And so it goes #Orphan Asylums #NativeLivesMatter

By Lara/Trace (adoptee-author)

I know it’s a sign when a couple of my friends mention “Orphan Asylums” to me in a single day. How children were called “inmates.”

I have no recollection of my time as an inmate in a Minnesota orphanage – this happened after I was born in St. Paul, MN and was shifted from The Catholic Infant Home (where unwed mothers wait out their pregnancy) to the St. Joseph’s Home for Children (Orphanage) then to a Catholic foster care (a house on Harrison St.) in Superior, Wisconsin. Apparently Catholic Charities moved infants/children across state lines without any scrutiny or trouble at all.  And all the paperwork they created on me was sealed. (I phoned back when I was 21 and they refused my request for my file.) And I have two Catholic baptismal certificates – one with my mother Helen Thrall and a later one with the adopters Everett and Edith DeMeyer who are listed on my birth certificate as my biological parents. (Best to hide proof and evidence of a stranger adoption brokered by Catholic Charities.)

The Catholic Church (and others) created a charity and an industry with maternity homes, orphanages, churches, hospitals, big brick buildings to house priests, nuns and medical staff, all to handle the baby inmates that became their big business. Pretty clever those pontiffs denounce birth control of any kind so a steady stream of illegitimate children can be sold through their channels. And they are a non-profit so they get to keep their income. And devoted parishioners keep pumping them donations to this day.

Here is the photo of the orphanage where I was:

I was there in 1956

This is Catholic Charities current description:

When land was bought for the Minneapolis Catholic Boys’ Home in 1885, the intersection of 46th Street and Chicago Avenue was a half-day’s ride from the city. The green countryside that stretched south to Minnehaha Creek promised a pastoral experience for children. Both the Minneapolis Catholic Boys’ Home and St. Joseph’s Home for Children in St. Paul were founded to address a critical need of the late 19th century: children left parentless by epidemics and other hardships of pioneer life. The nuns who staffed the homes offered motherly care to hundreds of children well into the 20th century.  The 1960s saw two important shifts. First, society turned to favor foster placement over orphanage care. The Minneapolis Catholic Boys’ Home and St. Joseph’s Home for Children were consolidated on the Boys’ Home property under St. Joe’s name.  Today, St. Joe’s continues to serve the community as a part of Catholic Charities. Several programs for children, including an emergency shelter, health clinic and mental health services, operate at St. Joe’s. SOURCE  (I want to note there are Orphan Cemeteries, too.) (How clever of them to leave out the adoptions they did. Really!)

Instead of using this blog to bombard you with my research, I have started to collect ORPHAN ASYLUM info: HERE  (thanks to my Librarian friend Karen Vigneault-MLIS for sending me sources on these asylums. Karen is a member of the Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel in California.)

For any one looking to find an ancestor at an asylum, some have individual websites with census that has names and dates and even parents names on many of these young inmates.

adoption agency directoryIt is staggering and upsetting to find out how many big brick institutions were built by churches and where these asylums operated… This out-of-print book by Reg Niles is selling for $999 on Amazon and has little known information about the various religion’s baby-broker-selling history.

A few friends have told me what their adoptive parents paid for them. I don’t know what I cost mine.

And I thought about the many Catholic-run Boarding Schools for American Indian children who were also made inmates, imprisoned to be assimilated and educated, all to KILL THE INDIAN.

My mother Helen had to pay to stay at the Catholic Maternity Home in Minnesota – can you believe it? She made arrangements to pay THEM?

Wasn’t giving them me enough payment?

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IN THE NEWS

People take to the streets in Rapid City, South Dakota to protest racism, Feb 26, 2015.

The Thursday march coincided with the release a 12-page report by the Lakota People’s Law Project, “Native Lives Matter,” which asserts the U.S. justice system is responsible for those injustices. Read more of this post

Chase Iron Eyes, attorney for the Lakota People’s Law Project, led the march…

“My relatives, I’m at a tipping point,” Iron Eyes told the crowd that massed Thursday despite the blustery weather. “I know you’re at a tipping point because we can’t take this any longer.”

