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Thursday, May 29, 2014

#ThrowbackThursday: Sacred Heart Commencement Exercises Held on June 27, 1876

Sacred Heart Graduates from Taylor Street (circa late 1800's)

Recent correspondence with a fellow Sacred Heart alum had me researching Sacred Heart students of yesteryear.  While researching the newspaper archives, I came across an article in the Chicago Tribune dated, June 28, 1876.  And, since it's the time of year when commencement exercises are held, I thought I would use the theme of a #ThrowbackThursday and take this opportunity to share  the article here in my blog.  Below is a recount of the events of the day taken from the newspaper story. 



"The closing exercise of the scholastic year at the Seminary of the Sacred Heart, corner of Taylor and Throop streets, were held yesterday afternoon.  As usual, the invitations were limited.  The Sisters, who are doing a noble educational work, avoid publicity as much as possible, and only care that the immediate results of their labors shall be witnessed by the clergy of their own faith.  Those who were present at the exhibition -- which  was in every respect excellent and worthy of the institution -- were the Rt. Rev. Bishop Foley, Fathers Damen, Cooemans, Sautois, Corbett, Niederkorn, Schaffel, O'Neil, Zealand, Coughlin, Condor, Van Lent, Hillman, of the Society of Jesus; Fathers Donohue, Conway, Macher, Dr. McGovern, and several other priests.

The exercises took place in the study hall, a large cheerful room, which was neatly decorated for the occasion.  All the pupils were attired in white, the dresses of the graduating class especially beautiful.

The proceedings opened with the "Grande Marche de Concert" (Wollenhaupt), which was admirably played by Misses Brenock, K. Naghten, L. O'Connell, and C. Sauter. The salutatory, quite a model in its way was delivered by Miss N. Kehoe, who charmed everyone with her fine elocution.  Miss A. Freeman followed with a vocal solo, "My Harp, My Beloved Harp." This was sung with great taste and feeling, and was one of the most pleasing features of the programme.

A French sketch, "La Joie, La Tristesse, et La Moderation," was next enacted by Misses M. Brenock, N. Kehoe and J. Almini.  this showed the careful training in the French language these pupils had received.  the pronunciation was good, and their gestures proved they had caught the spirit of the piece.

An instrumental duo, "II Trovatore Fantaste" (Alberti), was played in good style by Misses N. Cunningham and A. Reid.  Miss M. Connolly followed with a German poetical recitation, "Hirtenruf", which she rendered with a due regard to the sentiment of the piece as well as the elocutionary proprieties. 

The "Consecration Hymn to the Sacred Heart", a beautiful composition, was next on the programme. It was exceedingly well sung by a number of pupils.

That the graduating class is composed of young ladies of learning and ability was proven by their joint production, "The Mission of the Child of the Earth", a poetical sketch, which was performed by Misses A. Towel, B. Londergan, H. LeBrun, A. Williams, A. Stamm, M. Onahan, J. West, E. O'Hara, M. Towel, M. Garrity, L Koenig, C. Eagle, E. Walsh, K. McQuaid, - the youngest scholars in the Seminary.  This charming little production shows the "child of earth" tempted to join in the revels of the fairies, but she resists all their entreaties, on the ground that her missions to bear an earthly cross. The manner in which the delights of fairydom were described by the little girls was very fascinating. 

The overture, "Siege of Corinth" (Rossini), was given by Misses N. Cunningham, A. McLaughlin, A. Reid, and A. Fanning with great effect, their execution being remarkably brilliant. Misses A. Reid and M. McManus displayed the vocal talent in the duo, "Genevieve et Attila".

At this stage Bishop Foley bestowed graduating honors on Misses M. Brenock, N. Kehoe, N. Cunningham, and M. Connolly.  The valedictory was then delivered by Miss Brenock, and the formal part of the programme was brought to a close by the "Parting Song" which was sung by the graduates and A. Reid, C. Sauter, A. McLaughlin, M. McLaughlin, S. Smith, H. Hooker, A. Coffee, J. Almini, R. Heeney, M. McMannas. 

