Rare Latin American Texts Donated to Special Collections and Archives

Book Cover that gives the title as La Virgen Mexicana with an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe with two angels and other decorative elements.
Cover of La Maravillosa aparición de Santa Maria de Gaudalupe o sea la Virgen Mexicana, 1853.

Donation from Rev. Stafford Poole, C.M. Adds Important Titles about the History of Religion, Mexico, and Our Lady of Guadalupe to SPCA

Special Collections and Archives (SPCA) had just finished processing a large donation of books from Rev. Stafford Poole, C.M. to the DePaul University Library when the campus transitioned to remote operations in the spring due to COVID-19. After unpacking many boxes and going through each volume, SPCA has selected 36 titles, including rare books and contemporary scholarship, to add to our collections. Titles that were not selected by Special Collections and Archives for the rare book collections are being considered for the library’s circulating collection.

Rev. Stafford Poole, C.M. is a Vincentian Priest, scholar, and former professor at St. John’s Seminary College in Camarillo, California. His research interests include the history of the church in colonial Mexico and the Our Lady of Guadalupe controversy. During his career, he published many works on Our Lady of Guadalupe and Mexican religious history and has lectured around the world. He also has an interest in the history of the Vincentians and was a founding member of the Vincentian Studies Institute which is housed at DePaul University. [1]

Frontispiece depicting Hernando (Hernán) Cortes and the title page of The History of Conquest Mexico by William H. Prescott, 1855
Frontispiece depicting Hernando (Hernán) Cortes and the title page of The History of Conquest Mexico by William H. Prescott, 1855.

The books donated to the DePaul University Library were part of his personal research collection, with publication dates ranging from the 18th century to present day. Within the titles being added to SPCA, the majority are about the devotion of Our Lady of Guadalupe. These books add depth to and complement our rare book collections that document the history of Catholicism and Christianity. Also included in the donation are works on the history of Mexico and other areas of North America that we are excited to have available for our instruction sessions. One of the titles included in the donation was an 1855 edition of The History of the Conquest of Mexico by William H. Prescott, an early American historian. This title has been on SPCA’s wish list to add to our collection. The History of the Conquest of Mexico is a well-known, dramatically written work on the colonial history of Mexico that was originally published in 1843. While it is read more as a work of literature today due to the scholarship that has followed, it is an example of how Mexican history was understood by Americans during the nineteenth century. [2]

Also included in the donation were works written or co-authored by Rev. Poole that were not part of SPCA’s collections yet. We were thrilled to add Christianity Comes To The Americas, 1492-1776, The Guadalupan Controversies in Mexico, Our Lady of Guadalupe: The Origins and Sources of a Mexican National Symbol, 1531-1797, and Pedro Moya De Contreras: Catholic Reform and Royal Power in New Spain, 1571-1591 to fill in the gaps we had of Rev. Poole’s works in our Vincentian Studies Institute collection.  

Now that we are able to access our collections on a limited basis we will be working on having the materials cataloged. In the meantime, we encourage interested researchers to reach out to Nora Gabor, ngabor@depaul.edu for a list of titles or any questions about the collection. Please check our COVID-19 Library updates page for our most current policies on in person research.  

[1] “Biography Reverend Stafford Poole, C.M.,” Department of History, Missouri State University, last modified June 16, 2010, https://web.archive.org/web/20120315140710/http://clio.missouristate.edu /chuchiak/template/new_page_27.htm.

[2]“Prescott, William Hickling.” In The Columbia Encyclopedia, by Paul Lagasse, and Columbia University. 8th ed. Columbia University Press, 2018.  https://ezproxy.depaul.edu/login?url=https://search.credoreference.com/content/entry/columency/prescott_william_hickling/0?institutionId=2536

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