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St. Agatha (New Athens) Catholic Parish Records

Compilation copyright by Gloria Dettleff

SCCGS presents this data unaltered and as donated to the Society for genealogical research purposes only. SCCGS does not certify the accuracy of this data but recognizes it was done in good faith by an experienced compiler.
In keeping with the compiler’s wishes and SCCGS’s Terms and Conditions of Use (click), you may use unique elements that are part of a unique family history or genealogy but may not otherwise publish material from this site in whole or in part in any electronic, print or other medium. For special circumstances, seek required permission in writing from SCCGS and the compiler.

Kindly credit this work, click for citation example. Commercial use is expressly prohibited.

Baptisms  1874–Jan 1907) | ♦ | Marriages (1875–1931) | ♦ | Burials (1876–1945)


In 1870 a brick Gothic-style church was erected but the interior was not plastered until 1890. Originally part of the Alton Diocese, the parish became part of the Diocese of Belleville in 1887 and is now (2021) partnered with St. Joseph (Freeburg).

Before 1870, Catholics were served by priests from St. Joseph (Freeburg), and St. Liborius (St. Libory). The first resident priest was Rev. Bernard Hater in 1894, followed by Rev. Philip Becker (1896-1901), Rev. Anthony Breek (1901), Rev. Marcarius Walterbosch (1901-1903), Rev. Anthony Kuhls (1923-1928), and Rev. William Fischer (1928-1934). The school opened in 1910.

About these records, this database, caveats

  • The Society and the compiler recommend researchers verify information provided on the SCCGS website with the original record extracted from images are online at FamilySearch. If the image is unsatisfactory (much ink bled through), request help from the Archives of the Diocese of Belleville at (618) 722-5057.
  • Earlier church records were written entirely in Latin and translated to give the gist of the meaning to the best of the compiler’s ability. More recent entries may be written in English.
  • Square brackets [  ] indicate wording added by the compiler to clarify an entry.
  • Researchers are urged to correlate information here with that found in other records before forming conclusions about a person, family, or relationship. Further research.
  • Terminology reflects the time period and Roman Catholic Canon Law, both have changed over time.
  • Cramped handwriting, faint images, possible transcription errors, and names spelled phonetically or with diacritical marks will undoubtedly affect this compilation. Search tips may help locate an ancestor’s name if misspelled.
  • Given names abbreviated in the church book are spelled out when the English equivalent is certain (Elizabeth for Eliz., Louis for Ludovicus). When no apparent equivalent was known or ambiguous, the Latin name or initials were transcribed.
  • Some priests recorded more information than others.



  • location mentioned for parents might refer to place born.
  • Baptisms up to 1930 are on microfilm in SCCGS holdings at the Belleville Public Library and St. Louis County Library on Lindbergh. Find the microfilm roll for this parish here.


  • A bride or groom’s location may refer to current residence, or perhaps place born. The census may help pinpoint location.


  • The cemetery where buried, if mentioned, is included in the transcript.
  • Verify the actual place buried with the cemetery sexton’s book, an obituary, funeral card, or death certificate, or probate record. Courthouse, IRAD, and library addresses.

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Sample citation to a specific record in this database

Gloria Dettleff, compiler, “St. Agatha (New Athens [Illinois]) Catholic Baptisms (1874 – Jan 1907),” St. Clair County Genealogical Society ( : date viewed) ; [ancestor’s name, date of baptism].

Sample citation to a digital image of the original church register

The FamilySearch website provides a citation with each record.


Further Research


Translation Aids



  1. Burnett, Betty. A Time of Favor: The Story of the Catholic Family of Southern Illinois. St. Louis, Mo.: Patrice Press, 1987.
  2. Diocese of Belleville. Centennial Heritage Festival and Picnic, Sunday, September 27. Belleville, Ill.: The Diocese, 1987.
  3. Diocese of Belleville ( : viewed 1 June 2021)

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