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Clerical bead roll of the Diocese of Alton, Ill. online

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to be rudely interrupted by premature
cruel death. It was during the small-
pox epidemic in 1873 that he caught
the contagious disease while attend-
ing some of these small-pox sufferers.
He exposed himself to its violent con-
tagion more than proper caution
would have warranted. The stricken
priest, forsaken and alone, died with-
out the consolation of his church, on
May 10, 1873. His remains were in-
terred in the Catholic cemetery of

Rev. John Sandrock was born near
Paderborn in Westfalia, on Nov. 4,
1833, emigrated to this country Aug.
4, 1858, and became ordained to the
priesthood November 19, 1858. From
March 1, 1859, till his transfer to
Alton in 1872, he acted a= pastor of
St. Marie.

Almost as short as Father Sand-
rock's career at St. Mary's, proved
that of his successor, Rev. Vincent


"He hath holier and nobler fame
By poor men's hearths, who love and bless

the name

Of a kind friend; and in low tones today
Speak tenderly of him who passed away '.

Whilst Rev. A. F. Brickwedde, the
founder and first pastor of St. Boni-
face congregation of Quincy, was
visiting in Europe, he succeeded in in-
ducing several young clergymen to
espouse the cause of the American
missions and to accompany or follow
him across the ocean and here work
in the Lord's vineyard where a scarc-
ity of priestly laborers was keenly
felt. Less defections from the faitli
would have taken place and less leak-
ages been chronicled, had there been
a sufficiency of priests at the time
when town and hamlets sprung up
over night like mushrooms after a
warm summer-day's shower and the
fame of the California goldfields had
lured thousands of people thither,
when the best of farm lands were of-
fered to the homeseekers for a song.

a mere pittance. In those days, in the
fifties of the last century our young
diocese hailed amongst others the ad-
vent of a loyal, true and self-sacrific-
ing priest, one who had already
labored with apostolic zeal for more
than fifteen years in the fatherland,
it was Rev. Herman J. Schaefer-
meyer. Highly recommended for effi-
ciency and priestly virtues by his own
Ordinary, the new-comer from Europe
was cordially welcomed by the Bishop
of Alton, and at once assigned to the
pastorate of St. Boniface of Quincy,
the incumbency of which was vacant,
there being an inter-regnum since the
death of Father Kuenster from 1857-
58. On December 18, of the last named
year, the new pastor formally took
charge of its parochial affairs. The
loyal people of the parish at once
stood by their pastor, seconded his
views and helped to carry out his far-
reaching plans. And in fact. Father
Schaefermeyer was just the man these

Page One Hundred and Ticenty-Five

people needed, kind but firm and ener-
getic. Reforms were inaugurated and
soon new life began to course through
the veins of the parish, the obstreper-
ous spirit of former days became sub-
dued and began to fade and vanish.
St. Boniface was on the eve of an era
of prosperity and progress.

It was at this juncture that Father
Schaefermeyer suggested to the
Bishop that he extend an invitation to
the German Franciscans to come and
locate in the diocese. In 1859 they
came to Quincy, as did likewise the
Sisters de Notre Dame. On June 12,
1860, Bishop Damian Junker ap-
pointed him a Vicar General, which
appointment was later re-affirmed by
his successor, Bishop Baltes. Be-
tween the years 1859 and 1867, Father
Schaefermeyer lent a helping hand in
the founding of St. Francis College,
St. Mary's Hospital and St. Mary's
Academy; likewise do St. Antonius
parish of Melrose, St. Joseph's on

Columbus Road and St. Mary's parish
of Quincy, owe him a debt of grati-
tude for the interest he took in their
beginning and subsequent develop-

The great work he accomplished at
St. Boniface during the fourteen years
of incumbency has been eloquently
told by Father Bruener in his ''His-
tory of the Catholic Church of Quin-
cy." For a long time it had been
Father Schaefermeyer's desire to re-
tire from the turmoil of the world into
the seclusion of the cloister. Now
his work of reformation in St. Boni-
face parish had been accomplished,
his cherished wish assumed tangible
form and on September 23, 1872, he
quietly slipped away from Quincy to
join the Carmelite Order of Scipio,
Kansas. After some months of proba-
tion, however, he decided to exchange
the Carmelite habit for that of the
Franciscans. He entered the Francis-
can Monastery at Teutopolis where
from thenceforth he became known to
the world as Father Liborius, O. F.

