Marian Devotion and Archbishop Walsh – A Prayer for Peace During World War II

May Day is observed in various celebratory ways and this is no different within the Catholic Church as this diurnal it is a starting point for month-long devotions to the Blessed Virgin Mary across the globe.  Counted among the most evident displays of homage include the annual “May Crowning” of Mary statues found within churches worldwide, creation of art works depicting the image of the Holy Mother, increased prayers, group recitations, and other means  homage that invoke and honor her name and example. This increase in commitment to Mary has been nurtured over time especially from the 18th century forward.  Within the Pre-Vatican II era, the official pronouncement of the “Queenship of Mary” and her connections to May as a time of greater ceremony came in the Marian Year of 1954 when Pope Pius XII (1876-1958) made in his encyclical – Ad Caeli Reginam.  This inspired an oft-recited hymn that reads – “Hail Virgin, dearest Mary! Our lovely Queen of May! . . . ”

Mary herself was a Nazarean who lived in the 1st century BC and is known according to New Testament texts as the mother Jesus Christ by way of conceiving miraculously through the Holy Spirit.  The Mother of God was assumed into Heaven after her mortal life ended and her example has led to several assertions that she has appeared in miraculous fashion to different followers over the years.  This has led to Mary being the most venerated and admirable of all saints to most within the Catholic Church.

The example of Mary served the faithful not only in times of peace, but especially in times of turmoil.  A decade before the “Queenship of Mary” was formally established, and as the Second World War raged, Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Amleto Giovanni Cicognani (1883-1973) reached out to the American hierarchy on behalf of Pius XII to encourage focused prayer during the month of May.  In particular, he made special note of all to call on the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary in helping all people to lead a true life and to always remember – “. . . the needs of humanity and for the attainment of a just peace . . . at this time of conflict across the world.”  In response to this request, Archbishop Thomas J. Walsh (1873-1952) asked the faithful of the Archdiocese of Newark to not only participate in daily contemplation, but engage in the Holy Crusade of Peace as a means of honoring the Solidarity of Mary.  This was a means of joining the call of the Vatican in other shows of spiritual commitment on a daily basis as outlined in the April 27, 1943 circular letter illustrated on this page.

Archbishop Walsh also expressed the wish that the Litany of the Blessed Virgin, Litany of Loreto (a special Marian-centered prayer first uttered in 1587), and the “Prayer for Peace” (found below) each be read after each Mass throughout the month of May.

In addition, further demonstrations of faith included public services that featured the recitation of the Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary and honoring the Mother of Christ with a Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament at each parish and mission chapel throughout the Archdiocese of Newark.  Additionally, in accordance with the hope that the Catholic youth of the Newark See would be more active in spiritual exercises of this type, it was requested by Archbishop Walsh that students make a devotion to their nearest church every school day in addition to worship on Sundays.

This circular was read to parishioners at each parish throughout the Archdiocese of Newark during Masses conducted on Sunday, May 2, 1943.  In looking back 75 years later, this devotion to Mary shows how the words of the hierarchy and enlistment of the faithful helped in making peace a reality and further strengthened belief in the Blessed Virgin and her example through continued dedication throughout the month of May and even beyond.

For more information on Marian traditions, Archdiocese of Newark history, and other research subjects please feel free to contact at: Alan.Delozier@shu.edu / (973) 275-2378.

Object of the Month: Roman Coin from the age of Caesar Augustus (27 B.C.E. – 14 C.E.)

Denarius Coin 0.6875 inches x 0.625 inches 2015.16.0054

This hammered silver coin was made during the reign of Caesar Augustus (27 B.C.E. – 14 C.E.), the first Roman emperor. He spearheaded the transformation of Rome from a republic to an empire through military strength and governing. The chariot and laurel wreath symbolize this military success, while the robes represent those worn by highly ranked government officials called consuls. This coin is from a distinguished collection of Etruscan and Greco-Roman antiquities, including over 400 coins, donated by alumnus Ronald D’Argenio (MS ‘76/JD ’79).

