The Mother Seton House, built around 1800, was the home of Elizabeth Ann Seton, the first American-born woman beatified and canonized by the Roman Catholic Church. Although not born Roman Catholic, she converted to Catholicism in 1805, shortly after the death of her husband. With the help of her friend, John Carroll, Bishop of the Diocese of Baltimore, she established a school for girls at St. Mary's Seminary. While living at this house she took her religious vows at St. Mary's Seminary Chapel and founded the religious order of the Daughters of Charity. Afterwards, she established a school for girls in Emmitsburg, Maryland, the first parochial school in America.
The house, which is on the grounds of St. Mary's Seminary, is similar to other homes built in the early 19th century for the nearby French community. At the time the house was built Maximilian Godefroy, the architect of St. Mary's Seminary Chapel, was an instructor of drawing for the Seminary and could possibly be the architect of the Mother Seton House. Rising two-and-one-half stories over North Paca Street, this red brick house is somewhat larger in scale than the surrounding houses. Now referred to as the Mother Seton House, it was restored in the 1960s to its original appearance and continues to be operated as a museum.
The Mother Seton House is located at 600 North Paca St. It is open Saturdays and Sundays 1:00pm to 3:00pm or by appointment; closed Easter, Christmas and New Years. For appointment, call 410-523-3443 or e-mail the coordinator, which is found on the website. Free parking on off street lot next to house. Further information can be found at Mother Seton House. There is no admission charge.
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