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Sacred Heart Church
Sacred Heart Mission Historical Marker
Sacred Heart is a small unincorporated community in Pottawatomie Countymarker, Oklahomamarker, United Statesmarker. Established in 1879 by Father Isidore Robot as a Catholic mission on the old Pottawatomie reserve, it was originally named Sacred Heart Mission. The name was changed to Sacred Heart in 1888 shortly before the area was opened to settlement by non-Indians. The post office was closed in 1954. The mission site is located nine miles east of US 177 (Asher, Oklahomamarker) on SH 39, then one mile north on Sacred Heart Road.


In October 1876, Father Isidore Robot completed a deal with the Citizen Band Potawotami Indians for a tribal grant of land which included the current site of Sacred Heart Mission. Pioneering the mission was difficult. On Sunday, May 13, 1877, the first Mass at Sacred Heart was celebrated. Sacred Heart was not permanently occupied until June 7, 1877, which is regarded as the true founding date of the parish.

By 1884, there was a convent, a school for the girls, stables, employees' houses, blacksmith shop, tool house, carpenter shop, and a bakery-where the Sisters baked 500 big French loaves each day. A model farm - with a great variety of orchards, gardens, vineyards, fields, herds of animals and every form of agriculture was developed. The farm had two main purposes: to supply food for the institution and to provide a model for the Indian boys to copy. The mission had its own publication, the Indian Advocate, which was published from 1888 to 1910 in the bakery building.

1901 Fire

On the night of January 15, 1901, a fire broke out in the dining room of the Indian Boys School and swept out of control. Before it was over the blaze had destroyed the monastery, boys' school, college, girls' school, convent, and the church. The entire mission was destroyed with the exception of a few small buildings. The bakery and the two-story log cabin are the only buildings that remain today. Temporary wooden buildings were set up to carry on the boys' school, while the Sisters of Mercy moved one-quarter of a mile southeast to create a new St. Mary's Academy. Mass was celebrated in a converted granary until the present church was completed in 1914.

By 1910, the Benedictines went on from Sacred Heart to build St. Gregory's College in Shawnee, OK. A large Tudor-Gothic structure, the present administration building of St. Gregory's College, was under construction by 1913, opening its doors for high school and college students for its first term in 1915. An elementary school for boys continued at Sacred Heart until 1926. Sacred Heart remains as their motherhouse for many years, until its transfer to Mt. Saint Mary's in OKC.

The Sisters of Mercy founded numerous educational and medical facilities across the state, including St. Mary's Academy and Mercy Health Center in Oklahoma City.

The transfer of the educational and monastic endeavors to St. Gregory's College was complete by the early 1930.

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