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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.

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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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  1. Christi on January 26, 2012 at 8:49 am

    Sister Connie,

    Thank you for this wonderful piece of history from the archives. When I attended the Woods, there was an Anne-Marie Bisch who I believe was in my sister’s class. I am wondering if she related to the Bischs of which you wrote.

    In Providence,

    Christi Garcia

  2. Anonymous on January 26, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Thank you for sharing this! I was wondering the same thing about Anne Marie Bisch. :0)
    Peace and Love,
    Heather Tetzlaff Smith ’92

  3. Connie on January 26, 2012 at 11:42 am

    Thank you both for your comments on our blog about the Bisch family. We are working on finding out if Anne Marie is related to this Bisch family!

  4. Anonymous on January 26, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    Dear Sister Connie, Christi and Heather,
    This is Ann Marie Bisch, Class of ’90. My Father was Joseph L. Bisch (d.2009), and Stephen is my brother. I also have a sister, Cathy Bisch Stephens, Class of ’76.
    I love this history and know that my Dad was a proud Third Generation Bisch to have followed in his forefathers’ footsteps in working for the Sisters of Providence!
    Yours truly,
    Ann Marie Bisch

  5. Connie on January 27, 2012 at 8:35 am

    Ann Marie, thank you so much for sharing your family with us!

  6. Edie Bird Breneman on April 16, 2012 at 2:39 pm

    Joseph Bisch will be one of the “saints” represented in the May 6, 2012 Historic Cemetery Walk at St. Mary’s Village Parish Cemetery. The walk will be from 11-2 and is part of the parish’s 175th Anniversary.
    Edie Bird Breneman

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