Father Herman Joseph Schaefer-
meyer was born July 18, 1818, at Boke,
near Paderborn, Germany. He was
elevated to the priesthood August 14,
1843, and worked with great fervor
in the parish of Neiderwernger until
setting sail for America. He arrived
on our shores September 14, 1858.
After donning the Franciscan habit he
labored at Chicago, 1876-79, St. Louis
1879-'82, then at Joliet, returning to
Quincy November 19, 1886, where,
after a long and patiently borne ill-
ness, he died at St. Francis Monastery
May 10, 1887, and was buried on the
13th from St. Francis church. His re-
mains were deposited in St. Boniface
cemetery of Quincy. May God grant
him eternal rest. R. I. P.

Page One Hundred and Twenty-Six


"Twilight's mystery is so sweet and holy
Just because it ends in starry night".

Among the number of assistant
priests who served St. Boniface parish
of Quincy, we find the name of Rev.
Wm. Schamonie enrolled. He proved
to be an efficient helper to the pastor,
Rev. H. Schaefermeyer. His stay
there, however, lasted only from April
19-Oct. 25, 1868, when he was trans-
ferred to East St. Louis to assume
temporary charge of St. Henry's con-
gregation, succeeding the Rev. Ger-
hard Leve, who had been ordered to
Mascoutah. When, on January 26,
1869, Rev. Christopher Koenig was
appointed pastor of St. Henry's,
Father Schamonie was assigned to the
parish of Red Bud, in Randolph
county. We next find him presiding
as pastor over the parish at Lourdes,

and later on, in 1877 at Henry and
Metamora inthe diocese of Peoria,
where he became favorably known to
Bishop and priests, for his talents and
energies were such that success at-
tended his every undertaking. This
was forcibly put forth by Bishop
Spalding, for when Father Schamonie
had died at Henry in 1882, the learned
and eloquent Bishop delivered a most
impressive funeral sermon in the
course of which he paid unstinted
praise to the efforts and priestly
virtues of the deceased.

Father Wm. Schamoni was a na-
tive of Germany, born at Holinghau-
sen, Westfalia, in 1835; studied at Teu-
topolis and Montreal. At the latter
place he was ordained in April, 1868.
R. I. P.


"For soon the ashes of the day

Are gathered in the west,
And one by one we lay us down
Forever more to rest".

Sublime in moral courage and ex-
alted in ambition, strictly honorable
in all actions and true in all friend-
ships, Father Schlegel combined in
his character a multitude of virtues
which elevated him far above the
average man. By his forcefulness of
character and indomitable will power
he succeeded where others had signal-
ly failed, he was a martinet who
fearlessly carried out his plans once
they seemed plausible and advantage-
ous to the interests of religion in
general and his parish is particular.
Little did he care for public opinion
and he spurned the plaudits of men.
Plain and outspoken, he never tried
to hide the meaning of his sayings
by equivocal and ambiguous language
he never minced words but called "a
spade" by its proper name. Castigat-
ing, for instance, the stubbornness
of his own country people, those hail-
ing from Baden, he hesitated not to
call them at times "Badische Kuh-
hoerner," a well known appellation
not very flattering and yet seemingly
not hurting the feelings of his listen-

ers to any appreciable degree. Both
in private and public utterances he
held to his opinions and followed his
convictions. The height of his ambi-
tion was to do his duty well. He
loved his church and his country with
equal intensity. Beneath an often
blunt and harsh exterior there pu'
sated a sott and tender heart full of
sympathy and pity for his fellow men
the needy and destitute. His exalted
character, his intellectual powers, his
extensive and varied learning were
united with steady industrious and
economic habits. To all these gifts
may be ascribed the large measure of
success which he attained in the vari-
ous parishes over which he was sent
to preside, Mt. Carmel, Edwards-
ville and Highland. In a brief historic
sketch of the St. Boniface congrega-
tion of Edwardsville, he is spoken of
as "the second founder" of that

Rev. Augustine Schlegel was born
August 30, 1851, at Allmansdorf, in
Baden, and came to this country
when he had finished his classical
studies. Here St. Francis Seminary
near Milwaukee became his Alma
Mater. And when the theological

Page One Hundred and Twenty-Sevtn

studies were ended, he received ordi-
nation from Bishop Baltes in the
private chapel at Alton, June 24, 1877.
Father Schlegel's first appointment
was to Mt. Carmel (now Belleville
diocese), where he worked splendidly

for some four years at the end of
which by mutual agreement he ex-
changed places with Rev. Father
Gerard Janssen, then pastor of St.

