Ira Barnes “Brother Joseph” Dutton

Ira Barnes “Brother Joseph” Dutton

Birth
Stowe, Lamoille County, Vermont, USA
Death 26 Mar 1931 (aged 87)
Honolulu, Honolulu County, Hawaii, USA
Burial Kalaupapa, Kalawao County, Hawaii, USA
Memorial ID 28457601 · View Source
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Humanitarian. American Civil War soldier who after a failed marriage and a bout of alcoholism, went as a lay brother to help Father Damien at the Molokai leper colony in 1886. He served there for more than 40 years. When commenting on his life he said the graph of his life represented "45 years down and 45 years up."

[Brother Dutton, Apostle of Lepers, Converted in South
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Dashing Young Army Officer of 60's Attracted to Church in Clarksville, Tenn.
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HONOLULU-Ira Dutton, known in religion as Brother Dutton, who in 1886 went to the little leper village of Kalawao on the island of Molokai returned here recently so broken in health that he had to be carried from the steamer. It is forty-four years since he last saw Honolulu, but failing eye-sight prevented him from seeing it this time. It is hoped that an operation will aid his sight.
Brother Dutton was born in Stowe, Vermont , April 27, 1843, enlisted in the Federal Army in Wisconsin in 1861 and rose through the grades from private to captain. After the war, he settled in Tennessee and became active in business and social life. Entering the Catholic Church. he entred the Tempest monastary in Kentucky; then hearing of Father Damien's sacrifices for the lepers, he offered himself to care for them, and shortly afterward was on his way to the leper colony he just left. Brother Dutton has thus far escaped contracting leprosy.
---CLARKSVILLE, TENN.-Ira Dutton is recalled here as a dashing young Federal Army Officer, Captain Dutton, who came to this city after the War Between the States to settle local claims against the government. He was a general favorite here, especially among the belles of the city. Captain Dutton stayed at the Old Franklin House, operated by the late W.R.Bringhurst, whose daughter, Mrs. Lula Epperson recalls many stories her father used to tell of the popular young army officer.
Captain Dutton was a Protestant when he came to Clarksville, and recently stories in the Tennessee newspapers recall his conversion to the Catholic Church. One Sunday morning early, Captain Dutton saw Mrs. Julia Sullivan in the hotel and inquired what she was doing up so early. She said she had been to Mass. He wanted to know what that was and Mrs. Sullivan said she would get him some literature explaining it. This she did. Shirtly afterward, Captain Dutton left Clarksville. Three years later he returned and again happened to meet Mrs. Sullivan on a Sunday morning. He told her that she might be intersted in knowing that he had been to Mass, and had become a Catholic. Some time after this he entred the Tempest Monastery at Gethsemani, KY., a step which led him to his self-sacrificing and heroic career among lepers at Moloaki.
Just before Brother Dutton came to Clarksville, another world-famed Catholic figure resided here, Father Abram Ryan, the poet-priest of the Confederacy, whose connection with the city has been recounted in these columns by Mrs. Ben F. Taylor, pf Atlanta, a native of Clarksville, whose parents were friends of Father Ryan.
Published in The Bulletin of The Catholic Layman's Asociation on 26 July 1930.
Contributor: JoAnn Hagans Harris 46479896 ]


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  • Created by: Jan Franco
  • Added: 22 Jul 2008
  • Find A Grave Memorial 28457601
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Ira Barnes “Brother Joseph” Dutton (27 Apr 1843–26 Mar 1931), Find A Grave Memorial no. 28457601, citing Saint Philomena Catholic Church Cemetery, Kalaupapa, Kalawao County, Hawaii, USA ; Maintained by Jan Franco (contributor 46625834) .