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David Sparks Ph.d Cataldo Mission
by David Sparks Ph.d, click here for bio

Program: Idaho Ag Today
Date: May 30, 2019

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Twenty-three miles east of Coeur D'Alene, stands the oldest building in Idaho. Built by Jesuit Priests and Coeur D'Alene tribal members in 1853, it still stands on the bluffs above the Coeur D'Alene river. The mission was once named after the Sacred Heart of Jesus but the spot was later renamed the Coeur d'Alene's Old Mission State Park by the Coeur d'Alene Tribe. The nearest town to the mission is Cataldo. The area is an important supply center for traders, settlers, and miners. It was also a port for boats heading up the Coeur d'Alene River. And agriculture in the area? Cattle, hops, alalfa and farms with great names such as Killarney Farm a diversified small farm surrounded by national forest and Howling Hills Farm. Getting back to the mission, Paul Sala of Idaho Parks and Recreation:

In 1850, the church project was headed by the Italian Jesuit missionary Antonio Ravalli, who designed the beautiful mission building. He wisely had the mission built by the Indians, so they would feel part of the new church. Cataldo was built using the wattle and daub method and finished in three years without using a single nail.

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