This week’s #HiddenCatholicCollection takes a look at the Consolidated Archives of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph in Canada. The collection has over 1290 linear feet of archival and library materials. The Order was founded in Le Puy, France in 1650. Following the French Revolution, Mother St. John Fontbonne reformed the congregation in 1807 at Saint Etienne, with government approval following in 1812. The Archives collects the records of the formerly separate congregations of Hamilton, London, Pembroke, and Peterborough, Ontario, Canada.
Highlights of the Hamilton archive include records of St. Mary’s Orphanage, Mount St. Joseph Centre, missions in Guatemala and Jamaica, the House of Providence and St. Joseph’s Villa, Bethany House, St. Joseph’s Spirituality Centre, and many other ministries carried out by the Sisters. There are extensive administrative and decision making records as well as artifacts.
Highlights of the London archive include annals of missions across Canada; records of the Mount Saint Joseph Orphanage; Mount Saint Joseph Academy; and St. Joseph’s School of Music. There are also records of hospitals in Galahad, Killam, Stettler and Rimbey, Alberta; Chatham and Sarnia, Ontario; and St. Joseph’s Hospital and School of Nursing in London, Ontario. Included among the community annals are records for many convents and ministries such as Josephs’ House for Refugees; St. Joseph’s Hospitality Centre; and the Detox Centre.
Highlights of the Peterborough archive include records relating to the Peterborough congregation’s ministries, primarily in health care and education in Ontario and western Canada, as well as in Brazil. Holdings include community annals, photographs and some artifacts.
Highlights of the Pembroke archive include photographs, artifacts, and annals, including of the mission in Peru, and St. Mary’s Teachers’ College in Chapeau, Quebec.
The Consolidated Archives has a new website with finding aids, digital exhibitions, audio and video recordings, photographs, publications, a timeline, and an interactive historical quiz.
Mary Grace Kosta, M.A., M.L.I.S.
The Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph in Canada
485 Windermere Road, London, Ontario N6A 4X3
PO Box 487
London, Ontario N6A 4X3