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Women’s History Month: Mother Theodore and smoking

Traveling by stagecoach from Vincennes to Terre Haute, Ind., was another arduous and dangerous leg of Mother Theodore Guerin’s journey to Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Ind. Rain made matters even worse. When the stagecoach overturned and the driver was unable to upright the vehicle, assistance was sought from a man who lived in nearby cabin. Mother Theodore and her sister-companions stayed with the woman of the house as the men turned their attention to the stagecoach. Mother Theodore writes:

“The man of the house was so kind as to go and help our driver, and we were left to groan at our ease and to warm ourselves in this narrow abode. The woman, about sixty years of age, asked us who we were. As we could not answer except in French, she continued quietly smoking her pipe. (Smoking seems customary among the women in this part of the country; even young girls smoke; this seems very strange.)”

To learn more about Saint Mother Theodore Guerin, click here.

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Connie McCammon

Connie McCammon worked in the communications office for the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods.

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