exterior of Mother Seton School building

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 its walls, 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.

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St. Elizabeth Ann Seton - Foundress and Patron Saint

st elizabeth ann seton in blackSaint Elizabeth Ann Seton - Foundress and Patron Saint

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton and the Sisters of Charity of St. Joseph's welcomed three Emmitsburg girls to their newly built school, St. Joseph Free School for Girls in 1810.

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

Mother Seton's heroic virtue and courage, along with the witness of Charity by her spiritual daughters in schools and social ministries led to her canonization in 1975 as our first native-born United States Saint.

Click here for a link to a short biography of Elizabeth Ann Seton.

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Sponsorship and Governance

doc-logo.pngMother Seton School is sponsored by the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul, St. Louise Province. Provincial leaders provide direction in school governance, formation for mission, and appoint the Principal and Chairperson of the Board. A member of the Provincial Council of the Province is an ex-officio member of the Board.