The Archives baner
The Archives baner
The Archives baner
The Archives baner
Untitled Document
MSMC library in Villa,
1959-1963
Sr. Diana Marie Fulves with children attending the Center for Learning and Reading

Founders of Mount Saint Mary College

The efforts of all members of the Newburgh Dominican Congregation made the founding of the college possible. Certain members were placed in positions that had more responsibility for creating Mount Saint Mary College than others.  Three members, however, are profiled in this section of the archives: Sister Agnes Alma McDonald, Sister Thomas Aquinas McManus, and Sister Mary Vincent Ralph.

The archives frequently refer to Sister Thomas Aquinas and Sister Mary Vincent as the co-founders of the college.  It was Sister Agnes Alma, however, who began corresponding with members of the State Department of Education in Albany in 1925 about the possibility of establishing a Normal School for the Sisters.

The Newburgh Dominican Sisters archives provide records of the continued correspondence that came from Sister Agnes Alma to the contacts in the State Education Department that led to approval for the Normal School and, later, to the three year liberal arts college granting an associate degree, to the four year liberal arts college that was approved to award bachelors degrees, and finally to the masters degrees. 

Sister Thomas Aquinas Sister Agnes Alma
Sister Thomas Aquinas Sister Mary Vincent Sister Agnes Alma

Obituary notices for these three Sisters can be found below.

  Sister Agnes Alma
Sister M. Agnes Alma, O.P. of Mount Saint Mary, Newburgh, N.Y. died on Tuesday, April 7, 1959 at Saint Agnes' Hospital, White Plains, N.Y. after an illness of several months.
Sister Mary Vincent
Sister Mary Vincent Ralph, dean emerita of Mt. St. Mary College, Newburgh, died in the Sisters' Infirmary on Friday, (July 19, 1968) after a long illness.
Sister Thomas Aquinas
The death of Sister M. Thomas Aquinas, O.P., on August 5, 1947 was a shock to her community and her friends. Few there were even among her own Sisters who did not feel that she had many years yet to give to the Order and to Catholic Education.