About Father Augustus Tolton

Resources on Father Tolton


Below you can find additional media resources on Father Augustus Tolton.


  • Davis, Cyprian. The History of Black Catholics in the United States. New York: Crossroads, 1990.
    • Chapter 6 is entitled “Shepherd with Black Skins” and focuses on the first African American priests including Fr. Augustus Tolton, the Healey Brothers and the Josephites.
  • Hemeseth, Caroline. From Slave to Priest. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2006. Originally published by Franciscan Herald, 1973.
    • This is still considered the definitive book on the life of Fr. Augustus Tolton. While it was originally published by Franciscan Herald Press, it was reissued by Ignatius Press with a new introduction.
  • Ochs, Stephen. Desegregating the Altar: The Josephites and the Struggle for Black Priests. 1871 – 1960. Louisiana State University Press, 1993.
    • Dr. Ochs has written an extensive book on the struggle to have an indigenous African American Roman Catholic priesthood in the United States. While a majority of the book focuses on the Josephites, there is a section on Fr. Augustus Tolton.
  • Penn, Sabrina. A Boy Named Gus. Chicago: Penn Ink, 2010.
    • A Story about Fr. Augustus Tolton, America’s first African American Catholic priest.
  • Augustus Tolton: the Church is the True Liberator,  by: Joyce Duriga, Liturgical Press, Collegeville, MN, 2018

  • Audio Book (From Slave to Priest) by Lighthouse Catholic Media – visit: https://www.lighthousecatholiclmedia.org/store/title/from-slave-to-priest


  • Enduring Faith – Produced by the Diocese of Buffalo, NY, focuses on Josephites and their struggle to have an indigenous black priesthood. A section of the film focuses on the life of Fr. Augustus Tolton.

Prayer Cards, Newsletters, Brochures

  • Call 312.534.8376 or write: Bishop Joseph N Perry, Archdiocese of Chicago, 3525 South Lake Park Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60653



Children’s Resources

  • A Boy Named Gus by: Sabrina Penn, Penn Ink, 2010.
  • Fr. Augustus Tolton: The First Recognized Black Catholic priest in America, Corinna Laughlin & Maria Laughlin & Didier Pagot, Editions Du Signe, France, distributed by LTP-Liturgy Training Publications, Chicago, Illinois, 2015 [email protected]


  • Enduring Faith – produced by the Diocese of Buffalo, NY; focuses on the Josephite Fathers and their struggle to welcome indigenous black priesthood in the United Sates; shows a section on Father Tolton
  • Heed the Call-Do You Have the Courage? Tolton-DVD 2017 produced by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Vocations Office, heedthecall.org