Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepers

For those absolutely devoid of scruples, charity fraud is the field par excellance, in which you can simultaneously harvest kudos for your humanitarianism and make off with vast bundles of untaxed cash. Convictions for charity fraud are so rare as to be nonexistent, so any criminals operating in other fields of endeavor are incurring unnecessary risks.

Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepers

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:27 am

Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepers.
Sister Gertrude En Route for Molokai, Hawaii
Father Damien’s Successor
A Devout English Woman of Childlike Appearance Who Will Give Her Life to the Hawaiian Lepers—Plans of Her Noble Life Work.
by Trenton Evening Times, Trenton, New Jersey
published Friday, January 31, 1890

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New York, Jan. 31.—One of the passengers who arrived yesterday on the steamship Bothnia from Liverpool was a young woman who had left her family and friends in England to take up her life work as a nurse among the Hawaiian Lepers on the island of Molokai, of the Hawaiian group, where Father Damien labored so many years, and finally died a victim to the disease.

Miss Amy C. Fowler, the name of the young woman, is a daughter of a clergyman of the Church of England, who eight years ago embraced the Roman Catholic faith. She became a nun of the order of St. Dominic, and goes on her mission simply as Sister Rose Gertrude, the name given her when she joined the order, and by which alone she will be known among the lepers, for whom she is virtually giving up her life.

Hardly More Than a Child

Miss Fowler is 27 years old, but she is so small that at a first glance she seems hardly more than a child. She was dressed in a simple suit of black, as she will not don her nun’s garb until she reaches Hawaii. She was unwilling to discuss herself and her work yesterday and said that she shrank from any publicity. A vivid blush mantled her face as she spoke, and it was apparent that she was keenly sensitive of the attention which her mission is attracting. The week before she left her native country all England had grown enthusiastic over the news that one of its young women was starting out to give her life to work among the lepers. The first announcement of her purpose was made by the Prince of Wales at a banquet in London for the benefit of the national leprosy fund, when he said that an unknown young woman was going out to nurse the lepers among whom Father Damien had worked.

She Studied for the Work

About seven years ago, shortly after becoming a Roman Catholic, Miss Fowler first formed the idea of taking up this work, but she realized that she was too young at the time and appreciated the need of study. She studied medicine in Paris in order to make herself an efficient sick nurse. She holds certificates from the Pasteur institute there, and intends to make a practical investigation of Pasteur’s theory that the same microbe organism is found in leprosy as in cases of tubercular consumption. She intends to try what bi-chloride of mercury will do in killing the microbes. She made a special study of the leprosy cases in the Paris hospitals.

Her Plans for the Future

Miss Fowler takes out no special preparation for protection herself against the disease, and she told a representative of the The Pall Mall Gazette before she left that if she should become infected she would be quite ready to die. She is to have the entire charge of the hospital for women, a few native women assisting her. Miss Fowler will have a salary from the Hawaiian government. She expects to have but little use for the money herself, but intends to use it for the benefit of the hospital and its patients.

“When I have saved enough of my salary,” says Miss Fowler, “I shall buy a piano to brighten the lives of my patients by music.”

Miss Fowler takes with her two large boxes of articles contributed by friends, which she will use to beautify the homes of the unfortunate.
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Re: Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepe

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:27 am

Gifts for the Lepers. A Variety of Contributions Sent to Missionary Amy C. Fowler
To the Editor of the New-York Times:
R.F. DOWNING & CO.
New York Tuesday, Feb. 18, 1890.
-- © The New York Times, February 19, 1890

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Before leaving New York today Miss Amy C. Fowler -- Sister Rose Gertrude -- the young English lady on her way to the leper hospital at Molokai, desired us to express on her behalf her most sincere gratitude for the great generosity displayed by the public toward her mission and the many acts of personal kindness shown her during her stay in the United States. The delays of travel that prevented her sailing at once from San Francisco on Feb. 8 -- a detention which Miss Fowler then considered most unfortunate -- have given the people of this country, and of New York City in particular, an opportunity which they did not neglect of testifying substantially to a noble work of humanity and heroism.

Miss Fowler especially desires us to thank the American press, and especially the newspapers of New York and Brooklyn, as it was largely through their kindly treatment and interest that these gifts came. As we had the honor of receiving for Miss Fowler the contributions from the public, we feel that a statement of general results would be appropriate and of interest. Wherever practicable these gifts have been acknowledged personally and in detail. Many articles and letters with money came without the names or addresses of the givers, and represented the generosity of the people, literally from Maine to California. As in England, no distinction of creed or nationality appeared.

