Sketch of St. Joseph's, Talbot County, Maryland, by Rev. Joseph Mosley (see item 47)
Rev. Joseph Mosley, S. J, was born in Lincolnshire on November 16, 1731. He came to Maryland in 1758 and in 1765 established the mission of St. Joseph's in Talbot County, remaining there until his death in 1787. His life is typical of the missioners serving isolated congregations. Sixteen letters to his sister in London, Mrs. Dunn, survive. The entire collection is available here.
41 Mosley, Rev. Joseph, to Mrs. Dunn, Newtown, September 8, 1758.
Mosley's first letter after his arrival in Maryland: "I find here business
enough on my hands in my Way of Trade - I've care of some fifteen hundred
View: part 1 part 2 part 3 part 4
42 The same to the same, Newtown, September 1, 1759.
"You desire a short account of this part of America." Mosley describes
the land in some detail. He was particularly fond of the horses: "Our horses
are almost all natural pacers; they will easily go . . . a whole day without
food, at the rate of 7, 8, 9 miles per hour..."
View: part 1 part 2 part 3 part 4 part 5 part 6 part 7 part 8
43 [Mosley, Rev. Joseph. Day-book] 1764-1768.
This small day-book gives a brief account of the establishment of St.
Joseph's and lists Mosley's expenses and travels. The opening displayed
shows expenses, including a donation to the French displaced from Acadia,
and lists books loaned to the congregations. (MSJ)
View the Day Book
44 Silver pyx. Abingdon, Harford County, Md.: Joseph Toy, Ca. 1776-1787.
Almost certainly used by Rev. Joseph Mosley; marked (twice) with Toy's IT mark. (Carley)
45 Mosley, Rev. Joseph, to Mrs. Dunn, Tuckahoe, Talbot County, Md., October 14, 1766.
Mosley describes his new mission: "On the land there were three buildings,
a miserable dwelling-house, a much worse for negroes, and a house to cure
tobacco in. . . . The Chief Congregation is but ten mile off; 2nd, 20;
the 3rd, 24; 4th, 22; 5th, at home; 6th, 22. All these I visit once in
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46 The same to the same, Maryland, October 3, 1774.
Mosley provides a graphic description of the impact of the suppression
of the Society on the Jesuits in Maryland: "I must allow with truth, that
what was my pleasure is now irksome; every fatigue I underwent caused a
secret and inward satisfaction; it's now unpleasant and disagreeable. .
. . As the Jesuit is judged unfit by his H.. ness for a Mission, I think
that it is high time for me to retire to a private life."
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47 The same to the same, St. Joseph's, Talbot County, Md., October 4, 1784. Drawing of the chapel and residence enclosed.
Mosley did not retire to a private life: "Since the commencement of
the war, I've built on my farm a brick chapel and dwelling-house....I've
happily finished, without any assistance either from our Gentlemen or my
Congregation." Chapel and residence were under one roof, an arrangement
adopted in several mission stations to evade the provision of the Penal
Laws which forbade public places of worship for Catholics.
View: part 1 part 2 part 3 part 4 part 5 part 6
48 [Plat of land, St. Joseph's Mission, Talbot County, Md., Ca. 1784]
"The land I bought . . . cost £1-10 per acre some years ago: it will sell now for £6 and 7 per ditto." (Mosley to Mrs. Dunn, October 3, 1774) (MSJ)
49 Rev. Francis Neale, S.J. Oil on panel by unknown artist, Ca. 1814-1820.
This portrait of Fr. Neale, twice president of Georgetown and one of its first teachers, is probably a copy after an original by J.P. de Clorivière, who painted a number of the Maryland clergy. (GUC)
50 Challoner, Richard, Vicar Apostolic of London and Bishop of Debra, to the Jesuits of the Maryland Mission [n.p.] October 6, 1773.
Conveying notice of the suppression ordered by Clement XIV: "To obey the orders I have rec[eive]d from above, I notify to you by this the Breve of the total dissolution of the Society of Jesus...." (MSJ)
51 Carroll, John, to Rev. Charles Plowden, Maryland, February 20, 1782.
Nine years after the suppression, the Jesuits had still taken no steps to organize, and Carroll became increasingly frustrated by their failure to deal with their situation. Charles Plowden, a prominent English Jesuit, was a life-long correspondent of Carroll, and their letters are a major source for the history of Anglo-American Catholicism from 1779 to 1815 (MSJ)
52 Proceedings at a meeting of some of the Clergy in Maryland begun & held at the White Marsh June 27th 1783.
"The object of this meeting is agreed to be, to establish a form of government for the Clergy & to lay down rules for the administration and preservation of their property." At Carroll's initiative six former Jesuits met near present-day Bowie to organize a representative body of the clergy. (BCA)
53 Carroll, John, to Rev. Charles Plowden, Maryland, September 26, 1783.
"You have adopted the language of some of the prints on your side the water by representing us as under imperious leaders, & the trammels of France: but alas! our Imperious leaders, by whom I suppose you mean the Congress, were at all time amenable to our particular assemblies, elected by them every year, often turned out of their seats...." Carroll was an enthusiastic supporter of American independence. (MSJ)
54 [Plowden, Rev. Charles, S.J.] A short account of the establishment of the new See of Baltimore. London: J.P. Coghlan, 1790.
First edition. Of principal interest is the crucial portion of the authority granted by Pius VI for constituting the new See:
"the priests who lawfully exercise the sacred ministry and have care
of souls in the united States of America, should be empowered . . . to
determine . . . who of the aforesaid priests appeared the most worthy and
proper to be promoted to this important charge, whom We, for this first
time only, and by special grace permitted the said priests to elect and
to present to this apostolical See." (GULSC)
55 Lulworth Castle in Dorsetshire, the Seat of Humphrey Weld, Esqr. Publish 'd as the Act directs April 1st 1785 by W. Watts, Chelsea.
View of the site of the consecration of John Carroll as first Bishop of Baltimore; engraved from the drawing by Lord Duncannon. (GULSC)
56 [Minutes of the First Diocesan Synod, Baltimore, November 7-10, 1791]
Twenty-two priests from Boston to southern Maryland gathered to enact legislation concerning the discipline and administration of the American Church. Rapid expansion of the Catholic community led the participants to consider at once the creation of an additional diocese. This synod was the culmination of Carroll's efforts to organize the Church in America. (Woodstock)
57 Carroll, John, to Rev. Charles Plowden, Baltimore, June 1, 1792.
"Mr. Thomas Sim Lee, who embraced the Catholic faith about four years ago, and is a zealous observer of its precepts, is lately chosen Governor of this state." To Carroll, this was striking "proof of the decay of religious prejudice" following the Revolution. (MSJ)
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