Biography of Rev. William S. O’Meara

Rev. William S. O’Meara is a highly regarded priest in charge of the Roman Catholic church in Armour, Douglas County. Born in Detroit in 1871, he completed his education in Baltimore and Cincinnati before being ordained in 1898. Since his arrival in Armour, Father O’Meara has shown great zeal and devotion, leading to the growth of the congregation. Under his guidance, a new church was built, reflecting his commitment to architectural beauty. Although the parish is not yet able to establish a parochial school, Father O’Meara personally instructs the children before they attend public schools. He is also active in civic duties as a Democrat.

Rev. William S. O’Meara is described as an able and honored priest who is in charge of the Roman Catholic church in the village of Armour, Douglas County. He is highly regarded for his zeal, devotion, and gracious personality. Father O’Meara was born on August 27, 1871, in Detroit, Michigan, to Joseph and Mary (Feehan) O’Meara, both of whom were born in Ireland and later immigrated to the United States. He received his early education at the Jesuit college in Detroit and continued his studies at St. Charles College in Ellicott, Maryland. In 1894, he graduated from St. Mary’s College in Baltimore, having completed a course in philosophy.

With a calling to serve the divine Master, Father O’Meara enrolled in Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Cincinnati, Ohio, to pursue his theological education. He completed his theological course there and was ordained as a priest in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, on August 19, 1898. Shortly thereafter, on September 12 of the same year, he arrived in Armour, Douglas County, where he was assigned to his current position. In the following year, the church purchased lots for the construction of a new church and rectory, with the latter being completed within that year.

Father O’Meara took on the responsibility of organizing and initiating the church’s activities, and he received the wholehearted cooperation of his congregation. The church experienced steady growth in membership under his devoted services. The corner-stone of the new church was laid on October 3, 1902, and it was dedicated in 1903. The church is described as having a dignified and graceful design, reflecting its “churchly” architecture. Although there were initially only eighteen Catholic families in the parish, the congregation grew significantly during Father O’Meara’s tenure, with more than fifty families currently being part of the church.

Before Father O’Meara’s arrival, Mass was celebrated once a month on weekdays. However, under his guidance, the holy office is now held three times a month on Sundays. While the parish’s numerical and financial strength is not yet sufficient to establish a parochial school, Father O’Meara has arranged for personal instruction of the parish children each morning before they attend public schools.

In addition to his religious duties, Father O’Meara is also engaged in civic matters. He identifies as a Democrat and fulfills his responsibilities as a citizen faithfully.


Robinson, Doane, History of South Dakota: together with mention of Citizens of South Dakota, [Logansport? IN] : B. F. Bowen, 1904.

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