishops who were also local superiors for their order, was also linked to French and Canadian developments. By the 1890s, the Oblates began to attract Irish and French-Canadian vocations for the British Columbia missions from their Ottawa diocese and university and parishes in Montreal I 9 Pre-1871 Oblates laid out the pattern for the congregation in religious practice and works. The conservative ultramontane character of these men was enhanced by the activity of the Vatican regarding religious institutes after the Council of 1870. Post 1900 changes in Canon Law and the Roman Catholic hierarchy affected the Oblates just as they d id the Sisters of Saint Ann . The impact of French and Canadian politics on the French-based Oblates made their evolution much different from that of the Sisters of Saint Ann.20 For example, military conscription in France during the Franco-Prussian war of 1870 limited Oblate overseas mission initiatives. The coming of the federal department of Indian Affairs to British Columbia in 1872 opened up opportunities for Oblates as official church leaders to access funds for their Indian schools. Throughout this time period, ethnic/national tensions strained negotiations for missions and schools. These tensions were present both within the male congregation (between the 8 French and French-Canadian members and between the French and Irish members) and within Canadian public life (between French and English generally).21 By the 1900s the Sisters of Saint A n n and the Oblates of Mary Immaculate were not the only Roman Catholic religious orders operating in British Columbia. Several other teaching congregations of women and men had come to the province.22 For example, the Sisters of the Chi ld Jesus arrived from France to staff schools at Williams Lake and North Vancouver. The New Jersey based Sisters of Saint Joseph of Peace established schools in the Kootenays. Private schools, such as the Methodist Columbia College in N e w Westminster and the Anglican sisterhood's A l l Hallows School at Yale, competed for students with Saint Ann's academies located in Victoria, Vancouver, N e w Westminster and Kamloops. Competition for fee-paying pupils affected what the Sisters of Saint A n n could do regarding subsidizing their other charitable activities: schools, orphanages and hospitals. The terminal date of 1914 for this dissertation represents more of a break for the Oblates than it does for the Sisters of Saint Ann. By 1909 the Oblates no longer controlled the diocese of Vancouver, the mainland of the province. They had moved the headquarters of the diocese from St. Peter's New Westminster to Holy Rosary, in the rising metropolis of Vancouver. Irish and Irish Canadian Oblates were replacing veteran French missionaries. Conflicts of French and English nationalism shadowed the Oblate congregation in Canada. This situation led, in 1926 to the split of the Canadian Oblate provinces along linguistic lines.23 After that date the Oblates made English-speaking areas of Ontario and Western Canada into one province, French-speaking communities into another, and German speaking communities into a third. Furthermore, by the 1920s, other male congregations such as the Redemptorists were 9 establishing parishes in Vancouver and preaching missions in the province. In that decade, differences between Oblate priests and the archbishop led h im to bring in other priests to replace the Oblates at Holy Rosary Cathedral in Vancouver. Twentieth-century changes in the Roman Catholic church leadership in British Columbia also changed the context of the Sisters of Saint Ann's lives and works. The regional or metropolitan archbishop had shifted from Portland, Oregon to Victoria, British Columbia in 1903, and then to Vancouver in 1908. By 1909 the Roman Catholic archbishop for British Columbia was no longer a Belgian with west coast experience, nor an Oblate from France. The new archbishop, Nei l McNe i l , had Nova Scotian roots and Newfoundland experience. He was no doubt influenced by the eastern heritage of conflicts among Acadian, French-Canadian and Anglo-Irish Roman Catholics. M c N e i l told the Sisters of Saint A n n they would provide teachers for parochial schools, while the Religious of the Sacred Heart would be invited to establish an elite convent in Vancouver.25 The Sisters of Saint A n n complied, but continued fee-paying select academies in centres outside Vancouver, and re-established one in that city in 1926. The first generation of Sisters of Saint A n n in British Columbia negotiated particular places for themselves in the patriarchal church, and with the families of the region. The Sisters' system of educative and caring institutions was given little mention in the male missionary records of the nineteenth century. Later it was also overlooked or minimized and marginalized in the gendered constructions of historians. The Oblates' Durieu System, by contrast, was featured in the same records and in the historical literature.26 Briefly the Durieu system refers to the 1954 formulation of anthropologist E d w i n M . Lemert on the history of Roman Catholic missions to some Salishan peoples of 10 British Columbia. He contends that the Homalco, Klahoose, Sliammon and Sechelt, "at a relatively early contact period" almost completely gave up "their ceremonial culture," and that there was "relatively complete Catholicization of the tribes ... under the aegis and control of Bishop Durieu's 'System.'" Lemert states that "this system of social control" declined abruptly "under the impact of external changes in the ... missionary order." The social control consisted of priests and their appointed Aboriginal officials supervising converts in communities relocated to villages wi th new houses and dominating churches.27 Research on Durieu's biography and research for this dissertation indicates Lemert misrepresented the history of Oblate missionary effort and the Salish response. The Oblate mission methodology was a composite system, not Durieu's personal creation. His order had difficulty applying it all along owing to a combination of their own shortage of manpower and Salish resistance. However, as the Oblate records are in French and most academics working on the Salish are English-speaking, Lemert's view of Roman Catholic mission history in British Columbia has remained the standard version. Some scholars have, however, recognized that the Durieu system was actually an Oblate system,28 and that it was a modified 'reduction' system, an adaptation of the Roman Catholic model village or 'reduction' for the missions of Latin America in the sixteenth century.29 Thus, in this dissertation, the terms Oblate system and modified reduction system w i l l be used as well as Durieu system for the work of the male group of missionaries. Returning now to consideration of the Sisters of Saint Ann , it is important to note that despite the patriarchal nature of the church, these women were not without agency or respect. They saw themselves as "religieuses missionnaires," setting out for the west just as St. Francis Xavier had left for the East years before.30 They became known for 11 "Sisters' schools" run in English for boys and girls, both Native and non-Native, by women both French Canadian and Irish Canadian.^l Meanwhile contemporary male missionaries, particularly the Oblate Fathers, saw themselves as the Catholic mission force to First Nations in British Columbia, and as the official representatives there of the Roman Catholic Church. They were God's chosen French and Irish men, capable of outdistancing the European Jesuits and secular French-Canadian priests, and also of outflanking Anglo-Saxon Protestant missionaries.32 Yet the Oblates, even with the assistance of their lower rank of Brothers, had difficulties providing teachers for schools. They also had to contend wi th the politics of the Roman Catholic church and the larger Anglo-Protestant society. The Sisters of Saint Ann , like the Oblates, were limited by religious and racial perspectives and by the responses of the Aboriginal and settler populations to their ministrations. These missionaries of francophone background accepted the prevailing racial hierarchy and white supremacy attitudes of the Anglo-Saxon settler majority. The women missionaries were also affected by the Victorian domestic ideology, also termed the cult of true womanhood.33 The bonds of womanhood could, however, cut both ways and provide the sisterhood with support from within the church and from the society outside. The terminal date of 1914 for this study marks the time by which most pioneer generation Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblates were retiring or dying. It also represents the Wor ld War I era transformation of both the Catholic Church and Canadian society. The Sisters faced these changes as a western province of the Lachine-based Sisters of Saint Anne, and under a provincial superior who herself was drawn from the graduates of their Victoria convent academy. The Oblates had expanded internationally and 12 moved their generalate to Rome, but French remained the language of their congregation. The Oblates had far fewer vocations from the Pacific Coast of Canada. Unlike the Sisters of Saint Ann , they had no local graduate to promote as provincial superior when Augustin Dontenwill was elected superior general of the congregation in 1908. The Vatican appointed Nova Scotian Nei l M c N e i l as the next archbishop of Vancouver. Neither he nor his 1912 successor were Oblates.34 T H E F O R C E O F G E N D E R Examination of the first generations of Oblates and Sisters emphasizes the important role played by gender in defining the meaning given to mission. The two groups came to British Columbia with different senses of mission. These were modified within this setting in good part due to the force of gender. For the Oblates, notions of masculinity impeded their mission in British Columbia in two important areas -teaching and the preparation of a succeeding generation. The structure and expectations of the church, as well as the background itself of the Oblate order, encouraged the Oblates to look outward beyond British Columbia and to define themselves in ways that maximized their individual and group self-importance. They always had to prove themselves. They had to be heroes. Ongoing, sustained contact wi th local communities was limited, both because of small numbers on the ground and because the Oblates' principal interest was not so much in British Columbia as it was in mission as an abstract concept intended to enhance their self worth as individuals and as a religious order. Within such a set of values, grounded firmly in gender, teaching was only of marginal appeal. Both the French Oblate superiors, and the French Oblates who dominated the British Columbia pioneer generation of their order, regarded Frenchmen adventuring in the wilderness for Aboriginal converts as the most manly 13 missionaries. Teaching was for women. Oblate priests were going to the ends of the earth, to the heights of missionary effort in official, male Roman Catholic terms. They were fulfilling the nineteenth-century French belief in Gesta Dei per Francos.^ Irish Oblates who wanted to accommodate English colonists or Canadian settlers were, not surprisingly, subordinated or sidelined by French superiors. This same patriarchy inside and outside the church had far less interest in the Sisters as an order of women, and in everyday oversight of them. O n paper, Church regulations ensured the female congregation's overall dependence on the male hierarchy. But the church leaders' persistent focus on the male official church meant, ironically, that the Sisters actually had more freedom of action in the field than the rules prescribed. Patriarchy reduced the Sisters' expectations for themselves compared wi th the Oblates. The nuns' gender officially limited them in both church and secular society. As women they could not become priests in the church, and in Canadian society they were not yet legal persons. The Sisters, by gender and socialization, saw themselves more within the context of a religious community as a sisterhood than as individuals jockeying for power, or as members of preferred and subordinate ethnic groups. For example, the French-Canadian pioneer superior wisely requested an English-speaking replacement in Victoria to guide the Sisters' efforts in what had become a largely anglophone goldrush colony. The Irish woman who became the directress in the west had the support of her French-Canadian superiors and all congregation members. They overcame ethnic differences unlike their male counterparts. A t the ordinary level, the women's organization, in contrast wi th the Oblates, saw several sets of siblings follow one another into the sisterhood and move west to its missions. As Catholics the Sisters believed that their teaching and charitable 14 service would ultimately give them equal spiritual status to the men in heaven. They could model themselves on male Apostles or missionaries like Saint Francis Xavier while they did 'subordinate' and 'domestic' feminine work as part of a group akin, in their minds, to the female relatives of Christ (Anne, Mary and Elizabeth) or the gospel women of the early church. Compared to the Oblates, the Sisters in overall terms found more satisfaction with their circumstances, which meant that the first generation was more likely both to remain in the order and in British Columbia. C H A P T E R O R G A N I Z A T I O N This introductory chapter indicates the research focus on the role gender played in shaping individual lives and identities. I share Joy Parr's concern that today's theory can cast shadows and patterns of its own over the fabric or evidence of the past.36 it is important to consider the historical situation of the documents, something postmodernist scholars cannot do from textual analysis alone.37 Chapter Two discusses the secondary literature as well as the primary sources consulted for this dissertation. Chapter Three looks at the background and expectations of the Sisters of Saint A n n and Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate for their British Columbia missions. Missionary ambitions to leave the homeland and evangelize the nations at the ends of the earth affected women as well as men. The next chapter compares the lives of the first generation Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblates in British Columbia. It shows the autonomy of each religious congregation, and the asymmetry or disparity of the female and male organizations within the larger church. Next, an essay discussing the activities of the two founding generations and the additions to them from 1858 to 1914 emphasizes the differences in the realization of the two congregations' missions, particularly as they were grounded in gender. Politics 15 evolved on a field of gender, rather than gender being a sideline of political development.38 Over time two Roman Catholic missionary systems evolved in British Columbia, the Sisters' System and the Oblates' Durieu System. Following on this narrative Chapter Six probes the comparable work of the two groups by discussing the teaching background of each group, and explores case studies on the Sisters and the Oblates as teachers in the year 1881. It demonstrates the asymmetry of gender, the feminization of teaching and the masculinization of mission. Chapter Seven looks at continuity into the next generation, comparing the Sisters' links with regional families and their ability to attract novices from the province, and the Oblates' relative lack of local connections and vocations. The conclusion summarizes the discussion of the role of gender in missionary lives and historical identities. Findings on how gender assumptions shaped both the activities of the British Columbia missionaries and the historiography concerning them are then related to wider historical studies. 16 Notes 1 Archives of the Sisters of Saint Ann, Victoria, B.C. [ASSAV] RG 1 S24 Box 24 file 1-1 Dates of Arrival of Sisters in Victoria. The noviciate numbers were established from noviciate registers and necrologies. Exact figures are difficult to establish as several women came west from the Lachine noviciate before their profession of vows. Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne or in English, the Sisters of Saint Anne, were founded at Vaudreuil, Quebec in 1850. They are known in British Columbia as the Sisters of Saint Ann. I am following the Dictionary of Canadian Biography for spelling of French-Canadian names and their translations in English texts, except for the spelling of Saint Ann in the British Columbia congregational name. The spelling may vary slightly from that in the history of the congregation in British Columbia by Sister Mary Margaret Down [Edith Down], SSA, A Century of Service 1858-1958: A history of the Sisters of Saint Ann and their contribution to education in British Columbia, the Yukon and Alaska (Victoria: The Sisters of Saint Ann and Morriss Printing, 1966). The terms 'Sister' and 'nun' are used interchangeably in academic and Roman Catholic Church literature today according to Mary Jo Weaver, New Catholic Women: A Contemporary Challenge to Religious Authority (San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1985), xiv. Technically speaking, sisters are those working actively outside cloister or enclosure, and nuns are members of "contemplative communties perpetually enclosed." Some scholars contend historians should use the terms 'woman religious' or 'Sister' rather than 'nun.' However, English-speaking historians understand the terms 'Sister' or 'nun' better than 'woman religious.' Similarly the term order should technically only be applied to nuns under solemn vows, and the term congregation used for sisters living active lives and taking simple vows. See also W.B. Ryan, "Sister, Religious," New Catholic Encyclopedia (New York: McGraw Hill, 1967), 261; Evangeline Thomas CSJ, Women Religious History Sources: A Guide to Repositories in the United States (New York: R.R. Bowker Co., 1983), xxv. For further definitions of religious history terms see Michel Theriault, Les instituts de vie consacree au Canada depuis les debuts de la Nouvelle-France jusqu'a aujourd'hui. The institutes of the consecrated life in Canada from the beginning of New France up to the present (Ottawa: National Library, 1980). This book provides parallel texts in French and English on terminology and also a brief history of each insititute. For a recent discussion of what the terms of religious life in nineteenth-century France and Quebec see the appendix, "Pour s'y retrouver dans les congregations religieuses," in Guy Laperriere, Les congregations religieuses de la France au Quebec 1880-1914. Tome 1. Premieres bourrasques (Sainte-Foy: Les Presses de l'Universite Laval, 1996), 205-211. 2 Donat Levasseur, o.m.i., Les Oblats de Marie Immaculee dans 1'Quest et le Nord du Canada 1845-1967 (Edmonton: The University of Alberta Press and Western Canadian Publishers, 1995), 272 Appendice VI, "Les Oblats arrives en Colombie Britannique, 1872-1926," and 238. The appendix table gives the total of 94. Growth in Oblate personnel in B.C. was slow. There were 17 priests and 9 brothers in 1871 and 36 priests and 11 brothers in 1926. France sent no more Oblates after 1908. Only one Irish brother came between 1907 and 1926. The majority of new priests and brothers came from eastern Canada. The minor seminary for preparing priests in New Westminster, B.C. ran only from 1896 to 1909 as the Catholic population could not furnish enough candidates to warrant the expense of the institution. Unlike the Sisters of Saint Ann, the Oblate archives for British Columbia have no full listing of arrivals in the province, no complete noviciate register and no full run of necrologies (obituaries). The Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, St. Paul's Province Archives, Vancouver, is the full title of the Oblate Archives, Vancouver. Gaston Carriere, o.m.i., produced three volumes of a biographical dictionary on Oblates who served in Canada: Dictionnaire biographique des Oblats de Marie-Immaculee au Canada (Ottawa: Editions de l'Universite d'Ottawa, tome 11976, tome II 1977, tome III 1979). "The term 'oblate' identifies a person who has dedicated himself/herself to the service of God through religious life. For the Oblates of Mary Immaculate this was done in a formal ceremony, the perpetual oblation or vows, that took place prior to ordination [as a priest]." Raymond Huel, Proclaiming 17 the Gospel to the Indians and the Metis (Edmonton: The University of Alberta Press and Western Canadian Publishers, 1996), 305 note 4. 3 The term Aboriginal is used in this study more than the terms Native, First Nations or Indian. Aboriginal is more inclusive than First Nations. The terms Native and Indian have been used where found in the original historical record. The term First Nations is a respectful term, but is 1980s vintage. Historically in British Columbia anglophone writers have used the terms Indian or Native or Half Breed. Francophone writers have used Indien and Metis. The issue of voice or appropriation is a complex one in British Columbia history. Persons who now claim First Nations status may descend from Hawaiians or Mexicans or Europeans or French-Canadians as wel l as First Nations. This dissertation w i l l use the term Halfbreed not Metis as Jean Barman does in The West Beyond the West: A History of British Columbia, Revised Edition (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1996), 170-172. Barman explains that the twentieth century "disappearance from polite vocabulary of the term half-breed has obscured ... historical reality." In British Columbia the offspring of "liaisons between European men and native women .... were almost universally known, both by themselves and by others, as half-breeds,... but almost never as Metis, the prairie term for the descendants of Indian women and French-Canadian fur traders." Note also that Barman uses the spelling halfbreed in most of her publications. 4 Susan H. Armitage, "Women and Western American History," Paper presented to the Canadian Historical Association, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, June 1986. 5 Jacqueline Gresko, "Louis-Joseph d'Herbomez," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XI (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1982) 401-402; "Paul Durieu," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XII (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1990), 281-285; "James Maria McGuckin," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XII I (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1994), 641-642; and "Salomee Valois, named Soeur Marie du Sacre-Coeur [known in British Columbia as Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart]," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XIII , 1048-1049. 6 Published as Jacqueline Gresko, "The 'Serfs of the System?': Oblate Brothers and the Sisters of Saint A n n in British Columbia Schools, 1858-1920," in Western Oblate Studies 4/Etudes Oblates de 1'Quest 4, ed. R. Huel (Edmonton: Western Canadian Publishers, 1996): 119-142. ^ Gill ian Creese and Veronica Strong-Boag, "Introduction: Taking Gender into Account in British Columbia," in British Columbia Reconsidered, ed. G. Creese and V. Strong-Boag (Vancouver:Press Gang, 1992), 3-5. 8 Gail Cuthbert Brandt, "National Unity and the Politics of Political History, Tournal of the Canadian Historical Association 3 (1992): 3-11. 9 Joan Scott, Gender and the Politics of History (New York: Columbia University Press, 1988), 49, cited by Brandt, "National Unity," 10. 10 Joan Scott, "Gender: A Useful Category of Historical Analysis," in Gender and the Politics of History (New York: Columbia University Press, 1988), 42-44. H Joy Parr, The Gender of Breadwinners: Women, Men and Change in Two Industrial Towns 1880-1950 (University of Toronto Press, 1990), 9. 12 Gail Edwards, "Wr i t ing Religion into the History of British Columbia: A Review Essay," BC Studies 113 (Spring 1997): 101-105. 