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Father David. A. Degan papers

Identifier: A-03-2010.013

Scope and Contents

This collection is divided into three series:  Priest Personnel Board, reference files, and audio/visual materials.  Materials were extensively weeded, photocopied when necessary, and rehoused. Except for the audio/visual materials series, original arrangement and folder labeling were maintained.  All added notes in the first two series are enclosed in editorial brackets. Priest Personnel Board materials include meeting minutes; lists of pastoral assignments; priest questionnaires; and correspondence regarding personnel board meetings, pastoral assignments, resignations, transfers, inquiries, and letters from parishioners. The reference files were extensively weeded due to the large volume and broad scope of the materials.  These files were maintained by Degan as a reference guide to various activities and Masses he participated in and directed as a priest.  All materials authored by Degan and a small representative sample of the following items were kept.  The series includes various photocopied and original prayer cards; pamphlets; poems, newspaper clippings; handwritten and typed notes, prayers, liturgies, and homilies; religious education materials; Mass and event programs; liturgy and homily samples and guides; journal articles; bibliography lists; book excerpts; diocesan guidelines for weddings, funerals, baptisms, confirmations, communion, special mass and confession; a 1989 list of parishioners at St. Paul the Apostle in Spartanburg; newsletters for the National Conference of Diocesan Vocation Directors; memorial cards; bible verses; issues of Outlook, Catholic Update, Youth Update, and This Is Our Church; published homilies and sermons; some of Degan’s seminary notes and papers; sample short Mass programs; and address labels.  Degan’s subject headings include prayers; homilies and speeches; liturgies; CCD (Confraternity of Christian Doctrine) addresses, ideas, etc.; bibliographies; St. Paul’s roster; marriage; vocations-religious; death; funerals, overview; Jesus and Christmas; baptism; confirmation; communion; Lent and Advent; Mary mothers; penance; special feasts; Mary; and short services. Audio/Visual Materials include four (4) audio recordings on cassette tapes of various Mass services performed by Degan; fifteen (15) slides from a 1973 and 1974 baptism; and two (2) photographs.  One (1) is dated 17 May 1979 and one (1) is undated.  Neither photograph contains information regarding its subjects; however, the priest in the 1979 photograph resembles Degan.


  • Created: 1965-1995, undated
  • Other: Date acquired: 06/15/2010


Conditions Governing Access

Access is restricted; consult repository for details.

Conditions Governing Use

The Diocese of Charleston makes no representation that it is the owner of any copyright or other literary property in the materials contained in its archives. In providing access to or permitting the reproduction of any such materials, the Diocese of Charleston does not assume any responsibility for determining the nature of any rights, ownership or interest therein; nor for obtaining the appropriate permissions to publish or use; nor for determining the nature of any liabilities (for defamation and invasion of privacy) that may arise from any publication or use. This rests entirely with the researcher.

Biographical or Historical Information

David Arthur Degan, a Roman Catholic priest, was born on 4 May 1919 in Atchison, Kansas, to David I. Degan and Florence R. Jochems.  Degan graduated from St. Benedict’s College and attended seminary at Pope John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, Massachusetts.  He was ordained by the Most. Rev. Ernest L. Unterkoefler, bishop of Charleston, in Leavenworth, Kansas, on 7 February 1975.  His assignments included Church of the Nativity, Charleston; St. Peter, Columbia; St. Joseph, Columbia; St. Joseph, Anderson; St. Paul the Apostle, Spartanburg; and St. Louis, Dillon, where he served as pastor until his death.  Degan was chaplain of state hospitals and served as chair and member of the Priest Personnel Board.  He passed away on 5 February 1996, due to complications from a heart attack.  He is buried in Holy Cross Cemetery on James Island.

Note written by


1.25 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



Personal and professional papers of Father David A. Degan.

Arrangement Note

Except for the audio/visual materials series, original arrangement and folder labeling were maintained.  All added notes in the first two series are enclosed in editorial brackets.

Custodial History

This collection was part of records recovered from the second floor attic of the downtown Chancery building (119 Broad Street) and transferred to the archives for processing in February 2010. Records consist of files maintained by Rev. David A. Degan during his career, from seminary in the late 1960s to parish administrator in the Diocese of Charleston from the early 1960s to early 1990s.  Degan’s files were most likely brought to the Chancery from St. Louis in Dillon, South Carolina, after his death in 1996.

Method of Acquisition


Related Materials

Priest Personnel Board 2010.012 Priest Subject Files 2009.007 Vicar for Priests Inactive Clergy Records 2009.021

Processing Information

Processed by Jennifer Neal in 2010; edited by Melissa Bronheim, January 2015.

Inventory of the Father David. A. Degan papers
Description rules
Other Unmapped
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Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Catholic Diocese of Charleston Archives Repository

114 Broad Street
Carriage House
Charleston SC 29401 US