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Friday, May 19, 2023

Catholic-Operated Native Boarding Schools in the United States pre-1970

NEW Website :

Compiled by a group of archivists, historians, and concerned Catholics, the List of Catholic-operated Native Boarding Schools in the United States, pre-1978, represents the first and most comprehensive source for information on Native boarding schools that were overseen or staffed by the Catholic Church before 1978. Our motivation for assembling this data was to provide a resource to help boarding school survivors, their descendants, Tribal Nations, and the Church itself navigate the history of Catholic involvement with Native boarding schools.

The list has two primary objectives: first, to identify all Catholic-operated boarding schools designated specifically to educate Native American and Alaska Native children in the United States, and second, to identify all Catholic entities that were involved in the operation of each school. We are under no pretense that our list is complete. We have done our best to offer the most accurate information possible, but we also anticipate future revisions as additional information is obtained.


By bringing together basic information about Catholic-run Native boarding schools and the various Catholic institutions involved in their operation, the list responds to the clear request from Tribal Nations for access to archival records in Catholic repositories. Families and communities of boarding school survivors and their descendants deserve prioritized access to information regarding their own histories. The Catholic Church also has an obligation to understand the scope of its own role in this history. Making basic facts about the history of Catholic institutional involvement in the boarding schools more transparent aids in that understanding and facilitates identification of possible sources of archival records as one preliminary step to support information access.

Our goal is for Tribal Nations, families, and individuals to be able to use the list to locate records for schools that members of their communities attended. Our hope is that Catholic institutional archives and Tribal Nations will build relationships to increase understanding about records for Catholic-operated Native boarding schools and further develop the historical record. 


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