204 SW 8th Avenue
Topeka, KS 66603
The first Volga German colonists to arrive in Topeka on 23 November 1875 were from Catholic colonies. Assumption Church was the only Catholic parish in Topeka at the time. It had been active since at least 1862 and had been established as an outpost of the Indian Mission located at what would become the town of St. Mary's, Kansas. Assumption was founded by the missionaries of St. Mary's.
Most of those Volga German immigrants that arrived in 1875 and 1876 moved on to establish settlements in Ellis and Rush Counties in Western Kansas, but in 1877 another group arrived, and many of them stayed in Topeka and worshiped at Assumption.
The congregation built a new facility in 1882 as Catholic immigrants continued to arrive in Topeka. Even larger numbers of Volga German immigrants arrived in 1886, and in December of 1886, Bishop Louis M. Fink instructed Father Francis Henry to organize a German-speaking parish in Topeka. Assumption Parish accommodated the new German-speaking arrivals until their new facility could be constructed by conducting Masses in German at 7:00 and at 9:00, and in English at 8:00.
In December of 1887, a two story building was acquired at 213 West Third Street. This structure provided room for the sanctuary and nave, the school and the rectory of the new German-speaking St. Joseph Parish.
Assumption's current facility was constructed in 1923 across the street to the north from the Kansas State Capitol. It is a part of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas.
Assumption Parish (Topeka, Kan.), One Hundred Twenty-fifth Anniversary Committee. Assumption Parish 125 Years, 1862 - 1987. Topeka, Kansas, 1987.
Historical Information, St. Joseph Catholic Church, Topeka, Kansas.
History of St. Joseph and Sacred Heart Parishes
Isadore Appelhanz, The Volga-Germans in Topeka, Kansas, 1875-85. Topeka: privately published, 1992.
Parish Records, 1887-2002 (Kansas State Historical Society)