Part of the American History & Genealogy Project

Catholic Women in America


Mrs. Edwin F. Abell
Mrs. Edwin F. Abell, daughter of the late Frank Laurenson, a noted merchant of Baltimore. She married the late Edwin F. Abell, son of Arunah S. Abell, founder of the Baltimore Sun. Mr. Abell, succeeded his father as editor of the Sun, and under this guidance it remained as it had always been one of the most efficient and influential journals in the United States, and in its columns all affairs of interest and benefit to the Catholic Church in America have always been given just and dignified treatment.

Madam Marie Louise Alband
Madam Marie Louise Alband, was born at Chambly, near Montreal, in 1852, and was the daughter of Joseph Lajeunesse, a musician. Musical ability was early evidenced in the daughter and at the age of fifteen she had finished her education at the Sacred Heart Convent in Albany, New York, and had become organist at the Church of the Sacred Heart in New York City. Later she studied in Paris and Milan under distinguished musicians, eventually making her debut in Messina, in 1870. Her success, which established her as a famous singer, was achieved in the Royal Italian Opera in London, in 1870. Since then her voice has been heard in opera and sacred music by great audiences in America and England.

Mother O. C D. Augustine
She was the daughter of the late Samuel Tuckerman. She entered the Religious Order of the Carmelites, in Baltimore, in 1893, and for three years was Superior of the Carmelite Monastery, in Roxbury, Boston, having been one of the founders of this order. In 1908 a branch of the order was established in San Francisco on the estate of Robert Louis Stevenson, and Mother Augustine was placed in charge, where she has remained ever since.

Laura Elizabeth Lee Battle
Was born January 26, 1855, and is a descendant of the celebrated Lees of Virginia. Has been active in the work of building Catholic Churches in Michigan and North Carolina.

Kate Walker Behan
Was the daughter of William Walker, a prominent citizen of New Orleans, Louisiana. She married General William J. Behan. Is president of the ladies auxiliary of the Good Shepherd, for Magdalenes, one of the most prominent Catholic Societies of New Orleans; also president of the Ladies' Confederated Memorial Association and president of the Jefferson Davis Monument Association, and chairman of the civic department of the Women's League of New Orleans.

Mary Elizabeth Thomas Blow 1863 ~
Was born May 27, 1863 at Cape Elizabeth, Maine. One of her father's ancestors, Isaiah Thomas, was the publisher of the first Bible in New England. One of her mother's ancestors, General Timothy Pickering, was president of the war board in Revolutionary time, Secretary of State, and Postmaster-General under Washington. She is the wife of Major William N. Blow, 15th Infantry, United States Army.

Rosalie B. De Solms Bond 1843 ~
Was the daughter of Sidney J. de Solms and Maria del Carmen de Solms. She was born November 26, 1843, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Is one of the founders of the Catholic Guild, now the Dominican House of Retreat; member of the association of Perpetual Adoration and Work for Poor Churches, and other societies. The de Solms family is one of the most distinguished Catholic families of Philadelphia and Mr. de Solms presented to the Cathedral, in Logan Square, the painting of the ''Crucifixion" which is over the main altar.

Josephine Hale Boyle
Was the daughter of Joseph P. Hale, of San Francisco, California. Her husband enjoys the distinction of being heir-presumptive to the Earldom of Cork.

Mrs. Peter Arrell Browne 1834 ~ 1912
Was born April 14, 1834 and is the daughter of Thomas Parkin and Julianna M. Scott, of Baltimore. In 1860 she married P. A. Browne, Jr., who was the son of Peter Arrell and Harriet Harper Browne, of Philadelphia, and in 1861 they removed to Baltimore. Mr. Browne was a prominent lawyer of Maryland and auditor of the Superior Court, of Baltimore. Mrs. Browne's father was also a distinguished lawyer being chief judge of the Supreme Bench of Baltimore City, and a member of the Maryland legislature in 1861, and with others was imprisoned for refusing to take the oath of allegiance to the United States.

Anna Elizabeth Bryan
Was one of the most prominent women of the South, being the daughter of the late Admiral Raphael Semmes. Is prominent in Catholic charitable work of her home city, Memphis, Tennessee.