April Fools’ Day-Themed Tall Tales & Seton Hall . . .

Our school newspaper known as The Setonian has been a staple on campus since 1924 and since that time has featured numerous stories that focus on factual reporting.  Accuracy in journalism is the goal for anyone involved with the press from the writer to the editor before any article reaches the public.  Even before the upsurge in “fake news” that has become more commonplace in contemporary society there are times when content is purposely meant as satire in order to provide comedic relief.  This was clearly stated in the annals of Setonia lore as the paper regularly featured a special “April Fools’ Edition” dated April 1st from its inaugural appearance in 1956 through the remainder of the decade through the 1960s in particular.

These special editions were clearly meant to lampoon college life and often featured clever headlines and text to bring momentary shock, but with it harmless humor and often an inkling that something is amiss.  In many cases, the more outrageous the headline, columns, and photograph(s) shows the creativity of those involved with the prank.  In all cases though a disclaimer is issued that warns the reader of what they are to expect.  For the latter day audience these special issues have historical value on what constituted comedic values in a particular era.

For more information about college humor, satire in print, and other historical notes about Seton Hall please feel free to contact Alan Delozier, University Archivist at: Alan.Delozier@shu.edu or phone at (973) 275-2378.

 

Honoring the 65th Anniversary of the Judaeo-Christian Studies Institute & Jeifa Family Collection

This exhibit on display throughout the Spring 2018 semester on the first floor of Walsh Library is designed to share the historical significance of remembering the Holocaust and have furthered the discussion of inter-religious dialogue and cooperation over the last century into the new millennium.  This select array of materials on display also provides an introductory   and research-oriented means of appreciating the power of individual and communal stories through the sharing of documentary evidence.

The Jeifa Family Collection is based mainly on the contributions of Mr. Michel Jeifa (b. 1927) who was born and raised Paris, France and surviving the Holocaust and being able to endure after the deaths of his parents in concentration camps during World War II.  Various representations of life before and after this tragedy along with symbols and pride in their faith have been preserved by Michel, his children, and grandchildren as part of an important and lasting legacy.

              

Founded in 1953, The Institute of Judaeo-Christian Studies became a trailblazing enterprise devoted to religious dialogue and understanding.  The first director was Monsignor John Oesterreicher and through his vision and that of former university president, Monsignor John L. McNulty, Bishop John J. Dougherty, and others.  More detailed and additional information on Judaeo-Christian Studies and related initiatives sponsored through this Center can be found on the Institute homepage at: https://www.shu.edu/judaeo-christian-studies/

The materials presented here were selected from various portions of the Archives & Special Collections Center at Seton Hall University with editorial assistance from Reverend Lawrence Frizzell, Director and Associate Professor of the Jewish-Christian Studies Graduate Program, and Ms. Gisele Joachim, Dean of Enrollment Management of the Seton Hall University School of Law.

For more information on this exhibit and other materials related to the Holocaust and Judaeo-Christian Studies, please contact Alan Delozier, University Archivist via e-mail at:<Alan.Delozier@shu.edu> or phone: (973) 275-2378.

Brendan T. Byrne (1924-2018) – From Setonia to the State House, A Life of Public Service

We are pleased to announce a new exhibit in honor of the late Governor Brendan T. Byrne which is being hosted by the Archives & Special Collections Center through the Spring 2018 semester.

Brendan Thomas Byrne was born April 1, 1924 in West Orange, New Jersey, the fourth of five children born to Francis A. Byrne and Genevieve (Brennan) Byrne. He attended Seton Hall College in 1943 before leaving to enroll in the United States Army Air Corps as a navigator during World War II. Byrne earned a Distinguished Flying Cross, three Air Medals, and a Presidential Unit Citation before his honorable discharge from the service in 1945. Upon returning from overseas, Byrne graduated from Princeton University in 1949 and received his LL.B. from Harvard Law School two years later. The future governor first worked as a clerk for future Chief Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court, Joseph Weintraub and assisted attorney John W. McGeehan of Newark during the early 1950s.

