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Vintage Post Card Greetings from Louisville

Cathedral of the Assumption
"Cathedral of the Assumption,
Louisville Kentucky" 
ca. 1930

The building was erected between 1849 and 1852.  It is the seat of the archdiocese of Louisville, the oldest bishopric in the American heartland, although the proto-cathedral of St Joseph in Bardstown, Ky., a few miles away, is even older (1816-19).  This all goes to illustrate the strong Roman Catholic presence in the area over the past two centuries.  In fact, this cathedral had its origins in a church parish started from Bardstown (1811)  by a priest named Stephen Baldwin, who also happens to be the first priest ordained in America.  The first church at this site, dedicated to St. Louis (imagine that) was built in 1830, along with a school and orphanage by Catherine Spalding, a nun of the order of the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth (motherhouse also in Bardstown).  In 1841, the old St. Louis Church became a cathedral when the diocese was moved from Bardstown to Louisville (by edict of Pope Gregory XVI), and a new church was built soon after, renamed the Assumption.

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