Saint Louis University archives will be closed along with the rest of the university in honor of Independence Day. However, we wanted to commemorate the occasion for our patrons in some way. Luckily, the University historical records contain a letter written by Saint Louis University’s first president, the Belgian-born Reverend Father Superior of the Missouri Mission Peter J. Verhaegen SJ, which contains delightfully enthusiastic and patriotic praise of George Washington, General Jackson, Kentucky and Louisiana! In honor of our nation, we present that letter alongside transcribed samples of Verhaegen’s lyric, which demonstrate the affection he held for his new home.
The Letter in its Entirety:
This material comes from the following archival record:
DOC REC 001 0027 004
Saint Louis University Historical Records
Letter Book 4
It is available for viewing in the Archives and Rare Books reading room of Special Collections, located in room 307 on the third floor of Pius XII Memorial Library, which is open Monday through Friday 9:00am – 5:00pm … barring University holidays, of course.