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Guide to the Sisters of St. Francis (Bancroft, Iowa) records

Collection Overview

Date Span: 1900-1992
Creator: Sisters of St. Francis  (Bancroft, Iowa)
Extent: 1.50 linear inches.
Collection Number: IWA0120
Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Summary: Religious order that helped to establish a school in St. John's Parish, Bancroft, Iowa in 1900.

Access: The records are open for research.

Use: Copyright held by the donor has been transferred to The University of Iowa.

Acquisition: The records (donor no. 184) were donated by the Sioux City Diocese Commission on Women in Church and Society.

Preferred Citation: Sisters of St. Francis (Bancroft, Iowa) papers, Iowa Women's Archives, The University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City.

Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Address: 100 Main Library
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, IA 52242
Phone: 319-335-5068
Curator: Kären Mason

The Sisters of St. Francis of the Holy Family settled in Bancroft, Iowa, in September 1900. Originally from Dubuque, Iowa, the Sisters relocated to Bancroft at the request of the first pastor of the new parish in Bancroft, Reverend Anthony J. Schemmel. The Sisters had been asked to assist in establishing a new parochial school in Bancroft to be called St. John's to help with teaching duties. St. John's began with an enrollment of 133 elementary and high school students, which increased over the years. The faculty was originally composed entirely of nuns, but by 1992 only one remained on staff.

In addition to their teaching duties, the Sisters visited other parishes and convents; attended retreats, seminars, and conventions; and took part in social events such as dinners, showers, and parties. In 1970 the Sisters attended a meeting of area dioceses during which the Sioux City Diocesan Association of Women Religious was formed. The Sisters of St. Francis were founding members of this association.

The records are divided into three series: Annals, Announcements and annals guidelines, and Photographs.

The Annals series (1900-1992) consists of four annals compiled by the Sisters for the Office of Archives of the Diocese. The early annals list school relate information about such subjects as faculty members, student enrollment, and commencement exercises but also include parish material listing newly inducted sisters and visits to and from other area parishes. The later annals also contain administrative and parish information. Beginning in 1973 monthly dates of events are listed.

The Announcements and annals guidelines series (1976-1977) contains a copy of a financial notice sent by the Sisters to their community to show their need for financial support, a wake bulletin for departed sister Mary Tarcisia Scherbring, and a list of guidelines on creating annals, which was sent to the Sisters by the Office of the Archiveso f the Diocese.

The Photographs series(1984) consists of two photographs, one featuring the Sisters and students cleaning the school after an annual bazaar, and the other depicting a Sister at a Christmas assembly.

Browse by Series:
Series 1: Annals
Series 2: Announcements and annals guidelines
Series 3: Photographs

  • Series 1: Annals
  • Box 1:
  • Annals - 1900-1967
  • Annals - 1967-1978
  • Annals - 1978-1988
  • Annals - 1988-1992
  • Series 2: Announcements and annals guidelines
  • Box 1:
  • Financial notice, undated
  • Wake service bulletin - 1976
  • Annals guidelines - 1977
  • Series 3: Photographs
  • Box 1:
  • Photographs - 1984