In 1859, Mother Xavier was commissioned by Bishop James Roosevelt Bayley to establish a school for young women in New Jersey. The Academy of Saint Elizabeth was established in Madison in September 1860 in a white frame building that still stands. The renaming to Convent Station would come later when Mother Xavier provided funding in the 1870s for the train station just outside our gates.
Our first students entered in 1860 - the Registration Ledger of September 1 still resides in the principal's office, as do the records of every succeeding year. In 1865, the new Academy building was completed and its first commencement exercises were held on the growing campus. By then, our school had gained a wide reputation for scholarship and was recognized and accepted throughout the state as an institution of strong academics, culture, and Catholic learning for young women. The Sisters continued to acquire land whenever it became available—an enlightened determination for women of their time and circumstance. The campus today is over 200 acres and also the home of the College of Saint Elizabeth, founded in 1899.
Did you know?
The Academy of Saint Elizabeth is 153 years old.