The public career of Byrne began in the early 1950s as a member of the West Orange Planning Board. He then earned appointed as Assistant Council within the administration to Governor Robert B. Meyner in 1955.  Byrne was later promoted to the position of Executive Secretary the following year, and held this post until 1959.  Later that year, Byrne was named Deputy Attorney General in charge of the Office of the Prosecutor for Essex County and within months he was made the Essex County Prosecutor.  Over the next decade, Byrne argued over 60 different cases before the New Jersey Supreme Court and achieved recognition for prosecuting dishonest contractors and powerful underworld figures. Starting in 1968, Byrne served as President of the State Board of Public Utility Commissioners. He left this position when he was appointed to the New Jersey State Supreme Court in 1970.  In 1971, he handed down a decision that declared the state law on capital punishment unconstitutional. He resigned from the Supreme Court in 1973 to run for Governor.

The platform chosen by Byrne in the gubernatorial election of 1973 was based on the slogan “one honest man can make a difference.” Between the years of 1970 and 1973, several New Jersey public officials were indicted by federal grand juries, and with Watergate still in the news, Byrne ran on a platform of restoring public confidence in the government. His opponent was Republican candidate Charles Sandman, who criticized Byrne throughout the campaign for his reluctance to publicly state his position on controversial issues, but instead preferred to issue position papers. On November 6, 1973, Byrne won by over 721,000 votes.

Nicknamed “One Term Byrne” by critics, he surprised political experts in 1977 when he won re-election against Republican candidate Raymond H. Bateman. Despite being considered the underdog in the race, Byrne won by a large majority.  During his two terms time as governor, he created a legacy that includes the Meadowlands Sports Complex, development of Casinos in Atlantic City, dedication to the environment exemplified in the Pinelands Preservation Act, and a commitment to improving public education.

After stepping down as governor in 1982, Byrne returned to the private sector as an attorney, co-wrote a column in the Newark Star-Ledger with his gubernatorial successor Thomas Kean, and taught classes at various colleges prior to his death on January 5, 2018.

Governor Byrne receives an Honorary Degree from Seton Hall University on May 18, 1974.
Governor Byrne receives an Honorary Degree from Seton Hall University on May 18, 1974.

This exhibit (which will run throughout the Spring of 2018 and viewable at the Archives & Special Collections Center, located on the First Floor of Walsh Library) shows the ties Byrne had to Seton Hall as a student prior to the call to service in World War II.  In addition, included are his debate stop during his first gubernatorial campaign, honorary degree ceremony (1974), and aid with the Meadowlands Development project which bore his name during the 1970s-80s where Seton Hall sponsored a number of events from Men’s Basketball games (held regularly between 1982 until 2007) to Commencement and other activities of note. Additionally, select materials that provide an overview of his campaigns, work among the citizenry of New Jersey, summary of initiatives, and related items that provide a look at the man and his work on behalf of the Garden State and its citizens encompass this display.

More information on the Brendan T. Byrne Collection at Seton Hall University can be accessed via the following site link – http://academic.shu.edu/findingaids/mss0007.html  or you can contact Alan Delozier, University Archivist/Education Coordinator by e-mail at: <Alan.Delozier@shu.edu> or phone: (973) 275-2378.

Setonia in 1918 – Educational Life on Campus One Hundred Years Ago

Administrative Building (i.e. President’s Hall), c. 1918

When looking back at the world one hundred years ago, fighting had ceased to end the “Great War” and the United States proper was returning to a time of peace and budding prosperity.  Counted among the highlights of 1918 included the hope for creating a unified League of Nations to ensure world peace as advocated by President Woodrow Wilson. The creation of distinct time zones along with daylight savings time was enacted via the United States House of Representatives, and also watched was a continuation of the Progressive Era that featured  increased social, economic, and labor reform measures all marked this transitional period in the American experience.