Boniface parish of Edwardsville. His
stay here dates from 1877 till July 15,
1896. Here he is styled as already
mentioned "the second founder" of
the parish, because it was he who
brought order out of chaos, introduced
a number of necessary reforms and
caused many improvements to be
made. Thus in 1882 a new school
building was erected, in 1889 the leaky
church roof covered with slate shin-
gles, in 1890 new altars purchased, a
Sisters' residence constructed in 1892,
a new pipe organ installed in 1894,
and a new heating plant two years

Father Schlegel had for awhile an
assistant in the person of REV. GER-
HARD H'OPPE, whose duty it was to
look after the parish of Staunton. This
Father Hoppe exiled himself to the
Trappist Monastery of Gethsemane,
Ky., joined the membership of the
Community, and died there some fif-
teen years ago as Father Leonhard.

Our zealous and untiring priest,
however, could not draw on his
strength supply indefinitely, his health
in meantime had become undermined
and a sick man, he was ordered to the
pastorate of St. Paul's of Highland,
whose pastor had been transferred to
St. Mary's of Alton. Father Schlegel
suffered of cancer of the stomach and
it was that painful affliction which
caused his death at the hospital of
Highland, September 24, 1903, at the
age of 52 years. At the solemn obse-
quies presided over by the Bishop in
the presence of scores of clerical
friends, Rev. Albin Breinlinger of
Millstadt, 111., a countryman and for-
mer schoolmate of departed, pro-
nounced a fine eulogy on the life and
character of our lamented friend, Rev.
Augustine Schlegel. His remains
bedded' in St. Paul's cemetery of
Highland, 111. R. I. P.

Page Ont Hundred and Tirenty-Eight


"Farewell for ever, now;
In peace we part:
Remember that I thank you from my heart".

A companionable and good-natured
man was Rev. Adolf Schneider, who,
after a brief illness of but few weeks,
was claimed by death at the rectory
of St. Ann's parish of Edgewood,
January 26, 1914. An abcess on the

brain had caused his early demise,
for when called our subject was but
40 years old. His birthplace was
Frankfort, in Germany.

An only child of his parents, our
defunct friend received a splendid edu-
cation. Desirous for a higher spiritual
life he decided to enter the services of

the Church. To that end he applied for
admission to the Seminary of Knecht-
stetten, conducted by the "Fathers of
the Holy Ghost," of which communi-
ty he soon became a member. Having
almost finished his theological course,
he decided on coming to America. At
St. Francis Seminary, Wisconsin, . he
completed his unfinished ecclesiastical
studies, was ordained by Bishop Eis,
in St. Peter's Cathedral, of Marquette,
June 1, 1901, whose diocese he had
joined, and was appointed to the
parish of Grand Marrais, Mich. Here
he remained several years. Xot being
accustomed nor acclimated, however,
to the severity of the long northern
winters and the keen, icy blasts that
sweep the northern lakes and im-
pelled moreover by rather more per-
sonal reasons, Father Schneider, with
his Bishop's permission, went to
Davenport, Iowa, to become an assist-
ant to the Jate Monsignor Xiermann.
After a stay of about one year in that
city, he drifted into the Alton diocese,
where at Collinsville and Quincy, (St.
Boniface and St. Mary's) he acted as
assistant and thereafter was sent as
pastor to Edgewood, where he was un-
expectedly summoned away .from the
field of his labors by death .

Funeral services were held at Car-
linville, where he had substituted for
awhile during the illness of the late
Father Ader. His remains were
buried in St. Joseph's cemetery of
that place. R. I. P.


''Death alone has strength to take me
Where my foe can never be".

A contributor to German papers
and a poet of some merit was Rev.
Francis Schreiber. His poetic ef-
fusions laid down in ''Amanda" are de-
scriptive of customs and traditions
and folk lore of his native land.
Among his English poems is that of
"Grace Darling", the railroad heroine
who in the nick of time saved a pas-
senger train from crossing a burning
bridge, the most popular. It was
copied by the press of the land.

Father Francis Xavier Schreiber
was born at Warsburg, in the diocese
of Paderborn, Dec. 16, 1834. He came
to this country Nov. 3, 1856, and re-
ceived Holy Orders from Archbishop
Kenrick at St. Louis, June 25, 1858,
ordained for the diocese of Alton.

During his activity in our midst we
meet him as pastor of St. Mary's
church of Carlinsville in 1861 and
later on July 18. 1857, he takes charge
of St. Mary's church of Xew Berlin.
The present handsome brick building

Page One Hundred and Tmenty-Nin

of that parish owes its existence to
the efforts of Father Schreiber. Here

he remained five years when circum-
stances compelled him to hand in his

resignation to the Bishop. Father
Schreiber's next place was Vandalia,
1872-73. From there he moved to
Henry, and then comes the important
charge of Bloomington, at St. Mary's,
where he became the first resident
rector of that parish from 1877-'81,
after which it went over into the
hands of the Franciscan Fathers. At
this juncture our subject retired from
active pastoral duty and lived the life
of seclusion at Havana, 111. When
sickness and the accompanying in-
firmities of old age crept upon him
he betook himself to the Ursuline con-
vent of St. Louis, where he peacefully
expired June 20, 1905. His remains
were interred at Arcadia, Mo.

