Treasures from Archives: Marleau-Hercules Fence Co.
Back in the far recesses of Archives is a wonderful archival box filled with tantalizing details about the convent cemetery. One of the items that caught my attention was the bill for the wrought iron gate at the entrance of the cemetery. The invoice is dated Oct. 14, 1940, and is from the Marleau-Hercules Fence Co. of Toledo, Ohio. The cost for the gate is $800.
Another invoice tied with the cemetery is for the stonework for the entrance. Provided by the Lindley Ornamental Stone Company of Bloomington, Ind., and dated Oct. 19, 1940, the invoice totaled $900.
Also in this archival box are the blueprints for the gate as well as the stone gateposts. The prints are dated July 10 and July 12, 1940, respectively. On the gate blueprint is printed, “Gates to have latch no locks.” Both sets of blueprints were drawn by architects of D.A. Bohlen and Son of Indianapolis. This was the same company used for the Church of the Immaculate Conception.
Look closely at the wrought iron invoice. In the sold to box is the name Mr. Bisch, which has been crossed out. The Bisch family has a long and wonderful history with the Congregation. Joseph N. Bisch served as the superintendent of grounds from 1893 until his death in 1939. He was encouraged to come to Saint Mary-of-the-Woods by his sisters, Sisters St. Bernardine and Mary Anthony Bisch. Joseph’s son Bernard took over upon his father’s death. Bernard remained superintendent until his death in 1958. This invoice was sent in care of Bernard.
What other connections are there between the Bisch family and the Congregation? Sister Marian Celeste Bisch (RIP), a daughter of Joseph N., also was a Sister of Providence! In other words, she and Bernard were sister and brother.
Bernard was succeeded by his son Joseph L., who served as superintendent from 1958 to 1988. Joseph’s son, Stephen, was employed to assist his father on Sept. 17, 1984! He left the employment of the Congregation in 1988.