In South Orange, Seton Hall College was in the midst of its sixty-second year of operation and played host to a student body numbering 87 during during the 1917-18 academic year (down from 105 the year before and rising to 96 by the Fall of 1918 most likely caused by enlistments with the American Expeditionary Forces [AEF] during World War I) with another 106 enrolled in the prep division and 54 seminarians on-site.  These individuals encountered a school year consisting of two terms of five months apiece beginning in September that ended by June of the following calendar year.  The Christmas recess was twelve days long and a week without classes was also provided for Holy Week and Easter much like the scheduling of today.

Administratively, the school was headed by the Right Reverend John J. O’Connor, D.D., Bishop of Newark (1901-1927) and Head of the Board of Trustees and the Right Reverend Monsignor James F. Mooney, D.D., LL.D., President of the College who had one of the longest tenures as chief executive in school history serving as leader from 1907-1922.

When it came to defining aspects of building community and academic standards, the administration made sure the institution had its own guidelines that were followed closely by the Setonians of 1918.  This included recognition of the organization scheme for the school which was outlined in the following manner . . .

“Seton Hall at present consists of Seton Hall College, Seton Hall High School, Bayley Hall Grammar School and the Theological Seminary of the Diocese of Newark.  The College prepares for the degrees of Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science.  The High School prepares for either the Classical or the Scientific Course of the College. Bayley Hall offers thorough instruction in the last three grades of the grammar school course.  The Theological Seminary prepares candidates for the priesthood and gives a four years’ course in theology and the other Sacred Sciences.”

The ideals and overall goals for the school and its student body were summarized in the following manner . . .

“The aim of Seton Hall is to impart a good education in the highest sense of the word – to train the moral, intellectual and physical being.  The mere imparting of knowledge is looked upon as but a small part of the work of the institution.  The training of the heart and the formation of character under the guiding influence of Christian principles, the development of the intellectual faculties, the encouragement and guidance of laudable ambition, the acquisition of habits of logical thought, correct methods of study, self-discipline and refinement, the realization, in a word, of the highest ideals of excellence in the cultured Christian gentleman – these are the ends that Seton Hall keeps steadily in view in the arduous and sacred office of educating youth.”

Another aspect of the collegiate life that appealed to the student body was its location within the densely populated suburbs of Newark and within manageable travel range of Gotham.  The following description of the campus and its environs was outlined in the following manner . . .

“The College is situated in the village of South Orange, N.J., on the line of the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad, fourteen miles west of New York City.  No more healthful and inviting site could be chosen for the College buildings, situated as they are in full view of the Orange Mountains, on high ground and surrounded by fine shade trees and well-kept laws that afford charming fields for recreation and sport.  The College property embraces about seventy-five acres.  The buildings are grouped together in a natural surrounding that makes Seton Hall one of the most attractive sites in the State.”

When it came to actually “educating youth,” the student of 1918 had the choice of following a “Classical” or “Scientific” course of study which entailed more of a liberal arts or naturalistic path of research respectively.  Please consult the illustrations for more details on the overview of each major . . .

Otherwise, the cost of education was also a concern especially to the parents and sponsors of students attending Seton Hall in an age of low wages and pre-inflation pricing which is highlighted here.  The following details show what a Seton Hall student of 1918 usually paid yearly . . .

For Resident Students

  • Tuition, board, washing and mending clothes and line –  $330.00 per annum
  • Physician’s attendance at physician’s charges.

For Day Scholars

  • Tuition – $75.00 per annum
  • Dinner at College = $100.00 per annum

Extra Charges –

  • Italian or Spanish, each – $25.00 per annum
  • Stenography and Typewriting – $50.00 per annum
  • Piano, Organ, Violin, Guitar, Cornet, each – $60.00 per annum
  • Use of Piano – $10.00 per annum
  • Use of ORgan – $15.00 per annum
  • Private Rooms – $75.00 per annum
  • Graduation Fee and Diploma – $10.00 per annum
  • Books, stationary and other incidentals will be supplied from the College stationary department at the lowest possible rates.
  • Articles of clothing, etc., will not be furnished to students without special instructions from parents or guardians; but it must be noted that in such cases a sum sufficient to defray these expenses and the expense of books, stationary and other incidentals must be deposited with the Treasurer in advance.”
  • Bills are presented at the beginning of each term and are payable in advance.  The Trustees of the College have instructed the Treasurer to enforce rigidly this rule of payment in advance, and in no case will any exception be made.