HONORARY DISTINCTIONS AND PREMIUMS were then awarded as follows, Bishop Foley taking a prominent part in the ceremony:  First medallion and first blue ribbon, Maggie Ryan and Annie Reid; second medallion and second blue ribbon, Mary Conway and Annie Horan; third blue ribbon, Anna McLaughlin and Mary Connor; fourth blue ribbon, Jessie Cole; fifth blue ribbon, rosie Dunham, Addie Sheahan and Susie Smith; distinguished, Carrie Sauter and H. Clifford.

Green ribbons, Helen Quertier, Alice Williams, and Emma Ludwig. Red ribbon, Ella O'Hara.


Blue ribbons, Lizzie O'Connell, Katie Naghten, Mary Garvin, Anna McMahon, Lizzie Kehoe, Laura McGovern, Mary McManus, Maggie Healey, and Nora Breene.

Green ribbons, Jennie Nesbitt, Johanna Burke, Gertie McMahon, Annie Towle, Mary Keating, and Blanche Lonergan.

Red ribbons, Annie Schaefer, Louisa Collins, and Katie McQuaid.


Exemplary conduct, Maggie Ryan; distinguished, Annie Reid and Mary Conway.

Christian conduct, first course, Annie Reid; distinguished Annie McLaughlin and Maggie Ryan. Second course, Maggie Dillon and Gertie McMahon; distinguished, Mary Garvin, Amelia McLaughlin, C. Sauter, M. Healey.  Third course, Lula George; distinguished, Johanna Burke and Jennie Nesbitt.  Fourth course, Anni Schaefer; distinguished, Louisa Collins.

Application, first English Class, Jennie Cole and Annie Horan; distinguished, Lizzie O'Connell and Anna McLaughlin.  Second class, Mary Conway; distinguished, Mary Connor.  Third class, Susie Smith and Lizzie Kehoe; distinguished, Kittie Shea, Lulu George, and Maggie Dillon. Fourth class, Carrie Sauter; distinguished Gertie McMahon and Nellie Shea. Second division, Julia Walsh. Fifth class, Helen Quertier;  distinguished, Kittie Smyth. Sixth class, Annie Schaefer; distinguished, Annie Stamm.

Premiums of Success - Anna McLaughlin; distinguished, Annie McMahon and Lizzie O'Connell.


First English Class -- Lizzie O'Connell, Anna McLaughlin, Annie Reid, Katie Naghten, Maggie Ryan, Mary McManus, Annie Fanning, Jessie Cole.
Second Class -- Mary Conner, Mary Conway, Lulu Koatz, Josie Ochnini, Rosie Heeney, Annie McMahon, Minnie Buckley, Katie Duffy.
Third Class -- Rosie Dunham, Susie Smith, Lulu George, Addie Sheahan, Katie Shea, Amelia McLaughlin, Maggie Dillon, Laura McGovern, Mary Mullaney, Ophelia Heatley, Lizzie Kehoe, Mary Garvin, Mary Gearey, Isabella Waller, Maggie Healey, Mary Mcenery, Mary Walsh.
Fourth Class -- Carrie Sauter, Kizzie Keller, Hannah Clifford, Nellie Shea, Nellie Healey, Helen Hooker, Gertie McMahon, Johanna Burke, Annie Towle, Lizzie Carey, Mary Keating, Second divison, Alice Williams, Mary Koenig, Maud Loneragn.
Fifth Class - Helen Quertier, Kittie Smyth, Emma Ludwig, Jennie Nesbitt, Blanche Lonergan, Lizzie Downey, Laura Koenig, Sarah Gaynor, Julia Kanff.
Sixth Class -- Annie Schaefer, Annie Stamm, Louisa Collins, Ella O'Hara, Hattie Le Brun.
Seventh Class -- Katie McQuaid, Julia West, Lena Koenig, Ella Walsh.

After the prizes had been awarded, Bishop Foley delivered a brief address to the pupils.  He congratulated them upon their happy knack of dressing their thoughts in beautiful language, as well as their persons in chaste and elegant attire.  The exercise of the day had afford him great pleasure and satisfaction.  He had been agreeably surprised at the learning and ability displayed, and at the lady-like manner and deportment which characterized every pupil.  He hoped that after leaving the Institution, the pupils would put into practice the virtues which the good Sisters of the Sacred Heart had taught not alone by precept, but by example.

This closed the proceedings.  The seminary will reopen on the 1st of September, at which time a branch will be started on the North Side."  ###

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