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Salzmann, Joseph


Educator, editor; b. Münzbach, Austria, Aug. 17, 1819; d. St. Francis, Wis., Jan. 17, 1874. He attended schools at Münzbach, Linz, and Vienna, where he earned a doctorate in theology. After ordination Aug. 8, 1842, at Linz, he was influenced by Bp. J. M. henni to work on the American mission, and he arrived Oct. 7, 1847, at Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In addition to pastoral work, he served as editor of Der Seebote (1851) and Die Columbia (1871), both of Milwaukee. He was organizer of St. Francis Seminary (1856), Milwaukee, for which he collected $100,000 in the East, South, and Middle West; this institution proved a vital factor in the progress of the Church. He used the press and other means to counter the attacks of anticlericals and the pulpit to inform his people about political issues. Throughout the U.S. Civil War he criticized President Abraham Lincoln, the draft, and Yankees. As a member of the faculty and rector of the seminary, he taught history. He was a Germanophile and dreamed of a German Catholic university for the U.S. A direct consequence of his normal school, Holy Family in St. Francis, Wisconsin, which graduated over 500 organists and teachers, was his founding of the American branch of the Caecilian society for the reform of Church music. Although the society had a membership of 5,000 in the U.S. by 1920, it had abandoned its original purpose out of deference for the motu proprio on Church music (1903).

Bibliography: j. rainer, A Noble Priest: Joseph Salzmann, tr. j. w. berg (Milwaukee 1903).

[p. l. johnson]

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