18 ^ Vatican Council I, a meeting of Roman Catholic church leaders, was called by Pope Pius IX and met from December 8,1869 to July 18,1870. Vatican II or 'The Council' was called by Pope John XXIII in 1959 and met from 1962-1965. Vatican Council II brought major changes to the church including use of vernacular rather than Latin in liturgies and revisions of rules and cosumes of religious congregations. It also shifted the emphasis of Roman Catholicism from hierarchical and devotional to congregational culture. Modern historians studying Roman Catholicism before the 1870s or before the 1960s need to take note of the changes the councils brought. Thomas Bokenkotter, A Concise History of the Catholic Church, Revised Edition (New York: Image Books, 1979), 333-337 and 411-420. 14 Jo Ann Kay McNamara, Sisters in Arms. Catholic Nuns Through Two Millenia (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1996), 609. 15 Christine Mailloux, SSA, Esther Blondin, Prophet for Today, trans, by Eileen Gallagher SSA (Montreal: Editions Paulines, 1989), p. 147 on Pope Leo XIII's official approval of the Sisters of Saint Anne, May 2,1884; and 121 on study of the holiness of the foundress beginning in 1892 with the efforts of Sister Mary Irene, Prefect of Studies. Papal recognition of a congregation is defined in the glossary provided by Susan Carol Peterson and Courtney Ann Vaughan-Roberson, Women With Vision: The Presentation Sisters of South Dakota 1880-1985 (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1988). A pontifical congregation is a congregation of religious women or men whose constitution has been approved by the pope and whose ultimate governance derives from the pope. This type of congregation is the opposite of a diocesan one under the bishop's control. Sisterhoods sought pontifical approval in order to do independent missionary work, and also for status. This point has a complex history as often nineteenth-century bishops wanted sisters to help with schools and charitable institutions, but preferred to control a local branch of a respected congregation, rather than having its superior general and council, or the bishop of the home diocese, direct the assignment of sisters. 16 Vincent J. McNally, "Fighting for a Foundation: Oblate Beginnings in Far Western Canada, 1847-1864," in Western Oblate Studies 4/Etudes Oblates de 1'Quest 4, ed. R. Huel (Edmonton: Western Canadian Publishers, 1996): 47-70. 1^ Louis-Joseph d'Herbomez was named titular bishop of Melitopolis and vicar apostolic of British Columbia 22 December, 1863. He was consecrated 9 October 1864. Carriere, Dictionnaire biographique tome I, 286. 18 Vincent J. McNally, "Victoria: An American Diocese in Canada," CCHA Historical Studies 57 (1990): 7-28. i y For Oblate history in British Columbia see Levasseur, Les Oblats (1995), 91-103, 229-246. A popular English-language discussion is available in Kay Cronin, Cross in the Wilderness (Vancouver: Mitchell Press, 1960). 20 For English-language discussion of Oblate history in Western Canada see Raymond Huel, Proclaiming the Gospel, and Robert Choquette, The Oblate Assault on Canada's Northwest (Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press, 1995). 21 See E. Brian Titley, A Narrow Vision: Duncan Campbell Scott and the Administration of Indian Affairs in Canada (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1986). " No overall history of Catholic education in British Columbia exists. For an introductory survey see Sister Mary Margaret Down SSA [Edith Down], "The History of Catholic Education in British Columbia 1847-1900," CCHA Study Sessions 50, 2 (1983): 569-590. 19 2 3 Levasseur, Les Oblats (1995), 238, and Choquette, Oblate Assault, 205-208, 221. 24 Paul Laverdure, Redemption and Renewal: The Redemptorists of English Canada, 1834-1994 (Toronto: Dundurn Press, 1996). 2 5 See Archives of the Sisters of Sainte-Anne Lachine [ASSAL] B51/ 74,7, 79, handwritten letter, N. McNei l , Archbishop Vancouver, to Dear Mother General, September 2,1910. Archbishop McNei l had the support of Bishop McDonald of Victoria who had gone to Montreal to discuss this project. There is no printed history of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Vancouver. Margaret Whitehead, ed., They Call Me Father (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1988), p. 183, n. 83, identifies Archbishop Nei l McNei l as formerly bishop of St. Georges, Newfoundland. In 1912 he became archbishop of Toronto. According to The Canadian Who's Who 1910 (Toronto: Musson, 1910), 161, McNei l was born in Nova Scotia in 1851. He studied at Saint Francis Xavier College in Antigonish and at the Propaganda in Rome before his 1879 ordination. He then taught and administrated at Saint Francis Xavier. He became bishop of St. Georges, Newfoundland in 1895 and archbishop of Vancouver in January 1910. Canada Ecclesiastique 1908 gives the spelling St. Georges wi th no apostrophe. The Religious of the Sacred Heart established the Convent of the Sacred Heart in Point Grey municipality [Vancouver] in 1912. Their first Canadian convent was St. Jacques in 1842, transferred to the Montreal area a decade later. They established a Halifax convent in 1847. There is no overall history of Catholic women religious in British Columbia. See Sister Mary Margaret [Edith Down], "The History of Catholic Education in British Columbia 1847-1900." 2 6 Edwin M. Lemert, "The Life and Death of an Indian State," Human Organization 13,3 (Fall 1954): 23-27. This formulation of the Durieu system remains the basic English-language source for modern anglophone scholars, e.g. Elizabeth Furniss, "Resistance, Coercion and Revitalization: The Shuswap Encounter w i th Roman Catholic Missionaries, 1860-1900," Ethnohistory 42,2 (Spring 1995): 231-263. 2 ^ Lemert, "The Life and Death of an Indian State," 23. 2 ^ Robin Fisher, Contact and Conflict: Indian-European Relations in British Columbia, 1774-1890 (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1977), 138-139. 2 9 Vincent J. McNally, "From the Archives: A Defense of the 'Durieu System,'" Bulletin Western Canadian Publishers 26 (June 1997), 17-20. 30 I noticed the term 'religieuse missionnaire' while preparing Gresko, "Salomee Valois, named Soeur Marie du Sacre-Coeur [known in British Columbia as Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart]," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Vol. X I I I , 1048-1049. Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart, like other pioneer Sisters of Saint A n n in British Columbia, signed her letters home as 'religieuse missionnaire,' just as missionary priests distinguished themselves as 'pretre, missionnaire.' See Sister Mary Rollande, s.s.a. [Marie Besner], Soeur Marie du Sacre-Coeur s.s.a., superieure-fondatrice a Victoria 1858 (Lachine: Imprimerie Sainte-Anne, 1949), 54-59. This biography includes mention of this sister's signature on letters to her nephews and nieces in Quebec. See also McNamara, Sisters in Arms, 609, on"the reservation of the term 'missionary' to ordained priests." 31 ASSAL Letterbook [British Columbia] No. 227. Louis O M I Vicaire Apostolique a Ma Reverende Mere [Superior General of the Sisters of Saint Anne], 9 ju in 1877, regarding calls for "une ecole des Soeurs" at Kamloops, B.C., as soon as possible. Also for English-language support of the Sisters' schools in New Westminster, B.C. see Frances Herring, In the Pathless West (London: T. Fisher Unwin , 1904), 147-148. 20 3 2 Choquette, Oblate Assault 205, 221. i 6 Barbara Welter, "The Cult of True Womanhood: 1820-1860," American Quarterly 18 (Summer 1966); Carroll Smith-Rosenberg, Disorderly Conduct: Visions of Gender in Victorian America (New York: Oxford University Press, 1985), 12-13. For a Canadian discussion see Alison Prentice et al, Canadian Women: A History Second Edition (Toronto: Harcourt Brace, 1996), 155-188. 34 Timothy Casey succeeded Archbishop Neil McNei l as archbishop of Vancouver in 1913. See Sister Mary Margaret Down, A Century of Service, 147. Timothy Casey's biography to 1914 appears in F.W. Howay and E.O.S. Scholefield, British Columbia from the Earliest Times to the Present. Volume I I I Biographical (Vancouver: S.J. Clarke, 1914), 1126-1130. 35 Huel, Proclaiming the Gospel, xxii. "The writ ings of French Oblates serving in the North West. . . [reminded] their countrymen under the anti-clerical Third Republic that the glorious pre-revolutionary tradit ion of Catholicism Gesta Dei per Francos, the actions of God through the deeds of the French, was being continued in the interior of Canada. 36 Parr, Gender of Breadwinners, 231. 37 Gabrielle Spiegel, "History, Historicism and the Social Logic of the Text in the Middle Ages," Speculum 65 (1990): 59-86. 38 Joan Scott, Gender and the Politics of History, 49. 21 CHAPTER TWO: INTERPRETING THE FABRIC OF MISSIONARY HISTORY A t anniversary celebrations of their congregations' work in British Columbia, Roman Catholic Sisters often speak of their histories in terms of a fabric analogy. According to this analogy, the pioneer nuns wove a tapestry as they established their Pacific Coast missions, making the fabric of their own lives, rather than just following threads set by male church leaders. The historian's task is to find and piece together evidence of the fabric that the historical actors wove. Researching the biographies of the first twenty-four Catholic Sisters in British Columbia and their thirty male counterparts, the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, has been like going into the storage section of a museum and choosing to examine an old and dark piece of fabric, similar to pieces of cloth studied in earlier projects. Those projects, on Native residential schools at Lebret, Saskatchewan, and Mission, British Columbia, had made me acutely aware of how much of the Roman Catholic missionary education in Western Canada had been in fact the work of nuns. The historian's task now is to interpret, clarify, and contextualize this dark old fabric. 1 Spanning the years from 1858 to 1914, the fabric looks like it might have been plaid, as the various threads cross and the colours change at the crossings. The colours at first seem rooted in historical stereotypes about nuns who came west from Quebec and male missioners from France and Ireland: blues for French and French Canadians and greens for the Irish and Irish Canadians. For the peoples they met in British Columbia there are reds and browns representing those of Aboriginal descent, white and orange for Anglo-Canadians and Americans, a tweedy-grey for other national 22 groups. A l l colours darken in association with capitalism, imperialism, colonialism. The design at first glance looks as if it follows, as might be expected, standard historical patterns of dominant male threads in religious and civil life. But these are not always sustained or clear. In mid fabric and at the edge there are fuzzy and muted spots where the nuns and Aboriginal peoples in fact negotiated their own way. Historical circumstances have meant the colours meld or the threads drop off. Stripes sometimes run parallel, sometimes merge, then cross and uncross, only to run parallel again. When the stripes and threads change direction or depth, they change colour and texture. The regular plaid becomes somewhat abstract in places. For example, some Catholic teaching Sisters dealt directly with the secular public service in establishing commercial classes in secondary schools. A few Oblates operated individually in the British Columbia missions. Like history itself, interpreting this fabric w i l l involve appreciating and investigating its complexity. As an historian I w i l l attempt to indicate how the whole cloth once appeared, but may not be able to do so with complete certainty. Some colours have faded, some patterns loosened wi th time. A few gaps seem incapable of reconstruction. Some knotted threads in this British Columbia piece of fabric cannot be disentangled, even by reference to pieces of cloth that have been expertly analyzed in central Canada. Further study may indicate how the thread could be untangled, or how the fuzzy bits dangling from the fabric piece might be fitted back into the warp and woof. A n historian is limited by the sources and techniques available for research, and by the time-distorted nature of the fabric. Several scholarly sources also inform the analogy. Medieval historians sometimes speak of the Middle Ages as a tapestry, parts of which are now obscure.2 23 Laurel Thatcher Ulrich's A Midwife's Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard Based on her Diary, 1785-1812, for example, employs a fabric analogy in explaining the gendered conditions of cloth production in eighteenth-century Maine. In the "complex web of social and economic exchange that engaged women beyond the household," they "had no political life, but they did have a community life." Its basis "was a gender division of labor that gave them responsibility for particular tasks, products and forms of trade." 3 In a study closer to this dissertation, "None More Anonymous: Catholic Teaching Nuns, Secondary Schools and Students in South Australia 1880-1925," Stephanie Burley contends that historians should look at how women wove the patterns of their own lives. Burley finds strands of class, gender and religion "interact in a complex manner and weave different patterns depending on the individual. It is these varied patterns that historians must try to come to terms with, by understanding the spinner herself, the threads she chooses, those she rejects, those forced upon her and what she creates accordingly."4 SCHOLARLY PERSPECTIVES M y collective biography of the Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblates of Mary Immaculate in British Columbia from 1858 to 1914 is informed by a range of scholarly perspectives. Laurence Stone summarized traditional views on historical biography in 1971. "[Pjrosopography (as the ancient historians call it) has developed into one of the most valuable and most familiar techniques of the research historian. Prosopography is the investigation of the common background characteristics of a group of actors in history by means of a collective study of their lives." Stone described it as a "tool" used 24 "to attack two of the most basic problems in history," namely "the roots of political action" and "social structure and social mobility." 5 Gender studies, including men's as well as women's studies, have become prominent in Canadian historical practice in the last decade. Most men's studies concern twentieth-century men and secular rather than religious society.6 Women's studies in Canada have tended to look at the eras before 1900, but they have been similarly limited by what Ruth Compton Brouwer aptly terms the secular quarantine. In her 1992 "Transcending the 'unacknowledged quarantine': Putting Religion into English-Canadian Women's History," Ruth Compton Brouwer points to recent religious historical work on "religion's personal, spiritual significance for women as well as its implications for feminism and other social reforms." Yet she finds feminist historical biographers ignoring religion except as a step on the road to the women's movement. Brouwer calls on historians to extend their lines of inquiry, "to escape" the "secular quarantine" of Canadian history. Such effort, she concludes, would not just add to, but rather transform, "our understanding of important events in our past."^ Historical writ ing on religious and missionary women supports Brouwer's arguments and provides insights for a collective biography project on Roman Catholic missionaries in British Columbia. The historiography of Catholic women and Catholic missionary women through the ages has, in recent years, focussed on the women religious, popularly called Sisters or nuns, who led active, apostolic lives outside the cloister. The dominant themes concern the autonomous existence of these groups of women within a patriarchal church, the politics of gender which they played and sometimes won, their sense of sisterhood, their links into larger feminist history. Their sisterhood was that of mainly educated white women who shared an ideology and 25 promoted an organization and a lifestyle.^ The historic religious characteristics are, upon reflection, a far cry from ongoing popular stereotypes of cloistered, contemplative nuns as described by the poet Milton: "devout and pure, sober steadfast and demure." Medieval historians, including those who study cloistered women, have opened up new vistas on the lives and identities of nuns. They look at Sisters as workers and pioneers, establishing educational and charitable institutions on European frontiers. 9 They note the significance of their writing life histories or necrologies of deceased nuns and then using them in daily memorial services. The hagiographies and their promotion of devotions to saintly foundresses helped the women's communities survive in a "violent and hostile environment," and prosper in face of "powerful and predatory men."10 Caroline Walker Bynum in Gender and Religion applied feminist insights to the study of Catholic symbols and their gender significance. She notes the religious women's devotion to Christ in His Humanity, versus men's to Christ in His Divinity. Bynum also points out women's affection for saints in the female lineage of Christ such as Saint Anne, His grandmother, and Saint Emerentienne, His great-grandmother.^ Jo A n n Kay McNamara's Sisters in Arms: Catholic Nuns Through Two Millennia gives a more secular overview of sisterhoods from the time of Christ to the modern era.12 They sought equality and autonomy amid periods of patriarchal tolerance and repression. Marie Augusta Neal in From Nuns to Sisters: A n Expanding Vocation identifies different stages than McNamara in the longterm evolution of women's institutes in the Roman Catholic Church. But she agrees there were repeated instances of its officials resisting "new forms of the vowed life within the church."13 26 Scholars researching Roman Catholic nuns in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century France and New France have demonstrated that active sisterhoods continued even though faced wi th patriarchal constraints. Micheline D'Allaire 's fine studies of how Quebec sisterhoods managed their own finances, schools and hospitals in N e w France have not received much recognition by unilingual English-Canadian historians. D'Al la i re makes an important contribution by pointing out that the Congregation of Notre Dame of Montreal, characterized since the 1840s as an elite teaching congregation, had more popular origins. In the late seventeenth century Marguerite Bourgeoys founded a Montreal order of women teachers to serve the poor and the Native children as well as the rich.14 The nuns taught poor girls of the city domestic skills in a separate school, La Providence. If such pupils showed promise as entrants to the sisterhood, they were taught to read and write. Louise Dechene in her study of seventeenth-century Montreal remarks that numbers of habitant girls without dowries chose entrance as domestic service sisters over life as home helps for aged parents. 15 Recently other scholars have extended these themes. Mary Anne Foley points out how the seventeenth-century members of the Congregation of Notre Dame were inspired by the model of Mary, the mother of Christ. They saw Mary not as a cloistered, ideal woman, but as an active woman of the early Christian church. She was a missionary educator, l iving "la vie voyagere."16 Patricia Simpson explains the origins of this "positive" and "dynamic" image by noting that the medieval churches of Bourgeoys' home town of Troyes in France all had statues of Mary "being educated by her mother." Simpson says that the Marian devotion of seventeenth-century Troyes' women was not the idolatry contemporary Protestants alleged. Nor was it the oppression modern Catholic scholars see in traditional Marian devotions. 17 27 Elizabeth Rapley's The Devotes discusses how seventeenth-century women in France and N e w France were inspired by religious fervour to found active, charitable sisterhoods. The various Sisters of Charity often managed their finances by running elite convent schools in order to subsidize charitable schools and institutions. The latter institutions provided health and social services from the cradle to the grave for the poor, sometimes in the same building. Despite clerical attempts to cloister and control such activity, the women persisted and gained popular support. The government officers and church leaders too came to rely on the women's schools, hospitals, old age homes and asylums. The numerous groups of Sisters of Charity or "filles seculieres" were small, localized and loosely organized. These '"active life' congregations" constituted " a new form of religious life" in the Roman Catholic Church. Furthermore, they democratized its personnel "by allowing women unable to afford a dowry. . . to enter religious congregations."18 i n Montreal's congregation of Notre Dame, nuns under vows were accompanied in religious lives and works by numerous widows, aunts, "filles donnees" or lay associates.19 Although governments and male clerics attempted to limit the membership of sisterhoods of Quebec, the lay associates persisted, laying the groundwork for those of the Sisters of Saint Anne. 20 Claude Langlois' Le catholicisme au feminin explains how such sisterhoods survived the French Revolution and flourished in the nineteenth century in France. Langlois synthesizes the history of all French congregations headed by a superior general, that is, having their own organization recognized by the hierarchy and officially founded between 1800 and 1880. These congregations of nuns grew up not in conservative reaction to the revolution of 1789, nor out of guilt at its abuses, but rather as a continuity of religious women's work in women's way. Bishops and the Vatican 28 did attempt to constrain or direct them, but the sisterhoods persisted. As in Quebec and pre-revolutionary France, the nuns ran elite schools to subsidize charitable works. French congregations, however, kept more of a formal organization of choir or educated, teaching Sisters above a rank of coadjutrix or less-educated, domestic-service Sisters. During the nineteenth century French congregations regularly sent members overseas as missionaries and also, in times of political repression as refugees. Langlois thus includes some discussion of French congregations, like the Religious of the Sacred Heart, which sent missions to Quebec.21 The development of Catholic sisterhoods in Quebec in the nineteenth century, particularly teaching sisterhoods, was affected by the arrival of the Religious of the Sacred Heart and the competition they provided for urban convent academies. The Quebec congregations had their own dynamics from the 1840s to the 1920s, however. The studies of Micheline Dumont, Nadia Fahmy-Eid, Therese Hamel, Marguerite Jean, Marie-Paule Malouin and Marta Danylewycz have carefully explored the nineteenth-century Quebec congregations.22 Written in English, Marta Danylewycz' thesis is most familiar to anglophone historians. She argues that in nineteenth-century Quebec taking the veil , that is becoming a teaching or nursing sister, was an alternative to marriage, motherhood or spinsterhood. Joining sisterhoods gave women professional career options and opportunities to work on social reform in a man's world.23 Parallel findings have come from the research of Elizabeth Smyth on the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Toronto and from the investigations of Sheila Andrew and Elizabeth McGahan on congregations in the Maritimes.24 However, little academic research has been done on sisterhoods in the Canadian west.25 29 Barbara Misner's Highly Respectable and Accomplished Ladies: Catholic Women Religious in America 1790-1850, shows that the history of the first eight communities of women in the United States parallels the French and Canadian themes .26 Misner presents a sociological model which draws on the work of several of the previously mentioned scholars. She adapts to the study of religious congregations the three step model for the study of 'founded religions' given in Joachim Wach's The Sociology of Religion. A charismatic leader attracts "the circle of disciples." The followers as a brotherhood - often after death or deposition of the leader - spread his ideal or message. Finally there comes the systematizing and standardizing of the religion into an institution with a "doctrinal statement."27 Florence Deacon's dissertation on Catholic sisterhoods in Wisconsin, discussing their evolution from "handmaids" to "autonomous women," builds on the work of Misner and indicates trends in American Catholic historiography.28 Margaret Susan Thompson's survey of "Women and American Catholicism 1789-1989" also illustrates the new religious history. She contrasts the official patriarchal view of women religious as subordinate and domestic with the reality of their contributions as innovators and professionals. Nuns had some autonomy as male clerics needed them to run Catholic institutions.29 Susan Peterson and Courtney A n n Vaughan-Roberson show the Irish Presentation Sisters moving from North to South Dakota and then negotiating their own professional development in teaching and nursing, just as the Sisters of Saint A n n were to do in British Columbia.