The contributions to the lepers amounted approximately in value to $2,200. This includes $334 in cash.

Among the later gifts not noted were a handsome new typewriter, presented by the Smith Premier Typewriter Company of Syracuse; an order for a grand music box from James B. Murray, Esq., of this city; two large cases of table linen, including 600 napkins and 50 tablecloths, from Mrs. A. L. Ashman of the Sinclair House of this city; four cases of silks, books, and pictures, together with $50, from the Misses Merrington and Mr. Merrington of New York; a dozen handsome shawls from Miss A. Rice of Brooklyn; boxes of toys and pictures from Mr. E.J. Kilbourne of this city and Mrs. Conly of Brooklyn; a gift of 100 books from Miss Flannigan of New York.

Checks of $10 each were received from Mr. Frederic R. Coudert, Mr. F. Cummisky of Brooklyn, and D.G. Yuengling, and Miss White of Fifth Avenue sent $25. Mr. L. Benziger contributed $25, and Mr. Peter McQuade of 33 Pearl Street gave four large cases of wine for use in the hospital.

The Sisters of the Sacred Heart, on Seventeenth Street, sent a large case of valuable vestments and ornaments for the use of the church at Molokai and Kalawao.

Through the courtesy of Messrs. John Scheidig & Co., a large discount was secured on a photographic apparatus purchased by Miss Fowler. One of the handsomest gifts is the Steinway piano presented by Mr. George G. Haven. This has been sent forward to San Francisco free of charge through the courtesy of the Southern Pacific Railroad and Mr. H. Hawley, of the General Eastern Agent.

The New York, Lake Erie and Western Railroad, through Mr. J. Buckley, the General Passenger Agent; the Inter-State Dispatch, through Mr. Charles F. Case, General Eastern Agent, and the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railroad Company, through its General Eastern Agent, Mr. Sanderson, have extended the greatest courtesy to Miss Fowler in the matter of allowing extra baggage and arrangements for travel. Through this kindness the gifts received here, packed in five large cases, will go forward to Honolulu in the steamer with Miss Fowler.

Miss Fowler's first unwillingness to have any public mention of her arrival and purposes was overcome by the universally kind treatment she received and the public interest in her work. She left New York this afternoon, traveling alone to Chicago, where she will meet friends, and thence direct to San Francisco, sailing Feb. 28 on the steamer Mariposa.
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Re: Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepe

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:28 am

Medical Notes Re American Leprosy Fund Society
New York
Boston Medical and Surgical Journal
February 20, 1890

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In Brooklyn, on February 12th, was held the first meeting of the American Leprosy Fund Society, which has been organized since her arrival here by Miss Amy Fowler (Sister Rose Gertrude), who is soon to begin her work in the leper settlement of Molokai, as the successor of Father Damien. Cablegrams were received from the Prince of Wales, President of the British Society, with which the American Society will cooperate, and from the Rev. Hugh Chapman, the organizer of the British Society. The President, Mr. Richard F. Downing, read a paper on "Father Damien and the Lepers of Molokai," prepared by Dr. P.A. Morrow, who visited the leper colony last year; and remarks were made by Miss Fowler and by Dr. Titus M. Conn, who was born in the Sandwich Islands and has had ample opportunities for personal observation at Molokai. Miss Fowler will sail from San Francisco for the Sandwich Islands on the 28th of February.
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Re: Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepe

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:28 am

Notices of Books: Little Dick's Christmas Carols, and other Tales. By Amy Fowler. London: R. Washbourne, London 1886
by The Dublin Review
edited by Nicholas Patrick Wiseman

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1. Little Dick's Christmas Carols, and other Tales. By Amy Fowler. London: R. Washbourne, [London 1886

The authoress of the first book on the above list, Miss Amy Fowler, is now better known as "Sister Rose Gertrude," the volunteer nurse to the lepers of Molokai. Her little volume of tales for the young was published some four years ago, and was noticed at the time in our pages, but there are probably not a few persons who would now like to procure it for the sake of the writer, and we therefore mention it again. The stories themselves, six in number, are simply told, but with some pathos: they set forth the struggles of certain uneducated boys and girls to become good, and show the good that lurks within rough and unlikely exteriors, the waifs and strays of our city streets -- the young ones in whose welfare the self-sacrificing authoress took much interest. The narratives bring out, too, the elevating power of the Sacraments over such natures. "Little Dick's Carol," the title story, is pathetic, but "Tom White's Repentance" is the best of the tales; poor Tom is so very natural a boy.
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Re: Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepe

