Drexel, Mother Katharine Mary

Drexel, Mother Katharine Mary

(1858–1955) Catholic religious foundress; born in Philadelphia. Inheriting a fortune from her banker father, she used it lavishly to fund mission schools and churches for Indians and African-Americans. Entering a novitiate at the pope's urging, she founded her own order (1891), the Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament for Indians and Colored People, and directed it for over 40 years. She was beatified in 1988.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.