^O Themes noted for Catholic sisterhoods in France and North America also dominate the recent historiography of nuns in Ireland and Australia.31 Similar themes also mark the historiography of religious women's organizations outside the Roman 30 Catholic Church. American and Canadian scholars working through Protestant records have done valuable service in giving comparative material on eastern and western, home and foreign missions. By the late 1800s top-rate women missionaries were sent overseas and the less able kept for home mission work with Native North Americans or immigrants. Brouwer's New Women for God on Canadian Presbyterian women in India discusses a special aspect of their mission, namely the significance of 'the famine generation.' Numbers of widows and orphans became the major convert group for these Canadian missionaries in India, enabling them to finally achieve and report 'success' to fundraisers at home.32 Margaret Whitehead's essays on a variety of Catholic and Protestant women missionaries in British Columbia from the 1850s to the 1940s, like those of Rosemary Gagan on Methodists or M y r a Rutherdale on Anglicans in the same era, contribute to a general picture of the competition the Roman Catholic Sisters of Saint A n n were to face.33 These historians recognize neither the importance of Aboriginal and halfbreed women and children as a client group for Pacific Coast missionaries, nor the significance of the number of Aboriginal and halfbreed women who had French-Canadian or Metis partners. This dissertation, based on francophone sources, does include some discussion of these people. Margaret Whitehead and Jo-Anne Fiske have both done oral histories on francophone Catholic sisters who taught in residential schools in British Columbia.34 Neither of them, however, has done extensive research in French language archives of the congregations concerned. Few Canadian studies of male religious organizations say much on gender in modern historical terms. Histories of the Roman Catholic Church in N e w France, Quebec and Canada such as those of Cornelius Jaenen, Nive Voisine, Roberto Perin and 31 Terence Murphy and Gerald Stortz do provide necessary background on the structure of politics, the financing of organizations, and the society and culture, especially in national and ethnic terms.35 Published essays from the four symposia on the Oblates in Western and Northern Canada do include several probes into the Oblate relationship wi th teaching and nursing Sisters.36 Donat Levasseur's survey of the Oblates in Western and Northern Canada is a French-language synthesis based on years of archival study and teaching on the topic.37 Anglophone scholars are fortunate to have four other recent volumes on the Oblates. Robert Choquette's The Oblate Assault on Canada's Northwest employs a military analogy to portray the congregation's efforts to convert Aboriginal peoples and counter Protestant competition. Choquette, a francophone religious studies professor, gives a clear explanation in English of Oblate mission and Roman Catholic practices in the nineteenth century.38 Martha McCarthy's From the Great River to the Ends of the Earth: Oblate Missions to the Dene 1845-1921 combines the results of her fine doctoral study on Oblate origins and reports of the Dene response wi th her more recent research on the Grey Nuns and with interviews with Dene elders. McCarthy sheds particular light on the role of the Grey Nuns in mission schools and orphanages.39 Anne-Helene Kerbiriou, in her Les Indiens de l'ouest canadien vus par les Oblats, considers the photographs Oblates took in Alberta and the North West Territories as a documentary source on their missionary ideology. 40 The Oblate pictures featured romantic, heroic Catholic priests and the Aboriginal peoples they aimed to convert. Nuns appeared on the margins of photographs of Aboriginal converts at missions and 32 schools, just as the Sisters of Saint A n n are positioned in Oblate photographs of such institutions in British Columbia. Huel 's 1996 Proclaiming the Gospel to the Indians and the Metis draws on his background in French-Canadian and western Canadian history. He deals sensitively wi th the Prairie province Oblates and their Native audiences sensitively .41 Yet he does not hesitate to criticize Oblate limitations with respect to race, ethnicity, culture. He points out, for example, the failure of Oblates in the Canadian West to encourage a Native priesthood in contrast with their counterparts in Ceylon. Huel might follow John Webster Grant in probing further the politics of gender and mission. Grant found women composed two-thirds of the staff in many Presbyterian western missions. 42 Only a few comparisons of women and men as missionaries have been produced. Natalie Zemon Davis discusses Ursulines and Jesuits in early N e w France in her study on Mere Marie de l'Incarnation.43 Suzanne Schrems' dissertation deals wi th the Sisters of Providence of Montreal and the Ursulines teaching at the Jesuits' United States Montana mission 1864-1900.44 L u r i e Champagne and Micheline Dumont compare the financing of teaching Sisters and teaching Brothers' schools in Quebec.45 Bernard Denault looks at male and female religious congregations in nineteenth century Quebec.46 Guy Laperriere draws on Denault and the French historian Claude Langlois in writ ing about French congregations of men and women establishing foundations in Quebec between 1880 and 1914.47 The most useful religious comparative study for this dissertation is Diane Langmore's Missionary Lives, Papua, 1874-1914. Langmore did a collective biography of 300 European women and men, anglophone and francophone, Protestant and Catholic missionaries in New Guinea. Langmore concludes these women missionaries 33 had longer careers, better social networks and more social power than might be expected. Like the male missionaries, however, they remained exiles in the region and d id not form dynasties the way other Pacific Islands missionaries had.48 Mary Kinnear's In Subordination: Professional Women, 1870-1970 offers another relevant comparative study - in this case secular. Kinnear discusses the gendered lives of Manitoba women lawyers, doctors, nurses, university professors and school teachers. She draws on the formulation of Penina Migdal Glazer and Mi r i am Slater in Unequal Colleagues regarding the historic careers of women professionals in Nor th America. These, according to Glazer and Slater could follow one of four patterns: subordination, a separate women's culture, super performance, or innovation. 49 T n Manitoba Kinnear found that women teachers had similar education to men teachers but were unequal in status and role. The women's responses to their subordination ranged from acceptance to resistance. The Sisters of Saint Ann's gendered lives paralleled those of the Manitoba women professionals in many ways, even though the nuns had a separate women's organization and culture and some opportunities to be superperformers or innovators. Institutional histories of the Sisters of Saint A n n and the Oblates deserve mention as background studies. Although Sister Mary Theodore's Heralds of Christ the K i n g and Adrien-Gabriel Morice's History of the Catholic Church in Western Canada can be classed as triumphalist hagiography, they evoke the spirit of the pioneer mission age as recorded by second generation missionary historians.50 Morice wrote his book in a more academic format but also in a more partisan French and Catholic style than d id Sister Theodore. When in the 1950s Kay Cronin produced her Cross in the Wilderness as a popular history of the Oblates, she was aided by the research of George Forbes 34 O.M.I. Twentieth-century publications by historians of both congregations merit scholarly attention. Oblates Gaston Carriere and George Forbes composed both academic and popular works discussing British Columbia Oblates.51 The Quebec Sisters of Saint Anne produced a survey of the congregation from its founding in 1850 to 1900 in both French and English versions, and a French-language survey of the period from 1900 to 1950.52 Augustine Prevost did a study of the Sisters of Saint Anne as educators.53 Sisters Edith Down and Margaret Cantwell provide us wi th narratives of the Sisters of Saint Ann's service in British Columbia since 1858 and in Alaska and Yukon since 1886.54 Little secondary work is available, however, on Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblate Fathers and Brothers as teachers. Micheline Dumont's comparative work on the finances of teaching Sisters and Brothers in Quebec has been mentioned. Studies of educational history, particularly those of feminist historians of central Canada like Dumont, do cast some light on teaching Sisters and the feminization of teaching. J.R. Miller 's Shingwauk's Vision: A History of Native Residential Schools provides a national survey including analysis of gender relations. However, Mil ler d id little on the francophone sisterhoods who did the yeoman work of Catholic residential schools.55 Martha McCarthy's volume on the Oblates and the Dene shows what might be done by looking at the Oblate and the Grey Nuns' records.56 Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblates are rarely mentioned in historians' British Columbia studies. When they are, the secondary works cited are sociological rather than historical, and productive of stereotypes rather than fair and accurate interpretation. Two sources frequently cited by British Columbia historians wi th reference to Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblates are Celia Haig-Brown's Resistance and 35 Renewal and Edwin M . Lemert's "The Life and Death of an Indian State." 57 j n terms of my fabric analogy, both treat evidence of the lives of the Sisters and the Oblates as simply a dark old remnant of white anglophone colonialism. But this cloth is not just a simple dark old remnant. Yet, where British Columbia scholars have interpreted this or similar pieces of fabric, they have spent little time analyzing its nature. Any research they have done on the context of Catholic missionary effort has been in secular publications. Rarely have anglophone British Columbia scholars done any research on original French documents. They have quickly pictured the Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblate history in black and white terms, as mainly black - a relic of capitalist, imperialist, patriarchal oppression - and shoved it in as a swatch at the edge of a quilt constructed on the lines set by critical theorists in sociology. In Resistance and Renewal: Surviving the Indian Residential School, Celia Haig-Brown looked at the Sisters of Saint A n n and the Native residential school at Kamloops, British Columbia without consulting the congregation's archives. Rather, she presented "the history of the school from a Native perspective," using thirteen interviews as "the kernel of the data." Haig-Brown saw herself as a "quiltmaker" arranging the stories or squares " i n an effective design."58 Her book has been widely cited as the reference on male and female Catholic missionaries in residential schools through historic time. Gender historians such as Veronica Strong-Boag have not questioned her assumption that Oblates set policy and Sisters slaved to carry it out.59 Scholars who have challenged Haig-Brown's views and questioned both her documentary and oral history research, such as Robert Carney, have been ignored. His studies of the Grey Nuns' work in the North West Territories deserve more attention. 60 36 American Anthropologist Edwin M . Lemert's 1954 article, "The Life and Death of an Indian State," is used by scholars as the standard reference on the Oblate missionaries in British Columbia.61 Lemert, in a fashion similar to Haig-Brown, arranged information from a few documents and books on Oblate missions along wi th his own brief field notes into his portrayal of the 'Durieu System.' Lemert contends Oblate Paul Durieu himself created a theocratic system for the First Nations of British Columbia and applied it quickly and successfully. This argument originated wi th Adrien-Gabriel Morice O.M.I, in his publications at the turn of the century. Morice drew on printed Oblate mission reports, selecting material favourable to the Roman Catholic Church in Western Canada and particularly to francophone Oblates.62 Lemert d id not contextualize Morice's partisanship. Furthermore, although he d id consult some of Durieu's correspondence, including letters countering the success of the mission system, Lemert warned the Oblate archivist in Ottawa not to let others consult them.63 He seems to have been concerned that other scholars might question his findings. He need not have worried. Few historians have consulted Oblate archival -documents in English or in French. Fewer still have checked Lemert's facts or challenged his interpretation. It is ironic that two recent generations of anthropologists have built their careers studying the Salishan cultures the Durieu system supposedly wiped out.64 Secular and anglophone biases contribute to present day scholarly neglect of religious women's archives as they do of men's. Historians' traditional gender bias has led them to overlook also the published histories equivalent to Adrien-Gabriel Morice's 1910 History of the Catholic Church in Western Canada, such as Sister Mary Theodore's Heralds of Christ the King.65 Elizabeth Rapley explains "[FJeminine congregations of 37 early modern France were almost buried from . . . view" owing to the French Revolution's "disruption," the republican historians' "contempt," and religious historians' "condescension." Nuns are ignored by present-day historians who too readily "accept at face value the women's own lowly and humble self-image. Only lately have historians begun to investigate the possibility that these. . . women may have had a real effect both upon their times and upon their own condition. "66 That is part of the rationale for this dissertation. BUILDING ON THE LITERATURE, APPLYING THE ANALOGY This dissertation builds on existing scholarship by looking at aspects of missionary lives and at sources which have as yet received little academic attention. Research is based primarily on records of the first generation of Sisters of Saint A n n and the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate in British Columbia, and on complementary records of the Department of Indian Affairs. These sources - diaries, chronicles, codexes, correspondence, supervisory and published reports, internal histories, obituaries - have strengths and limitations. So do the printed biographies or necrologies on each deceased member of the congregation. The Oblates did not compile these accounts as regularly as the nuns, nor use them in commemorative services, but did, particularly at the end of the nineteenth century, make efforts to publish articles on pioneer missionaries in their order's journals. The raw correspondence and reports in the Indian Affairs files of the National Archives, like the printed annual reports of the Department of Indian Affairs, have further limitations. They are predominantly anglophone, Protestant in tone and male in authorship. Women are rarely mentioned. The nineteenth century Sisters of Saint A n n necrologies, like modern feminist scholars' collections of women's life histories, 'are not objective.' Their "subjective 38 views of women's experiences . . . are important in feminist research," according to Susan Geiger. "Life histories reflect a critical feminist question: consciousness is not simply an act of interpretation, but of constructing the social wor ld as well."67 It is important to see the nuns' necrologies[obituaries] in historical context. Nineteenth-century Roman Catholic Sisters read out the necrologies of deceased community members at prayers each day. They used them to create a communal identity, l inking them "to a larger tradition of belief and heritage," and giving them "the spiritual strength to continue their work."68 The nuns' documents from the nineteenth century voice the views and experiences of women members of a religious congregation. The records are naturally biased to the women's religious and social ideas and by their particular, semi-cloistered position in the Catholic Church and in British Columbia society. Similarly Oblate archival materials are biased to their ideas as Roman Catholic priests and brothers, and by the priests' positions as ordained Catholic leaders in the Church and in British Columbia society. The Sisters of Saint A n n archives in Victoria and the Oblate archives in Vancouver have limited access to private personnel files, such as medical records, and those concerning ongoing work as teachers. Records on personnel that are not accessible include registers of persons who attempted the noviciate but d id not take vows, and those who might have been refused entry. Nineteenth century requirements for entrance to the noviciate included proof of legitimate birth. The Sisters d id allow me access to quantitative information on the noviciate and on their hospital patients. The Oblate archives in British Columbia did not include a noviciate register. Nineteenth century Oblates in this province did not write up their provincial council 39 minutes, their codexes [house logs], and their necrologies as consistently as d id the Sisters of Saint Ann . For example, there is a published necrology on every Sister of Saint Ann , but none on 9 of 20 Oblate priests in the first generation in British Columbia. Most Oblate brothers had only a one line death notice. Furthermore the itinerant nature of Oblate mission effort affected retention of records. I have not been able to access files on 1858 to 1914 at the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Vancouver and diocese of Victoria Archives. However, the Sisters of Saint A n n Archives Victoria and Lachine, and the Oblate Archives in Vancouver hold correspondence between the nuns and the bishops of these dioceses, especially as Oblate priests served as bishops of the mainland from 1863 to 1908. Vincent J. McNal ly has published from his research in the Victoria diocesan archives.69 By contrast, Marta Danylewcyz researched diocesan records in writing her study of the Congregation of Notre Dame in Quebec 1840-1920, but could not use the congregation archives, as they had been destroyed in a late nineteenth-century fire.70 In researching provincial archives and those of the Department of Indian Affairs, it is important to recognize their limitations, and to beware of stereotypes. Finding aids overlook or ignore most teaching Sisters and Brothers. Modern stereotypes regarding Indian residential schools as agents of 'White-Anglo-Saxon-Protestant-Imperialism' can be read back into the past. The Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblates were francophone Roman Catholic organizations. They began mission schools for the children of Aboriginal peoples of British Columbia from religious motives and without government funding or regulation. These missionaries shared some of the racial views of the other white settlers, but stood at a distance from Protestant, British Imperialism, being both Catholic and French in origin. Modern researchers in government archives 40 need to be reminded that English-Canadian commentaries on Catholics and Catholic congregations come from a long heritage of Protestant and secular biases. They would do wel l to consult J.R. Miller 's "Anti-Catholic Thought in Victorian Canada/ ' and Fritz Pannekoek's "'Insidious' Sources and the Historical Interpretation of the Pre-1870 Wes t . " 7 1 During preparation of this dissertation I have become aware of the varying inclusiveness of the different sets of documents consulted. While researching the Oblate records I often noted how rarely nuns or lay women were mentioned. Going through the Department of Indian Affairs annual reports or documentary materials in R G 10 of the National Archives proved more unsettling. Male, Anglo-Protestant officials dominated the texts. Women, especially religious women of Catholic and French heritage, were marginalized or altogether omitted. Likewise newspapers and local histories rarely mentioned Roman Catholic Sisters or Brothers. Mixed race children and adults who sought out missionary services did appear in the Sisters' records. They also appeared in unpublished Oblate or government documents, but rarely in printed versions. N o doubt this occurred because sisterhoods were sent to the missions to care for all the needy, while male missionaries were charged wi th converting 'Indians' and government bureaucrats with controlling them. Published Oblate and government records focussed on 'Indians', especially the men, and on activities of organizational leaders. The norms for discussion in Oblate, government and newspaper sources were male. The Oblate writings were French or Irish Roman Catholic in viewpoint, while the latter two types of sources had an Anglo-Protestant cast. The Sisters' records were more inclusive by gender, class and race, but feminine and Roman Catholic in emphasis. 41 In sum, all the primary sources consulted for this study were biased by gender, religion, ethnicity, race and class, but especially by gender, and must accordingly be interpreted wi th care. The next chapter w i l l open the discussion by surveying the background and expectations of the two groups of Roman Catholic missionaries who went to British Columbia in the mid nineteenth-century. 42 Notes 1 The fabric analogy that deserves comment is not original to me. Sister Mary Harper S.A., Mother General of the Franciscan Sisters of the Atonement, particularly inspired me with her comments at their seventieth anniversary in Vancouver on May 18,1996. She described congregational history in terms of sisters weaving the fabric of their own lives, not following threads already set by male ecclesiastics. In this dissertation, fabric stands for evidence on the past, not history writing. Historians have used fabric as an analogy both in terms of evidence on the past and in terms of historians writing up history and thereby composing the fabric. The evidence like the history writing was itself constructed in specific social contexts. Carroll Smith-Rosenberg, Disorderly Conduct: Visions of Gender in Victorian America (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986), 3 and 11. 2 D. Herlihy, Medieval Households (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1985). 3 Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, A Midwife's Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard Based on her Diary, 1785-1812 (New York: Vintage Books, Random House 1991, c. 1990 Alfred A . Knopf), 75-76. 4 Stephanie Burley, "None More Anonymous: Catholic Teaching Nuns, Secondary Schools and Students in South Australia 1880-1925," (M.Ed, thesis, University of Adelaide, 1992): 143-144. Also see Susan Mann Trofimenkoff writing on "Feminist Biography" as a tool for women's history in Atlantis 10: 2 (Spring 1985): 5-7. 