As with the student of today, those who attended Seton Hall during the teens contributed to the development of school life and left a legacy that continued through the last several decades as higher education and society within South Orange and on a global scale alike.  In providing a prelude to the students of today regardless of what time zone they hailed from, the students of 1918 also echoed the school motto of “Hazard Zet Forward” as part of the Seton Hall legacy that continues to this day.

For more information about this, and other periods in Seton Hall history please feel free to contact University Archivist, Alan Delozier – Alan.Delozier@shu.edu / (973) 275-2378.

Pictures and Prose of the Season – Christmas Cards and Setonia

Christmas has been an event traditionally embraced by generations of    Setonians as a special time in their lives both in experiencing campus traditions leading up to the celebration and looking back at memorable days of yore.  This prelude and embrace of the holiday is not only clearly expressed in such Seton Hall traditions as the Nativity Scene constructed outside of the Immaculate Conception Chapel, the presence of Holly Wreaths on entrance ways on many iconic buildings from South Orange Avenue to Ward Place, Musically-Themed Concerts, Pageants, Plays, and other artistic endeavors that highlight Holiday Music, and other signs of the season are evident across campus throughout December.  In recent times, the lighting of the Christmas Tree found outside of President’s Hall has grown into a major event each year and officially signals the beginning of celebrations campus-wide.  The popularity of these and other rituals are not only anticipated, but are typically announced or memorialized in that most customary of seasonal gifts – the Christmas Card.

The University has issued a number of different seasonal greetings over the years and these posts have offered not only joyful wishes and expressions of peace, but also featured illustrations or photographs that capture the feeling of the school community in collective celebration.  These cards often link to the spirit of Christmas Past or Christmas Present in their look along with expressing the positive wish for New Year and Christmas Future in word and sentiment.  A few historical examples are provided here to show some of the shared experience.

For more information about Christmas and other aspects of University History please feel free to contact us at: Archives@shu.edu or by phone at: (973) 275-2378

 

Archives News: Conservation and Digitization of 17th Century Illuminated Manuscript Qur’an

Page from the Qur'an with intricate designThe Archives & Special Collections Center in collaboration with the Digital Humanities Committee recently had conservation work and digitization performed on a 17th century illuminated manuscript Qur’an from the rare book collection. The Qur’an was originally brought from Lebanon by Edwin D. Hardin, who was a missionary stationed at the American University of Beirut from approximately 1900 to 1915. It first came to Seton Hall in 2003 when it was featured in a Walsh Gallery exhibition entitled The Beauty of Sacred Texts: Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Institute of Judeo-Christian Studies. The lender, Mr. Peter Kennedy, had intended to gift the volume to the University and in 2016 donated the Qur’an to the Archives & Special Collections Center.

Qur'an's binding before conservation
Before conservation
Qur'an's binding after conservation
After conservation
Marginal decoration with handwritten annotation
Marginal decoration with handwritten annotation

The Qur’an was sent out for conservation in order to stabilize it for digitization and handling. The volume had undergone some previous repairs and was re-bound sometime during the 18th or 19th century. The envelope flap, which extends from the back cover of the volume and folds up to cover its fore edge, was very weak at the hinges and became detached during the conservator’s examination. The binding was also failing, causing some leaves to loosen and begin to detach. We sent the volume to Etherington Conservation Services in North Carolina, where conservators reattached and reinforced the envelope flap, repaired minor damage to the covers, re-sewed the binding, and re-covered the spine. While the binding was removed, they scanned the pages to create a digital copy of the book.