Father Schreiber was the first priest
to offer holy Mass at Todt's school
house in the present parish of Ray-
mond, corning occasionally thither
when pastor of St. Mary's at Carlin-
ville. R. I. P.


' 'For what God designs to try with sorrow
He means not to decay tomorrow".

But meagre are the details known

its first resident rector, from 1864- '65,
succeeding Rev. A. Laurent. Father
Sheridan thereupon joined the Cleve-

of Father Sheridan. He was pastor of land diocese, where he died some years
St. John's church of Carrollton, and later.


"Our feet are worn and weary
But we will not despair".

He was the son of William J. Smith
and Alice Wittaker, born Decemiber
9, 1869, and ordained at Mt. St. Mary's,
Cincinnati, by Archbishop Elder, on
June 21, 1893. Among the various
minor charges which he presided over

was that of Brighton from 1896- '99.
Sickness and conditions induced him
to repeatedly seek a change of climate,
but, nevertheless, the bright young
priest succumbed to an early death at
the Alton hospital November 28, 1905.
R. I. P.


On July 31, 1880, the people of Ed-
wardsville, but more particularly the
members of St. Mary's congregation
became shocked when they learned
of Father Smith's tragic death. On
that morning when Mass time arrived
and the priest could nowhere be lo-
cated, upon investigation by the
alarmed parishioners poor Father
Smith's lifeless body was found in the

well adjoining his residence. It was
known that the good priest habitually
drew a bucket of water from the well
before retiring. This he did on the
fatal evening, for the lamp was still
found burning on his library table
next morning. Father Smith was a
very corpulent man, hence the suppo-
sition that when he was bending for-
ward over the open well he became

Page One Hundred and Thirty

overbalanced and thus met his cruel

To Father Smith's credit it can be
said that he again placed St. Mary's
of Edwardsville on a good footing.
During his administration ground was
bought and plans for a new church
were secured which were carried out
by his successor on a more conveni-
ent new site.

Rev. James Smith, son of Patrick
Smith and ?.!ary Galligan, was born
Aug. 15, 1848 at Grosser-Laugh, Ire-
land, and ordained a priest June 29,
1879, at the Alton Cathedral by
Bishop Baltes. He was buried at Ed-
wardsville. R. I. P.


"Faithful soldier of the cross!
Peaceful be thy rest
On thy Savior's breast.
Gain is thine, though ours is loss!"

"God's finger touched him and he
slept." That which was mortal of
Rev. C. A. Sommer lapsed quietly
into death's embrace at St. Clara's

rectory of Altamont during the mid-
night hour on the day before Epipha-
ny, January 5, 1903. His death was
wholly unexpected by his parishioners
and confreres of the clergy to whom
the cruel news came with a force that
greatly saddened. Strengthened and

fortified by the last sacraments of his
church, consoled by the presence and
prayers of a brother priest, L. Lam-
mert, and a good Sister of Mercy who
knelt by the bedside when the end
came, he passed calmly and peaceful-
ly away. Dreaded pneumonia, con-
tracted during the previous Christ-
mas holidays caused his premature
demise. And no wonder. In a coun-
try parish a priest often has to com-
bine the office of pastor and sexton in
one person. Aside from long hours
in the Confessional and that not in-
frequently in a cold, damp and
draughty church, he trims the altars,
rings the Angelus bell and in early
morning hour kindles the fire in the
church stove for the comfort of his
people. And Father Sommer met in
the struggles of his priestly life such
multitudinous demands with unwav-
ering courage and unflagging devo-
tion, not only here at Altamont dur-
ing the three and one-half years of
service, but especially so during the
fourteen years' labor in isolated Cal-
houn county at Michaels, with Kamps-
ville and Hardin as missions attached
to his parish, in all of which places,
his name has become a house-
hold word. The good which he ac-
complished and the seeds he so gen-
erously has sown by word and ex-
ample and the sacrifices and priva-

Page One Hundred and Thirty-One

tions he so cheerfully shouldered dur-
ing the 26 years of priestly life will
surely have met at the hands of his
God with a generous response. Father
Sommer was a man of a retiring dis-
position, unostentatious and humble
in all his doings.