5 Laurence Stone, "Prosopography," Daedalus 100 (Winter 1971): 46-79. " Joy Parr and Mark Rosenfeld, editors, Gender and History in Canada, (Toronto: Copp Clark, 1996). See Peter Filene, "The Secrets of Men's History," in The Making of Masculinities: The New Men's Studies, ed. Harry Brod (Boston: Allen & Unwin, 1987), 103-119. ^ Ruth Compton Brouwer, "Transcending the 'unacknowledged quarantine': Putting Religion into English-Canadian Women's History," Journal of Canadian Studies 27, 3 (Fall 1992): 57; Gail Malmgreen, ed. Religion in the Lives of English Women, 1760-1930 (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1986). 8 Nancy Adamson et al, Feminists Organizing for Change: The Contemporary Women's Movement in Canada (Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1988), 217 ff. on the 'sisterhood' of 1970s feminists. 9 Judith M . Bennett et al, editors, Sisters and Workers in the Middle Ages (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1989), especially 198-207, Jane Tibbetts Schulenberg, "Women's Monastic Communities, 500-1100: Patterns of Expansion and Decline." 10 Jo A n n McNamara, " A Legacy of Miracles: Hagiography and Nunneries in Merovingian Gaul," in Women of the the Medieval World: Essays in Honor of John H . Mundy (Oxford and New York: Basil Blackwell, 1985), 37-52. 11 Caroline Walker Bynum, Steven Harrell and Paula Richman, editors, Gender and Religion: O n the Complexity of Symbols (Boston: Beacon Press, 1986), in particular Bynum's essay, 257-288,'". . . A n d Woman His Humanity': Female Imagery in the Religious Writing of the Later Middle Ages." See also Caroline Walker Bynum, Fragmentation and Redemption: Essays on Gender and the H u m a n Body in Medieval Religion (New York: Zone Books, 1991). 43 12 Jo A n n Kay McNamara's Sisters in Arms: Catholic Nuns Through Two Millennia (Cambridge: Harvard University Press 1996). 13 Marie Augusta Neal S N D D N , From Nuns To Sisters: A n Expanding Vocation (Mystic, Conn.: Twenty-Third Publications, 1990) cited in Elizabeth Smyth, "Christian Perfection and Service to Neighbours. The Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph, Toronto 1851-1920," in E . G . M u i r and M . F . Whiteley, eds., Changing Roles of Women Within the Christian Church in Canada (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1995) 47. 14 Micheline D'Allaire, Les dots des religieuses au Canada francais, 1639-1800: etude economique et sociale (Montreal: Editions Hurtubise H M H Itee., 1986), 170 and 186 note 5. The twentieth century image of the Congregation of Notre Dame as an old and elite educational sisterhood in the Montreal diocese has made people forget "ses origines paysannes." 15 Louise Dechene, Habitants and Merchants in Seventeenth-Century Montreal, trans. Liana Vardi (Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1992, c. 1974 Paris), 270-271 and 277. 16 Mary Anne Foley, "La vie voyagere for Women: Moving Beyond Cloister in Seventeenth-Century New France," C C H A Historical Studies 63 (1997): 15-28. See also Elizabeth Rapley, The Devotes: Women and Church in Seventeenth-Century France (Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1990), 170-173. 1^ Patricia Simpson, Marguerite Bourgeoys and Montreal, 1640-1665 (Montreal and Kingston: McGi l l -Queen's University Press, 1997), 31-32,184. See also Rapley, The Devotes, 170-173. 1 8 Rapley, The Devotes, 193-194. 1 9 Rapley, The Devotes, 254,100-112. Micheline D'Allaire, L'Hopital General de Quebec 1692-1764 (Montreal: Fides, 1971), 150-151. At L'Hopital General de Quebec women became members of the sisterhood by taking vows as choir sisters (vocales), auxiliary sisters (convers), or, without taking vows but in accordance with religious rules as "soeurs donnees." 20 Estelle Mitchell, s.g.m., The Grey Nuns of Montreal and the Red River Settlement 1844-1984, trans. J.F. O'Sullivan and C. Rioux (Montreal: Editions du Meridien, 1987, English translation 1991), 37-47. 21 Claude Langlois, Le catholicisme au feminin. Les congregations francaises a superieure generate au XIXe siecle (Paris: Les Editions du Cerf, 1984). Their first Quebec school, in St. Jacques de l'Achigan in 1842 in Montreal diocese, relocated closer to the city in 1853. See Guy Laperriere, Les congregations religieuses de la France au Quebec 1880-1914 Tome I: Premieres bourrasques 1880-1900 (Sainte-Foy: Les Presses de l'Universite Laval, 1996), 27; and Diane Belanger and Lucie Rozon, Les Religieuses au Quebec (Montreal: Libre Expression, 1982), 294. 22 Micheline Dumont and Nadia Fahmy-Eid, Les couventines. L'education des filles au Quebec dans les congregations religieuses enseignantes 1840-1860 (Montreal: Boreal, 1986); Therese Hamel, U n siecle de formation des maitres au Quebec 1836-1939 (Ville la Salle, Quebec: Editions Hurtubise H M H Ltee., 1995); Marguerite Jean, s.c.i.m., Evolution des communautes religieuses de femmes au Canada de 1639 a nos jours (Montreal: Fides, 1977); Marie-Paul Malouin, M a Soeur, a quelle ecole allez-vous? Deux ecoles de filles a la fin du XIXe siecle (Montreal: Fides, 1985); Marta Danylewycz, Taking the Veil: A n Alternative to Marriage, Motherhood and Spinsterhood in Quebec, 1840-1920 (Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1987). 44 L i Marta Danylewycz, Taking the Veil: A n Alternative to Marriage, Motherhood and Spinsterhood in Quebec, 1840-1920 (Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1987). 24 Elizabeth Smyth, "Christian Perfection and Service to Neighbours," in Changing Roles of Women Within the Christian Church in Canada, ed. E . Muir and M . F . Whiteley (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1995), 38-54; Sheila Andrew, "Selling Education: The Problem of Convent Schools in Acadian New Brunswick, 1858-1886," C C H A Historical Studies 62 (1996): 15-32; Elizabeth McGahan, "The Sisters of Charity of the Immaculate Conception: A Canadian Case Study," C C H A Historical Studies 61 (1995): 99-133. Z i } Anne Gagnon, "The Pensionnat Assomption: Religious Nationalism in a Franco-Albertan Boarding School for Girls, 1926-1960," Historical Studies in Education/Revue d'histoire de Feducation 1,1 (Spring 1989): 95-117, looks at the francophone schools for girls begun by the Sisters of the Assumption from Nicolet, Quebec in Edmonton, Alberta. Sister Margaret McGovern SP analyzed the relationship between Oblates of Mary Immaculate and Sisters of Providence in western Canadian missions and schools in "Perspective on the Oblates: The Experience of the Sisters of Providence," in Western Oblate Studies 3/Etudes Oblates de F Quest 3, ed. Raymond Huel (Edmonton: Western Canadian Publishers, 1994), 91-108. 26 Barbara Misner, Highly Respectable and Accomplished Ladies: Catholic Women Religious in America 1790-1850, (New York: Garland, 1988). 27 Misner, Highly Respectable, 13-14. 28 Florence Deacon, "Handmaids or Autonomous Women: The Charitable Activities, Institution Building and Communal Relationships of Catholic Sisters in 19th Century Wisconsin" (Ph.D. diss. Univeristiy of Wisconsin, Madison, 1989). 29 Margaret Susan Thompson, "Women and American Catholicism," in Stephen J. Vicchio and Virginia Geiger, eds., Perspectives on the American Catholic Church 1789-1989 (Westminster, Maryland: Christian Classics, 1989), cited in Suzanne Schrems, "God's Women: Sisters of Charity of Providence and Ursuline Nuns in Montana, 1864-1900" (Ph.D. diss., University of Oklahoma, Norman, 1992), 3-5. 30 Susan Peterson and Courtney A n n Vaughan-Roberson, Women With Vision: The Presentation Sisters of South Dakota 1880-1985 (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1988). 31 For Ireland see Catriona Clear, Nuns in Nineteenth Century Ireland (Dublin: Gi l l and Macmillan, 1987); Mary Cullen, e d „ Girls Don't Do Honors. Irish Women in Education in the 19th and 20th Centuries (Dublin: Argus Press and the Women's Educational Bureau, 1987); and Suellen Hoy, "The Journey Out: The Recruitment and Emigration of Irish Religious Women to the United States 1812-1914," Tournal of Women's History 7,2 (Summer 1995): 64-98. For Australia see Stephanie Burley, "None More Anonymous? Catholic Teaching Nuns, Their Secondary Schools and Catholic Students in South Australia 1880-1925 (M.Ed. Thesis, University of Adelaide, Australia, 1992). 32 Ruth Compton Brouwer, New Women for God. Canadian Presbyterian Women and India Missions, 1876-1914 (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1990), 119-127. 33 Margaret Whitehead, '"Women Were Made for Such Things': Women Missionaries in British Columbia 1850s-1940s," Atlantis 14 (Fall 1988): 141-150; ' " A Useful Christian Woman': First Nations Women and Protestant Missionary Work in British Columbia," Atlantis 18,1/2 (Fall/ Winter 1992-45 Spring/Summer 1993): 142-166; and '"Let the Women Keep Silence': Women Missionary Preachers in British Columbia, 1860s-1940s," in Changing Roles of Women within the Christian Church in Canada, ed. E . G . Muir and M . F . Whiteley (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1995), 117-135. Rosemary Gagan, A Sensitive Independence. Canadian Methodist Women Missionaries in Canada and the Orient, 1881-1925 (Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1992). M y r a Rutherdale, "Revisiting Colonization Through Gender: Anglican Missionary Women in the Pacific Northwest and the Arctic, 1860-1945," B C Studies 104 (Winter 1994-95): 3-23. 34 Margaret Whitehead, Now You Are M y Brother: Missionaries in British Columbia. Sound Heritage Series No. 34 (Victoria: Provincial Archives of British Columbia, 1981); and Jo-Anne Fiske, "Life at Lejac," in S A TS'E: Historical Perspectives on Northern British Columbia, ed. Thomas Thorner (Prince George: College of New Caledonia Press, 1989), 235-272. See also Jo-Anne Fiske, "Pocahontas's Granddaughters: Spiritual Transition and Tradition of Carrier Women of British Columbia," Ethnohistory 43,4 (FaU 1996): 675. 35 Cornelius Taenen, The Role of the Church in New France (Toronto: McGraw Hi l l Ryerson, 1976). Nive Voisine directed the five volume Histoire du catholicisme quebecois project. Nive Voisine co-authored Volume II, Philippe Sylvain et Nive Voisine, Histoire du catholicisme quebecois, Les XVIIIe et XIXe siecles, Tome 2: Reveil et consolidation (Montreal: Boreal, 1991). Roberto Perin, Rome in Canada: The Vatican and Canadian Affairs in the Late Victorian Age (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1990). Terence Murphy and Gerald Stortz, eds., Creed and Culture: The Place of English-speaking Catholics in Canadian Society, 1750-1930 (Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1993). See also the valuable work of Paul Laverdure, Redemption and Renewal: The Redemptorists of English Canada, 1834-1994 (Toronto: Dundurn Press, 1996). 36 Margaret McGovern, SP, "Perspective on the Oblates: The Experience of the Sisters of Providence," in Western Oblate Studies 3/Etudes Oblates de 1'Quest 3, ed. Raymond Huel (Edmonton: Western Canadian Publishers, 1994), 91-108. 37 Donat Levasseur, o.m.i., Les Oblats de Marie-Immaculee dans 1'Ouest et le Nord du Canada, 1845-1967 (Edmonton: The University of Alberta Press and Western Canadian Publishers, 1995). 38 Robert Choquette, The Oblate Assault on Canada's Northwest (Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press, 1995). 39 Martha McCarthy, From the Great River to the Ends of the Earth: Oblate Missions to the Dene 1845-1921 (Edmonton: The University of Alberta Press and Western Canadian Publishers, 1995). 40 Anne-Helene Kerbiriou, Les Indiens de 1'ouest canadien vus par les Oblats, (Sillery: Les Editions du Septentrion, 1996). 41 Raymond Huel , Proclaiming the Gospel to the Indians and the Metis (Edmonton: The University of Alberta Press and Western Canadian Publishers, 1996). 42 John W. Grant, "Two-Thirds of the Revenue: Presbyterian Women and Native Indian Missions," in Changing Roles of Women within the Christian Church in Canada, ed. E . G . Muir and M . F . Whiteley (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1995), 99-116. 43 Natalie Zemon Davis, Women on the Margins. Three Seventeenth Century Lives (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1995), 93-99. 46 44 Suzanne Schrems, "God's Women: Sisters of Charity of Providence and Ursuline Nuns in Montana, 1864-1900" (Ph.D. diss., University of Oklahoma, Norman, 1992). 45 Lucie Champagne and Micheline Dumont, "Le financement d'un seminaire diocesain. Le Seminaire de Sherbrooke, 1915-1950. Comparison avec le financement des pensionnats de religieuses," Historical Studies in Education/Revue d'histoire de l'education 2,2 (1990): 339-351. 46 Bernard Denault et Benoit Levesque, eds., Elements pour un sociologie des communautes religieuses au Quebec (Montreal: Les Presses de l'Universite de Montreal, 1975). 47 Laperriere, Les congregations religieuses de la France au Quebec. 48 Diane Langmore, Missionary Lives, Papua, 1874-1914. (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1989). O n missionary dynasties see Patricia Grimshaw, Paths of Duty: American Missionary Wives in Nineteenth Century Hawaii (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1989). 49 Mary Kinnear, In Subordination: Professional Women 1870-1970 (Montreal and Kingston: McGi l l -Queen's University Press, 1995). 50 Sister Mary Theodore, S.S.A., Heralds of Christ the King: Missionary Record of the North Pacific 1837-1878 (New York: PJ Kenedy & Sons, 1939); and Adrien-Gabriel Morice, O.M.I. , History of the Catholic Church in Western Canada from Lake Superior to the Pacific (1659-1895) (Toronto: Musson Book Co., 1910). 51 Kay Cronin, Cross in the Wilderness (Vancouver: Mitchell Press, 1960). 52 Soeur Marie-Jean-de-Pathmos, s.s.a., Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne un siecle d'histoire Tome I: 1850-1900 (Lachine: Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 1950). This volume was translated by Sister Marie Anne Eva, SSA, as A History of the Sisters of Saint Anne Volume One 1850-1900 (New York: Vantage Press, 1961). Louise Roy, s.s.a., Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne: U n un siecle d'histoire Tome II: 1900-1950 (Montreal: Editions Paulines, 1992). Eileen Gallagher S.S.A. translated this volume as The Sisters of Saint Anne. A Century of History Vol . II1900-1950 (Lachine: Les Editions Sainte-Anne, 1992). 53 Augustine Prevost s.s.a., L'education hier et aujourd'hui 1850-1985 (Montreal: Editions du Meridien, 1986). 54 [Edith Down] Sister Mary Margaret Down, S.S.A., A Century of Service: A History of the Sisters of Saint A n n and their contribution to education in British Columbia, the Yukon and Alaska 1858-1958 (Victoria Morriss Printing for the Sisters of Saint Ann , 1966). Margaret Cantwell, S.S.A., North to Share: The Sisters of Saint A n n in Alaska and the Yukon Territory (Victoria: The Sisters of Saint A n n , 1992). 55 J.R. Miller, Shingwauk's Vision: A History of Native Residential Schools (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1996). 56 McCarthy, From the Great River. 57 Celia Haig-Brown, Resistance and Renewal: Surviving the Indian Residential School (Vancouver: Tillacum, 1988); and Edwin M . Lemert, "The Life and Death of an Indian State," H u m a n Organization 13, 3 (Fall 1954): 23-27. 47 As an English-language academic publication of the 1950s Lemert's article has been more available to scholars than works by Morice and so has been cited more often. Examples of citation of both Haig-Brown and Lemert are found in works by Elizabeth Furniss, "Resistance, Coercion and Revitalization: The Shuswap Encounter with Roman Catholic Missionaries 1860-1900," Ethnohistory 42,2 (Spring 1995): 231-263; and Paul Tennant, Aboriginal Peoples and Politics: The Indian Land Question in British Columbia, 1849-1989 (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1990, 77, 80. Academics who cite Lemert include Wilson Duff, Robin Fisher and Tina Loo. See Wilson Duff, The Indian History of British Columbia Vol. I The Impact of the Whiteman. Anthropology in British Columbia Memoir No. 5 (Victoria, B.C.: Queen's Printer, 1964), 9; Robin Fisher, Contact and Conflict: Indian-European Relations in British Columbia, 1774-1890 (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1977), 139; and Tina Loo, "Tonto's Due: Law, Culture and Colonization in British Columbia," in Making Western Canada: Essays on European Colonization and Settlement, edited by Catherine Cavanaugh and Jeremy Mouat (Toronto: Garamond Press, 1996), 62-103. 58 Haig-Brown, Resistance and Renewal, 141-143. 59 Haig-Brown, Resistance and Renewal, 32 "In the usual male-female hierarchy within the Church, the Oblate priests controlled policy and served as administrators while the Sisters were expected to work obediently.. . ." Veronica Strong-Boag, "Contested Space: The Politics of Memory," Tournal of the Canadian Historical Association 5 (1994): 3-17. 60 Robert Carney's review of Haig-Brown, Resistance and Renewal, appeared in Canadian Review of Sociology and Anthropology 26,5 (November 1989): 852-854. Jacqueline Gresko's review appeared in Canadian Historical Review 70,3 (September 1989): 453-454. E. Brian Titley's review of the same book appeared in Western Canadian Publication Project Newsletter, [University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada] 26 (November 1989): 4-5. For Robert Carney's research on the Grey Nuns in the North West Territories see Robert Carney, "Residential Schooling at Fort Chipewyan and Fort Resolution 1874-1974," in Western Oblate Studies 2/Etudes Oblates de 1'Ouest 2, ed. R. Huel, (Queenston, Ont.: The Edwin Mellen Press, 1992), 115-138. 6 1 Edwin M . Lemert, "The Life and Death of an Indian State," Human Organization 13, 3 (Fall 1954): 23-27. 62 Morice, History of the Catholic Church in Western Canada, 249-259. See also David Mulhall , Wil l to Power: The Missionary Career of Father Morice (Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1986). 6 3 Archives Deschatelets [AD] Oregon 1, C-vii , 2 Durieu's System [Also listed as H P K 5 241], "Lettres de Mgr. D U R I E U au R.P. Le Jacq sur la direction des Sauvages (typescript of MSS) 23 novembre 1883, 23 et 25 fevrier, 1884. The typescript bears an undated covering note by E . M . Lemert, University of California, "These letters give in complete detail a description of the system developed by Bishop Durieu in missionising the Indians on the mainland of British Columbia beginning around 1840-1850. The system was most highly developed at the village of Seschelt located about 50 miles north of Vancouver. These Indians were all successfully converted by 1870." The latter assertion is questionable in light of archival missionary correspondence showing incomplete conversion of Seschelt peoples in the 1870s and ongoing resistance to Oblate visitors, as well as the lack of a resident pastor until 1900. 64 Wilson Duff, The Upper Stalo Indians of the Fraser River of B.C. Anthropology in British Columbia Memoir No. 1 (Victoria: Provincial Museum of British Columbia, 1952); Pamela Amoss, Coast Salish Spirit Dancing: The Survival of an Ancient Religion (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1978). 48 Sister Mary Theodore S.S.A., Heralds of Christ the King; and Adrien-Gabriel Morice O.M.I. , History of the Catholic Church in Western Canada . b " Rapley, The Devotes, 247, in "Note on the Use of Sources." 6 7 Susan N . Geiger, "Women's Life Histories: Method and Content," Signs 11,2 (1986): 334-351. 68 Trudelle Thomas, '"Heed Not the Fall': Elegy as Myth Among the Ursuline Nuns [Brown County, Ohio," Tournal of American Culture 11, 2 (1988): 47-55. 69 Vincent J. McNally, "Victoria: A n American Diocese in Canada," C C H A Historical Studies 57 (1990): 7-28. 70 Danylewycz, Taking the Veil, 87, " . . . many of the records of the Sisters of the Congregation were destroyed by a fire in the 1880s. . . . " 71 J.R. Miller, "Anti-Catholic Thought in Victorian Canada," Canadian Historical Review 66,4 (December 1985): 474-494; and Frits Pannekoek, "'Insidious' Sources and the Historical Interpretation of the Pre-1870 West," in The Anglican Church and the World of Western Canada, ed. Barry Ferguson (Regina: Canadian Plains Research Center: University of Regina, 1991), 29-37. 49 CHAPTER THREE: ORIGINS AND EXPECTATIONS In 1858 both the Sisters of Saint Anne and the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate established missions in the territory now known as British Columbia. 1 Comparison of the origins and expectations of the two groups indicates how autonomy and asymmetry marked gender relations for both congregations in the church and in the world. The Sisters of Saint Anne were founded by Mother Marie-Anne [Esther Blondin] in the diocese of Montreal in 1850.2 Bishop Bourget of Montreal clashed wi th and then deposed the foundress, replacing her with Sister Marie-Angele. Despite this, the nuns developed their own sisterhood and religious mission. They volunteered to assist in his mission a fellow French-Canadian, Modeste Demers, the bishop of Vancouver Island, and sent him a group of nuns in 1858. The Oblates, founded in 1816 in Provence, struggled to develop their congregation within the Roman Catholic Church of post-revolutionary France. Ventures to foreign missions spurred Oblate growth. The founding superior, Eugene de Mazenod, sent a group of priests and brothers to assist the Quebec mission to the Pacific in Oregon Territory in 1847. By 1858 the Oregon Oblates' differences with the bishops and the settlers of the American frontier led to their superior's decision to move from the United States to Vancouver Island so as to exercise their mission autonomously. 3 ORIGINS OF RELIGIOUS CONGREGATIONS OF WOMEN IN QUEBEC Scholars who have researched Quebec Catholic women's congregations in the nineteenth century have focussed on their history in that territory, while the significant role of these women in the Catholic missions to the West has been largely overlooked. 50 In his recent survey of those efforts, The Oblate Assault on Canada's Northwest, Robert Choquette casts women religious as humble footsoldiers, numerous but silent labourers in the campaign of conversion directed by male ecclesiastical commanders. 4 Research in the archives of one such congregation, the Sisters of Saint A n n in British Columbia, shows that these women brought west from the Montreal diocese their own identity, their own sense of sisterhood and religious mission. This identity developed as they negotiated their own way in the patriarchal civi l and ecclesiastical communities of the Pacific West. This very identity assisted the Sisters of Saint A n n in overcoming the disadvantages of being women in a man's world.5 The origins of the Sisters of Saint Anne lie in both the history of women religious or nuns and the history of Quebec in the mid-nineteenth century. Medieval historians trace the development of nuns' work as mystics and ministers in building the Roman Catholic Church. Through the early modern era autonomous women's organizations struggled to survive in a church whose male leaders were sometimes encouraging, and other times repressive.6 Some sisterhoods were cloistered and some not. Sisters were both constrained and liberated by their enclosure in cloistered convents following the rulings of the Council of Trent (1545-1563). Women religious could work together, write the biographies of their members, promote the sainthood of their female spiritual leaders, and network with the communities outside their walls. Sisterhoods used devotions to their saints to defend their position in the world. In some eras, however, male politicians and church leaders dominated or even destroyed large formally organized sisterhoods. A l l through the Christian era smaller, informally organized communities of women excercised an active apostolic ministry outside monastic enclosures. In a study 51 of nineteenth-century French congregations of women Claude Langlois points out the heritage of these women including medieval beguines, the beates of Le Puy diocese, and the filles seculieres. Such "bonnes soeurs," or Sisters of Charity, rose up particularly in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. They continued through war, revolution and changes in the papacy or Vatican regulations. The many nineteenth century French active sisterhoods were founded not by the call of men after the revolution, but from the ongoing work of religious women. 