Robert G. Gassert was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on July 6, 1921.
Following graduation from Marquette University High School in 1939, he
attended Marquette University from 1939-1941. In 1941 he joined the
Society of Jesus at St. Stanislaus Seminary in Florissant, Missouri and
remained for four years studying theology. He then received his A.B and
M.A. in Philosophy from St. Louis University in 1945 and 1948,
respectively. He taught briefly, from 1948-1951, at Campion High School in
Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, after which he attended St. Mary’s College in
Kansas, where he was ordained in 1954 and received his S.T.L. in 1955.
After his tertianship at St. Joseph’s Hall in Decatur, Illinois, he
attended Gregorian University in Rome, Italy and received his S.T.D. in
1958 Gassert joined the Marquette University faculty as a theology
instructor. Five years later, in 1963, he became the dean of the College
of Liberal Arts, now the College of Arts and Sciences. In 1979 he was
named the Corporate Vice President of Marquette, a position held until
1990 when he became the national chaplain of the Marquette University
Alumni Association. He also served as secretary to the Board of Trustees
for several years.
Gassert co-authored the book Psychiatry and Religious Faith with
Bernard H. Hall, M.D., a collaboration formed in 1962-1963 during
Gassert’s postdoctoral fellowship in religion and psychiatric theology at
the Menninger Foundation in Kansas.
Reverend Robert Gassert died of cancer June 17, 1993.
Scope and Content:
The Robert G. Gassert Papers, 1935-1992 (2.4 cubic feet) document the
teaching and administrative career of Gassert, as well as his Jesuit
training and education. Researchers should be aware that related materials
are also located in the
Helen Way Klingler College of Arts and Sciences and the
of the President record groups. The papers are arranged in four
series, as follows:
Series 2.1 – Correspondence,
1938-1992 (.9 cubic feet) is arranged by correspondent and topic in
an effort to preserve the original order maintained by Gassert. Weekly
letters to his family while in school document his religious training
and personal life. His roles at Marquette University are also
Series 2.2 – Public Addresses and
Writings, 1953-1992 (.3 cubic feet) is arranged alphabetically and
includes talks and sermons given by Gassert, many of which were given in
conjunction with events sponsored by Marquette.
Series 2.3 – Education, 1935-1992
(.9 cubic feet) documents Gassert’s role as both teacher and student.
Includes teaching and lecture notes, graded assignments, and
certificates and diplomas documenting Gassert’s educational
accomplishments. Researchers should note that many assignments and notes
from Gassert’s years as a student are in Latin.
Series 2.4 – Travel and Personal
Events, 1941-1986 (.3 cubic feet) is arranged alphabetically and
includes correspondence, photographs, and personal documents.