The purpose of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend Archives is to collect, preserve, and make available for research the official records of the Diocese and those ancillary records which reflect the work of the Church within the Diocese.
Do you have something to donate to the archives?
The archive is actively collecting materials that relate to Catholic society in Northeast Indiana. If you have something that you think that the archives might be interested in please feel free to contact the archivist. The archive is especially interested in materials that relate to layperson activities in our Diocese. (Please see the Collection Policy below for a more in depth report of the materials the archives collects.) Thank you in advance for your part in ensuring the the history of the Catholic Church in Northeast Indiana will not be lost or forgotten.
What do we have?
We have many types of materials in the archives. Listed below is but a small portion.
Administrative materials from the Diocese
Closed Parish materials
St. Andrew and St. Hyacinth Sacramental Records and historical materials
St. Stephen’s historical materials
Various school records from closed parish schools
Lay Organization historical materials
Sacramental Records for the Diocese of Fort Wayne – South Bend 1830s – 1940s on microfilm**
Bound copies of the Diocesan Newspapers 1912 – Present
Old editions of the Official Catholic Directory
Library collection of books relating to Catholicism
**The archives does not currently have a microfilm reader therefore interest in researching the sacramental records must be made to the archivist and she will look through the records for the patron.
The Archives is erected in accordance with Canon 482, which charges the Chancellor with the responsibility for the Archives. The Archivist reports to the Chancellor and is granted faculties to fulfill this mandate. The Diocesan Archives seeks to promote an understanding of the origins, aims, and goals of the Diocese as reflected in the workings of the official Diocesan agencies, institutions, and offices. Official diocesan records are defined as all recorded information, regardless of media type or characteristics made or received and maintained by an agency, institution, or office in pursuance of its legal obligations or in the transaction of its business. The Diocesan Archives also seeks to collect, preserve, and make available for research those records of individuals and organizations engaged in work which is reflective of the work of the Catholic Church in the Diocese. Such individuals and organizations may operate within the Diocese in an advisory capacity, as a unit supervised by the Diocese, or as an advocate of the Diocese.
The purpose of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend Archives is to collect, preserve, and make available for research the official records of the Diocese and those ancillary records which reflect the work of the Church within the Diocese. The official Diocesan records are defined as all recorded information regardless of media type or characteristics made or received and maintained by an agency, institution, or office in pursuance of its legal obligations or in the transaction of its business. The official agencies, institutions, and offices constitute the core collection of the Archives. Offices are the administrative units designed to assist the Bishop in the administration of the diocese and maintain a reportorial relationship to the Bishop. Agencies and institutions are considered those administrative units which perform specific functions and maintain an operational relationship to the Bishop. Such agencies and institutions may be operated by religious orders of men and/or women, but remain under the rubric of the Diocese. The parishes and diocesan elementary and high schools of the Diocese are considered an official organ of the Diocese. Those ancillary records of individuals and organizations engaged in work that is reflective of the work of the Catholic Church in the Diocese constitute the additional collections of the Archives. This includes, but is not limited to, records of individuals and/or organizations involved in an advisory role, such as legal counsel to the Diocese; as a unit supervised by the Diocese, such as religious orders of men and women; and a position of advocacy for the Diocese, such as the Indiana Catholic Conference, and lay societies such as the St. Vincent de Paul Society. Artifacts and other items of similar classification will be recommended for accession into the catalogue of the Cathedral Museum. Other collections that may be better suited in another repository will be recommended to such repository as needed, such as a collection that may be better suited to remain in South Bend at Saint Mary’s College Archives, the Archives of the Indiana Province of the Congregation of Holy Cross or the University of Notre Dame’s Archives.
Regular acquisitions to the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend Archives should include the following:
- The records of the Bishop and Auxiliary Bishops of the Diocese.
- The records of the central diocesan administration, including especially those offices dealing with financial affairs, building and physical plant maintenance, (such as blueprints and architectural drawings); real estate, including the original deeds to church property; clergy and religious personnel; administration of the canon law in the diocese, including but not limited to dispensations and faculties.
- Beyond these the archives should also be responsible for preserving documentation of the full range of diocesan ministries and services: religious education, ecumenical affairs, social services, youth ministry, and a host of others.
- Records pertaining to local parishes, especially parishes that have closed. Strive to collect certain records of active parishes such as sacramental registers that are sufficiently old as to make them useful primarily for historical and genealogical research.
- Records of church-related institutions and agencies engaged in educational, charitable, and social service work. These records should especially be collected whenever an agency goes out of existence. The archives should be prepared to be the “repository of last resort” when no other archives (such as that of the religious order) are appropriate or available.
- Records or personal papers of individual clergy, religious, and laity who have played an active role in the life of the Diocese.
Archbishop Noll Catholic Center.
Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend
915 South Clinton Street Fort Wayne, Indiana 46802
260-422-4611 ext. 3386
If you are interested in coming to the archives, please contact the archivist ahead of time to schedule an appointment. The archives office is also available for any historical questions relating to the Diocese and can be reached by phone or email.
Archivist: Janice L. Cantrell, M.A.