If those in power had their way, Iron Eyes said, “We would exist in the margins of poverty for the next 100 years,” he said. “They would sentence us to death by poverty if they had their way.”

Iron Eyes said the fatal police shooting of 30-year-old Allen Locke in December was the most recent incident between Native Americans and the Rapid City Police Department. My Post about Allen

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Building the First Slavery Museum in America

Louisiana’s River Road runs northwest from New Orleans to Baton Rouge, its two lanes snaking some 100 miles along the Mississippi and through a contradictory stretch of America. Flat and fertile, with oaks webbed in Spanish moss, the landscape stands in defiance of the numerous oil refineries and petrochemical plants that threaten its natural splendor. In the rust-scabbed towns of clapboard homes, you are reminded that Louisiana is the eighth-poorest state in the nation. Yet in the lush sugar plantations that crop up every couple of miles, you can glimpse the excess that defined the region before the Civil War. Some are still active, with expansive fields yielding 13 million tons of sugar cane a year. Others stand in states of elegant rot. But most conspicuous are those that have been restored for tourists, transporting them into a world of bygone Southern grandeur — one in which mint juleps, manicured gardens and hoop skirts are emphasized over the fact that such grandeur was made possible by the enslavement of black human beings.
On Dec. 7, the Whitney Plantation, in the town of Wallace, 35 miles west of New Orleans, celebrated its opening, and it was clear, based on the crowd entering the freshly painted gates, that the plantation intended to provide a different experience from those of its neighbors. Roughly half of the visitors were black, for starters, an anomaly on plantation tours in the Deep South. And while there were plenty of genteel New Orleanians eager for a peek at the antiques inside the property’s Creole mansion, they were outnumbered by professors, historians, preservationists, artists, graduate students, gospel singers and men and women from Senegal dressed in traditional West African garb: flowing boubous of intricate embroidery and bright, saturated colors. If opinions on the restoration varied, visitors were in agreement that they had never seen anything quite like it. Built largely in secret and under decidedly unorthodox circumstances, the Whitney had been turned into a museum dedicated to telling the story of slavery — the first of its kind in the United States.

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/01/magazine/building-the-first-slave-museum-in-america.html

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Experts: Arctic development could mean increase in sex trafficking

By Bonney Bowman February 25, 2015 |

ANCHORAGE – Opening the Arctic to development could bring an economic boost to the state, but it could also mean increased exploitation of Alaska’s residents — experts addressed the topic at a recent conference in Anchorage. If large-scale projects start popping up in the north, those same experts say sex trafficking will follow — and the communities may not be ready to prevent it or help the victims. Victoria Sweet says Alaskan Native villagers need to take an active role in defining the future of their communities and the Arctic, while making sure there’s no future for sex trafficking.

“It’s a very insidious crime that’s hard to track down,” Sweet said of sex trafficking. “But it’s everywhere and it’s affecting our communities, it’s affecting our children, it’s affecting our youth. Our society isn’t going to be whole until we stop exploitation.”

She says other ways to stop sex trafficking from following development in the Arctic is to put pressure on the companies to be proactive when it comes to human rights.  Village leaders — like teachers, nurses and law enforcement — also need more training to recognize the signs of trafficking and know what to do when they see it.  Read More

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3 thoughts on “And so it goes #Orphan Asylums #NativeLivesMatter

  1. Lara-Trace, the history of Catholic orphanages is so important! I’m grateful to know that you are compiling information. You might also find the book “Indian Orphanages” (Marilyn Irvin Holt, 2001) an interesting resource. (Years ago, I wrote a critical review of this rather shallow, favorable analysis of the role tribes played in orphanages and adoption, although I found her previous book, “Orphan Trains,” to be an important critical analysis of classism in Euro-American child removal.

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    1. Carol, thank you – that’s invaluable information to me. Yes, I am collecting information. The amount of children inmates so far is as astounding as it is heartbreaking.

      Liked by 1 person

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