May 31, 1821

The Cathedral of Assumption of Blessed Virgin Mary, the first U.S. Catholic cathedral, is dedicated in Baltimore. The cathedral, now a Basilica, was envisioned by John Carroll, America’s first bishop, who was the founder of the American Catholic hierarchy and Georgetown University. It was designed by renowned architect Benjamin Henry Latrobe. Carroll, whose father was born in Ireland, laid the cornerstone of the cathedral on July 7, 1806, but he did not live to see its completion, having died on December 15, 1815. During its first year over 200,000 people visited the cathedral. Pope John Paul II made two visits to the cathedral.

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