 

 

Decoration within the text
Decoration within the text

As a result of this work, this historic Qur’an is stable enough for handling and display, and the digital images can be made available online. This will allow researchers to view the Qur’an’s beautifully illuminated pages and intricate marginal decorations without putting stress on the volume. It will also open up many possibilities for research projects, such as a potential project to decipher and translate the annotations that appear throughout the volume. The digital collection is coming soon!

Page with marginal decoration and decoration within the text

 

Saints In Print – An Example From Our Rare Book Collection

The commemoration of All Saint’s Day (also known in some quarters as “All Hallows’ Day,” “Hallowmas,” “Feast Of All Saints,” or “Solemnity of All Saints”) recognizes the lives and legacy of saints and martyrs in history and is celebrated not only in the United States, but globally.  It is a Christian-based holiday that is observed every year on November 1st among Western Churches and the first Sunday after Pentecost in Eastern Rite Churches.  The traditional rituals found to be connected with All Saints’ Day include personal reflection and formal remembrance combined with a religious service to honor those who are recognized for their exceptional piety.  Their tales are often recounted in print form and available to future generations to discover.

In our Rare Book Collection, a number of texts on individual saints dating back to the 15th century which are worth reading in a wide-range of languages including Latin, French, German, and others.  Among our earliest American published volumes is the work entitled – Christ In His Church: Her Dogmas and Her Saints, With Moral Reflections, Critical Illustrations, and Explanatory Notes (New York: Thomas Kelly, 1875) by noted author Henry Rutter.  He provided the context of how the work of saints was instrumental in the overall work of devotion to the Catholic Church with a particular emphasis on female deities including St. Brigid, St. Margaret, St. Cecily, St. Lucy and others.  This volume is a prime example of a mid-19th century devotional text that highlights the contributions of saints with their influence on Church teachings.     

For more information there are many books, articles, and other resources including the Internet where more information can be found regarding the sainthood and the holiday of All Saints’ Day.  The following a few starting works, but not limited to these examples, for those who want to learn more can connect to the following link –

http://eds.b.ebscohost.com/eds/results?vid=0&sid=d3248b17-f009-493f-8072-85abf8698d21%40sessionmgr101&bquery=%22saint*%22&bdata=JkF1dGhUeXBlPWNvb2tpZSxpcCxzc28mdHlwZT0wJnNpdGU9ZWRzLWxpdmU%3d

Individual saints can also be researched by name and as part of a collective narrative on the history and contributions of those whose legacy endures to this day.

For more information please feel free to contact us at (973) 275-2378 or via e-mail at: archives@shu.edu

Golden Anniversary Geography – The Seton Hall Campus in 1968

With the current architectural-centered projects taking place on campus including the Student Center addition and the new Welcome Commons, the look, feel, and function of Seton Hall will be enhanced event further once these projects are completed in the near future.  As with any new structure, each has its own evolving story and functionality as part of the “brick and mortar” story of Setonia history from 1860 to the present day.

 

Aerial View of the South Orange Campus, 1968

 

Looking back 50 years ago, the view of the campus is different than it is today as the school continued to make additional blueprints as the evolving need for various structures including classroom buildings, dormitories, and administrative centers took shape and form.  In 1968, the year full Co-Education occurred on the South Orange campus and the establishment of the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP), a new Humanities Building (now known as Fahy Hall in honor of Father Thomas Fahy, former President of Seton Hall from 1970-76)  featuring needed classroom and office space for the College of Arts & Sciences in particular was completed and complimented other structures on the grounds stretching from Ward Place to South Orange Avenue.  Along with edifices such as Fahy Hall still in use, those which have replaced or modified over the semesters including McLaughlin Library, Parking Lot (in front of Walsh Gymnasium), the Veterans/R.O.T.C. Barracks, and others hold just as many milestones for those who have a connection to these spaces over the course of time and memory.

 

Campus Site Key for Seton Hall University, 1968

 

For more information about University History during the late 1960s and any time period, please feel free to contact us via e-mail at – archives@shu.edu or by phone at – (973) 275-2378.