7 Elizabeth Rapley's The Devotes outlines how, during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, French women inspired by a religious revival to do charitable works through non-cloistered or secular congregations began to organize.8 Male church administrators in old France and its colony of New France d id not call these women forth. They came forth on their own as secular sisters, d id good works and gained the support of local communities and male church leaders. By the 1700s it had become normal and necessary for active women religious to do charitable works. Thus male clerics approved their efforts though still constraining them via rules and regulations. Popular traditions influenced how the women's congregations did their work. The Congregation of Notre Dame founded in 1658 by Marguerite Bourgeoys, and the Grey Nuns of Montreal founded in 1737 by Marguerite d'Youville, are examples. Male clerics limited their official members under the French colonial government prior to 1760, and under the British in the 1760s-1840s. But the tradition of lay women associates assisting in the work of congregation members continued. Eventually, the public and church leaders came to rely on the services of these congregations.9 52 The Congregation of Notre Dame ran schools for the children of Montreal and also for those in smaller towns. 10 These Sisters also undertook charitable works in general. The Grey Nuns established institutions called in French "asiles" and "hopitaux," charitable institutions that combined services to young and old members of the urban poor. The Grey Nuns' teaching activities consisted mainly of catechism and elementary instruction for children in day nurseries.il jfoe Hotels Dieux (or hospitals), by contrast, originated from Royal initiatives and were staffed by cloistered nuns. In the convents of New France "three distinct social grades [of nuns] performed different functions." Choir Sisters from seigneurial families directed or taught. "Convers," nuns from ordinary families, took minor vows and cared for the sick. Donnees "performed domestic service in return for their keep." Wealthy patrons paid the dowries of some lower class girls who entered as "religieuses de choeur." The average age at entrance, nineteen, supports the argument that such women opted to enter the congregation, rather than joining late in life for lack of husbands.12 Descriptions of the vibrant continuity of women's congregations in Quebec after the British Conquest of 1760 run counter to the picture often presented in histories of women and religion in Quebec. Some scholars regard the years from 1760 to 1840 as the dark age when women's congregations, lacking French government and elite aid, struggled to survive.13 Such scholars would agree with Jan Noel's argument that by the mid-nineteenth century women "activists were overshadowed" by men in the provision of social welfare. In the Montreal region, for example, Bishop Bourget had men direct but let women continue "to supply much of the labour."14 Yet the research of historian Al lan Greer on rural Quebec society from 1760 to 1840 confirms findings of feminine agency in popular culture. According to Greer, the 53 religious revival in Quebec in the 1840s, albeit conservative, offered women opportunities in parish devotional organizations and in new or expanding religious congregations. 15 Quebec sisterhoods of the mid-nineteenth century drew on the traditions and the pedagogy of French Catholic women's charitable institutions. It was "a pedagogy based on conversion and withdrawal from the world." The terminology nuns applied to their clients is significant. Needy children were classed as orphans or "preserves." Destitute women seeking refuge might also be given the latter title. Women of i l l repute who sought the nuns' assistance were encouraged to progress through stages of a redeemed religious life. They could become penitents or advance to religious vows as Magdalenes, although very few women did so.16 The Grey Nuns, the Sisters of Providence, the French Sisters of the Good Shepherd, and the Sisters of Misericorde took the initiative during the crises of the 1840s, the peak years of the Irish famine immigration, in giving spiritual and physical relief to masses of men, women and children in the Montreal diocese.I 7 The nuns' achievements in social work should not be subsumed under those of male church leaders, like Bishop Bourget, as Jan Noel and J.I. Cooper suggest.18 Nor should the nineteenth-century expansion of teaching sisterhoods in Quebec be attributed to Bourget alone. Micheline Dumont remarks that in Quebec in 1841 there were only two Roman Catholic teaching congregations of women and twenty boarding schools and seven other schools.19 By the 1890s ten Quebec congregations had been founded, members of several French congregations had established Quebec convents and the number of boarding and day schools run by nuns had risen to 265.20 Dumont, like Marta Danylewycz, correctly attributes the increase in teaching sisterhoods to 54 women's economic and social aspirations in a rural society just beginning to industrialize. 21 Legislators, church leaders and parents in French-Canadian society supported development of government-funded but religiously-separate elementary schools for the general population. During the late nineteenth century most of the Catholic schools were French-speaking and nearly all of the Protestant schools were English-speaking.22 Within the Catholic system the majority of teachers were women, wi th religious women and men the majority in urban areas. Protestant schools in Quebec were staffed by lay people. As in Catholic schools, women formed the majority both of rural teachers and of elementary teachers.23 During the nineteenth century, fee-paying convent academies for daughters of affluent Quebec families grew along with the economy and women's congregations. Boarding schools run by teaching sisterhoods served both as female secondary schools and normal schools. Their student fees subsidized the sisterhoods' charity schools and orphanages. The provincial government did not develop, run or fund girls' secondary education, as the women's congregations, supported by churchmen, guarded their right to do so. Each congregation developed its own program of studies and teacher training system, although these were not that dissimilar.24 By contrast in other provinces of Canada most convent academies, whether associated with government funded separate school operations or not, began to use the provincial department of education program of studies.25 Two of the religious congregations of women running convent boarding schools in Quebec in the mid-nineteenth century, the Congregation of Notre Dame and the Religious of the Sacred Heart, served as the models for new congregations established 55 in that e ra /6 Both the Congregation of Notre Dame and the Religious of the Sacred Heart used the profits of their elite convent academies to run charity schools for the poor and, in some cases, missions.27 THE FOUNDING OF THE SISTERS OF SAINT ANNE IN QUEBEC The foundress of the Sisters of Saint Anne, Esther Sureau dit Blondin, organized a group of women interested in teaching school to rural boys and girls in the parish of St. Michel de Vaudreuil, twenty-four miles west of Montreal, in the 1830s and 1840s.28 Esther and her colleague Suzanne Pineault had both been students of the Congregation of Notre Dame. Esther, a poor farm girl, had only begun her education at age nineteen when she went to work for the Sisters of the convent at Terrebonne, Lower Canada.29 Blondin and Pineault both attempted the noviciate of this congregation but left for health reasons. However, both were interested in teaching elementary schools in their rural home district. In 1833 Blondin accepted a teaching position in Pineault's private school at Vaudreuil . When Pineault retired in 1839, Blondin took over the direction of the school.^O She grew concerned about the illiteracy of most rural youths. The Vaudreuil cure, Paul-Loup Archambault, a supporter of parish schools, assisted her educational efforts as he saw the opportunity of taking advantage of new legislative provisions for funding schools in the United Canadas.31 In 1840 Ignace Bourget became bishop of Montreal. Bourget, who championed the Catholic cause with dynamism and an emphasis on ultramontanism, promoted the dominance of the church in education.32 He welcomed the interest of Esther Blondin and her colleagues in founding a religious community to provide education for rural youth. Bourget appointed the parish priest at Vaudreuil, Paul-Loup Archambault, as chaplain to the group and supported Blondin as she organized her religious 56 congregation in 1849 and 1850.3^ it was patterned on the early Congregation of Notre Dame which taught both girls and boys of the countryside and trained rural school teachers. 34 In September 1850, Esther Blondin and her companions took vows and religious names as Sisters of Saint Anne. Blondin, now known as Soeur Marie-Anne, was elected as superior general. As such she became known as Mother Marie-Anne and took charge of organizing pedagogy and expansion of the congregation to other parishes.35 By 1853 the young congregation needed to build a new boarding school at Vaudreuil to accommodate both pupils and aspirants. When the fabrique or council of the parish of Vaudreuil declined financial assistance, Bishop Bourget arranged for the administration of the congregation and the noviciate to move to St. Jacques de l 'Achigan [Montcalm]. There the Sisters of Saint Anne would move into a boarding school recently vacated by the Religious of the Sacred Heart.36 A t St. Jacques de l 'Achigan, Mother Marie-Anne and her congregation met their newly assigned chaplain, Louis-Delphis-Adolphe Marechal. The middle-aged Mother Marie-Anne was soon locked in a conflict with the young priest. Marechal "felt torn . . . between a life of action" and a life of the spirit. Since his ordination as a priest, he had held several appointments and been dissatisfied with all. He sought the chaplaincy of the Sisters of Sainte Anne in order to fulfill his spiritual yearnings .37 He may also have hoped to gain the religious status accorded the associates of the saintly foundress of the Religious of the Sacred Heart. The founding members of the Sisters of Saint Anne were French-Canadian country-women, many of limited educational background, but all inspired by the 1840s religious revival in their province. That event was not a simple reaction to the Lower 57 Canadian rebellions of 1837 and 1838. Rather it was linked to contemporary Catholic revivals and temperance crusades in the United States and Europe.38 These women, like the founding members of the Sisters of Charity of Providence of Montreal, held different expectations of their personal mission than did the male clerics.39 The desire of Mother Marie-Anne and the Sisters of Saint Anne to teach both young boys and girls conflicted wi th the policies of Bishop Bourget and his clerical appointees. Bourget, in approving a sisterhood teaching of mixed or coeducational classes had gone against the official policy of the church. He moved quickly and harshly to rectify the error.40 The chaplain Marechal and Bishop Bourget viewed their conflict wi th Mother Marie-Anne as a matter of her "obedience and humility in the face of decisions made by ecclesiastical superiors." Marechal as chaplain and Bourget as bishop both had expectations of a female religious community shaped by what they knew of Catholic traditions of governance regarding women's communities in Quebec, and what they had learned recently of the French Religious of the Sacred Heart. Bourget and his men wanted and needed women religious to staff schools and institutions. As conservative, ultramontane clerics they accepted lay women's initiatives to do charitable works, but wanted control of the enterprise. The male leaders held that the structures of nuns' lives should be as cloistered as possible. Women religious should be restricted to teaching girls, and, where necessary, boys at the primary level.^l What the Sisters of Saint Anne wanted to do in the diocese of Montreal had to be fitted into Bishop Bourget's models. A n d it would be the Sisters who would struggle to yoke the two traditions, cloistered and active, in busy apostolic lives.42 By the end of 1854 "the struggle, in which the clerics were attempting to seize control of a young community of women whose leaders did not want to abdicate their 58 power of decision but in which all the actors spoke the same religious language, was beginning to die down. "43 Mother Marie-Angele Gauthier replaced Mother Marie-Anne as Superior General. Mother Marie-Anne went to other administrative posts but was soon sidelined to domestic duties at the mother house.44 From the viewpoint of male church historians the conflict between Mother Marie-Anne and her religious superiors died down with her demotion in 1854 and the promotion of chaplain Marechal in 1858 to parish priest. Technically he was only official religious superior of the congregation. 45 The difficulties between male clerics and the Sisters of Saint Anne over the direction of the congregation abated in the late nineteenth century as the congregation sent missions west and south and worked to gain pontifical status. Rome's eventual approval of that initiative meant more structural autonomy for the women religious. Once the nuns comprised a pontifical congregation, they reported directly to the Vatican, not their local bishop, and struggles such as those described above could henceforth be avoided, thus leaving the organization with much autonomy.46 Behind the politics of the Sisters of Saint Anne in Quebec in the 1850s lay the economic and social aspects of their lives. The Sisters had to manage finances carefully, given the lack of public funding for education in Quebec or Lower Canada.47 Parishes and local governments supported some schools, but the training of priests and professionals, such as lawyers, was more of a priority than women's education. The Sisters had to operate in an educational market complicated by French and Irish Catholics, English Protestants, and British Colonial governments. The Sisters of Saint Anne, like other congregations, developed strategies for survival and expansion of their work,48 such as adding piano lessons to their 59 curr iculum. 4 " They found English-speaking patrons and political contacts, for example the Vaudreuil 'seigneur' Robert Harwood and his wife Louise.50 Socially, the first members of the congregation of the Sisters of Saint Anne consisted of a majority of French-Canadian farm women, in their twenties and thirties along wi th a significant minority of Irish or Irish-Canadian women.51 Only a few women who joined the new congregation had had life experience in urban areas or education wi th another more established congregation. The French-Canadian and Irish Sisters of Saint Anne, like other Lower Canadians of French and Irish background in the mid-nineteenth century, got along fairly well with one another. Irish aspirants to the sisterhood, unless already bilingual, d id have to learn to speak French, but d id not otherwise face discriminatory practices.52 Irish immigrant women had experienced a revival of Roman Catholicism in Ireland after the famine of the 1840s. This revival shared much with the Quebec revival, for example preachers and devotional practices from France. 53 Addit ional links between the Sisters of Saint Anne and the popular culture of Catholicism in Quebec in the mid-nineteenth century existed in the name of the order and the participation of lay associates. The congregational patron, Saint Anne, grandmother of Christ, had long been a focus of Irish as well as French, Acadian and French-Canadian women's devotions.54 Women lacking education but wanting to participate in the spiritual life and charitable works of the congregation could join it as lay associates. The Sisters of Saint Anne here followed Quebec tradition rather than the more formal European practice of having a rank of coadjutrix nuns.55 As regards education, the Sisters of Saint Anne were a community of women who felt called, as had Mother Marie-Anne, to dedicate their lives as women religious 60 teachers of the rural youth of Quebec. Each of the women went through a two year noviciate preparing for religious community life and teaching. The novices became accustomed not only to prayer and study but to the discipline of congregational rules. These were shaped by the history of women's religious congregations and included aspects both of the cloistered life, such as silences, and of the active apostolic life, such as home visits wi th students' families.56 At the end of the noviciate each took vows of poverty, chastity, obedience and instruction. Each received a new name and a new costume.^ 7 The entrance ceremonies usually took place in the summer near the feast of Saint Anne, July 26, or the Assumption of the Blessed Virg in Mary, August 15. These feastdays held significance for French-Canadian Catholics. A t this point in the year the superior, mother general or mother provincial assigned or gave an obedience/ nomination to each new member in the teaching or domestic works of the congregation. Once professed, the members of the congregation went to their posts.58 Each summer members returned to the motherhouse for an annual religious retreat, a period of study and vacation. In between times the ties of community were forged by correspondence wi th the motherhouse, chronicles of activities going in, circulars coming out, Sister Visitors coming round. Deceased members of the community were remembered on the annual anniversary of their deaths by the reading out of their necrologies or obituaries. The reading of the necrologies did more than memoralize the departed Sisters; it helped model the remaining women religious along the lines of the recorded virtues of 'good nuns.' 61 THE SISTERS OF SAINT ANNE'S EXPECTATIONS OF WESTERN MISSIONS The religious revival which swept Catholic Quebec in the 1840s not only inspired the formation of new religious congregations of women and the foundation of Catholic works of mercy, it also assisted development of the French-Canadian missionary movement of the mid-nineteenth century. Female religious congregations, such as the Sisters of Saint Anne, heard the preaching of the missioners Bourget had encouraged to come from France, the Jesuits and the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. Some of the Oblates may have mentioned Honore-Timothee Lempfrit, Oblate missionary to the Natives of Vancouver Island from 1849 to 1852. Some of the Grey Nuns of Montreal may have spoken of his letters to them.59 As a Montreal area sisterhood the Sisters of Saint Anne likely read of the adventures of the French-Canadian missionaries, Frangois-Norbert Blanchet and Modeste Demers, to the Quebec mission to the Pacific, begun in 1838. By 1846 F . N . Blanchet had become archbishop for the region. From Oregon City, near present-day Portland, he himself ministered to the area west of the Cascade mountains. Demers was made bishop of Vancouver Island, while Blanchet's brother Augustin-Magloire was named bishop of Walla Walla (the American territory east of the Cascade mountains).60 There were frequent contacts between Quebec and the west coast of North America. F . N . Blanchet visited the Sisters of Saint Anne at Vaudreuil in 1852. The Sisters of Providence of Montreal sent a mission west to Oregon in 1856. In 1857 when Bishop Demers of Vancouver Island visited the Sisters of Saint Anne at St. Jacques, he told them of the need for missionaries to serve Aboriginal peoples and the families of French Canadian fur traders. Demers requested the Sisters' help as teachers of "halfbreed and Indian girls" in his new diocese. The Sisters 62 responded positively, as, although they were members of a teaching congregation, their rule also allowed "the care of the poor in orphanages and hospitals."61 A l l the professed nuns volunteered to go west to Demers' diocese.62 Mother General appointed four Sisters to set out for Fort Victoria. Sister Marie Alphonse, commissioned as superior, fell i l l while studying nursing in Montreal. Sister Marie du Sacre-Coeur replaced her as superior and Sisters Marie-Angele, Conception and Lumena were added to the list. Marie Mainville accompanied these women as their lay assistant. 63 A l l of the appointed missionaries toured or interned at Montreal area charitable institutions, such as the Asile de la Providence of the Sisters of Providence. The Sisters of Saint Anne destined for the west also received gifts and prayers from several Montreal communities of religious women. These examples of feminine friendship and cooperation indicate that 'the great missionary movement' unified Catholic efforts and muted the usual competition between sisterhoods, particularly teaching sisterhoods.64 Both the directress and Sister Marie-Angele wrote chronicles of the journey from Montreal to Fort Victoria on Vancouver Island while traveling as part of a contingent of missioners heading west. En route to their Pacific Coast mission the Sisters went by train to N e w York and by steamer from there to Panama, San Francisco and Portland. The Portland stopover was notable in that no congregation of women hosted them, but the local community tried to hijack them into staying permanently in a convent building already prepared.65 The Sisters of Saint Anne who arrived in Fort Victoria from Portland in June 1858 expected that their mission would parallel the works of the Grey Nuns of Montreal in the Red River Settlement in the territory of Rupert's Land, or the mission the Sisters 63 of Providence began in 1856 at Fort Vancouver in the Oregon territory. Bishop Demers had described for them the Victoria community he knew: a fur trade fort wi th a small colonial establishment. A few British settlers had come into the area but local agricultural growth was slow as the adjacent American territory had better developed facilities. The nuns thought they would teach some daughters of fur trade company employees, but learned the Anglican church would compete wi th its schools. The Sisters of Saint Anne presumed they would focus on catechizing and doing charitable services for the children and women of fur trade families, especially those of Roman Catholic and French-Canadian background, or for abandoned halfbreed children. They aspired to move on to minister to the Aboriginal peoples, particularly the school age children.66 The Sisters of Saint Anne expected Vancouver Island would be a classic mission territory 'at the ends of the earth.' In Victoria they met a tent city built to serve miners going to the Fraser River gold mines on the mainland. They were as shocked as Bishop Demers that the fur trade fort and adjacent Aboriginal lands had become development sites. The Sisters of Saint Anne had not expected to encounter the gold rush, the immigration of European, American and Canadian settlers, or the amplification of the British presence. Accordingly, these nuns had to adjust their plans to fit the new situation. Their origins and identity as a teaching congregation from the Montreal diocese would shape that adjustment, and that is the subject of the next chapter. ORIGINS OF THE OBLATES OF MARY IMMACULATE A group of Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate who met the Sisters of Saint A n n on Vancouver Island in 1858 would work in this region with the Sisters in the missions of the Roman Catholic Church. 