Emma Westcott Bullock
Is the widow of Jonathan Russell Bullock, who was formerly judge of the United States District Court of Rhode Island She is a member of the national patriotic societies of the country. The Colonial Dames, Descendants of Colonial Governors, Society of the Mayflower, etc.; hereditary life member of the National Mary Washington Memorial Association.

Suzanne Bancroft Carroll
Is a granddaughter of Honorable George Bancroft, the historian of the United States. Her husband is the son of John Lee Carroll, of Ellicott City, Maryland. The family emigrated to Maryland, in 1688, and have been conspicuous in the history of the United States. One of his ancestors, Charles Carroll, of Carrollton, was a signer of the Declaration of Independence. He took a prominent part in the Independence Movement and was a member of the Convention of Maryland chosen to frame the constitution; also a member of the first Congress of the United States in 1777, and of the board of war, and a senator from Maryland. Mrs. Carroll lives in Paris, France.

Mother Praxedes Carty, (Susan Carty)
Was born at Rawnsboy, County Cavan, Ireland, and entered into the novitiate of the Loretta Sisters in 1874. She was Superior of the convent in Bernalillo, New Mexico; also Las Cruces, New Mexico; Florissant, Missouri, and Loretta Heights, near Denver. In 1896 she became Mother Superior of the whole order of the Society of the Sisters of Loretta at Loretta, Kentucky. She has made several trips to Rome in the interests of this order and was elected Mother-General in 1904. The order is now known as the Sisters of Loretta at the Foot of the Cross, and her title is Superior-General of this order.

Margaret Elizabeth Casey 1874 ~
Was born December, 1874, in Beatrice, Nebraska. Active in the ladies' auxiliary. Ancient Order of Hibernians. Was secretary in 1900 of the law class of the Kansas State University.

Mrs. James Blanchard Clews
Is the granddaughter of the late Honorable Charles Nichols, at one time minister to The Hague. Her husband, J. B. Clews, is a nephew of Henry Clews of the firm of Henry Clews and Company, bankers of New York City. She is active and has been for several years, in all Catholic charitable work.

Zoe Desloge Cobb 1850 ~
Was born in Potosi, Missouri, December 18, 1850. Is president of the Children of Mary, Sacred Heart Convent, and also president of the ladies' auxiliary, St Louis Obstetrical Dispensary.

Edythe Patten Corbin
Mrs. Corbin, the wife of General Henry C. Corbin, United States Army, was one of the most prominent social leaders of Washington before her husband's death, and by her kindliness, charm, and practical sense endeared herself to the army. She is the daughter of Edmund and Anna Statia Patten, of California, who were pioneers of the Pacific coast, and belonged to that circle of early settlers the Mackays, Fairs, and Crockers, who made their fortunes in the gold fields of that state. Mrs. Corbin and her sisters were educated in a convent in Paris. She is a most accomplished conversationalist, speaking French, German, and Italian fluently, and is to-day one of the charming women of Washington, D. C.

Anna McLane Cropper 1859 ~
Was born March 11, 1859, in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Is the daughter of Allen and Ariadne Knight McLane. Her family were prominent in the army, navy, and diplomatic service of the United States. Her father's father, Louis McLane, was a member of Congress, Senator, Secretary of the Treasury, Secretary of State under General Jackson, and Minister to England. Her own father was a graduate of the Naval Academy, but resigned in 1850, and was for many years president of the Pacific Mail Steamship Company. She is prominent in the Society of Colonial Dames.

Georginia Pell Curtis
Georginia Pell Curtis was born in New York City, February 19, 1859 and although of Protestant parentage and educated at a Protestant school she was afterwards converted to the Roman Catholic Church, and has since been a constant and brilliant contributor to all the publications devoted to the interests of that church. Her writings have appeared in the Ave Maria, the Catholic World, the Messenger, the Magnificent, the Messenger of the Sacred Heart, Donaho's, the Rosary, and the Pilgrim, She is also the editor of "Some Roads to Rome in America," and the "American Catholic Who's Who." She comes justly by her ready, facile mental qualities and her ability for logical work, coming from distinguished ancestry along Colonial and Dutch lines; on the maternal side Miss Curtis is a granddaughter of Thomas Hill, known on the stage as Thomas Hillson, an English actor of the old Park Theatre, New York, who numbered among his intimate friends, Junius Brutus Booth, John William Wallack, and Washington Irving. Other lineal ancestors of whom Miss Curtis is justly proud were Peter Vandewaker, keeper of the city gate at the foot of Wall Street, New York, in the eighteenth century, and Jacobus Vandewaker, mayor of New Amsterdam, in 1673.

