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St. Anne Parish History

Timeline of
St. Anne
Catholic Church

On the left you will find links associated with periods of history for St. Anne's and her missions. If you have any photos or important information that you think my be of help to these pages, please contact our office.

Events from 1857-1899

1857 Archbishop Francis N. Blanchet visited the local Native Americans and held services for them in what is now Grants Pass in December, 1857. The Oregon City Archbishop was returning from South America by way of Jacksonville seeking funds to alleviate church debt.


1864-1867 The first church and its adjoining cemetery were blessed by Father Francis X. Blanchet at Allen Gulch near Waldo on March 17, 1864. Archbishop Francis N. Blanchet later blessed the Saint Patrick church cross and cemetery on October 8, 1867. 

1880’s Father Francis X. Blanchet, nephew of Archbishop Blanchet and pastor of St. Joseph parish, Jacksonville, purchased property in Grants Pass in the 1880’s hoping to build a church here “by early 1886.” 

1883-1887 Grants Pass began to grow with the arrival of the Oregon and California Railroad from Portland in December, 1883. Grants Pass became part of Josephine County in 1885 and the county seat on January 1, 1886. Grants Pass was incorporated as a city in 1887. 

1895-1897 Father Louis P. Desmarais, pastor of Jacksonville, began raising funds for a church in Grants Pass, in 1895. He blessed the new church building on October 11, 1896. The church sat 100 persons and measured 40 X 24 square feet with an additional 16 X 14 square foot sacristy. Non-Catholics raised $500 of the total $800 cost of the church. Archbishop William Gross dedicated the church named after Saint Anne, mother of the Blessed Virgin Mary, on October 24, 1897. The church was named after the Shrine of St. Anne de Beaupre in Quebec, Canada. 

1899 Father Michael J. Hickey became the first resident pastor of Saint Anne on September 9, 1899. 

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