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:29 am

Sister Rose Gertrude and the Lepers of Molokai
by Liverpool Catholic Times
New Zealand Tablet, Volume XVII, Issue 47, 14 March 1890, Page 15

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SISTER ROSE GERTRUDE, a member of the Third Order of St. Dominic, took her departure from the Mersey for New York on Saturday in the Cunard steamer Bothnia, with the intention of proceeding to the leper settlement at Kalawao, under the auspices of the Hawaiian Government, who have paid her passage out, and attached to her position an annual salary, which at first she did not wish to take, but was persuaded to accept as it gives her a certain official status. She expresses her intention of devoting the money to the benefit of the hospital and the patients.

Sister Rose Gertrude (in the world Miss Amy C. Fowler) is the daughter of the Rev. F. Fowler, a well-known Anglican clergyman, chaplain to the Infirmary at Bath, where she was born 27 years ago, and where she received her education. She had it in her mind for many years -- long before Father Damien's illness and death drew special attention to the Molokai lepers -- to devote her attention to this particular branch of sick-nursing.

Eight years ago, when she became a Catholic, she wished to go, but was too young then. She studied medicine for several years in Paris, not to take a medical degree, but to become an efficient sick-nurse, and holds several certificates. She has also been at the Pasteur Institute, where she says she learned much that she hopes will be of great use to her. She is quite ready to die when her work, to which she looks forward with intense interest, is done.

Some Hawaiian friends, and another friend who lives in Paris, put her in communication with the Government at Honolulu, who accepted her at once and unconditionally.

She has seen lepers in the Paris hospitals, not in a very advanced stage of the disease, but enough to give her an idea of what she shall have to face. Cardinal Manning, when he gave her his blessing before she left London, said: -- "My child, you have had a very special call; a great task has been given you to do; and I would not, could not, prevent you from following the Voice which calls you."

From the hour when she will step ashore on the leper island in the South Seas, she will become Sister Superior of the leper's hospital at Kalawao. A few days ago the Prince of Wales, in his speech at the banquet at the Hotel Metropole, London, Publicly announced that this young lady was going out to nurse the lepers among whom Father Damien had worked and suffered and died a martyr's death.

She is described as a young, fresh, beautiful girl, with large eyes of deepest blue, and a fair, rosy complexion. In every movement of her little figure activity and energy are expressed.

Father Damien's hospital contains from thirty to sixty men and women, and she will reside in a small cottage erected in close proximity to the institution.

By her express desire, the least possible publicity was given to her departure. Having bade farewell to her parents at home (Combe Down, some miles from Bath), she travelled alone to Liverpool. The Rev. Mr. Chapman, of Camberwell, the Secretary of the Father Damien Fund, travelled to Liverpool to bid her farewell. He writes: -- "I have been requested by Sister Rose Gertrude, who sailed on Saturday for Molokai, to express her humble and deep gratitude for the many proofs of kindness received in answer to the appeal on her behalf. The money given amounted to 120 pounds, and five cases of various articles have been despatched to the leper island. A society will shortly be formed for the regular supply of extra comforts which may be required, embracing also other leper communities conspicuous for similar sadness and similar heroism. Sister Rose begged me, as a last favour, to ask that her secular name might not be mentioned, and expressed her intense regret that she had fallen an unwilling victim to a most distasteful publicity. I need only say that her heroism is not more remarkable than her humility. God grant that her example may do much to shame us men out of our selfishness by the sight of what a woman can do when she truly loves. She left this country absolutely alone, and without a sixpence of her own."
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Re: Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepe

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:29 am

Hawaii, Kingdom. Legislature, Select Committee on Rose Gertrude
Legislature of 1890. [rule] Select Committee on Complaint of Rose Gertrude in regard to Kalihi Hospital, Honolulu, H.I.:, Robert Grieve, Steam Book and Job Printer, 25 and 27 Merchant Street, 1890.

Hawaiian National Bibliography, 1780-1900: 1881-1900
by David W. Forbes

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8VO. 20.5 x 13 cm (BPBM). Cover title, [1] + 2-39 complaint and testimony, 40-42 majority report, 43 minority report, [44] blank pp.

