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Religion Collections in Libraries and Archives: Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia

Daughters of Charity Archives

Introductory Information

Daughters of Charity Providence of St. Louise Archives External

Daughters of Charity Facebook External

Address: 333 South Seton Ave, Emmitsburg, MD 21727

Telephone number: 301-447-6041

Contact information: [email protected]

Online catalog External

Access Policies

Hours of service: Monday - Friday 8:00 am - 12:00 pm; 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Open to the public: Yes

Interlibrary loan: No

Reference policy: Reference requests are accepted by: Telephone, email, in person

Background note: The Company of Daughters of Charity St. Vincent de Paul was founded in France in 1633. The Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph's was founded by Elizabeth Seton in Emmitsburg, MD in 1809. In 1850, the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph’s joined the Paris-based Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul. In 2011, the Province of St. Louise was formed from the consolidation of four former provinces: Albany, Emmitsburg, Evansville, and St. Louis. The collections of the Provincial Archives reflect this consolidation with a geographic scope of the states east of the Rocky Mountains. The content of the collections includes the records of individual community members and history, as well as works operated by Daughters such as social centers, orphan asylums, hospitals, and schools.


Books and monographs
Approximately 10,000 volumes concerning the history of the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul including its founders, leaders and ministries from 1809 to the present; also scholarly books concerning the community’s founders (Vincent DePaul, Louise de Marillac, and Elizabeth Ann Seton) and Vincentian spirituality.

Periodicals and newspapers
No dedicated newspaper collection; selected newspaper articles appear throughout the manuscript holdings, filed with the appropriate mission.

Periodicals: Vincentian Heritage and Annals of the Congregation of the Mission are available for research.

Archives, manuscripts, correspondences, and/or oral histories
The archival collections measure approximately 12,000 linear feet, inclusive dates from 1809 to the present. Materials include brochures, pamphlets, letters, diaries, newspaper articles, and Provincial Annals. Subjects covered include the charity, nursing, social work and teaching missions of the Daughters of Charity; the community’s work during natural disasters, epidemics, and armed conflicts such as the Civil War, the Spanish-American War, and World Wars I and II; lives of community saints and leaders; history of the Catholic Church in the United States, especially in areas where Daughters of Charity have been present; history of women religious in the United States; women’s higher education.

Videos and sound recordings
No dedicated audio or video collections; materials appear throughout the manuscript collections. Arrangements can be made for digitization of cassette tapes and VHS tapes if copyright laws permit; film, cassette, VHS, and digital collections are all usable on-site.


  • Paintings: The Archives contain religious artwork collected from former missions, paintings of community saints, and original artwork of Sisters.
  • Photographs, slides, and prints: Images of missions are organized by mission. Photos of individual Sisters are housed with files on those Sisters.

Databases and/or electronic resources External

Digital collections
Please contact archival staff to discuss material that can be made available digitally or remotely

Subject Headings

Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul -- Spiritual life Vincent de Paul, -- Saint, -- 1581-1660 Louise de Marillac, -- Saint, -- 1591-1660 Seton, Elizabeth Ann, -- Saint, -- 1774-1821 Monasticism and religious orders for women -- United States -- History Catholic Church -- United States – History Catholic Church – Education Delivery of Health Care -- United States. Social Work -- history -- United States Church work with the sick -- United States -- History. Church work with the poor -- Catholic Church Spiritual life -- Catholic Church Nuns -- United States – History Women -- United States Women -- Religious life -- North America Women -- Education (Higher) -- United States – History Women's colleges -- United States – History