GUIDE TO CATHOLIC RECORDS ABOUT NATIVE AMERICANS IN THE U.S.
Volume 2: Midwest United States
South Dakota: SD-38
Benedictine Sisters. Mother of God Monastery. Archives
Mother of God Monastery
110 Twenty-Eighth Avenue, Southeast
Watertown, SD 57201
Email: See website (Contact Us)
Hours: By appointment only
Access: Some restrictions apply
Copying facilities: Yes
History: In 1874, Bishop Martin Marty, O.S.B., asked Benedictine Sisters to join him in Dakota Territory, which they did with their first foundation at Zell, South Dakota. In 1889, Benedictine Sisters founded Sacred Heart Monastery, Yankton, South Dakota, which was followed by Mother of God Monastery, Watertown, South Dakota, 1961. The Benedictine Sisters of Mother of God Monastery taught in North and South Dakota at the Catholics schools serving Native Americans:
Immaculate Conception School (Santee), Crow Creek Reservation, Stephan, South Dakota
St. Bernard School (Hunkpapa), Standing Rock Reservation, Fort Yates, North Dakota
Holdings of Catholic records about Native Americans:
Inclusive dates: 1887-1970s, undated
Volume: 1.1 cubic feet and 1 reel of microfilm
Description: 3 series plus some unclassified records include Native Catholic records. Also included are records of schools administered by the Benedictine Sisters of Sacred Heart Monastery, Yankton, South Dakota.
/1 "Publications and Publicity - Chronicles"
Inclusive dates: 1935-1974
Volume: .2 cubic foot
A. "Fort Yates [North Dakota], St. Bernard School," 1935-1974, 1 volume (194 pages): includes daily entries and annual summaries; also photographs and clippings
B. Stephan [South Dakota], Immaculate Conception Mission School, 1939-1964, 4 notebooks: typed entries with school newsletters
/2 "Ministries - Secondary Education"
Inclusive dates: 1931, 1947-1958, 1960-1966
Volume: .75 cubic foot
Description: Includes copies of Memories, the yearbook of Immaculate Conception Mission School, Stephan, South Dakota.
Inclusive dates: 1960s-1970s, undated
Volume: 40 prints
Description: Prominent topics include the dedication ceremony at St. Peter Church, Fort Yates, North Dakota, in 1975, and mission buildings and personnel at Immaculate Conception Mission and School, Stephan, South Dakota.
/4 Unclassified Records
Inclusive dates: 1887-1970s, undated
Volume: .2 cubic foot and 1 reel of microfilm
A. Scrapbooks of Sister Helen Marx, O.S.B., 1960s-1970s, .1 cubic foot:
1. "Fort Yates, Government Indian School and St. Bernard's Mission School, and Kenel, St. Benedict's School," compiled in 1970s, 100 pages: contains summaries of Benedictine Sisters' chronicles, 1887-1974, copies of correspondence and photographs, clippings, and historical data
2. "Stephan, Immaculate Conception Mission School," compiled in 1960s, 65 pages: contains summaries of Benedictine Sisters' chronicles, 1939-1965, a brief history of the Mission by Sister Marmion Maiers, O.S.B., 1961, and copies of the newsletter Wopeedah, 1941-1942, 1945-1946, 1949-1950, 1953, 1958
B. Microfilm copy of records at Sacred Heart Convent, Yankton, South Dakota, 1887-1962, undated, 1 reel:
1. Chamberlain, South Dakota, St. Joseph School, 1951-1962, undated
a. Correspondence, 1951, 1953-1956, 1959, 1962, 9 letters: major correspondents include Mother M. Jerome, O.S.B., and Rev. Augustine Edele
b. Clippings, undated
2. Fort Yates, North Dakota, Government Indian School and St. Bernard Mission School, and Kenel, South Dakota, St. Benedict School, 1892-1961, undated:
a. Correspondence, 1924, 1959, 1961, 6 letters
b. Diary (copy) of Rev. Bernard Strassmaier, O.S.B., undated: copied in 1934
c. Quarterly school reports, 1892-1894
3. Stephan, South Dakota, Immaculate Conception Mission School, 1887-1960, undated:
a. Correspondence, 1887-1889, 1921, 1932-1933, 1935-1936, 1938, 1945, 1947, 1959-1960, 38 letters: most are copies from the Archives of the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament, Bensalem, Pennsylvania; major correspondents include Mother Gertrude, O.S.B., Mother Katharine Drexel, S.B.S., Mother M. Jerome, O.S.B., and Rev. Justin Snyder, O.S.B.
b. Notes summarizing the diary of Rev. Pius Boehm, O.S.B., 1893-1930," undated
c. Account of Catholic Indian education by Rev. Ambrose Mattingly, S.C.J., 1936, 8 pages
d. Photographs, 1938, undated, 2 prints
C. Unpublished theses, 1935, 1961, .1 cubic foot:
1. "The Educational Work of the Catholic Church Among the Indians of South Dakota," by Sister M. Serena Zens, O.S.B., 1935
2. "The History of Immaculate Conception Indian Mission, Stephan, South Dakota, 1886-1961," by Sister M. Marmion Maiers, O.S.B., 1961
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.