64 In shaping mission methods, Louis-Joseph d'Herbomez, the Oblate superior at Esquimalt near Fort Victoria on Vancouver Island in 1858, used his congregation's French practices, reports of Canadian and Red River missions, and the lessons of the Oblates' Oregon ventures, including the examples of the Jesuit Rocky Mountain Mission and of one Oblate on Vancouver Island.67 Thus to understand Oblate history in British Columbia, it is necessary to review both the origins of the Oblates in France, and their Oregon background.68 Eugene de Mazenod and the men who joined h im in 1816 in founding a congregation were dedicated to the rechristianization of the southern part of France after the French Revolution. De Mazenod himself had studied for the priesthood wi th the Sulpicians. In organizing his congregation, first called the missionaries of Provence, de Mazenod used historical examples of preaching congregations from other European countries and other eras such as the Oratorians, the Redemptorists and the Jesuits of the Counter-Reformation. The motto de Mazenod chose for his order, "to preach the gospel to the poor He hath sent me," echoes that of the Redemptorist preaching congregation of eighteenth century Italy.69 The early Oblate home mission techniques bear remark as they became the basis for foreign mission work, including that of British Columbia. The Oblate founder, de Mazenod, like to remind priests of his congregation to stick to "the method that we follow in France."70 The missionaries of Provence evangelized the masses of the region in week long evangelization sessions or 'missions,' noted for use of the Provencal language. These culminated in grand penitential processions. To ensure adherence of the laity to Catholic practices after or between missions, the Oblates distributed devotional literature and organized religious societies for them.71 65 In promoting his new congregation's efforts de Mazenod benefited from the support of his uncle, Fortune de Mazenod, the bishop of Marseilles. In 1837 he succeeded his uncle as bishop. 7^ Unti l his own death in 1861, de Mazenod manoeuvred ecclesiastical politics so as to benefit the congregation's growth. 7 ^ Vatican approval was given in 1826, at which point the congregation took a new name, Oblates of Mary Immaculate, partly out of agreement with the papal promotion of Marian devotion, partly to have a distinguishing name. 7 4 Then to compete wi th the revivification of diocesan clergy and older orders for members, de Mazenod had the Oblates take on some parish work, junior seminaries, and the direction of shrines. The latter activity tied in wi th the order's home missions as the shrines were sites for pilgrimages and centres for lay associations. Teaching school, though taken up by Oblates in parishes, seminaries and missions, d id not become part of the congregation's official mandate until the end of the century. The Oblates had a group of non-ordained vowed members called brothers who taught, d id manual labour and technical work, but their numbers were not large. The "function of lay brothers was enhanced when the Oblates accepted foreign missions. Lay brothers became missionaries, builders of churches and schools and assumed apostolic responsibilities as catechists and teachers in schools." 7^ The Oblate congregation was also assisted by the revival of women's active congregations in France at this time. For example, the Holy Family Congregation of Bordeaux came to the Oblates' aid in establishing schools and charitable institutions in the south of France and in the missions of Ceylon. 7 6 The 1840s religious revival in France with its conservativism, ultramontanism and missionary emphasis contributed to the growth and identity of the Oblate 66 congregation. During the 1830s the Oblates ventured a mission to Algeria. Although the Oblates withdrew from that territory after a brief period, the next decade saw them send missionaries to England, Ireland, the Canadas, Texas, Red River, Ceylon. They became known for their 'mission' sessions, preaching in local languages, working wi th the poor and working class, sponsoring temperance societies. In Canada the college, later the University of Ottawa, became a major part of the Oblate work, but elsewhere missions to the Native peoples and the poor, rather than schools, were the Oblate for te . 7 7 By the 1840s when the French-Canadian bishops of Oregon Territory applied to de Mazenod for priests for their Aboriginal missions, the Oblate congregation in France and the missions consisted of 50 priests, 4 brothers, and 17 seminarians. 7^ The economic and social profile of the congregation members was mainly, 'pauvre, pur et dur': French, lower-middle class and rural. Some members, though, d id come from Ireland and from professional or upper-middle class and urban backgrounds. The average Oblate priest had joined the congregation at about age eighteen. He studied Latin texts on theology and philosophy for four years at their seminary near Marseilles. 7^ Some ordained secular priests joined the Oblates and did a year or two of noviciate. A l l were instructed in the moral theology of St. Alphonsus Ligouri , a less r igid theology than the old Jansenist French variety.80 The Oblate Marseilles seminary, and seminaries which opened in Ireland and Canada, provided no specific mission orientation. Oblates were trained as priests in the ultramontane Roman Catholic church, destined to spread and defend its faith, not for specific missions.81 As McCarthy notes, the French congregation did not distinguish the work of home and foreign missions.82 However, Huel notes that the founder 67 revised his initial directive on missionary work, which encouraged the use of mission sessions as in Provence, in light of overseas experience. By 1853 it became part of the Oblate rule. Significantly "the Oblates were [now directed] to establish a school in each mission in which the young would be instructed in ... Christianity and ... receive a practical education to prepare them to live in a sedentary civilized society."83 rje Mazenod also encouraged Oblates going to British colonies to learn English, by assigning them to study in England or Ireland.84 Like the Sisters of Saint Anne, entrants to the Oblate congregation as priests or brothers made vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, but also of perseverance in the congregation. Perseverance meant making a commitment to remain an Oblate for life. The Oblates bonded together as a congregation through daily religious and social life as a community, according to an established rule and customs. The founder and his successors communicated with Oblates by regular letters. They sent visitors to report on the vicariates or districts of the congregation. Oblates in each vicariate were supposed to gather for an annual retreat but this was waived in mission situations. Printed reports of Oblate work in popular French mission magazines, such as the Annals of the Propagation of the Faith (Lyons), and the Oblates' own Missions (established 1862), created links and a sense of common identity.85 Reports of General Chapters, held every five years, were important too. Each Oblate province sent its superior as a chapter delegate, but members of each province also elected and sent their own delegate.86 68 T H E O B L A T E S O F M A R Y I M M A C U L A T E ' S E X P E C T A T I O N S O F M I S S I O N S T O V A N C O U V E R I S L A N D A N D B R I T I S H C O L U M B I A In addition to their French heritage, the experiences of the Oblates in Oregon Territory from 1847 to 1858, shaped the congregation's expectations of future missions on Vancouver Island and in British Columbia.87 In 1847 a small band of priests and brothers arrived in Oregon territory to assist in the Aboriginal missions planned by Bishop Augustin Magloire Blanchet of Walla Walla, one of the Quebec missioners to the Pac i f ic . 8 8 Once in Oregon territory, the French Oblates cooperated with the European Jesuits who had earlier begun missions in the Rocky Mountains and east of the Cascade mountains. The Oblates' local superior, Pascal Ricard, however, soon quarrelled wi th the French-Canadian ecclesiastics. Ricard "insisted that canon law permitted the congregation to own and operate its own missions," while the French-Canadian bishops thought they should control all Catholic enterprises. When Francois Jayol, one of the few diocesan priests, asked to be admitted to the Oblate congregation in 1848, tensions increased between the bishops and the Oblates. 8^ Vincent McNal ly has thus aptly termed the era of Oblate beginnings in the far west, "Fighting for a Foundation." 90 Battles going on around the Oblate founders of Oregon complicated their lives. Although many of the Cayuse and the Yakima welcomed the Oblate missionaries, the years of Oblate beginnings in their territory were marked by a series of conflicts between Aboriginal peoples and settlers. The Whitman massacre of November 1847 was followed by vigilante violence, and then the Yakima war of the mid-1850s. American settlers and Protestant missionaries suspected the Oblates of aiding Aboriginal uprisings. The Americans' suspicions rose from their nativist distrust of Roman Catholics, the Oblate use of Aboriginal languages, and their support of 69 Aboriginal peoples against vigilantes. However, the Oblates got on well wi th most federal troops and federal officials.91 Although Oblate superior Pascal Ricard removed his headquarters from the wartorn interior valleys of Oregon to the Puget Sound town of N e w Market [later named Olympia], in 1848, his administrative problems continued. He was not able to assign priests to evangelize local Salishan peoples until 1850. Ricard ran short of funds owing to wartime destruction of mission properties, and disruption in communications from France during and after the revolution of 1848.92 Even with additional priests and brothers sent from France, Ricard never had more than nine men at his disposal for both coastal and interior missions. He complained "our poverty prevents us from becoming missionaries, we have become simple tillers. We have hung our crosses at the sides of our beds and we have taken up the hatchet and the pick axe."93 Ricard had to deal wi th brothers revolting against their heavy workload.94 When Ricard was i l l in 1854 and needed an assistant he drew veteran missionaries' resentment for moving Louis-Joseph d'Herbomez, a young protege of de Mazenod from the wartorn interior missions to Olympia.95 Another new Oblate missionary sent from France to Oregon, Honore-Timothee Lempfrit, initially provided encouraging reports of his work on Vancouver Island 1849 to 1852. Lempfrit, an ordained priest, inspired by the 1840s religious revival in France, left a Trappist monastery to join the Oblates. They had quickly acceded to his desire for foreign mission work, sending h im to assist Ricard in Oregon. 96 Ricard assigned Lempfrit to begin a mission at Fort Victoria, a Hudson's Bay Company post in bishop Modeste Demers' diocese. Lempfrit initially got on well with Demers, Hudson's Bay Company officers and the Salishan peoples. He began a school 70 in the fort for wives and children of the French-Canadian fur trade employees,97 preached to hundreds of Salishan peoples, and baptised great numbers as members of the Roman Catholic church. However, when Lempfrit visited the Cowichan people, further up the coast of Vancouver Island, he drew an angry response, forcing Governor James Douglas to send men to rescue him. Several explanations have been advanced for Lempfrit's problems, including rumours about his alleged affairs with Aboriginal women, including the fathering of a child.98 French-Canadian Bishop Demers, already concerned by the French priest's too hasty baptisizing of converts, was horrified to receive reports of his embarassing removal from Cowichan. In religious terms the scandal grew as Bishop Demers complained to his metropolitans about Lempfrit's behaviour, and Lempfrit in turn complained to Rome about Demers. Accordingly, in 1852 Lempfrit left Vancouver Island and then proceeded to France where he withdrew from the Oblate congregation and became a parish priest.99 Although embarrassed by the Lempfrit scandal, Ricard was more concerned about the survival of Oblate missions in the wartorn interior of Oregon and Washington and the tension between settlers and Aboriginals on Puget Sound. By the time Ricard was recalled to France in 1856 he and his temporary successor, d'Herbomez, were recommending that the Oblates move north to Vancouver Island to gain peace and autonomy for their work.100 In 1857 the superior general, de Mazenod, sent Oblate Frangois-Xavier Bermond to Oregon with powers as visitor and superior.101 Bermond endorsed the directions proposed by local Oblates: abandon wartorn Yakima and Cayouse missions, keep Puget Sound posts, and move to Demers' diocese of Vancouver Island. Bermond recommended seeking an autonomous area for Oblate missions by petitioning Rome for an apostolic vicariate.102 He had learned that the Salish peoples 71 of the area were favorably disposed and that Bishop Demers was "desperate" for priests.103 The mainland British colonial territory adjacent to his episcopal seat, Fort Victoria, seemed the best potential region for autonomous Oblate missions. Thus in 1858 Bermond officially began the Oblates' move north to assist Bishop Demers. A not so hidden aspect of their agenda was that they knew Demers would have to allow them wide latitude in direction of Aboriginal missions. 104 Bermond, like the Oregon Oblates, expected that the Vancouver Island and mainland missions would be mainly Aboriginal missions. Since the Oblates were convinced that few white settlers would come, particularly to the fur trade centre of Fort Victoria, 105 j-he emphasis would not be on implanting a European church but on saving Native souls. Priests should learn Aboriginal languages in order to preach the gospel. They could baptize children and the dying. But adults interested in Catholicism would have to go through a year's preparation and testing, and renounce polygamy and Aboriginal beliefs. 106 As a veteran of Oblate missions in Ruperts Land, Bermond gave d'Herbomez, the incoming superior, advice on how to strengthen missionary methods. In assessing six years of work among the Yakima with only 160 converts, d'Herbomez had opined, "as long as we follow the system we have adopted up to now, reside in one place and fail to visit the Indians in their camps, we w i l l do nothing." He recommended following the Red River Oblates' practice of making missionary efforts nomadic .107 D'Herbomez endorsed Bermond's directives, for example, assigning a young Oblate, Paul Durieu, to help establish a mission and a school at Tulalip.108 There, at St. Francis Xavier, Eugene Casimir Chirouse gave mission instructional sessions, organized temperance societies in Snohomish villages, built chapels at central sites, and 72 proceeded wi th itinerant mission work. Chirouse, like other Oregon Oblates, had adopted use of the Quebec missionaries' illustrated Bible History, the Catholic Ladder and temperance society. The temperance society was a village confraternity headed by Native chiefs, catechists and watchmen to ensure converted Salishan peoples kept to Catholic religious practices, avoided traditional Salish religious leaders and abstained from alcohol consumption. Like both Quebec missioners and Jesuit priests, Chirouse used the Chinook jargon or interpreters in beginning evangelization. Then he set about learning local languages and translating Catholic hymns and prayers. With in a few years the mission and boys' school Chirouse began at Tulalip would impress officials and gain government financial support. Where Chirouse, d'Herbomez and the Oregon Oblates differed from Bermond in missionary methods was in their interest in the Jesuit "reductions" of Paraguay of the seventeenth century. The Jesuits there had gathered Native converts in church-centred agricultural villages isolated from European settlements. These Utopian settlements elected their own officials and had their own police and courts. 109 Bermond had seen the failure of George-Antoine Belcourt's attempt at an agricultural village or reduction for the Saulteaux at Baie St. Paul, Manitoba.HO However his Oregon confreres had visited a 'modified reduction' organized by the Jesuits at St. Paul's at Colvil le, Washington Territory,! H and were impressed with Jesuit achievements among nomadic peoples. The Jesuits established a mission church and school and made circuits out to preach in Native camps, but did not try to get Aboriginal peoples to settle down to farming. Locating such 'modified reduction' missions in traditional Aboriginal territory helped guard the converted from the threats of liquor traders or vigilantes. 73 In the spring of 1858 as the gold miners poured into Fort Victoria on their way to the Fraser River mines, the Oblate superiors focussed on plans to move north and undertake Aboriginal missions. In July 1858 Fathers Bermond and d'Herbomez founded the Oblate mission at Esquimalt near Fort Victoria on Vancouver Island. The influx of settlers meant that there was even more reason to follow the Jesuit model for 'modified reductions' and the methods Chirouse had tested at Tulalip. Scholars who have researched the Oblates of Mary Immaculate in British Columbia have focussed on one French Oblate bishop, Paul Durieu, and his system for conversion and control of the Aboriginal peoples of the Pacific West. Research on Durieu's biography and for this chapter indicates that the Oblates' mission system for British Columbia actually drew on French experiences predating Durieu's entry into the congregation, and Oregon experiences predating his arrival in that mission territory. This finding counter's E . M . Lemert's argument that Durieu created a theocratic system and applied it quickly and successfully to Salishan p e o p l e s . W h a t is important to note at this point is that the Oblate mission system was not Durieu's creation but a composite, centred on a modified rather than a classic reduction, and that the Oblates had problems applying and maintaining their mission system all along. Two major difficulties for the Oblates, also experienced by the Rocky Mountain Jesuit Missions, were the shortage of priests to supervise and the intrusion of frontier settler vices, particularly liquor sales, in Aboriginal communities. COMPARISON OF ORIGINS A comparison of the origins of the Sisters of Saint Anne and Oblates of Mary Immaculate brings forward both interesting similarities and significant differences. The Sisters of Saint Anne were founded thirty-four years after the Oblates, in a rural area of 74 a colony of Britain, rather than in a country where Catholicism had been the state church. The Sisters' foundress had no bishop-uncle to support her. In contrast to the Oblate founder she was a person closer to the margin than to the elite of society. As women the nuns' positions and activities were inherently restricted within the patriarchal Roman Catholic Church. However, Esther Blondin, like Eugene de Mazenod, had run her own organization prior to its official foundation within that church. Both founders had colleagues and religious mentors to assist them. Both new congregations were impelled by contemporary religious revivals and conservative politics after political disruptions. The Sisters modelled their teaching on the Congregation of Notre Dame and the recent example of the Madames of the Sacred Heart in Montreal. The spirituality of the latter congregation, modeled on that of the Jesuits, was favoured by Bishop Bourget and L . A . D . Marechal, the second chaplain of the Sisters of Saint Anne .H6 The Oblates followed Oratorian, Redemptorist and Jesuit examples in spiritual life and in works. Both congregations aimed to teach the Catholic faith, but the men in the traditional sacerdotal and school ways, the women in schools and social service only. The mottoes are significant. The Oblates' was "to preach the gospel to the poor He has sent me." The Sisters of Saint Anne cite the Latin for Matthew 5:19: "He that shall do and teach shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven."H7 These mottoes reflect the gendered norms of the nineteenth-century Roman Catholic church. Only men could be ordained to the sacerdotal and pastoral ministry. The Sisters as women could not lead formal liturgies nor administer parishes, but the congregation of women could organize and deliver education and social services for the church. 75 Both congregations drew on the Catholic missionary literature of the early nineteenth century. In France, where the papally approved popular mission societies were headquartered, that was flavoured by a sense of the "pre-revolutionary tradition" of Gesta Dei per Francos, God leading the Catholic church through the French .H8 In Quebec, the centre for a diocese extending as far as Oregon on the Pacific, mission magazines proudly spread word of the arrival of priests at Fort Vancouver on the Columbia in the 1830s, and of the arrival of the Grey Nuns of Montreal at Red River in 1844.H9 A group of Oblates from France and Canada arrived a year later. In the mid-nineteenth century both congregations were invited by French-Canadian bishops of Oregon Territory to found missions on the Pacific Coast. The pioneer missionaries of each group were aware of the Grey Nuns of Montreal and Oblate foundations at the Red River settlement serving both the Aboriginal Peoples and the fur traders and settlers. The Sisters of Saint Anne and the Oblates based their plans for particular missions in Demers' Vancouver Island diocese on impressions garnered from the reports of Lempfrit.120 They expected to meet Salishan peoples interested in Roman Catholicism for its religious ceremonies and for services it might offer families disrupted by epidemic disease or social problems.121 The two congregations, however, d id not share Lempfrit's romantic notions about the Salishan peoples. The Sisters heard Demers' negative opinions regarding these western Aboriginal peoples on their voyage west. The Oblates had had both negative and positive experiences wi th the Salish of Puget Sound .122 In terms of gender and mission both the Sisters of Saint Anne and the Oblates brought a system for their practical works as well as a set of expectations to their new 76 mission field. The Oblates' Oregon experience as French frontier male missionaries to the Aboriginal peoples, and as male missionaries unaided by nuns, shaped their mission system and their plans, just as the Sisters of Saint Anne's background as a Montreal diocese community of women shaped theirs. H o w the expectations of the two groups of missionaries played out in their lives and works w i l l be the subject of the following chapters. 77 Notes 1 The mainland territory of the present-day Canadian province was named New Caledonia by North West Company fur trader Simon Fraser in the early 1800s. The British government made Vancouver Island a colony in 1849 and the mainland a separate colony in 1858. The two colonies were united in 1866, and British Columbia became a province in the Canadian confederation in 1871. The fine points of constitutional history are explained by James Hendrickson's introduction to The Journals of the Colonial Legislatures of British Columbia and Vancouver Island 1858-1871, Vol. I Journals of the Council, Executive Council and Legislative Council of Vancouver Island 1851-1866 (Victoria: Provincial Archives of British Columbia, 1980). 2 I am using the Dictionary of Canadian Biography English spelling of Mother Marie-Anne's name and that of the Sisters of Saint Anne of Quebec. These spellings vary from those used in some other publications. See Eugene Nadeau, "Esther Sureau dit Blondin, Mother Marie-Anne," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XI (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1982), 864-865. 3 Vincent J. McNally, "Fighting for a Foundation: Oblate Beginnings in Far Western Canada, 1847-1864," in Western Oblate Studies 4/Etudes Oblates de l'Ouest 4, ed. R. Huel (Edmonton: Western Canadian Publishers, 1995): 47-70. 4 Robert Choquette, The Oblate Assault on Canada's Northwest (Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press, 1995). 5 See Marta Danylewycz, Taking the Veil: A n Alternative to Marriage, Motherhood and Spinsterhood in Quebec, 1840-1920 (Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1987), 160. 6 Jo A n n Kay McNamara, Sisters in Arms. Catholic Nuns Through Two Millenia (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1996). 7 Claude Langlois, Le catholicisme au feminin. Les congregations francaises a superieure generate au XIXe siecle (Paris: Les Editions du Cerf, 1984). 8 Elizabeth Rapley, The Devotes. Women and Church in Seventeenth-Century France (Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1990). 9 Marguerite Jean, s.c.i.m., Evolution des communautes religieuses de femmes au Canada de 1639 a nos jours (Montreal: Fides, 1977), 27-35, and 49-60. Marguerite Bourgeoys founded the Congregation of Notre Dame in Montreal in 1658. Marguerite d'Youville began her community in Montreal in 1737. It was known as the Grey Nuns of Montreal, but formally termed "Soeurs de la Charite de l'Hopital General de Montreal." 