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Archival description
Henri Nouwen fonds
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Henri Nouwen fonds

  • CA ON00389 F4
  • Fonds
  • 1910 - 1997, 1964 - 1996 predominant

Fonds consists of 15 series:

  1. Manuscripts
  2. General files
  3. Calendar files
  4. Personal records
  5. Publisher files
  6. Financial files
  7. Teaching materials
  8. Nouwen’s education records and study notes
  9. Published works
  10. Video recordings of Nouwen
  11. Sound recordings
  12. Collected materials
  13. L'Arche Daybreak administrative files
  14. Ephemera and artifacts
  15. Photographs

Nouwen, Henri J.M.

Postcards and icons

Sub-series consists of approximately 500 postcards and icons collected by Nouwen. The postcards are blank except for three which contain letters on the verso. Nouwen maintained the collection of postcards and icons in three plastic index card boxes. The first section contains postcards largely of a religious nature, including architecture churches, monasteries, etc. from around the world) and artwork by Van Gogh, Chagall, Rodin, Degas, Renoir, Barlach, and others, as well as postcards of New York. Also contains a photograph of a sculpture of Jesus on the cross and the three postcards with letters.
The second section contains postcards of a religious nature, including architecture (churches, monasteries, etc. from around the world) and artwork by Renoir, Van Gogh, Rodin, and others. Also contains postcards of people, flowers and nature scenes, and scenes of places from predominantly around the US.
The third section contains envelopes of icons and postcards. The envelopes are labelled "Icons", "Marthe Robin", "Archives", "Abbey of the Genesee", "Marthe Robin", "Genesee", "Rembrandt", "Check For Archives" and "Freiburg Cards". Also contains some loose cards in the back, as well as a photograph of a picture of Edith Stein in 1925 and a photograph of a church, inscribed in Dutch on the back. This box also contains icon ordination cards from the 25th anniversary of Nouwen's ordination.

Administrative resources files

Series consists of administrative resources files which were maintained for Nouwen by Nouwen's administrative staffs from 1983 to 1997. These files contain materials collected by Nouwen in order to assist him with his roles as pastor, writer, researcher, and friend. In addition to subject-based material such as newspaper clippings and brochures, it is evident that Nouwen's administrative assistants at Daybreak used these files to hold administrative material related to liturgical events such as Christmas, Lent, and Easter, as well as other aspects of Nouwen's duties in the community. These files were likely maintained as a resource for Nouwen regarding his daily work.

The titles of the files are taken directly from the file labels created by Nouwen and his administrative assistants, unless otherwise noted. The files are arranged by subject or topic (such as Latin America, Vincent van Gogh, or Abbey of the Genesee), are in alphabetical order, and materials within the files have been maintained chronologically. Many of the materials have been placed in this series because they contain annotations, either by Nouwen or an assistant, saying "File" with the subject or name or "File - Resource files."

Photograph of view of city

Item consists of a slide (taken from a certain height) of a view of a city surrounded on one side by water.

Photograph of building

Item consists of a slide of a white building with an orange roof and clothes drying on a line; a house is visible in the background.

Photograph of unidentified boy

Item consists of a slide of an unidentified boy at an outdoor market, standing beside a pile of watermelons, holding a small one.

Photograph of view of coastline

Item consists of a slide (taken from a certain height) of the view of a coast line: trees, farmland, sea and an island. Shot 2.

Photograph of view of coastal town

Item consists of a slide (taken from a certain height) of the view of a coast line: trees, town, water, island and mountains in the distance. Shot 5.

Photograph of unidentified people

Item consists of a slide (taken from a distance) of unidentified people walking down a large sandy hill, with threes and the coast in the distance.

Photograph of unidentified man

Item consists of a slide of an unidentified man wearing a scarf on his head, visible on the other side of a white wall.

Photograph of narrow lane

Item consists of a slide of a narrow lane leading down a hill, lined with trees; two unidentified people are visible walking along it. Shot 2.

Photograph of mountains

Item consists of a slide (taken from below) of the sun shining on tree-covered mountains.

Photograph of two unidentified men

Item consists of a slide (taken from a distance) of one unidentified man standing on the shore, unloading cargo from two horses, and another unidentified man standing on a dock beside the cargo.

Photograph of unidentified man

Item consists of a slide of an unidentified man standing on a narrow path surrounded by bushes, trees and greenery.

Photograph of Henri Nouwen and Maria Nouwen

Item consists of one photograph of Henri Nouwen and his mother, Maria Nouwen. They are standing on the tarmac at an airport in front of a TWA airplane. They are smiling at the camera. Nouwen is turned to the side and is leaning towards his mother. He is also holding a bag under his left arm. He is wearing dark pants and a dark jacket, and a green shirt underneath.

