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At the same time that Archbishop Ireland commissioned the construction of the Cathedral of St Paul in 1906, he also commissioned the construction of the almost equally as large Church of St Mary, the Immaculate Conception in the neighboring city of Minneapolis. It became the Pro-Cathedral of Minneapolis. This Church was later to become the first basilica in the United States in 1926. Both were designed and built under the direction of the French architect, Emmanuel Masqueray. http://www.mary.org/ourparish/history/basilica/1920s.html Disturbed by reports that Catholic immigrants in eastern cities were suffering from social and economic handicaps, he organized and directed in Minnesota (1876–81) the most successful rural colonization program ever sponsored by the Catholic Church in the U.S. (see IRISH CATHOLIC COLONIZATION ASSOCIATION OF THE U.S.). Working with the western railroads and with the state government, he brought more than 4,000 Catholic families from the slums of eastern urban areas and settled them on more than 400,000 acres of farmland in western Minnesota. http://www.stthomas.edu/libraries/ireland/captivate/ireland_nce2.htm --Ray from Mpls 14:01, 3 August 2006 (UTC)Ray from Mpls
This seems like an overly negative biography that contains more criticism than helpful informaiton... —Preceding unsigned comment added by 188.8.131.52 (talk) 23:49, 30 April 2007