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Our History

White stone statues of Mother Seton reading book with two children

Two centuries ago, Elizabeth Ann Seton and a small band of Sisters moved into the Stone House in St. Joseph Valley, Emmitsburg, Maryland, to formally establish the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph's.

Seven months later, on Feb. 22, 1810, the Sisters welcomed three Emmitsburg girls to their newly built school, St. Joseph Free School for Girls.

The school quickly evolved into St. Joseph's Academy and Free School. Mother Seton accepted girls whose wealthy families wished their daughters to be educated in a strong Catholic environment.

Thus was planted the seed that has grown to maturity as the Seton Legacy of Catholic Education. Welcoming all students regardless of ability to pay became a distinctive characteristic of the Seton Legacy.

As a pioneer in Catholic education, St. Joseph's Academy and Free School continued to grow, becoming the cradle of Catholic education for the nation.

St. Elizabeth Ann's all-embracing love of God and neighbor continues to thrive within the walls of Mother Seton School, now a school for boys and girls in Pre-K through eighth grade. Solid academics are complemented by solid values: daily prayer, religious instruction, liturgy, Christian formation of students, service learning and outreach are integral to the educational program at Mother Seton School.