Following the death of Father Damien, Miss Amy Fowler, a Roman Catholic convert and daughter of an English clergyman, announced to the world that, as Father Damien had done, she would travel to the Hawaiian Islands and devote the rest of her life to the service of the lepers. She received a great deal of publicity. When as Sister Rose Gertrude she arrived at Honolulu, she was "attired in the dress of the order of St. Dominic" (Pacific Commercial Advertiser, March 1-, 1890). The President of the Board of Health writes in his 1890 report to the legislature (pp. 10-11):

Sister Rose Gertrude, whose mission to this country to devote her life to the care of the lepers was heralded by the press of the whole civilized world, arrived here early in March, and, although she expected to be assigned to duty at Molokai, it was the opinion of the Board that she could be more usefully employed, for the present, at the Receiving Station, where the services of a trained nurse were very much needed, and she has therefore been installed as its matron. Her field of labor, though limited, is an important one. She is in charge of the "Suspect" side of the establishment and has her residence in a detached cottage in the grounds. She has already entered upon her work with a zeal and judgment that bid fair to be of great benefit to those who are placed under her care.

Sister Rose Gertrude, however, soon found herself at cross-purposes with one Charles Kahalehili, who acted as a sort of luna (overseer) at the Kalihi establishment. He had on numerous occasions counseled fellow patients not to take prescribed medicines, and Sister Rose reported that whereas she, acting under the orders of Dr. Lutz, had prescribed rest for the patients, Kahalehili was forcing ill patients to work in various capacities, threatening to send them to Molokai if they did not perform. Recreational outings by the doctor and Sister Rose "into the surrounding country, amusing themselves by amateur photography on the way," reported in the Pacific Commercial Advertiser (Sept. 30, 1890,) had also become the source of town gossip. Sister Rose first demanded that the Board of Health dismiss Kahalehili, and, while this was under consideration, she also managed to get the legislature involved in the investigation.

In its report the committee states that it had investigated matters at the hospital and interviewed the patients and had come to the conclusion that the conduct of Charles Kahalehili had been improper, and that W.F. Reynolds of the Board of Health had also acted in an unsatisfactory manner; it recommends the removal of both from office. The majority report is signed by John W. Kalua (Chairman), A.P. Paehaole, H.G. Crabbe, and Wm. H. Halstead. The minority report is signed by T.R. Lucas.

Following this report Sister Rose Gertrude resigned, and, as Miss Fowler, was subsequently employed as a children's governess for the John Ena family.
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Re: Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepe

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:30 am

Medical Notes Re Amy Fowler, aka Sister Rose Gertrude
The Boston Medical and Surgical Journal, Volume 122
January 30, 1890

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The announcement is made that a London lady has taken up the labors of Fr. Damien, and will go to Molokai to work among the lepers. She is Amy Fowler, daughter of Chaplain Fowler of the Bath workhouse, London. Miss Fowler studied medicine under Pasteur in Paris. She is twenty-seven years old, and goes to the lepers under the name of Sister Rose Gertrude.
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Re: Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepe

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:30 am

Calendar Re Amy C. Fowler Marriage to Dr. Lutz
by University of Notre Dame
April 14, 1891

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Amy C. Fowler, formerly known as Sister Rose Gertrude is to be married to Dr. Lutz at the home of H.W. Schmidt.
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Re: Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepe

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:31 am

Sister Rose Gertrude Seeks Solace for her Sorrows in Matrimony
by Otago Daily Times
Issue 9105, May 2, 1891

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A Honolulu correspondent of the Auckland Herald, under date April 10, writes: --

The Honolulu Daily Bulletin, issued shortly after the steamer Monowai sailed for San Francisco today, announced that Dr. Lutz and Miss Amy Fowler (Sister Rose Gertrude) are to be married tomorrow.

Dr. Lutz was brought from Germany by the Reform Ministry as a specialist who would try to cure leprosy. Sister Rose Gertrude is known throughout the world as the lady who heroically volunteered to come to Hawaii to nurse lepers. When she arrived, instead of being sent to the leper settlement on Molokai, where Father Damien dwelt and died, she was retained at Honolulu to minister to the comfort of the sick people at the branch leper hospital and examining station near the city.