Mother Antonina O. S. D. Fischer 1849 ~
Before entering sacred order her name was Mary Ann Fischer, and she was born in Bavaria, Germany, November 22, 1849. Is the daughter of John and Mary Ann Fischer. She was a member of the Dominican Order for thirty-four years. In 1902 she went with seven Sisters to Great Bend, Kansas, and founded the Mother House and novitiate of the Sisters of St. Dominic.

Stella M. Hamilton
Daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles W. Hamilton, and was born in Omaha. Is prominent in social work of that city, and active member of the Christ Child Society.

Julia Carlin Hardin
Was born in Carrollton, Green County, Illinois. Her ancestors were prominent among the early settlers of Illinois. She married John A. Hardin, of Louisville, Kentucky, who died in 1884.

Mrs. Francis T. Homer
Is the daughter of George W. and Jennie Webb Abell, and granddaughter of A. S. Abell, the well-known founder of the Baltimore Sun. In 1900 she married Francis T. Homer, of Baltimore.

Louise Frances Hunt 1837 ~
Was born in Paris, France, in 1837. Is the daughter of John T. and Anne Maria Hyde Adams, and the wife of William H. Hunt, Secretary of the Navy under President Garfield, and Minister to Russia under President Arthur.

Mrs. George Merriam Hyde
Is the daughter of the late Oliver Prince Buel, of New York, and grand-daughter of General Charles Macdougall. Her mother was a member of the well-known family of Hillhouse and of Bishop Atkinson's family. Mrs. Merriam is now Sister Mary of the Tabernacle.

Eliza Le Brun Miller Joyce 1840 ~
Was born in Ohio, April 5, 1840. Her father, Thomas Miller, in that year came to Ohio from Bronwnsville, Pennsylvania. Her mother's (Margaret T. Wilson) father, Thomas Wilson, Mrs. Joyce's grandfather, was obliged to leave Ireland in the rebellion of 1798, forfeiting his property, which was restored to him forty years later. She is regent for Trinity College, Washington, D. C and on the board of managers of several charitable institutions. Active in organizing charitable societies in the church.

Anne Leary
Was born in the city of New York of Irish parentage, and is a sister of the late Arthur Leary. She is one of the most prominent social leaders of New York City and Newport and much beloved for her generous charity and her great accomplishments. She was created a countess by Pope Leo XIII in recognition of her services to the church. She spends much of her time abroad.

Adele Le Brun
Was the daughter of Napoleon Le Brun, of New York, the well-known architect. She was instrumental and conspicuous in bringing to this country the Society of the Helpers of the Holy Souls, which had been founded in France by Mere Marie de la Providence. The house for this order was opened in May, 1892, and she has made the extension and the furtherance of the good works of this order her life work.

Margaret McCabe 1846 ~
Was born in 1846 in Cincinnati, Ohio. Founded the Sacred Heart Hone for Working Girls and the Boys' Home in Cincinnati, and prominent in the building of the Church of the Sacred Heart of that city.

Marchioness Sara McLaughlin
Created a marchioness by Pope Pius X in 1908; in recognition of her benefactions in the interest of religion. She is the widow of the late political leader, Hugh McLaughlin.

Mother Eutropia McMahon
Superior of the Sisters of Charity, of Nazareth, Kentucky, to which she was elected in 1909, having been previously Superior of the Presentation Academy at Louisville.

Sister Josephine O. S. D. Meagher
Was born in 1841 in County Tipperary, Ireland, and emigrated to this country in 1852. She and her sister both entered the order of St Dominic at Springfield, Illinois. In 1873 Sister Josephine was placed in charge of a little band of religious people and sent to Jacksonville, Illinois, to establish an independent community, over which she presided for fifteen years. In 1908 they celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of her entrance into religious life.

