St. James School, Maryland

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Saint James School
Saint James School MD Chapel-Summer05.jpeg
The Chapel at St. James School
All good things and every perfect gift is from above.
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
Established 1842
Headmaster The Rev. Dr. D. Stuart Dunnan
Enrollment 220 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] Saint James’ Chapel provides religious support to Saint James School. The Chapel is administered by the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland within Saint John’s Parish.[3] Saint John’s Parish is a historical district within the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland covering most of Washington County, Maryland, and serving communicants residing in the three states sharing the lower Cumberland valley and the adjacent Great Valley of Virginia. The mother church of Saint John’s Parish is Saint John’s Church on North Prospect Street in Hagerstown, Maryland. The school itself is governed by a self-perpetuating Board of Trustees. The School's operating budget is $6.2 million per year. The endowment is approximately $11.1 million. An active Annual Giving program is supported by better than 50 percent of the alumni. The 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 in their work. 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. It is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools, Association of Independent Maryland Schools, Cum Laude Society, Council for Advancement and Support of Education, and National Association of Episcopal Schools.


The current headmaster of the school is The Revd. Dr. D. Stuart Dunnan, an Episcopal priest with doctorate and master's degrees in theology from Oxford and bachelor and master's degrees in history from Harvard University. The Revd. Dr. D. Stuart Dunnan has been the headmaster since 1992 and is the 10th headmaster in the school's history. His predecessor was Charles Meehan, a graduate of the School and current Senior Master, who served for one year as the interim headmaster.


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.[4]

The Saint James Conference was established in 2012. The purpose is to provide a summer forum of educators from all over the United States and abroad who are committed at once to premier college preparation and Christian faith and practice. The Conference meets on the beautiful campus in early June. Teachers, administrators, chaplains, trustees, parents, and others gain an opportunity to discuss the latest scholarship in the humanities, especially those topics related to high-quality secondary education. Participants enjoy fellowship and a unique sort of professional development.


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 65 miles (105 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, 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: The school's library, built in 1997, holds about 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 4 days a week for lunch and dinner, and served buffet style for breakfasts and weekend meals. 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 and Chaplain's Offices. A school physician is on call 24/7 and an athletic trainer lives above the infirmary.
  • Cotton Building and the Bowman Fine Arts Center: The Fine Arts Center contains the auditorium, which seats about 300, music study rooms, the art studio, yearbook room, and 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 field house is also the location of the students' end-of-trimester exams. Currently, the athletic department is in the process of building a new baseball field and Golf driving range, which will be located behind the tennis courts.
  • The Chapel: Every morning, the students gather in the chapel for a fifteen-minute service or, on Wednesdays, an hour-long Communion service. Optional chapel services are held every evening and Sunday morning and night. Students can help in the chapel by serving as acolytes, readers, ushers, choir members, or be appointed sacristan by the Headmaster.
  • 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.[5] 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.)
  • 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.


  1. ^ "Admission: Application Process & Timeline". 
  2. ^ List, Diocese of Maryland, Schools.
  3. ^ List, Episcopal Diocese of Maryland, Churches of Washington County. The seat of Saint John’s Parish is at Saint John’s Church in Hagerstown, Maryland.
  4. ^ "On Campus: Academics". 
  5. ^ "Saint James School – A traditional, co-ed, Episcopal boarding school near Washington, D.C". Retrieved 2012-03-12. 
  6. ^ "Admiral James L. Holloway III, US Navy (Ret.)". 
  7. ^ "Robbie Basho - Archives". 

External links[edit]