This change in her location from the original intention was made by the Board of Health because there were Sisters of Mercy enough on Molokai, and Sister Rose belonged to a different order from them, and a nurse at the branch hospital was regarded as desirable
. Everything went well enough with Rose, so far as the public knew, until a serious complaint on her behalf was suddenly made in the Legislature. She complained that a native overseer, a man who was on probation himself as to whether he should be consigned to Molokai, was interfering with the treatment of Dr. Lutz as hospital physician and with her regimen as matron. Further, she complained that the agent of the Board of Health, C.B. Reynolds, who had the superintendence of the hospital, was supporting the overseer in his recalcitrant conduct. Also, that she had formerly complained to the Board of Health, but had received no redress from that body.

A select committee of the Legislature, which was composed chiefly of native members, spent several afternoons at the hospital taking evidence. At first it looked as if the committee was going to sustain Rose Gertrud's charges unanimously, but the one white member dissented from the majority in its recommendation to dismiss the agent and the overseer.

The evidence was printed in an official document. It showed some breaches of discipline on the part of the simple-minded native overseer -- or "luna" as the native word for "boss" is. On the other hand, it was made clear that up to a few days before the Sister's grievance was aired in the House, she had been on the most cordial terms with both the overseer and the agent. It was shown that the first and almost the only real cause of offence to her was the gossiping of the overseer with the native men and women inmates regarding the intimacy observable between the doctor and the nurse.

They used to go out riding and driving together, also taking long excursions into the surrounding country with a photographic camera, and, on their return, going into the "dark room" together to develop the negatives. These facts became very obvious not only to the inmates of the hospital, but to the whole community. Early in the unpleasantness the priests in the Roman Catholic Mission, in answer to inquiries, declined to acknowledge Sister Rose as a genuine member of any known Sisterhood, saying at the same time that conduct like hers would not be tolerated in any Catholic country in the world.


You are probably familiar with Miss Fowler's agitation of her quarrel with the Board of Health through the American and British press. It is only necessary to add that the theory once treated here as a little spiteful to the comely maiden -- viz., that the whole trouble arose from the doctor and the nurse's having fallen in love with each other at almost first sight -- has now been verified by the public notice of their marriage. The marriage ceremony and wedding reception will both take place at the house of Mr. H. W. Schmidt, consul for Norway and Sweden, tomorrow evening.

As there has been a change in part of the personnel of the Board of Health since Queen Liliuokaiani's accession, it is possible that Dr. Lutz may be asked to assume again the position of hospital physician, which he resigned some time ago on account of the troubles before mentioned. In such a case everything ought to be lovely with all concerned, since the heroic English girl has become more than a sister to the German specialist.
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Re: Sister Rose Gertrude (Amy C. Fowler) To Die For The Lepe

Postby admin » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:32 am

Notes on New Books: "Little Dick's Christmas Carol", by Amy Fowler
by The Irish Monthly
Volume 18, April, 1890

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Mr. Gladstone's review of Ellen Middleton, disinterred after forty years, has probably relieved Burns and Oates's shelves of many copies of their reprint of Lady Georgiana Fullerton's earliest novel. We trust that the same effect may be produced with regard to a pretty book of stories published by Mr. R. Washbourne, 18 Paternoster Row, when the author is recognised as Miss Amy Fowler, the convert daughter of an Anglican clergyman, who is now making Molokai her home. As a Dominican nun, her name is Rose Gertrude, and as such she is thus addressed by another Anglican clergyman, the Rev. H.D. Rawnsley, in The Pall Mall Gazette:--

"Sister Rose Gertrude! when the angels came
And fired your soul and filled your girlish eyes
With that fierce splendour of self-sacrifice,
Whose passionate glory death can never tame,
Did tropic lands with flowers and fruit out-flame?
Bright shores from hyacinthine seas arise?
Or heard you Pain in some far Paradise,
Cry for a Saviour in the Saviour's name?

Nay rather, then, the paradisal flower
Of Love, heaven-planted in your heart of earth,
Turned to the light to find its being whole,
And o'er dark seas you went with pity's power
To share true Life's communicable birth,
And realise the God within your soul."

It is pleasant to be able to add that Amy Fowler tells her pretty stories so prettily that they do not need the extraneous recommendation of having been written by Sister Rose Gertrude. "Little Dick's Christmas Carol" contains five tales, beside the one that gives its name to the book. The three first are in reality one story. Every one of the half dozen is interesting, edifying (and not too edifying), and very charmingly written, worthy of warm praise for its own sake, even if the writer had not given up home and friends to become a Catholic, and had not now gone across the world to nurse the poor lepers of Molokai.
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