Timeless Tuesday — History Related to My Novel — Orphanages in St. Louis, Missouri in the 1800s

The Story of Us 1

Missouri Baptist Children’s Home, St. Louis, Missouri taken from (https://www.mbch.org/content/who-we-are/our-history/4)

St. Joseph’s Home for Boys (1835-1988) is a former Roman Catholic orphan asylum administered by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. (This photo and information taken from Facebook — https://www.facebook.com/Saint-Josephs-Home-for-Boys-1835-1988-St-Louis-MO-435351459833507/

Above are a drawing of an orphanage that was first opened on April 1, 1886 in St. Louis, Missouri and a photo of St. Joseph’s Home for Boys.

There was also St. Vincent Home for Children which was founded in 1850 following a cholera epidemic and a fire that left many children orphaned in St. Louis, Missouri. Because many Diocesan orphanages were already crowded at the time, an appeal was made to the German Catholic community. The German Catholic community responded by constructing the St. Vincent Home for Children in 1850. Five sisters of St. Joseph Carondelet took charge of the new home in 1851 and the first orphan arrived on July 25, 1851.

(I was unable to find out if there is any connection between St. Vincent Home for Children and the St. Joseph Home for Boys, which was also run by Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet.)

I share this information with you because my main character ended up in a Boy’s Home in St. Louis, Missouri when he was 14 years old, and he remained there until he was 18 years old, when he went out on his own. The Boy’s Home isn’t mentioned in my story in great detail, or even more than two or three times, but it is a part of my main character’s back story. I imagine the Boy’s Home, where my main character lived for four years, to be similar to either St. Joseph Boy’s Home or St. Vincent Home for Children. I do specify in my story, that when my character was there, it as a Boy’s Home run by Catholic Sisters.

Both the Missouri Baptist Children’s Home and the St. Vincent Home for Children are still in existence in Missouri today.

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