Welcomed in New York at The Leo House

After the 11-day voyage, the three sisters arrived at the Ellis Island immigrant processing station in New York City. Before heading on to Milwaukee, Wis., the sisters stayed one night at The Leo House. As newly arrived German immigrants, there was no better place for the sisters to stay than The Leo House. Named after Pope Leo XIII, the religious-run hostel lodged primarily German Catholic immigrants. The Leo House was a hope-filled beacon for immigrants unfamiliar with the languages and customs of the United States. Since it opened in 1889, The Leo House has been a ministry of the Sisters of St. Agnes of Fond du Lac, Wis. Today, the Catholic guesthouse still welcomes visitors from all over the world.

The Leo House in 1960
Source: Congregation of Sisters of St. Agnes
A more recent photo of The Leo House which now operates as a Catholic guesthouse.

Our 125 Year Celebration

As we look back on our 125th anniversary of coming to the USA, we invite you to reminisce with us. We've launched all 5 time lines with historical milestones and stories that bring to life the experiences of our sisters who came before us.

Era 1: 1895-1920
Responding to Immigrant Needs

The missionary response of hearty immigrant women religious characterizes the first 25 years of Salvatorian Sisters’ presence in the United States ...

Era 2: 1920-1950
Expanding in an “American” Church

By 1920, life for a Salvatorian Sister in the USA was radically different than it had been 25 years earlier. World War I ....

Era 3: 1950-1970
Embracing Renewal

Bob Dylan’s 1964 classic, The Times They Are A Changing, captures the high energy of this era.  Change was afoot both outside and inside the Salvatorian convent walls...

Era 4: 1970-2000
Building Collaboration

Events of the mid-1960s renewed the collaborative energy that had always characterized Salvatorian life. Cloistered living ...

Era 5: 2000-2020
Searching for New Footing in a Changing World

When the new millennium arrived on January 1, 2000, Salvatorian Sisters were already five years into our second century on USA soil.  Our ...