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Martin Marty

MARTY, Martin, R. C. bishop, born in Schwyz, Switzerland, 12 January, 1834. He studied in colleges in Switzerland and Austria, with the intention to fit himself for the medical profession, but he afterward went through a course of theology, and on 14 September, 1856, was ordained He came to the United States to assist in founding a new Benedictine abbey and college, and learning on his arrival that Bishop DeSaint Palais, of Vineennes, was in need of German priests, he went thither with two companions in 1860. After consultation with the bishop, he purchased a tract of 7,000 acres in Spencer county, Indiana, part of which he sold to colonists whom he invited from Germany and Switzerland. Through his efforts Spencer and Dubois counties were settled almost entirely by German Roman Catholics. He built many churches, and in 1865 erected St. Meinrad's priory, and was made its first superior. He also established and presided over a theological college. In 1870 Pope Pins IX. raised St. Meinrad's to the rank of an abbey, formed the priests connected with it into the " Helveto-Ameriean congregation," and appointed Father Marty a mitred abbot. He resigned his office a few years later to devote himself to the conversion of the Indians, and went to Dakota, where he spent some time in studying the ***In(libra languages, that of the Sioux in particular. He then returned to St. Meinrad's and wrote a Sioux grammar and dictionary, by means of which he taught twelve priests and twelve Sisters of Charity to speak the language, afterward taking them with him to Dakota. Father Marry soon attained great influence over the savages; he was trusted by them so thoroughly that he went twice into the camp of Sitting Bull at a time when the Indian had sworn death to every white man, and he did much toward protecting settlers. He acted thus under the authority of the United States government, which has always recognized his services in Indian troubles. In 1879 the territory of Dakota was formed into an apostolic vicariate, and Dr. Marty was consecrated bishop of Tiberias in partibua on 1 February, 1880. When he went to Dakota the Roman Catholic church had hardly any existence in the territory, and all the institutions and congregations that have been there established are his creation. The vicariate now contains 97 churches, 118 stations, and eight missions containing nearly 30,000 Indians, with several schools, among them an agricultural school at Standing Rock agency, in which eighty boys are taught.

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