1 ° Patricia Simpson, Marguerite Bourgeoys and Montreal, 1640-1665 (Montreal and Kingston: McGi l l -Queen's University Press, 1997). H Jean, Evolution des communautes, 52, 55-56, 66-68. 12 Explanation in English from W.J. Eccles, "The Role of the Church in New France," in his Essays on New France (Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1987), 32-37. Similar themes appear in Louise Dechene, Habitants and Merchants, 1992 English translation. [English language references are given where possible.] 78 13 Danylewycz, Taking the Veil, 17; Lucien Lemieux, Histoire du catholicisme quebecois Vol . 2 Les XVIIe et XIXe siecles (1760-1898. Tome 1: Les armees difficiles (1760-1839) (Montreal: Boreal, 1989), 218. 14 Jan Noel, "Women and Social Welfare in the Montreal Region, 1800-1833: Preliminary Findings," in Changing Roles of Women Within the Christian Church in Canada, ed. E . G . Muir and M . F . Whiteley (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1995), 261-283. 15 Al lan Greer, The Patriots and the People. The Rebellion of 1837 in Rural Lower Canada (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1993), 214-216; and Danylewycz, Taking the Veil, 17-18. 16 Micheline Dumont, "Marie-Elmire Cadotte, named Marie de Saint-Alphonse-de-Ligouri, provincial superior of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd (Angers), [1848-1909] Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XIII (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1994), 146-147. 17 M . D'Allaire, "L'originalite de l'oeuvre sociale des Congregations Religieuses de Montreal au xixe et xxe siecles." S C H E C Etudes d'histoire religieuse 59 (1992): 25-41, Grey Nuns on p. 27. See also Clio Collective, Quebec Women a History (Toronto: The Women's Press, 1987), 140-141. 18 Jan Noel, "Women and Social Welfare in the Montreal Region, 1800-1833," and J. I. Cooper, "The Social Structure of Montreal in the 1850s, C H A Annual Report 1956, 63-73, especially 70. 19 Micheline Dumont, Preface, to Augustine Prevost, S.S.A., L'Education hier et aujourd'hui 1850-1985 (Montreal: Editions du Meridien, 1986), 9-11. 20 Micheline Dumont, Girls' Schooling in Quebec 1639-1960, Canadian Historical Association Booket No. 49, trans. C E . Cochrane (Ottawa: Canadian Historical Association, 1990), 10-11. Clio Collective, Quebec Women a History, 173, "In 1870, there were ten times as many nuns as in 1830. By 1900 one woman in a hundred over the age of twenty-one took final vows in Quebec." Many more had some experience of life in the noviciate. Compare the discussion in Susan Mann Trofimenkoff, The Dream of Nation. A Social and Intellectual History of Quebec (Toronto: Gage, 1983), 122-124. 21 Dumont, Girls' Schooling in Quebec 1639-1960; Danylewycz, Taking the Veil, 17 passim; see also Micheline Dumont, "Evolution et role des congregations religieuses enseignantes feminines au Quebec, 1840-1960," S C H E C Sessions d"etude 50 (1983): 201-230. This contains material similar to that in Dumont, Girls' Schooling in Quebec 1639-1960. 22 Louis-Philippe Audet's overview of the history of education in Quebec is useful here. See his contributions to Canadian Education: A History, ed. J.D. Wilson, R . M . Stamp and L-P. Audet (Scarborough: Prentice Hall , 1970), 2-23, 70-85,145-189. 23 Dumont, Girls' Schooling in Quebec 1639-1960,10; Danylewycz, Taking the Veil, 57-60; Clio Collective, Quebec Women a History, 164-165. By 1856 the majority of teachers in Quebec were women and women constituted 68% of public school teachers. 24 Dumont, Girls' Schooling in Quebec 1639-1960,10-12. For a detailed discussion see Micheline Dumont and Nadia Fahmy-Eid, Les couventines: 1'education des filles au Quebec dans les congregations religieuses enseignantes 1840-1860 (Montreal: Boreal, 1986), 252-274. 79 25 Elizabeth Smyth, '"Developing the Powers of the Youthful Mind': The Evolution of Education for Young Women at St. Joseph's Academy, Toronto, 1854-1911," C C H A Historical Studies 60 (1993-94): 103-125. 26 The Congregation of Notre Dame of Montreal in 1823 began to change its curriculum, adding English, geography and music. The congregation also founded "new prestigious boarding schools." In 1843 it "finally received permission from Bishop Bourget of Montreal to increase the number of its members, which until then had been limited to eighty." See Dumont, Girls' Schooling in Quebec 1639-1960, 9. Danylewycz, Taking the Veil, 77, notes additional members helped the Congregation of Notre Dame compete against other orders, particularly the Religious of the Sacred Heart in running urban convent academies. The significance of the Religious of the Sacred Heart [RSCJ], founded by Sophie Barat in Amiens, France in 1800, as educators of young women, merits comment. Barat intended the name, the Society of the Sacred Heart, to parallel that of the male Society of Jesus or Jesuits. She aimed to restore the Catholic Church in post-revolutionary France, just as the Jesuits worked to restore it in post-Reformation Europe. Barat followed European traditions in having choir nuns teach and lay sisters do domestic labour. When her order was invited to Canada by Bishop Ignace Bourget of Montreal in 1842, it began a convent boarding school in St. Jacques de l'Achigan [Montcalm]. The nuns moved closer to Montreal in 1853. There, as in other North American metropoli, the Religious of the Sacred Heart taught their standard curriculum, stressing piety, feminine accomplishments and academics. They adopted the English language, but kept their elite French culture, setting the style for their competitors. See Diane Belanger and Lucie Rozon, Les Religieuses au Quebec (Montreal: Libre Expression, 1982), 294. 27 Belanger and Rozon, Les Religieuses au Quebec, 287-289, By 1863 the Congregation of Notre Dame had 32 missions in Canada and 3 outside and were running 42 free classes. G u y Laperriere, Les congregations religieuses: de la France au Quebec, 1880-1914. Tome 1. Premieres bourrasques 1880-1900 (Sainte-Foy: Les Presses de l'Universite Laval, 1996), 27-28, notes that the Religious of the Sacred Heart ran a school for workers' children at Sault au Recollet after 1853. Compare Nikola Baumgarten, "Education and Democracy in St. Louis: The Society of the Sacred Heart," History of Education Quarterly 34,2 (Summer 1994): 171-192. 28 Nadeau, "Esther Sureau dit Blondin, Mother Marie-Anne," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XI, 864-865. See also the congregation's own history: Soeur Marie-Jean-de-Pathmos, s.s.a., Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne un siecle d'histoire Tome 1:1850-1900 (Lachine: Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 1950). 29 H u g h A . Halliday, "Terrebonne: from seigneury to suburb," Canadian Geographical Tournal 84,4 (April 1972): 131-139, the Terrebonne convent opened in 1826. Esther Blondin worked and studied there beginning in 1828. 30 Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 28-32; Sister Mary Margaret Down, SSA [Edith Down, SSA], A Century of Service: A History of the Sisters of Saint A n n and their contribution to education in British Columbia, the Yukon and Alaska 1858-1958 (Victoria: Morriss Printing for the Sisters of Saint A n n , 1966), 28-29; Augustine Prevost, s.s.a., L'education hier et aujourd'hui 1850-1985 (Montreal: Editions du Meridien, 1986), 27-39 and 63. Prevost explains that Suzanne Pineault returned to Blondin's Vaudreuil school to join the nascent congregation of teaching sisters in 1848-49. 31 Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 34; Prevost, L'education hier et aujourd'hui, 48. Louis Rousseau, "Paul-Loup Archambault," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume VIII (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1985), 19-21. See also Real G . Bouilanne, "The French Canadians and the Schools of the Royal Insititution for the Advancement of Learning, 1820-1829," Histoire sociale/Social History 10 (November 1972): 152,157. 80 32 Philippe Sylvain, "Ignace Bourget," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XI (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1982), 94-105. For a definition of ultramontanism see the glossary of Terence Murphy and Gerald Stortz, eds., Creed and Culture: The Place of English-speaking Catholics in Canadian Society, 1750-1930 (Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press, 1993). 33 Rousseau, "Paul-Loup Archambault," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Vol . VIII, 19-21. 34 Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 34-38 and 455-458, appendix of original documents on the name and goals of the new congregation. 35 Nadeau, "Esther Sureau dit Blondin, Mother Marie-Arme," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Vol . XI, 864-865. See also the congregation's own history: Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 59-64; Belanger and Rozon, 150-160; and Jean, Evolution des communautes. O n educational aspects see Prevost, L'Education hier et aujourd'hui 1850-1985, 60-61. 36 Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 96-100. St. Jacques was an Acadian settlement. The Sisters of Saint Anne began a convent school at Lachine and moved their administration to that location in the 1860s. So the congregation is sometimes mentioned as the Sisters of Saint Anne (Lachine). 37 Louis Rousseau, "Louis-Delphis-Adolphe Marechal," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XII (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1990), 697-698. 38 Philippe Sylvain and Nive Voisine, Histoire du catholicisme quebecois. Vol . 2 Les XVIIe et XIXe siecles Tome 2 Reveil et consolidation (1840-1898) (Montreal: Boreal, 1991), 17-26. Charles Forbin Janson came from France to Montreal to lead a religious crusade during 1840 and 1841. The Quebec religious revival which Janson inspired parallels movements in the United States. See Jay P. Dolan, The American Catholic Experience (New York: Doubleday, 1985), 212-13; and Jay P. Dolan, Catholic Revivalism: The American Experience 1830-1900 (Notre Dame, Indiana: University of Notre Dame Press, 1978), 37-48. 39 Marguerite Jean, "Emilie Tavernier (Gamelin)," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume VIII, 863-865; and Philippe Sylvain and Nive Voisine, Histoire du catholicisme quebecois. Vol . 2 Les XVIIe et XIXe siecles Tome 2 Reveil et consolidation (1840-1898) (Montreal: Boreal, 1991), 51. 40 Lucien Lemieux, Histoire du catholicisme quebecois. Vo l 2 Les XVIIIe et XIXe siecles. T o m e l : Les annees difficiles (1760-1839) (Montreal: Boreal, 1989), 205, explains bishops and parish priests had always been against co-educational schools, but they had existed, particularly in the Montreal diocese. 41 Jean, Evolution des communautes, 84-91, discusses the conflict from the viewpoint of canon law. The sixteenth-century code did not forsee the structures of "filles seculieres," or active congregations working in more than one diocese. Bishop Bourget was inexperienced and hasty in dealing with their superiors general and too ready to borrow French models. Mailloux, Esther Blondin, 19 discusses the Ignatian or Jesuit spirituality which Bourget and later Marechal emphasized with the Sisters of Saint Anne. 42 Margaret Cantwell SSA, North to Share: The Sisters of Saint A n n in Alaska and the Yukon Territory (Victoria: The Sisters of Saint Ann , 1992), 9. 43 Rousseau, "Louis-Delphis-Adolphe Marechal," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Vol . XII, 697-698. For an English-language account of the conflict between Mother Marie-Anne and Marechal and Bourget, based on research for her canonization as a saint, see Christine Mailloux, SSA, Esther Blondin. Prophet For Today, Trans E . Gallagher SSA (Montreal: Les Editions Paulines, 1989). 81 4 4 Mailloux, Esther Blondin, 76, 77, 82, 99, notes some members of the congregation continued to express affection and respect for the foundress. ^ Rousseau, "Louis-Delphis-Adolphe Marechal," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Vol . XII, 697-698. 46 Jean, Evolution des communautes, 88-91; Belanger and Rozon, Les Religieuses au Quebec, 150-160. 4 7 Lucie Champagne, "Le financement des pensionnats de jeunes filles au Quebec: le modele de la congregation des Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 1850-1905," (Memoire de maitrise en histoire, Universite de Sherbrooke, 1989); and Lucie Champagne and Micheline Dumont, "Le financement d'un seminaire diocesain, Le Seminaire de Sherbrooke, 1915-1950. Comparaison avec le financement des pensionnats de religieuses," Historical Studies in Education/Revue d'histoire de l'education 2, 2 (1990): 339-351. 48 Sheila Andrew, "Selling Education: The Problem of Convent Schools in Acadian New Brunswick, 1858-1886," C C H A Historical Studies 62 (1996): 15-32. 4 9 Prevost, L'Education hier et aujourd'hui 1850-1985, 65. ^ Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 44 and 83. See also form Beswarick Thompson, "Robert Unwin Harwood," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume IX (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1976), 373-374. Robert Harwood, 1798-1863, was a merchant and politician. His wife, Marie-Louise Josephte de Lotbiniere, inherited the seigneury in 1829. Robert Harwood then "exchanged ... Montreal society for the countryside." Though he was referred to as a "seigneur," the seigneurial lands were commuted into freehold tenure between 1846 and 1853. ^ The Matricule, Les Soeurs de Sainte Anne par ordre de profession. The Sisters of Saint Anne by order of Profession (Lachine [Sisters of Saint Anne] 1989), 1-4. The first 100 members of the congregation, those professing vows between 1850 and 1864, include ten women with Irish surnames. There are also a few non-French and non-Irish surnames. Also there are non-French first names such as Anna. The adoption of Irish orphans of the 1840s by French-Canadian families may provide an explanation, in that some of the women with French-Canadian surnames may have been Irish orphans. Prevost, L'Education hier et aujourd'hui 1850-1985, 60. Blondin was thirty-nine when she took the first steps to founding a religious community. The average age of its first members was twenty-three. 52 Prevost, L'Education hier et aujourd'hui 1850 -^1985, 64-65,109-110, Louise Harwood had taught English to the nuns at Vaudreuil. By 1874 Sister Mary Irene was teaching English to the novices and the students at the Lachine convent. By 1890 a formal English curriculum developed with a separate prefect of studies. See also Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 108-109 and notes 341 on English-speaking students of the Sisters of Saint Anne and English-speaking, mainly Irish entrants to the congregation. 53 J.J. Lee, "Women and the Church Since the Famine," in Margaret MacCurtain and Donncha O'Corrain, eds., Women in Irish Society: The Historical Dimension. Contributions in Women's Studies No. 4 (Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1979), 37-44. 5 4 Lucien Lemieux, Histoire du catholicisme quebecois. Vo l 2 Les XVIIIe et XIXe siecles. Tome 1: Les annees difficiles (1760-1839) (Montreal: Boreal, 1989), 326. 55 The coadjutrix Sisters' separate noviciate began in the 1890s and lasted only until 1909. Separate coadjutrix status lasted only until 1926. See [Sister Marguerite Boucher, SSA, researcher], "From the 'Filles de Bonsecours of 1880 to the Associates of 1982," Annals of the Community 52, 415 (January-July 82 1982): 87-92 for a short article in English expanding on the discussion in Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 298. 56 Cantwell, North to Share, 1-11, "Thematic Introduction." 57 Novices wore clothing denoting their status. The Sisters' habits were modelled on those of the Congregation of Notre Dame until Marechal ordered them revised as too expensive and pretentious. Yet the habit he had the Sisters of Saint Anne 'choose' in 1857 was remarkably similar to that of the Religious of the Sacred Heart. See: Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 52 description of original habit with head dress similar to Congregation of Notre Dame; 136 new habit in 1857; photographs of early costume 81, 88, and after Marechal, 104. 58 Champagne, "Le financement," 112 gives dates for establishment: 1850 Vaudreuil, 1851 St. Genevieve, 1853 St. Jacques, 1855 St. Ambrose, 1857 St. Cyprien. 59 Patricia Meyer, editor, and Catou Levesque, translator, Honore-Timothee Lempfrit, O.M.I, , His Oregon Trail Tournal and Letters from the Pacific Northwest 1848-1853 (Fairfield, Wash.: Ye Galleon Press, 1985), 14 of introduction, 221-226, letter of Lempfrit to Grey Nuns in Montreal, written February 9, 1850 at Fort Victoria, Vancouver Island, describing six months of work and thanking the Grey Nuns and the Sisters of the Holy Names at Longeuil for their chapel decorations etc. 60 Vincent J. McNally, "Fighting for a Foundation: Oblate Beginnings in Far Western Canada 1847-1864," Western Oblate Studies 4/Etudes Oblates de 1'Quest 4, ed. R. Huel (Edmonton: Western Canadian Publishers, 1996), 50; David Nicandri, Olympia's Forgotten Pioneers: The Oblates of Mary Immaculate (Olympia, Washington: State Capitol Historical Association, 1976), 2. 61 A S S A V R G IS24 Box 2 of 3 [Originial in Box 1 of 3] Dix Premieres Annees des Soeurs de Sainte Anne, Victoria B.C. 1858-1868. Narrees par Soeur Marie des Sept Douleurs, translated by Jeanne Jodouin SSA, 1990, 3-5. 6 2 Sister Marie Anne Eva, SSA, A History of the Sisters of Saint Anne Volume One 1850-1900 (New York: Vantage Press, 1961), "The Great Missionary Movement," chapter VII, 133-58, in English translation of Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne. There were 42 professed members of the congregation in 1857; i.e., women who had taken vows as Sisters of Saint Anne. 63 Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, 298. Marie Mainville's experiences in the west contributed to her becoming the first coadjutrix Sister of Saint Anne. 64 The competition came both from male church leaders' efforts to control women's groups and the efforts of older congregations of women, e.g. the Grey Nuns, to protect their rights against newer orders. Conflicting lines of male patronage fed this competition in that the Grey Nuns had the Montreal Sulpician superior, Joseph Vincent Quiblier, as a patron versus the Sisters of Saint Anne with Bishop Bourget as a patron. Danylewycz, Taking the Veil, 77; and Sylvain and Voisine, Histoire du catholicisme quebecois. Vol . 2 Les XVIIe et XIXe siecles Tome 2 Reveil et consolidation (1840-1898),47-51. 65 "Lettre de la Soeur Marie-Angele, Soeur de Ste Anne, a Vancouver," L'Ordre (Montreal) 1, 5,19, 22 avril 1859. [Typescript and translation in A S S A V R G 1 S 24, 24-1-5]. 6 6 Marie Anne Eva, Sisters of Saint Anne, 139-140. 83 67 For Jesuit missions to the Salishan, Kootenai and Coeur d'Alene peoples in what are today eastern Washington, northern Idaho, and northwestern Montana see Jacqueline Peterson with Laura Peers, Sacred Encounters: Father DeSmet and the Indians of the Rocky Mountain West (Norman and London: The De Smet Project, Washington State University in association with the University of Oklahoma Press, 1993), 97-117, and map 95. 68 This survey will draw on archival and published records on these developments, and several fine recent secondary works sponsored by the Western Oblate Project. Donat Levasseur, o.m.i., Les Oblats de Marie Immaculee dans 1'Quest et le Nord du Canada, 1845-1967 (Edmonton: University of Alberta Press and Western Canadian Publishers, 1995); Robert Choquette, The Oblate Assault on Canada's Northwest (Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press, 1995); Martha McCarthy, From the Great River to the Ends of the Earth: Oblate Missions to the Dene 1847-1921 (Edmonton: University of Alberta Press and Western Canadian Publishers, 1995); Raymond Huel, Proclaiming the Gospel to the Indians and the Metis (Edmonton: University of Alberta Press and Western Canadian Publishers, 1996). 69 McCarthy, From the Great River, 3-5 on history of de Mazenod and Oblates; Peterson, Sacred Encounters, 28 on the Jesuits founded in 1541; and Paul Laverdure, Redemption and Renewal: The Redemptorists of English Canada, 1834-1994 (Toronto: Dundurn Press, 1996). O n Oblate History also see Donat Levasseur, o.m.i., A History of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate Vol . I ,Towards a Synthesis, 1815-1898 (Rome: General House, 1985) and Vol. II, 1898-1985 (1989), trans. John Rheidt O M I and Aloysius Kedl O M I . 70 C.J. Eugene de Mazenod to Fathers Maissonneuve and Tissot [at Red River in Manitoba], November 24,1858, in Eugene de Mazenod, Letters to North America 1851-1860. Collection Oblate Writings II, Translated from the French (Rome: General Postulation OMI, 1979), 200. 71 Huel , Proclaiming the Gospel, 1-10; McCarthy, From the Great River, 1-5; and also see Levasseur, Les Oblats de Marie Immaculee (1995). 72 Levasseur, Les Oblats de Marie Immaculee (1995), 22, Eugene de Mazenod was made a bishop in 1832 and an auxiliary to his uncle, Fortune de Mazenod. Eugene de Mazenod succeeded him as bishop of Marseilles in 1837. A n English translation of an older work by Levasseur, History of the Oblate Congregation (Ottawa: Editions des Etudes Oblats, 1959) [A course for seminarians], 63-68 gives details. 73 Huel , Proclaiming the Gospel, 8; Eugene de Mazenod, Letters to North America 1841-1850: Collection Oblate Writings I, trans. John W. Mole (Rome 1978); Eugene de Mazenod, Letters to North America 1851-1860. Collection Oblate Writings II, Translated from the French (Rome: General Postulation O M I , 1979). 74 Huel , Proclaiming the Gospel, 1-8. 75 Huel , Proclaiming the Gospel, 312 note 57. For more information on Oblate brothers see William Woestman, The Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate: A Clerical Religious Congregation with Brothers (Ottawa: Faculty of Canon Law, St. Paul's University, 1995). 76 Langlois, Le catholicisme au feminin, 340; Jean Leflon, Eugene de Mazenod. Bishop of Marseilles, Founder of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate 1782-1861 Vol. IV Pastoral and Missionary Work, trans. Francis Flanagan O M I (New York: Fordham University Press, 1970), 196, 294-297; and Levasseur, History of the Oblate Congregation, 1959,115-116. The Holy Family congregation of Bordeaux, founded in 1815, affiliated with the Oblates, beginning in 1857. See Missions de la Congregation des Oblats de Marie Immaculee [Missions!, 1891, 99. 84 7 7 Gaston Carriere, "Oblates of Mary Immaculate," New Catholic Encyclopedia Vol . X (New York: McGraw Hi l l , 1967), 612. See also Lemieux, Histoire du catholicisme quebecois. V o l 2 Tome 1: Les annees difficiles, 34-36; Levasseur, History of the Oblate Congregation, 1959, 91-93. Oblates arrived in the diocese of Montreal in 1841. They preached missions and temperance crusades. They ministered to lumber camps and the Indians of the Upper Ottawa and the North Shore of St. Lawrence River. Bruno Guigues, o.m.i. was named bishop of a new diocese of Bytown (Ottawa) in 1847. Martha McCarthy, To Evangelize the Nations: Roman Catholic Missions in Manitoba, 1818-1870. Papers in Manitoba History Report No. 2 (Winnipeg, 1990), discusses missions to the Aboriginal peoples of the western interior. 7 ^ Levasseur, History of the Oblate Congregation, 1959, 93 and table on 225. 7 9 Choquette, The Oblate Assault, 11-18; Leflon, Eugene de Mazenod ... Vol . IV, 16-18. 80 Choquette, The Oblate Assault, 11-18; and Claude Champagne, "La formation des oblats missionnaires dans le Nord-Ouest canadien," S C H E C Sessions d'etude 56 (1989): 21-33. The correspondence of the Oblate founder, Eugene de Mazenod shows he insisted that entrants to his congregation follow a strict moral code. He told novice masters to beware "particular attachments," i.e. homosexual relationships. Candidates with a history of adultery or fornication were to be sent away. De Mazenod insisted that priests hearing women's confessions do so, not in a parish office, but in a confessional with grilles to obscure the confessor's vision. C.J. Eugene de Mazenod to Father Boisrame, novice master at Sicklinghall, England, June 25,1858, in Eugene de Mazenod, Letters and Documents Concerning England and Ireland 1842-1860, Collection Oblate Writings III, Trans. J.W. Mole O.M.I. (Rome: General Postulation O.M.I. , 1979), 141-142 regarding "particular attachments," and adultery or fornication. De Mazenod's requirements for confessionals appear in his Act of Visitation ... Inchicore, Dublin, July 26,1857, in the same volume, 192. 