Born in Anfeld, Westfalia, July 26,
1852, he graduated in his classical
studies at Paderborn, became there-
upon an alumnus of the American
College of Muenster and received the
grace of Ordination in the venerable
Cathedral of Osnabrueck, May 2t>,
1877. Bishop Baltes directed the
young priest for one year ro May-
ncoth in Ireland, there to familiarize

himself with the English language ere
coming to America. For fourteen
years he labored in Calhoun county
with those two doughty pioneer
priests, Revs. Winterhalter and With-
out, and on the death of Fr. Ostrop
was transferred to Carlinville. There
as pastor of St. Joseph's parish he
worked nine years till his health
broke down and he was given the
smaller congregation of Altamont,
where after three and one-half years-
work conscientiously performed he
entered eternal rest. His remains
were interred in St. Anthony's ceme-
tery og Efifingham. R. I. P.


''The joys now seem so trivial
The griefs so poor and small".

The name of Father Jos. Spaeth
will forever remain linked with St.
James' parish of Decatur. The Ger-
man Catholics prior to 1877 had held
membership in St. Patrick's, but grow-
ing in number and influence Bishop
Baltes considered it opportune to
gather them into a separate parish.
This was done in 1877 with Father
Spaeth as organizer and builder.
Church, school and rectory were
erected and before long St. James
enjoyed progress and prosperity.

Rev. Joseph Spaeth was born at
Blitzenreuthe in the diocese of Rot-

tenburg in Wuertemburg, Germany,
February 20, 1849, came to this coun-
try May 5, 1867, studied Theology at
St. Francis Seminary, Milwaukee and
was ordained at Alton, June 24, 1877.
From Decatur our subject trans-
ferred to Southern Illinois, became
Cathedral choir director at Belleville,
which position, however, he soon re-
linquished. Early in the nineties,
(1893) he joined the Detroit diocese,
where he displayed his talents to
great advantage. He died as pastor
of the German St. Joseph's parish of
Port Huron. Mich., April 19, 1913.
He was buried in Decatur. R. I. P.


"For thy Good Master thou hast daily

Enfranchising the souls His blood hath


Directing them upon their heav'nward way,
Unto the dawn of Life, the 'Perfect Day'."

In these days when the church and
the world at large needs every voice
unpraised for high thinking and doing,
every hand armed to strike for right-
eousness, it is hard to see the gaps
death has caused in the ranks of our
clergy Of course, there always will
be new recruits to till the vacant
places, but just the same one can ill
afford to lose any of the true an.l
tried standard bearers, such as Father
Stick. His people's spiritual and tem-
poral welfare was the aim of his long

Page One Hundred and Thirty-Tuo

life-work, for our defunct had the sin-
gular privilege to commemorate the
fiftieth anniversary of his ordination
to the priesthood, his "Golden Jubilee
Day," December 6, 1913.

Advanced in years, yet young in
zeal for his Master's work. Father
Stick passed on to the higher re-
wards of faithful service.

A symphony of simplicity in
thought, speech and action was the
predominant note in the life of Rev.
F. Stick, pastor emeritus of St. Paul's
parish of Highland. In consequence
he left his stamp on the various com-
munities which witnessed his stay

among them, Alt. Sterling, Tiptown,
Mattoon, Madonnaville, Pana, Ray-
mond, Alorrisonville and Highland.

Father Stick was a man of many
hobbies. He would study Spanish
and Yiddish, turn to his flute, take up
history and delve into old musty vol-
umes. He had probably some of the

oldest codices on his library shelf to
be found in any priest's private libra-
ry, those ancient tomes bound with-
in worm-eaten wooden covers and
kept together with huge silver or
brass clasps. Truly it was interesting
to spend a few hours in his company,
or at his modest home.

With the passing of Father Stick,
the ranks of the diocesan clergy ex-
perienced a keen void, not that he
was one of the few Xestors who of
a by-gone generation still lingered
among -us, but more so of his general
great usefulness. Recognizing his
merits, the Bishop appointed him a
dean of the district, and later an ir-
removable rector of St. Paul's parish
of Highland. Father Stick's main
parochial achievements rest, however,
with the parish of Mattoon, where
his memory will not die until the old-
est member thereof has sunk into the

grave. The motives of the well-in-
tentioned man were at times miscon-
strued by evil-minded persons, such
as he experienced to his sorrow whilst
pastor of Pana.

Months prior to his demise, in
July, 1911, our departed one had re-
linquished parochial 'duties and had
retired, a patient to the hospital of
Highland, where he resignedly bore

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Online LibraryAnthony ZurbonsenClerical bead roll of the Diocese of Alton, Ill. → online text (page 16 of 19)