Presenter Information

Judith Metz S.C.


The Sisters of Charity arrived in Cincinnati in 1829 to establish a girls’ school and an orphanage at the bishop’s request. Both were named for Saint Peter and the school “was the first permanently established free school in Ohio.” Detailed history is given for these institutions, which grew constantly. The Sisters served hundreds of Catholic and Protestant children throughout the years. They also ran a boys’ orphanage for a short time until community policy changed, and they were nurses during several cholera epidemics. They “help[ed] to pioneer the growth of the Church in Ohio,” ministered despite anti-Catholic prejudice, and formed the basis of the diocese’s educational and social services. When the Sisters of Charity were united with the Daughters of Charity in 1850, changes were proposed for the Sisters’ community. Many of those in Cincinnati could not agree to them, and they became their own diocesan community, the Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati, in 1852. An appendix lists the Sisters of Charity who served in the city from 1829 to 1852.