Presenter Information

John E. Rybolt C.M., Ph.D.


Saint Vincent’s College in Cape Girardeau, Mississippi opened in 1838 as a boys’ school and was incorporated as a college in 1843, providing mainly secular secondary education. It became a common seminary for several dioceses in 1860. During the Civil War, skirmishes and the Battle of Cape Girardeau came near it, and the loyalties of its faculty and students were divided. Nonetheless, classes continued throughout the war. Afterward, the college faced anti-Catholic bigotry and bankruptcy, and returned to accepting secular students for various reasons. It had many notable alumni and faculty, including bishops and Vincentian provincials respectively. It resumed its seminary status from about 1883 to 1893. The college program continued until 1910, when the institution changed to a high school seminary for Vincentians.