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St. John's Orphanage in Belleville, ILL

St. John's Orphanage in Belleville, ILL

Posted: 15 Aug 2011 12:04PM GMT
Classification: Query
Looking for stories of life at orphanage 1910-1920.

Re: St. John's Orphanage in Belleville, ILL

Posted: 23 Apr 2013 8:47PM GMT
Classification: Query
I see that your inquiry about St. John's hasn't brought in much information. My Mother and her 3 siblings lived there probably after the 1920s to 1930 range. It was quite a hard life as they recalled. The children had work duties before school, such as scrubbing floors, cleaning the stoves etc. The boys worked in the field...they may have had milk cows. They would harvest corn, climb ladders to the metal roof tops and lay the corn out to dry in the sun, to be used during the winter for food. They had Lentil soup everyday and only had a meat if the benefactors were paying a visit. It was a stict environment. Once a month the priest came for "whipping day", all the offenses during the month were listed and names were called to come forward for the punishment. My Uncle kept running away and hopping freight trains until he was found and returned. He was a regular for whipping day! They finally tied him to a tree outside for recess. My grandfather died and my grandmother couldn't feed them so she had to send them there. She did pay a small monthly fee for their keep.

Re: St. John's Orphanage in Belleville, ILL

Posted: 16 Aug 2014 1:36AM GMT
Classification: Query
I'm looking for information on this orphanage. I believe my grandfather and his brothers were there between 1916 to sometime in the 20s. Does anyone know where I can find this information? Was this also the only orphanage in Belleville?

Re: St. John's Orphanage in Belleville, ILL

Posted: 16 Aug 2014 12:32PM GMT
Classification: Query
You may be able to get some information by calling the Archdiocese of Belleville. I once found a Morman site that had some information as to First Communions and Confirmations from the parish church used by the orphanage. When I accessed the site again, it was all gone, so I emailed them and they said the Church made them discontinue providing the info as they felt it was a privacy thing. Let me jnow how it goes, I would like my Mother's info also.

Re: St. John's Orphanage in Belleville, ILL

Posted: 16 Aug 2014 1:33PM GMT
Classification: Query
Hi Barbara, you might want to try this link http://genealogy.mohistory.org/genealogy/source/355 I didn't get anywhere with it but you might have some luck.. I just emailed the Diocese today and hopefully I'll get the information I need, or at least pointed in the right direction of where I can get the information.
~Melinda

Re: St. John's Orphanage in Belleville, ILL

Posted: 16 Aug 2014 3:24PM GMT
Classification: Query
I don't believe you will get any information from an email or phone call the the Diocese. We tried that and finally took a trip to the orphanage. The building was torn down, but there is a Catholic school there now and they have all the records of the orphanage. A nun was very helpful and let us see the admissions book with our grandmother and her siblings names, the dates they entered and when they left. There are also pictures that she showed us very quickly. We could look but could not go through them ourself. I suggest a personal visit to the school and also a visit to the Belleville Library. There is a lot of information there too. Good Luck.
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