GUIDE TO CATHOLIC RECORDS ABOUT NATIVE AMERICANS IN THE U.S.
Volume 2: Midwest United States
North Dakota: ND-7

Our Lady of Seven Dolors Mission
213 Dakotah Road
P.O. Box 299
Fort Totten, ND 58335

Phone: 701-766-4314
Email: See Diocese of Fargo website (parish clergy locator)

 

History: Our Lady of Seven Dolors Mission, Fort Totten, Spirit Lake Reservation, North Dakota, has beenb a predominantly Native American (Sisseton-Wahpeton Dakota) parish in the Diocese of Fargo (Archives: Fargo, North Dakota).

1872

Rev. Jean Baptiste M. Genin, O.M.I. [Oblates of Mary Immaculate] established a school at Fort Totten

1874-1878

Rev. Louis Bonin established and administered Our Lady of Sorrows Chapel and School (Sisseton-Wahpeton Dakota) near the present-day St. Michael Mission, St. Michael

1874-1883

The Soeurs grises (Archives: Montreal, Quebec, Canada) staffed Our Lady of Sorrows School

1878-1883 (closed)

Benedictines (St. Meinrad Archabbey) (Archives: St. Meinrad, Indiana) administered Our Lady of Sorrows, which was destroyed by fire

1885-1926, 1927-1980s (transferred to Fargo Diocese)

Benedictines established and administered Our Lady of Seven Dolors Church (Sisseton-Wahpeton Dakota), which was destroyed by fire and rebuilt

1886-1926 (closed)

The Soeurs grises staffed the Fort Totten Indian Industrial School, which was destroyed by fire and rebuilt

1886-1926 (closed)

The Soeurs grises staffed the Fort Totten Government Indian School

1980s-present

Rev. Charles J. Leute, O.P. [Dominicans] (Sac & Fox) has administered Our Lady of Seven Dolors under special agreement with the Fargo Bishop and the Dominicans, St. Albert the Great Province (Archives: Chicago, Illinois)

Seven Dolors was the center of evangelization on the Spirit Lake/ Fort Totten Reservation, 1884-1929. With the opening of Little Flower School, 1929, the center shifted to St. Michael's with Benedictines residing at both St. Michael's and Seven Dolors, 1949-1980s. The Benedictines at Seven Dolors, and Father Leute who followed them, has attended to these Native American (Sisseton-Wahpeton Dakota) missions on the Spirit Lake Reservation, North Dakota.

1885-1929 (became a parish)

St. Michael Mission, St. Michael

1892-1929 (transferred to St. Michael's, St. Michael)

St. Jerome Mission, Crow Hill

1916-1929 (transferred to St. Michael's, St. Michael)

St. James Mission, Warwick

1949-present

St. Jerome Mission, Crow Hill

 

Holdings of Catholic records about Native Americans:

Inclusive dates: 1918-ongoing, undated

Volume: At least .6 cubic foot

Description: The records at Seven Dolors Mission were not organized according to a classification scheme when reviewed by a Marquette University archivist, 1980. Consequently, this description is by record type.

 

/1 Sacramental records

Inclusive dates: 1918-ongoing

Volume: At least 4 volumes

Description: Although Seven Dolors Church was the mission center until 1929, the early records for the reservation were kept at St. Michael Mission:

A. Baptisms, 1918-ongoing

B. Marriages, 1940-ongoing

C. Deaths, 1938-ongoing

D. First communions and confirmations, 1942-ongoing

 

/2 Audio recordings

Inclusive dates: Undated

Volume: 10-20 tapes:

Description: By Rev. Timothy Sexton, O.S.B.; includes his reminiscences and interviews with Sisseton and Wahpeton Dakota Indians; in 2007, it was reported that these recordings were no longer at Seven Dolors Mission.

 

Unless noted otherwise, the repository named above holds (or held) the records described and not the Marquette University Archives. However, Marquette’s holdings, e.g. Bureau of Catholic Indian Missions Records, include related records about these Native and Catholic groups and places.

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