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Of all the books that have been written about the Eight Jesuit Martyrs of North America, Fr. John A. O’Brien’s opus is perhaps the best … and most concise. For this reason, Watershed has gone to great effort to provide this PDF scan which we offer free of charge.
HE FIRST MARTYRS OF NORTH AMERICA by Father John A. O’Brien. In this volume is told the inspiring story of eight humble and faithful men — the eight commonly known as the Jesuit martyrs of North America. They were the first individuals on this continent to be canonized as saints by the Catholic Church. The willingness with which these men ventured into the wilderness lived and labored among the Indians under the most revolting and painful conditions, and gladly, almost exultantly, suffered torture and death, can hardly be matched by any other enterprise in history. Their letters and records — simply related and carefully noted in spite of all hardships and weariness — contribute so splendidly to the greater knowledge of the life, the customs and the languages of the Indians, that they are equally remarkable. Here is the account of Father Isaac Jogues, who was the first priest to enter what is now New York State, and of his two lay assistants, Rene Goupil and Jean de Lalande; of Father Jean de Brebeuf, who was among the first missionaries to accompany the Huron party into Huronia, and among the last to leave; of Father Gabriel Lalemant, who though the smallest and most delicate in health of all the Jesuit missionaries, still won in six months by iron will and unwavering determination, a martyr’s end; of Fathers Antoine Daniel, and Charles Garnier, who were murdered by the Iroquois; and of Father Noël Chabanel who lost his life to one treacherous Huron, but whose memory lives on as the last of the eight who gave their lives in the missions of the New World. Peppered throughout with excerpts from correspondence and notes made by these and other missionaries, THE FIRST MARTYRS OF NORTH AMERICA is a propelling story of heroic endurance and magnificant achievement: a brilliant, important chapter in the history of America. Softcover. 321 pages. Large Print.