Founder of the Daughters of Mary of the Immaculate Conception
Fr. Lucjan Bojnowski was one of New Britain’s most famous Polish citizens. Born in Swierzbutowo, parish of Dąbrowa Białostocka, Province of Grodno in 1868, he came to the United States in 1888 and shortly after enrolled in the Polish seminary at Orchard Lake, Michigan. After being ordained, he was assigned to a Slovak parish in Bridgeport where he served for approximately six months. His arrival in New Britain in 1895 marked the beginning of the Bojnowski era in the history of the Polish community.
Urged by the desire to honor the Blessed Mother in a special way, on the occasion of the golden jubilee of the proclamation of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, and wishing to ameliorate the sad plight of orphaned children, Father Bojnowski brought together a group of devoted Sodalists from his parish and, with ecclesiastical approbation, formed the nucleus of the present Community.
He also founded a Polish Orphanage, Our Lady of Różanystok, whose name derives from a much-revered icon in his native parish. In 1906, he established a Polish language newspaper Przewodnik Katolicki which ceased publication in the late 1960s. Bojnowski was also instrumental in the creation of a Polish bank, Peoples Savings Bank, in 1907. His last major project was the erection of St Lucian’s Home for the Aged, which was constructed in 1925.