St Mary's College

St Mary's College in 1880 (AOT, PH30/1/904)

St Mary's College is a Catholic girls' school established in 1868 by the Presentation Order, which was founded in Ireland to educate poor and disadvantaged children, especially girls. In 1866, Bishop Murphy appealed to his sister, Superior of the Presentation Convent in Fermoy, to assist him by opening a Catholic school in Hobart. Mother Murphy and a small group of nuns arrived in 1866. In 1868 Mount St Mary's (as the school was known) received its first pupils, including boys and boarders. The College continued to develop on its prominent site next to St Mary's Cathedral, the boarding house closing in 1971. Today, St Mary's College embodies the special charism of its founding Sisters in offering a faith-oriented quality education to girls from kindergarten to Grade 12, with boys from kindergarten to Grade 2. St Mary's College is still administered by the Presentation Sisters, with lay principals from 1999.

Further reading: J Clarke, 'St Mary's College and the Friends School', MHum thesis, UT, 1994; C Verrier (ed), St Mary's College, Hobart, 1993.

Jane Clarke