St. James School, Maryland

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Saint James School
Saint James School MD Chapel-Summer05.jpeg
The Chapel at Saint James School
17641 College Road Hagerstown, MD 21740[1]
Coordinates 39°34′33″N 77°45′29″W / 39.57583°N 77.75806°W / 39.57583; -77.75806Coordinates: 39°34′33″N 77°45′29″W / 39.57583°N 77.75806°W / 39.57583; -77.75806
Type Private Episcopal boarding school
Motto All good things and every perfect gift is from above.
Established 1842
Headmaster The Revd. Dr. D. Stuart Dunnan
Enrollment 235 total
75% boarding
25% day
Colors Maroon and White

Saint James School is an independent, secondary, boarding and day school. Founded in 1842 as the College of Saint James, the School is a coeducational college preparatory school.


Saint James is one of twenty-four Episcopal Schools in the Diocese of Maryland.[2] The School is governed by a Board of Trustees. A Prefect Council, made up of ten seniors elected by the students and the faculty, upholds the traditions of Saint James and assists faculty members and the Headmaster in the day-to-day operations of the School. Of this group, one member is elected Senior Prefect, and he or she leads the Prefects. The Sacristan Council and Vestry are responsible for the upkeep of the Chapel and assist in the liturgy of daily services. The Senior Sacristan is the second most prestigious position for a student on campus, following the senior prefect, and is the chief student assistant to the Chaplain. Saint James School is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and the Maryland State Department of Education. The School is a member of: the National Association of Independent Schools, the Association of Independent Maryland Schools, Cum Laude Society, the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, and the National Association of Episcopal Schools.


The Revd. Dr. D. Stuart Dunnan was appointed headmaster of Saint James School in June 1992. A teacher and chaplain at both the school and university levels before he came to Saint James, he is one of the few Episcopal priests still serving as the head of a secondary school in the United States. Born and raised in Washington, D.C., Father Dunnan holds bachelor's and master's degrees in history from Harvard University and master's and doctoral degrees in theology from Oxford University in England.


Advanced Placement courses are offered for able and interested students who wish to pursue subjects in greater depth. Electives are offered to upper-form students for enrichment and the exploration of new interests.[3]


Located in a rural setting, the Georgian-style campus of Saint James sits on 100 acres (0.40 km2) of farmland containing a natural spring, fields, and streams. The campus lies 5 miles (8.0 km) southwest of Hagerstown and is approximately 70 miles (110 km) from both Baltimore and Washington, D.C..

  • Claggett Hall: The largest boys dorm on campus, Claggett houses over 60 fourth, fifth, and sixth formers as well as several faculty members. The building also contains the Headmaster's Office, Business Offices, the Office of Admissions, and St. Luke's, the Claggett Hall Common Room.
  • Kemp Hall: Kemp Hall is the campus student center, containing the school bookstore, mailboxes, snack bar, and Offices of Development, Communications, Ping Pong, and Alumni relations.
  • Powell Hall: This is the main academic building with over 20 classrooms. The Assistant Head of School, the Academic Dean, and the Director of College Counseling are also housed in Powell. Currently, Powell Hall is attached to the new Barabra Fulton wing, which was recently dedicated on April 25, 2008. The new Fulton wing also houses the tutoring center on campus and the Dean of Students' Office.
  • John E. Owens Library: Built in 1997, the library holds more than 20,000 volumes, 50 periodicals, and provides Internet access. The lower level contains the history department classrooms and the School archives.
  • Kerfoot Refectory: Completed in 2001, this is the School's dining hall, where students eat all of their meals. Meals are eaten family style four days a week for lunch and dinner, and served buffet style for breakfasts and weekends. In addition to the main meal, there is always a sandwich and salad bar.
  • Laidlaw Infirmary: The Infirmary is a refuge for ill students and contains two rooms with beds, a bathroom, and the Nurse's Office. A School physician is on call 24/7.
  • Cotton Building and the Bowman Fine Arts Center: The Fine Arts Center houses the auditorium, which seats about 300. This building includes music study rooms, the art studio/yearbook room, and a Choir room. The Mummer's Society puts on several plays every year, including a fall drama, a spring musical, senior-directed plays, and the Christmas Tradition of St. George and the Dragon.
  • Alumni Hall: Alumni Hall houses two wrestling rooms, two dance studios, a weight room, locker rooms, and a field house. The field house contains three basketball courts which can be converted into four tennis courts or two volleyball courts.
  • The Chapel: Every morning, the students gather in the chapel for a fifteen-minute service or, on Wednesdays, an hour-long Communion service. Students can help in the chapel by serving as acolytes, readers, ushers, or choir members.
  • Mattingly Hall: A dorm for third and fourth form boys. Hershey Hall was renovated in the spring of 2006 and renamed Mattingly Hall in honor of Mr. John M. Mattingly '58.[4] Mattingly Hall also houses a government-owned Cold War communications bunker in the basement.[citation needed]
  • Onderdonk Hall: A dorm for second and third form boys.
  • Holloway House: The fourth, fifth and sixth form girls' dorm.
  • Coors Hall: A dorm for second, third, and fourth form girls.
  • Bai Yuka: The school's water source, the Bai Yuka is a beautiful natural spring that runs through campus and whose name is Native American for "fountain rock".
  • Biggs Rectory: The headmaster's house was completed in 2002.[citation needed]

Notable alumni[edit]


  • David Hein, editor. Religion and Politics in Maryland on the Eve of the Civil War: The Letters of W. Wilkins Davis. Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, 2009. (An updated version of a book published in 1988 in hardcover as A Student's View of the College of St. James on the Eve of the Civil War.)
  • Herbert B. Adams, editor. History of Education in Maryland, 1894, pp 258–260 by Reverend Hall Harrison
  • Life of the Right Reverend John Barrett Kerfoot, D.D. L.L.D., First Bishop of Pittsburgh, by Hall Harrison, M.A., Vol. 1, pp. 46 – 48, published by James Pott & Co., New York 1886 (Google Books)
  • Civil War Diary of Joseph H. Coit, Maryland Historical Magazine, volume 60. p 245 (edited by James McLachlan).
  • James S. McLachlan, "American Boarding Schools: A Historical Study" (New York: Scribners, 1970).
  • W.L. Prehn, "Episcopal Schools," The Praeger Handbook of Faith-Based Schools in the United States, Vol I, edited by Thomas C. Hunt and James C. Carper (Santa Barbara, Denver, and Oxford UK: ABC-Clio/Praeger, 2012); 76-89.
  • W.L. Prehn, "Social Vision, Character, and Academic Excellence in Nineteenth-Century America: William Augustus Muhlenberg and the Church School Movement, 1828-1877." Ph.D dissertation, University of Virginia (2005). Chapters on Kerfoot and Saint James.


External links[edit]