IAGenWeb Project - Allamakee co. Church records
updated 10/29/2012

St. Mary's Catholic Church

Catholic Church, Dorchester - 1911
Catholic Church, Dorchester
photo-postcard postmarked 1911
~contributed by Errin Wilker

St. Mary's Catholic church & congregation ca1895
St. Mary's Catholic church & congregation ca1895

Close-up (left). Click the picture for an even larger version.
Close-up (left). Click the picture for an even larger version.

Close-up (right). Click the picture for an even larger version.
Close-up (right). Click the picture for an even larger version.

This photo was in a box my sister discovered when we were pulling together pictures for my mother's funeral.  The photo is about 8 x 10 and mounted on the cardboard-stock-type mounting boards of the era. 

I imagine my McLaughlins are in the photo and this is why it has remained with our family for so many years. Perhaps someone can help identify some of the congregation members shown, or the date & occasion depicted in the photo.

In a letter dated May 2, 1895, written to his cousin William McLaughlin, Patrick McLaughlin wrote:

"We have a nice Catholic Church in Dorchester.  New stained glass windows, also a fine new bell and a resident Priest Rev’d Francis McCullough."

The stained-glass windows show in this photo, so maybe it was a celebration of them.  It looks like maybe a bishop (wearing a fez-type hat) near the first window on the long wall.  Also, perhaps a priest at the base of the steeple. Around the steeple are some boards on the roof, so maybe a new roof came with the new windows? 

I'd love to know more.  Do you recognize anyone?  Patrick McLaughlin was my ggg grandfather. William McLaughlin was married to Margaret Danaher.

~original photo from the contributors personal collection
~contributed by Kathy Maurer. Kathy's email address can be accessed on the surname registry under McLaughlin.


Father James Whalen & church group ca early 1920's

L-R: William Donald McLaughlin, Irene A'Hearn, Grace Quillin, Helen Steinhart, Fr. James Whalen, Berniece McLaughlin, Dorothy Marie McLaughlin, Pearl McGraw, Agnes Devitt, Stacia O'Malley, Unknown, Mary Collins, Frank Gavin with hands on his son Harold Gavin, and Jimmy Ronan.

This photo was originally in the possession of Mildred Burke Hall. The Burkes were from Hanover in Allamakee. My grandfather William Whalen's brother, James Leo Whalen, is the priest in the picture and he was assigned to St. Mary's in Dorchester.

I am not sure if the photo is at St. Mary's Hanover or St. Mary's Dorchester, or perhaps St. Mary's Lycurgus. Fr. Whalen was from French Creek Township & died in 1929. Frank Gavin, who is on the right, died in 1927. The boy Harold Gavin was born in 1916, according to census records and died at 21 in 1937. Dorothy Marie McLaughlin died July 2, 1924. So the date of the photo is probably from the early 1920's and no later than July 2, 1924.

This photo made it's way to one of the Devitt sisters who lived in Chicago...she identified her sister and the other people as well. There is one who remains unidentified.

If anyone knows who the unidentifed person is, please contact me. Also, if there are any misidentifications, I would appreciate hearing about them.

~original photo from the contributors personal collection
~contributed by Matthew Whalen. His email address can be found on the surname registry for Whalen.

(Note: this photo has been included on the St. Mary Lycurgus & St. Mary Hanover pages also - anyone knowing at which church the photo was taken, please notify Matthew or the Allamakee co. coordinator referencing this page.)


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