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Holand, Hjalmar Rued, 1872-1963 / Wisconsin's Belgian community : an account of the early events in the Belgian settlement in northeastern Wisconsin with particular reference to the Belgians in Door County

Chapter VIII: F. Edward Daems,   pp. [98]-100 PDF (592.0 KB)

Page 99

doctor, being familiar with many medical remedies and
thus eased many a bed of pain.
    These visits of the cheerful, energetic young priest
were the great festival days of the humble pioneers. There
were no newspapers in their cabins, and very seldom came
a letter, but he told them of what was happening in all his
farflung parish, fifty miles long and ten miles wide. In that
parish practically all were Belgians, coming largely from
the same province-Brabant-and the news he had to tell
was therefore of great interest. Weddings and funerals,
the news from the old country or of new arrivals were
usually first heard of through him. As he had a strong
penchant for the humorous, these narratives were usually
highly entertaining. He could also tell of how the people of
this or that neighborhood were talking of building a church,
which news was a powerful stimulus for the settlers in an-
other district to follow their example.
    In time these churches were built and the Belgian
settlement changed from one large parish with Father
Daems as the only priest into more than a dozen smaller
ones, most of which have their own priests. The following
is a list of the congregations with their churches, the mem-
bers of which are almost exclusively Belgians, into which
the original Holy Cross parish was subdivided:
    Holy Cross, Bay Settlement, Brown County.
    St. Hubert's, Sugar Bush, Brown County.
    St. Peter & St. Pauls, Green Bay, Brown County.
    St. Joseph's, Champion, Kewaunee County.
    St. Martins, Tonet, Kewaunee County.
    St. Amand's, Walhain, Kewaunee County.
    St. Louis', Dyckesville, Kewaunee County.
    St. Odile's, Thiry Daems, Kewaunee County.

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