Photographs of May 1967

File consists of 19 photographs of an unknown group of men. These photographs were likely taken while Nouwen was teaching a non-credit course to priests on Pastoral Care at Moreau Seminary, Notre Dame University (Notre Dame, IN). There are seven men visible in the photographs. They are at a large house in a rural area. Also depicted is a wooden walkway and some trees, and one of the men catching a ball.

Photograph of Henri Nouwen

Item consists of one photograph of Henri Nouwen leaning against the hood of a gold car parked outside of brown cabins. Nouwen is looking at the camera and wearing glasses, light coloured pants, a tan sweater and striped grey scarf.

Photographs from marriage festivities for Laurien Nouwen and Marc van Campen

File consists of 8 slides featuring Maria Nouwen, Laurien Nouwen, Marc van Campen and other unidentified people likely taken during the festivities surrounding the marriage of Laurien Nouwen and Marc van Campen in June 1966. Six of the slides feature people, including Maria Nouwen (P5100, P5101); Laurien Nouwen and Marc van Campen (P5096); unidentified men in suits and an unidentified women in semi-formal attire (P5097 - P5098). The two slides which do not feature people show houses, which may be the buildings where the couple were married and received by families and friends.

Page 4 of Album 3

File consists of page 4 of Album 3. There are eight photographs on the page [P6419, P6420, P6421, P6422, P6423, P6424, P6425, P6426]. Possibly taken between August 16-30, 1970 on a retreat in Vermont, Henri Nouwen is seen working and with friends, including Don McNeill, Bob Antonelli and Claude Pomerleau.

The annotations on the back of the photos read:

P6419: Bob Antonelli met de kinderen van Claude's [illegible]

P6420: [Illegible] van Claude

P6421: Claude, Don en de moeder van Claude [bijleren?] de H. [Mis?]

P6422: Don

Page 7 of Album 3

File consists of page 7 of Album 3. There is one photograph on the page [P6429]. Taken by Ron van den Bosch, the photo is a shot of Henri shaking hands with an unidentified boy along a canal in Utrecht.

Page 13 of Album 3

File consists of page 13 of Album 3. There is one photograph on the page [P6345]. Taken by Ron van den Bosch, the photo is a shot of Henri Nouwen waving to someone out of the frame along a canal in Utrecht.

Page 21 of Album 3

File consists of page 21 of Album 3. There are four photos [P6469, P6470, P6472, P6473] and one cardboard illustration [P6471] on the page. In the photos Henri Nouwen is seen talking with family and friends including Maria Nouwen at Yale; Colin [Williams?] at Cape Cod in Massachusetts; and an unidentified man dressed as a clown at the Franciscan Renewal Center on May 10, 1973. The cardboard illustration is of Henri Nouwen sitting in a chair under which “don't you know better than to break the chair?” is written.

The annotations on the back of the photos read:

P6469: Franciscan Renewal Center May 10, 1973

P6472: By the shores of the Atlantic Ocean on Cape Cod Massachusetts. Henri and Colin.

P6473: Cape Cod East Orleans, Mass. Henri and Colin.

Page 4 of Album 5

File consists of page 4 of Album 5. There are eight photographs on the page [P6594, P6595, P6596, P6597, P6598, P6599, P6600, P6601]. Taken in the late 1940s, in the Netherlands, the photos consist of Henri Nouwen and friends taking part in various outdoor activities. Included are several group shots of the troop members.

Page 5 of Album 5

File consists of page 5 of Album 5. There are eight photographs on the page [P6602, P6603, P6604, P6605, P6606, P6607, P6608]. Predominantly taken in the late 1940s, in the Netherlands, Henri Nouwen is seen with friends as they camp and cook food. Also included is a photo of Henri Nouwen with friends and their bicycles.

Page 8 of Album 5

File consists of page 8 of Album 5. There are seven photographs on the page [P6625, P6626, P6627, P6628, P6629, P6630, P6631]. Taken in the late 1940s the photos include scouts camping in Oosterwijk in 1949; Maria and Laurien Nouwen with a bicycle in 1950; children in a horse drawn carriage in Mook in August 1949; a shot of a cliff in Dinant, Belgium taken in 1948; three males, one of them possibly Wim [Klink?], at the top of a tower in Apeldoorn in 1949; and Laurent J.M. Nouwen with a horse named [Vingtaine?] in Mook in August 1949. The annotations on the page read: "1949 [Fourajeur?] in Oosterwijk", "1948 Rots van Dinant" and "Pasen. 1949. Op de toren in Apeldoorn Ferry en Wim [Klink?]".