Rebecca Newell Morison
Was born in Rhode Island, and is the widow of H. G. O. Morison. It is said the "Knownothings"' tried to bum the convent in New England where she was staying to "rescue her from the Popish Nuns."

Margaret O'Brien
Assistant librarian, Omaha Public Library. Is the daughter of the late General George Morgan O'Brien, United States Army.

Mary Semmes Orrick
Is a descendant of the distinguished Admiral Raphael Semmes, U. S. N. and the widow of Dr. Nicholas C Orrick, of Kenton, Massachusetts.

Marie Martin Palms
Is the wife of F. L. Palms, of Detroit, Michigan, and was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. Is the president of the Weinman Catholic settlement.

Mrs. Theophile Emily Carlin Papin
Was born in Carrollton, Illinois, and is the daughter of William and Mary Goode Carlin. In 1865 she married Theophile Papin, great-grandson of Pierre de Laclede Ligueste, the founder of St. Louis. Some of her ancestors left Ireland in the Revolution of 1798 and settled in Virginia, eventually going with a colony to Illinois. An uncle, Thomas Carlin, was governor of Illinois from 1838 to 1842 and founded the town of Carrollton. Mrs. Papin is prominent as an active worker in the charitable work of the Catholic Church in St. Louis and in the social life of that city.

Katherine Laughlin Pfohl
Was born in Buffalo, New York, in 1867. Is the daughter of John M and Mary A. Whalen Laughlin. Her grandfather on her mother's side was one of McMahon's Irish Regiment and was killed at Spottsylvania Court House. Her granduncle was Bishop Marrom of Kilkenny, Ireland. In 1887 she married George W. Pfohl, whose ancestors came to this country with Lafayette. Mrs. Pfohl is the director of the Working Boy's Home of the Sacred Heart; also St Elizabeth's Hospital Association, and St. Mary's Infant Asylum. Is president of the O. M. I. Parish Aid Society, Holy Angels Church, and vice-president of the St James Mission and of the Catholic Women's Club.

Mother Mary De Sales (Wilhelmina Tredow)
Was the daughter of William Tredow of Vienna, and the Princess Clementine of Saxe-Coburg. Is the director of the Bradford Park Academy, Ursuline Nuns, located in Bedford Park, New York.

Miss Grace Charlotte Mary Regina Strachan
Miss Grace Charlotte Mary Regina Strachan, educator, social worker and writer, is the daughter of Thomas F. Strachan, a Scotch Presbyterian, but entered the Catholic Church, of which her mother was a devoted member. She was educated in Buffalo, New York, first, at Saint Bridget's and later at the Buffalo State Normal School and she has taken several New York University extension courses. Since 1900 she has been superintendent of the public schools of New York, and is well known for her philanthropic work in the Young Women's Catholic Association of Brooklyn, where she has taught free classes. Miss Strachan has also been most active in promoting the cause of equal pay for equal work and is interested in all Catholic charities. She has contributed several articles and stories to the Delineator and has traveled in this country and abroad, having been granted an audience with Pope Pius X. She is president of the Interborough Association of Women Teachers and a member of many other organizations.

Mrs. Frances Tiernan
Mrs. Frances Tiernan, novelist, whose pen name is "Christian Reid," was a daughter of Colonel Charles F. Fisher of the Confederate Army. Her girlhood home was in Salisbury, North Carolina, to which she returned on the death of her husband, James M. Tiernan, of Maryland. Among the thirty or more stories which have made famous her pen name "Christian Reid" are "A Daughter of Bohemia," "Valerie Aylmar," "Morton House," "Heart of Steel," "Cast for Fortune," and "." Mrs. Tiernan has received a Laetare medal from Notre Dame University, Indiana.

Mrs. Andrew Welsh, Sr.
One of the generous benefactors of the Catholic Church, having given $100,000 to St Ignatius College, Califonia, and later $50,000 to Santa Clara College near San Francisco.

Women of America

Source: The Part Taken by Women in American History, By Mrs. John A. Logan, Published by The Perry-Nalle Publishing Company, Wilmington, Delaware, 1912.


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