Joseph, Mother

Joseph, Mother (b. Esther Pariseau)

(1823–1902) nun, architect, pioneer; born in St. Elzear, Quebec, Canada. She joined the Sisters of Charity of Providence (1843) and was sent to Vancouver, Canada, in 1856. She had learned carpentry from her father, who was a carriage-maker. She became an all-purpose architect in the creation of 11 hospitals, seven academies, five Indian schools, and two orphanages. She traveled throughout the Rocky Mountains into the United States and conducted "begging tours" to raise money from miners. Long after her death, she was called the "first architect of the American Northwest." The state of Washington placed her statue in the U.S. Capitol.
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