Page 16 of Album 5

File consists of page 16 of Album 5. There are three photographs on the page [P6674, P6675, P6676]. Taken in 1950 on a trip to Italy, Henri Nouwen and [Fiammetta?] Cavatorta are seen at Ostia Antiqua. Also included is a photo of Henri Nouwen with Mr. Cavatorta near Naples. The annotations on the page read: "Met Fiammetta naar Ostia Antiqua 1950" and "1950 met Mijnheer Cavatorta en Franco naar Napels".

Page 19 of Album 5

File consists of page 19 of Album 5. There are three photographs on the page [P6685, P6686, P6687]. Taken during his summer holidays in 1951, Henri Nouwen and Lenie, Karel, Wim and Carla Eygenraam are seen near the Roman Forum and Viterbo. The annotations on the page read: "[?] naast [?] Capitool op forum Trajanus", "[?] achter [?] Capitool op forum Romanum" and "Op weg naar Viterbo".

Page 21 of Album 5

File consists of page 21 of Album 5. There are five photographs on the page [P6692, P6693, P6694, P6695, P6696]. Taken in 1951 in at the minor seminary in Apeldoorn, Henri Nouwen is seen with friends, including Nico Kok and [?] Kouwenberg, acting in a play called "Proces Douglas". The annotations on the page read: "Vastenavond 1951 Apeldoorn "Proces Douglas"" [Shrove Tuesday 1951 Apeldoorn "Proces Douglas"], "Nico Kok" and "Kouwenberg als beklaagde".

Page 22 of Album 5

File consists of page 22 of Album 5. There are five photographs on the page [P6697, P6698, P6699, P6700, P6701]. Taken in 1951 in at minor seminary in Apeldoorn, Henri Nouwen is seen with friends, including Nico Kok, acting in a play called "Proces Douglas".

Page 30 of Album 5

File consists of page 30 of Album 5. There are three photographs on the page [P6736, P6737, P6738]. Taken in 1954 at the major seminary in Rijsenburg, the photos show Henri Nouwen's classmates, including Nico Kok, acting in a play. Included is a cast photo with Henri Nouwen standing in the back right. The annotation on the page reads: "Spelers en T.T.C."

Page 33 of Album 5

File consists of page 33 of Album 5. There are nine photographs on the page [P6756, P6757, P6758, P6759, P6760, P6761, P6762, P6763, P6764]. Taken in 1953, Henri Nouwen is seen with friends while travelling through the St. Andrews area of Scotland. Included in the photos are Fathers [Jan Wessers?] and [Frans van Roessel?], Brian Ahern and Aunt Nelly. The annotations on the page read: "[?] met studenten", "Monteviot House", "[?] fathers [Jan Wessers?] en [Frans van Roessel?]", "Brian 'in burger' bij Mrs Kane", "Aunt Nelly", "Brian aan boord", "bij de witte Paters", "Op weg naar Sint Andrews" and "Universiteit te Sint Andrews".

Page 2 of Album 10

File consists of page 2 of Album 10. There are eight photographs on the page [P7554, P7555, P7556, P7557, P7558, P7559, P7560, P7561]. Taken by Mary Carney, the majority of the photos show Henri Nouwen at a dinner party at Mary Carney's home, opening gifts and with friends including Don DiGiulian, Jean Emmons, Elaine Fitzpatrick, Bernadette DiGiulian, Sr. Kate Crowley and Jim Broker. Also included are photos of an unidentified event, possibly a vigil or demonstration, attended by Mich Zeman [P7554] (blonde beard), [Bob Gustafson?] [P7555] and Bo Davis [P7556] (second from right).

P7557: Henri Nouwen, Don DiGiulian, Jean Emmons

P7558: (Back row): Jean Emmons (partially seen); ?; ?; Elaine Fitzpatrick; Bernadette DiGiulian; ?; Sr. Kate Crowley
(Front row): [Name unknown] Morrison, Jim Broker; [name unknown] Morrison; ?; ?

Page 14 of Album 10

File consists of page 14 of Album 10. There are nine photographs on the page [P7656, P7657, P7658, P7659, P7660, P7661, P7662, P7663, P7664]. Taken after a Yale Divinity School graduation ceremony, graduates wearing black and red caps and gowns, including Mary Ann Cejka [P7658], Yushi Nomura (gown) and Rick Dirkson [P7659] and Joseph Nunez [P7663], are seen celebrating outdoors. Also included is a photo of Henri Nouwen standing between two unidentified women, smiling and looking to his right.

Page 21 of Album 10

File consists of page 21 of Album 10. There are five photographs on the page [P7715, P7716, P7717, P7718, P7719]. Henri Nouwen is seen leading a church service in the Yale Divinity School Prayer Chapel, wearing white clerical robes and a stole, as a small group looks on.

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