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  • Writer's pictureUrsulines of Brown County

The Journey Continues: First View of St. Martin

Updated: Jul 1, 2020

We left our travelers with their first glimpse of the Queen City with new adventures awaiting them. We pick up with the tale told in “An Old Account of New Beginnings”:

“Joy and happiness replace our fear. We didn’t know our destiny. We wanted only the will of God and to be ready to make the sacrifices He wanted, and not make evident what we wanted to do.”

“Once on Land, Msgr. Macheboeuf arranged carriages for the Eleven and a carrier for their luggage. They went to meet Bishop Purcell, who greeted them and blessed each one in his office. Then they went into the Cathedral where he blessed them again, adding a short “affectionate exhortation.” They were welcomed by Mrs. Corr, who graciously provided hospitality for them. Every morning, Msgr. Macheboeuf celebrated Mass in the “little chapel” in her home. On Sunday, they went to the High Mass in the Cathedral.”

“The morning of June 22, Msgr. Macheboeuf, Mother Julia Chatfield and Sister St. Pierre began their six-hour ride to St. Martin in “the most economical carriage” that could be found. Msgr. wanted the Sisters to see the Seminary buildings and where they were located. The city of Chillicothe was also a possible location to visit.

On their way, the driver missed the road to Fayetteville and apologized. Other passengers could not help but encourage him to stop and ask for directions, as soon as they reached a place where there were more houses. Three miles from Fayetteville, five o’clock in the afternoon, one of the horses seemed to be sick. Again, the driver apologized and stopped at a farmhouse and asked for some pepper. “He added the pepper to some brandy which we brought as a precaution.” Although the horse seemed a little better, he could not pull the carriage, so the driver rode the hose and Msgr. Macheboeuf took the driver’s place. All went well until they came to a little mound. The carriage horse swerved causing the carriage shaft to break. It had to be held together with string and “garters, which were returned later.”

It was eight o’clock in the evening when the travelers came to the river near Fayetteville. They saw there was no bridge, nor any way to tell how deep the water was. Nor were there any houses on that side of the river where they could find help. Finally, the driver on horseback, headed safely into the water reaching the other side; and the carriage followed. They stopped in Fayetteville long enough for the driver to rent another horse to help pull the carriage. There were still three more miles before reaching St. Martin.

Finally, they were close enough to see “the beautiful gate.” Once inside, their arrival on the Seminary grounds was announced by two large barking dogs. It was nine-thirty in the evening.

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