Allouez, Claude Jean

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Jesuit missionary; b. Saint Didier-en-Forez, France, June 6, 1622; d. near Niles, Mich., Aug. 2728, 1689. He joined the Jesuits at Toulouse (1639), studied there and at Billom and Rodez, and was ordained in 1655. He was 36 when he arrived in Canada, where he spent the next seven years ministering to the settlers in the Saint Lawrence area. In 1665 he was named vicar-general to Bishop François de Montmorency Laval of Quebec. Allouez's assignment to the Great Lakes region marked the first step toward the organization of the hierarchy in the central part of what later became the United States. From 1665 to 1689 he traveled the Great Lakes region in all directionsHuron, Superior, Erie, Michigancovering 3,000 miles, preaching to more than 20 native tribes, and, it is said, baptizing about 10,000 persons. In 1667 he went to Lake Nipigon and celebrated the first Mass to be offered within the boundaries of the present Diocese of Fort-William, Ontario. He worked among the Illinois, prepared a prayer book in Illinois and French, laid the foundations for St. Francis Xavier Mission (1673), and wrote Récit d'un 3(e) voyage fait aux Illinois (c. 1679). The Relations of 1667 to 1676 have preserved numerous extracts from his journals; the edition of 1671 contains a portion of the address he delivered the preceding year at Sault Sainte Marie, Michigan, when M. S. F. de Saint-Lusson took possession of the territories of the West in the name of the King of France. Allouez is honored in the U.S., especially in Wisconsin, where in 1899 the Wisconsin Historical Society raised a monument to him at De Pere, the center of his missionary activities.

Bibliography: "Narrative of a 3rd Voyage to the Illinois made by Father Claude Allouez," Jesuit Relations and Allied Documents, ed. r. g. thwaites, 73 v. (Cleveland 18961901; New York 1959) 60:148167, and general intro. g.j. garraghan, Jesuits of the Middle U.S. (New York 1938) 1:34. t. j. campbell, Pioneer Priests of North America, 3 v. (New York 190819) 3:147164. f. j. nelligan, "The Visit of Father Allouez to Lake Nipigon in 1667," Canadian Catholic Historical Association Report (1956) 4152.

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