81 Champagne, "La formation des oblats missionnaires," 30-33. 82 McCarthy, From the Great River, 1-10. 83 Huel , Proclaiming the Gospel, 5-6. 84 For example Charles Grandidier was sent to England before assignment to British Columbia, see Gaston Carriere, Dictionnaire Biographique des Oblats de Marie Immaculee au Canada Tome II (Ottawa: Editions de l'Universite d'Ottawa, 1977), 104-105. De Mazenod wrote to Robert Cooke, provincial in England, July 30,1858, about sending Grandidier, see Eugene de Mazenod, Letters and Documents Concerning England and Ireland 1842-1860, Collection Oblate Writings III, 144-45. 85 Missions de la Congregation des Oblats de Marie Immaculee [Missions!, (Paris: 1862-). 86 Huel , Proclaiming the Gospel, 7-9. 8 7 Huel , Proclaiming the Gospel, 9. Oblate missions in the Montreal and Ottawa dioceses and at the Red River Settlement began in 1841 and 1845 respectively, but these mission districts developed separately. Personnel were rarely transferred. 88 His brother, Francois-Norbert Blanchet, Archbishop of Oregon City and Vicar Apostolic of Oregon had requested Oblates of de Mazenod with no success. A . M . A . Blanchet appealed directly to Oblate 85 Father Bruno Guigues, the superior at Montreal, who in turn appealed to de Mazenod. Levasseur, Les Oblats de Marie Immaculee (1995), 31; and McNally, "Fighting for a Foundation," 47-52. 89 McNally, "Fighting for a Foundation," 56-57; Levasseur, Les Oblats de Marie Immaculee (1995), 32-34. Note that the publication date is included with the reference to Levasseur as he had a long career and published several volumes. The use of short titles for them might easily confuse future researchers. 9 0 McNally , "Fighting for a Foundation," 47-69. 91 McNally , "Fighting for a Foundation," 54, 59. See also Gaston Carriere o.m.i., "The Yakima War," Vie Oblate Life 34 (1975), 147-73, 261-94, and David Nicandri, Olympia's Forgotten Pioneers: The Oblates of Mary Immaculate (Olympia, Washington: State Capitol Historical Association, 1976), 5. Nicandri cites American archival sources and Pascal Ricard, "Les origines de nos Missions de l'Oregon d'apres un memoire du P. Ricard," Missions 1912, 67-83,163-176. 92 Nicandri, Olympia's Forgotten Pioneers, 7 passim. 93 Seattle Archdiocese Archives, Ricard to Brouillet [vicar general of Walla Walla diocese], January 10, 1850, cited in Nicandri, Olympia's Forgotten Pioneers, 8. 94 In 1854, Oblate brothers Gaspard Janin and Celestin Verney revolted against the heavy workload set them by Father Eugene-Casimir Chirouse at St. Rose Mission. Ricard managed to get them to obey regulations and work for Chirouse again. Nicandri, Olympia's Forgotten Pioneers, 16, citing Oregon Historical Society Archives, Catholic Church in the Northwest, Oblates, Microfilm Roll 1: Chirouse to Ricard, February 24 and 28,1854 and Janin to Ricard, June 29,1854. 95 De Mazenod Letters to North America 1841-1850 Collection Oblate Writings I (Rome: General Postulation O M I , 1978), 230-231, De Mazenod to Father Richard, November 17,1849 sending L.J. d'Herbomez as your "first consultor" and successor in case of illness or death. See Eugene de Mazenod, Letters to North America 1851-1860 Collection Oblate Writings II, trans. (Rome: Gneral Postulation O M I , 1979), 69-70, E. De Mazenod to Father Ricard March 7,1854, appointing d'Herbomez as vice-vicar of Oregon. O n the Oregon Oblates' opinion of d'Herbomez see Father Aubert quoted in a note in the same volume, 156, on how d'Herbomez "has not been well accepted by all the fathers in Oregon." Nicandri, Olympia's Forgotten Pioneers, 14-17, discusses the Richard-d'Herbomez friendship. The latter's transfer to Olympia in 1854 was on account of stomach problems. Ricard's poor health was probably due to tuberculosis. 96 Emilien Lamirande, "Le Pere Honore-Timothee Lempfrit: son ministere aupres des autotochtones de l'ile de Vancouver (1849-1852)," Western Oblate Studies 1/Etudes Oblates de l'Ouest, ed. R. Huel (Edmonton: Western Canadian Publishers, 1990), 53-70; Patricia Meyer, editor, and Catou Levesque, trans., Honore-Timothee Lempfrit, O . M . L , His Oregon Trail Journal and Letters from the Pacific Northwest 1848-1853 (Fairfield, Wash.: Ye Galleon Press, 1985). 97 Emilien Lamirande, "Le Pere Honore-Timothee Lempfrit," 55. O n Lempfrit's school see Chief Factor James Douglas to the Governor of the Hudson's Bay Company, October 27,1849, in H . Bowsfield, ed., Fort Victoria Letters 1846-1851 (Winnipeg: Hudson's Bay Record Society, 1979), 59. The wives would have been Aboriginal or Metis women and the children halfbreed or Metis. 98 Vincent J. McNally , " A Lost Opportunity: A Study of Relations Between the Native Peoples and the Diocese of Victoria," Western Oblate Studies 2/Etudes Oblates de l'Ouest 2 (Queenston: Edwin Mellen Press, 1992), 164. Also see: Emilien Lamirande, "Le Pere Honore-Timothee Lempfrit," 63-64; McNally , 86 "Fighting for a Foundation," 61-63; Meyer and Levesque, Honore-Timothee Lempfrit, O.M.I. , editor's introduction. 99 Emilien Lamirande, "Le Pere Honore-Timothee Lempfrit," 70; Meyer and Levesque, Honore-Timothee Lempfrit, O.M.I. , editor's introduction, 21-40 especially 33, 37-39. 100 R i c a r d was recalled in 1856 but did not leave Olympia until the spring of 1857. Kay Cronin, Cross in the Wilderness (Vancouver: Mitchell Press, 1960), 48-49. For original correspondence see Eugene de Mazenod, Letters to North America 1851-1860 Collection Oblate Writings II, 126-128, C E . de Mazenod to Father Ricard November 15,1856, recalling Ricard from Oregon. 101 Eugene de Mazenod, Letters to North America 1851-1860 Collection Oblate Writings II, 156, De Mazenod to Father Bermond, Visitor in Oregon, September 9,1857, and editor's note quoting Father Aubert that d'Herbomez could not yet be named superior, and on how he "has not been well accepted by all the fathers in Oregon." 102 Levasseur, Les Oblats de Marie Immaculee (1995), 34. McNally, Fighting for a Foundation," 60 and 65. 103 McNally , "Fighting for a Foundation," 63 on Demers "desperate" for priests. See also Jean Usher, "Modeste Demers," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume X, 222. 104 McNally , "Fighting for a Foundation," 66, on Demers' awareness of Oblate intentions "to replace him or have a new independent jurisdiction detached from his huge diocese." 105 Levasseur, Les Oblats de Marie Immaculee (1995), 35-36. 106 Achiel Peelman, "Les Missionnaires oblates et les cultures amerindiennes au 19e siecle," S C H E C Etudes d'histoire religieuse 62 (1996): 31-47. Professor Peelman drew his conclusions from examination of the published versions of 246 Oblate letters 1847-1856, in Les oblats de Marie Immaculee en Oregon 1847-1860, 3 vols., ed. P. Drouin, o.m.i. (Ottawa: Archives Deschatelets, 1992). 107 Carriere, "Yakima War," 283, quoting d'Herbomez to de Mazenod, Apr i l 22,1857. Nicandri, Olympia's Forgotten Pioneers, 26, on how d'Herbomez's 1856 tour with E . C . Chirouse among the Snohomish near Tulalip had followed the Red River "mission ambulante" style. 108 Jacqueline Gresko, "Pierre-Paul Durieu," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XII (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1990), 281-285. For a history of the Tulalip mission and a biography of Chirouse see [Nellie Sullivan], Sister Mary Louise OP, "Eugene Casimir Chirouse and the Indians of Washington," (M.A. Thesis, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, 1953). 109 H . Storni, "Reductions of Paraguay," New Catholic Encyclopedia Volume 12 (New York: McGraw Hi l l , 1967), 165-166. H O W . L . Morton, "George-Antoine Bellecourt (Belcourt)," Dictionary of Canadian Biography X 1972,46-48. See also Gaston Carriere, "The Early Efforts of the Oblate Missionaries in Western Canada," Prairie Forum 4:1 (Spring, 1979), 4. Belcourt was not an Oblate. He began his reduction in 1833. His bishop, Provencher, condemned it saying, "it would have been better to have a little less ploughing and a little more catechism." 87 m Pandosy and Durieu fled their Yakima mission and took refuge with the Jesuits at Colville in October 1855, see Carriere, "Yakima War,"168-170. 1 1 2 Robert I. Burns SJ, "Roman Catholic Missions in the Northwest," Handbook of North American Indians Vol . 4 History of Indian White Relations, W.E . Washburn volume editor (Washington: Smithsonian, 1988), 494-500; and Robert Ignatius Burns SJ, The Tesuits and the Indian Wars of the Northwest (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1966), 41-47, on the modification of the reduction model to local circumstances and Jesuit finances. See also Robert M . Waver, "The Jesuit Reduction System Concept: Its Implications for Northwest Coast Archaeology," Northwest Anthropological Research Notes (Fall 1977): 163-169. H 3 Bermond's last letter from Oregon to de Mazenod, October 22,1858, is cited in Kay Cronin, Cross in the Wilderness, 53. H 4 Gresko, "Pierre-Paul Durieu," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Volume XII, 281-285. H 5 Edwin M . Lemert, "The Life and Death of an Indian State," Human Organization 13, 3 (Fall 1954): 23-27. 1 1 ° Rousseau, "Louis-Delphis-Adolphe Marechal," Dictionary of Canadian Biography Vol . XII, 697-698; and Mailloux, S.S.A., Esther Blondin, 19. H 7 McCarthy, From the Great River, 4 on Oblate motto, "Evangelizare pauperibus misit me," which she translates as He has sent me to teach the Good News to the poor." Cantwell, North to Share, vi, on Sisters of Saint Anne's motto, "Qui fecerit et docuerit hie magnus vocabitur in regno coelorum." H 8 Huel , Proclaiming the Gospel, xxii. 11^ Marie Anne Eva, Sisters of Saint Anne, "The Great Missionary Movement," chapter VII, 133 ff. in English translation of Pathmos, Les Soeurs de Sainte-Anne, reflects the enthusiasm of French Canadians for missions. Lempfrit's letter to the Rev. Grey Sisters Montreal, February 9,1850 appears in Patricia Meyer, editor, and Catou Levesque, translator, Honore-Timothee Lempfrit, O.M.I. , His Oregon Trail Tournal and Letters from the Pacific Northwest 1848-1853 (Fairfield, Wash.: Ye Galleon Press, 1985), 221-225. 121 O n the impact of epidemic diseases on Salishan peoples see Cole Harris, The Resettlement of British Columbia (Vancouver: U B C Press, 1997). O n the problems of alcohol, prostitution, and diseases see Wilson Duff, The Indian History of British Columbia Vol . 1 The Impact of the White M a n (Victoria: Provincial Museum of British Columbia, 1965), 40-45. More recent scholarship appears in Wayne Suttles, editor, Handbook of North American Indians Vol . 7 The Northwest Coast (Washington: Smithsonian, 1990). 122 McNally , " A Lost Opportunity," looks at the negative views of Victoria diocese clerics and nuns. He does not consider the more positive viewpoints cited in Nicandri, Olympia's Forgotten Pioneers. 88 CHAPTER FOUR: THE LIFE HISTORIES OF THE FIRST GENERATION "Life will be mostly what women truly wish it to be" This chapter compares the lives of the first twenty-four Sisters of Saint A n n and the lives of the first thirty Oblates of Mary Immaculate in British Columbia missions. Discussion of the leadership and then the group in each congregation shows how their expectations played out in their life histories. This biographic approach, countering present day stereotypes about Oblate priests as directors, and the nuns and brothers as docile servants, lays groundwork for further examination of how two missionary organizations evolved in British Columbia. 1 The collective biography shows that the Sisters were a sisterhood, a unified organization with ideology and associations, able to negotiate their own way in a patriarchal church. The Sisters of Saint A n n saw themselves as missionaries, apostles of the Christian church. The Oblate priests and brothers, for all their formal status as the missionary apostles of the church in British Columbia, were an organization divided in ideology and associations, especially by the politics of church, class, ethnicity and personality. Prior to the 1960s ordained priests were the official Roman Catholic Church. As priests and as men in a British colonial society the Oblates were drawn into the politics of public life. The Oblate brothers were inferior to the priests in their congregation but were equal to them in colonial law. The Sisters, who were much more of a homogeneous group, had relatively more freedom and equality in their lives than the brothers. The Sisters operated as a religious congregation in the larger church wi th their own superiors and their own rules and customs. The brothers were the lowest 89 rank of the Oblate congregation and came under its rules. However, as many were not educated to read Latin, the language of official church documents, they could not access their own rules. Twenty-three of the twenty-four nuns served in British Columbia as professed members of the congregation; only one worked as a lay assistant during her western assignment. Yet the Sisters remained a lower order in the patriarchal church. They might gain male ecclesiastics' approbation for their teaching or charitable and missionary works, but they could never become their ordained officials' equals. The disparities of gender and the peculiarities of church organization marked the Sisters of Saint A n n and Oblates' lives and identities throughout their history in British Columbia. In the sense of spiritual achievement as well as church organization, religion was a key factor in the material and mental lives of both orders. The Sisters considered themselves primarily women religious, missionaries, teachers of the Catholic faith even though their assignment might be nursing or domestic duties. The Oblates considered themselves missionary priests and brothers called to evangelize Aboriginals, even though their assignment might be parish work with settlers or teaching. They constructed their identity in relationship to their congregation based in Marseilles, then Paris, to their local superiors and colleagues and to the populations they served. The Sisters of Saint A n n in British Columbia constructed their identity in relationship to their own congregation based at Lachine, Quebec, to their local clerical advisors, co-workers and superiors, and to the populations they served. L I V E S O F T H E F I R S T T W E N T Y - F O U R S I S T E R S O F S A I N T A N N L E A D E R S H I P Salomee Valois, the first superior of the Sisters of Saint A n n in British Columbia, was born A p r i l 30,1830 in the rural community of Vaudreuil near Montreal in Lower 90 C a n a d a / She was the eldest of six children of a French-Canadian farm couple, Joseph Eustache Valois and Angelique Lefaivre. Her parents' Catholicism and relative prosperity motivated them to send Salomee to the parish school, the Blondin Academy in Vaudreuil . They supported her decision to enter the noviciate of the Sisters of Saint u Anne in 1851 and later her volunteering for the mission to Vancouver Island. 3 O n June 22,1852 in Vaudreuil, Salomee Valois finished her postulancy and received her habit and her religious name, Soeur Marie du Sacre-Coeur [Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart], from Archbishop Frangois-Norbert Blanchet of Oregon City .4 Blanchet called her to be a Christian missionary in foreign lands. Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart heard additional promotion of French-Canadian Catholic missions in the west during her noviciate, but her main concern was her commitment to train as a religious teacher with the Sisters of Saint Anne. A t her perpetual profession in 1853, when she was twenty-three years old, Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart, like the other nuns, took vows of poverty, chastity, obedience and teaching, thus becoming the twenty-second professed member of the congregation. When the mother house transferred to St. Jacques de 1'Achigan that same year, she remained at Vaudreuil to teach in the parish school. However she did go to St. Jacques as sacristan, then went back to Vaudreuil to teach, then returned to St. Jacques to work in the garden, infirmary and household accounts. When in 1857 the Sisters of Saint Anne accepted the call from Bishop Modeste Demers of Vancouver Island for teachers and healthcare workers, Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart was one of the four commissioned. When the directress of the missionary group, Sister Mary Alphonse, fell i l l early in 1858, Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart replaced her.5 91 Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart was one of the more experienced teaching Sisters going west. The other, Sister Mary Angele [Gauthier], had served as superior general of the congregation for three years after the deposition of Mother Marie-Anne. Sister Mary Lumena [Brasseur] and Sister Mary Conception [Lane] had only recently made profession as members of the Sisters of Saint Anne. The lay assistant, Marie Mainvil le, made a personal vow to Bishop Bourget of Montreal to remain attached to the four professed Sisters.^ O n their arrival at Fort Victoria June 5,1858, the four pioneer nuns immediately saw the impact that the gold rush on the Fraser River had made on the fur trade post. This caused them to change their original plans to teach French-Canadian fur traders' children and Aboriginal children. As the directress, Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart soon oversaw classes for white settler children as well as halfbreeds and Indians, home nursing, and care of the bishop's residence.^ A near-unilingual francophone herself, she recognized her limitations and those of her three francophone companions in an English-speaking urban community. In a gold rush town cash from paying pupils was needed to fund charitable efforts. Only Sister Mary Conception, an Irish-Canadian, had the fluency in English to run classes entirely in that language. So Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart wrote to her superiors asking for English-speaking Sisters, preferably with musical ability, to direct a select fee-paying school. 8 The Superior General of the Sisters of Saint Anne and her Council at St. Jacques, Quebec received and acted on this request. Neither Bishop Modeste Demers of Vancouver Island nor Bishop Ignace Bourget of Montreal interfered with the arrangements. ^ 92 In November 1859 Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart happily turned over direction of the log cabin convent in Victoria to one of two newly arrived English-speaking Sisters, Mary Providence McTucker.10 She would change the congregation's name in British Columbia to Saint Ann , and shift its curriculum to the English language.H For the next five years Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart continued to teach in Victoria, to advise on administration and to help with the domestic chores of the convent and its boarding and day schools. The private correspondence of Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart hints that the pioneer directress stepped aside, not only so that an anglophone nun could promote the congregation's missions, but also so that a new superior could resolve personnel problems. One of the pioneer nuns had criticized her management style and disrupted the harmony of the Victoria convent community. It was tough emotionally to have to make her subordinates work hard and to have to admonish them, but she found it even more stressful that one unnamed nun resented the slightest correction and had turned against her, calling her a tyrant. To preserve harmony in the convent all the other nuns gave in to this nun's opinions. Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart asked her superiors for the means to show this nun that she was mistaken and to bring her into line, i.e. into loyal and harmonious working relations. Most probably this person was Sister Mary Angele, a former superior general. After 1859 both she and Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart assisted Sister Mary Providence, but they never worked together again for more than a brief period. These assignments contrast with the other nuns of the 1858 contingent.12 Beginning in 1864 Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart and one assistant pioneered the establishment of the Sisters of Saint A n n mission school at Quamichan or Cowichan, 93 now Duncan. Sister Mary Conception served as the long term assistant, although Sisters Mary Angele, Lumena and Bonsecours also held brief appointments. In spite of the aid of these Sisters, who had learned Chinook, the fur trade jargon familiar to Aboriginal families, and that of the local missionary priest, French-Canadian Pierre Rondeau, few Indian pupils came or stayed. There were few settler families to supply paying pupils. Orphans were left in the Sisters' care before their garden or farm could supply adequate food. 13 The hard labour at Cowichan wore down Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart's health. So in 1869 she was reassigned to the Victoria convent to assist wi th administration, supervision of manual works and care of boarders. The arrival of more English-speaking nuns from the East and the construction of a new convent academy on Humboldt Street in Victoria meant these were not small tasks. She also helped out nuns at other missions on the mainland. For example on May 3,1870, Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart went to St. Mary's Mission on the Fraser, east of N e w Westminster, and helped the two nuns there make forty-four quilts. Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart's continued difficulty speaking English limited the role she would take in the select convent school in Victoria. The boarding students, however, expressed great affection for the Sister they knew as "my Aunt Sacred Heart."14 When in 1876 the Sisters of Saint A n n established St. Joseph's Hospital near the Victoria convent, Mother Providence assigned Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart to oversee its laundry and old men's ward. This ward grew out of the Sisters' arrangement for hospital fundraising. They charged for annual and/or lifetime hospital society memberships and promised hospital care and/or geriatric care in return. In the 94 late nineteenth century the Sisters took in Aboriginal and Asian patients who were not admitted to all area public hospitals.15 Only a short appointment near her family near Montreal in the 1890s and the rheumatism of advancing age interrupted Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart's hospital routines. In her letters to family, she encouraged one nephew and two grand-nephews to become priests and two grand-nieces to join the Sisters of Saint Anne.16 Her religious community recognized Sister Mary of the Sacred Heart's fiftieth anniversary of profession in 1903 and her death in 1906, at 76 years of age. But she d id not receive much public recognition. She would not have objected to a comparison of her final assignment as laundress in the Victoria provincial house wi th that of her congregation's foundress at the motherhouse in Lachine. A younger Sister of Saint Ann , the historian Sister Mary Theodore, credited the shaping of the sisterhood's British Columbia missions to Sisters Mary Providence and Anne of Jesus, the provinc
UBC Theses and Dissertations
Gender and mission : the founding generations of the Sisters of Saint Ann and the Oblates of Mary Immaculate… Gresko, Jacqueline 1999
You are currently on our download blacklist and unable to view media. You will be unbanned within an hour.
To un-ban yourself please visit the following link and solve the reCAPTCHA, we will then redirect you back here.
- 831-ubc_1999-463494.pdf [ 19.03MB ]
- JSON: 831-1.0055449.json
- JSON-LD: 831-1.0055449-ld.json
- RDF/XML (Pretty): 831-1.0055449-rdf.xml
- RDF/JSON: 831-1.0055449-rdf.json
- Turtle: 831-1.0055449-turtle.txt
- N-Triples: 831-1.0055449-rdf-ntriples.txt
- Original Record: 831-1.0055449-source.json
- Full Text