Joseph Dutton

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For the British parasitologist, see Joseph Everett Dutton.
Joseph Dutton, 1922.jpg

Joseph Dutton (born on 27 April 1843, Stowe, Vermont[1] – died on 26 March 1931, Honolulu, Hawaii), was a Civil War veteran, Union Army Lieutenant, who converted to Catholicism and later worked as a missionary with Father Damien. He was born Ira Barnes Dutton in Stowe, Vermont, son of Ezra Dutton and Abigail Barnes.[2]

Dutton carried out his studies at Old Academy and Milton Academy, Wisconsin and in 1861 enlisted in 13th Wisconsin Infantry under Colonel Maurice Malooney.[2] He served in the 13th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry Regiment during the American Civil War. He had been raised Protestant in almost all time in Baptist sunday schools[3] and was for a time married. The marriage did not last as his wife was unfaithful and Dutton developed problems with alcohol. He quit drinking in 1876 and later took the name Joseph.

He converted to Roman Catholicism in 1883 and afterward spent 20 months at the The Abbey of Our Lady of Gethsemani. In 1886 Dutton went to Molokai to aid the dying Father Damien. After Father Damien's death Dutton founded the Baldwin Home for men and boys with financial assistance from Henry Perrine Baldwin.

Dutton was a member of the Secular Franciscan Order.[4] He was often called "Brother Joseph."[5]

Dutton died in Honolulu on March 26, 1931.


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ a b The Catholic Encyclopedia and its makers. New York: The Encyclopedia Press. 1917. p. 51. 
  3. ^ [2]
  4. ^ Encyclopedia Americana (1969 edition), Volume 9 page 501
  5. ^ Column by Pat McNamara

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