• by Dave Miller

The Founding Father of a community.

Northeast Wisconsin is well known for its deeply rooted culture and interesting history. The community of St. Nazianz, Wisconsin, located in Manitowoc County, is no exception. I had a chance to visit this rural community. Many communities have a pioneer who led the community passed the struggles of its early days. No one sets the example than one of St. Nazianz' leaders Fr. Ambrose Oschwald who led an entire community out of a small German village in 1854 and brought them to what is now St. Nazianz. Fr. Oschwald helped make the community grow after their arrival establishing a Monastery. Later a Salvatorian seminary and even an orphanage was built. Fr. Oschwald led the village and the religious community for several years which helped St. Nazianz grow.

Fr. Oschwald died in 1873 and was originally interred beneath St. Ambrose Church within the grounds of the Monastery. Later in 1926, his remains were relocated to his current resting place in a mausoleum below the Loretto Chapel. One article stated that Fr. Oschwald was to be disinterred for canonization. There have been several reports regarding the excellent condition of his remains at the time of reinternment to the present site in 1926. This was the belief of many villagers at the time. Fr. Oschwald's burial site as well as the burials of many others associated with his order, is located on a hill south of the village.

"Customs Change by Old Town Founded by Priest in 1854," Wisconsin Historical Society. Wisconsin Local History & Biography Articles; "The Milwaukee Journal"; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; June 26, 1921, viewed online at http://www.wisconsinhistory.org on January 19, 2017.

Transfer Body of Town Sage, " Wisconsin Historical Society. Wisconsin Local History & Biography Articles; "The Milwaukee Journal"; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; October 10, 1926; viewed online at http://www.wisconsinhistory.org on January 19, 2017.

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