Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

Loretto-The Sisters and Their Santa Fe Chapel, Revised Edition

Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

Loretto-The Sisters and Their Santa Fe Chapel, Revised Edition

Article excerpt

Cook, Mary Jean Straw. Loretto-The Sisters and Their Santa Fe Chapel, Revised Edition. (Santa Fe: Museum of New Mexico Press. 2002. Pp. xviii, 118. $22.50 paperbound.)

The chapel of Our Lady of Light, more commonly known as "the Loretto Chapel" or the "chapel of the miraculous staircase," was dedicated on April 25, 1878. The chapel known for its miraculous staircase has been of interest to Mary Jean Straw Cook for many years, and her research led to the original publication of the book Loretto, the Sisters and their Santa Fe Chapel in 1984. The author's interest and love for the chapel is evident in this lovely and interestingly written account of the chapel's construction and its history. The book also relates the story of the Sisters of Loretto beginning with their establishment as one of the first orders of nuns to be founded in the United States. This revised edition gives additional information about the sisters and their chapel and includes the identity of the person who, the author believes, built the chapel stair-case. Her case for the identity of the builder, one Francois-Jean Rochas, also known as "Frenchy," is well detailed and very convincing. …

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