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SMC General Information



St. Mary's College - classroom building, during winterLOCATION

St. Mary’s College is located on 465 rolling acres in northeast Kansas, about twenty-five miles west of Topeka, the capital of Kansas. The main entrance of the campus is on U.S. Highway 24, about thirteen miles from Interstate 70.


For more than one hundred fifty years the site of the present-day St. Mary’s College has served as a center for Catholic education. In 1848, the Jesuits founded here a mission and school for the Potawatomi Indians. Since the property was on the Oregon Trail, thousands of west-bound settlers were able to visit the chapel and refresh themselves at the mission before journeying on.

As the number of Indians declined and the number of white immigrants increased, the mission changed its orientation. In its place the Jesuits established a college for boys and men. In 1869, St. Mary’s College received its charter from the State of Kansas. It was in 1870 that the present College Building was constructed. For the next sixty years the school flourished; other buildings were constructed. The boarding school had its own power plant, water system, steam laundry, canning factory, slaughter house, farm, gardens, green houses, a creamery, and ice plant. The curriculum was then, as it is now, the liberal arts. Unfortunately, the devastating Great Depression forced the College to close in 1931.

Beginning in 1931, St. Mary’s College served as a seminary for the Jesuits. Seminarians spent four years here in their Theological training. During this time of study, they were ordained to the priesthood. In 1967, the Jesuits moved their Theologate back to St. Louis, and St. Mary’s stood empty and silent for years.

In 1978, the Society of St. Pius X acquired St. Mary’s College and began the monumental work of restoration. The first Academy classes began in 1979. The College opened in 1981, with its first graduation in 1984. Five years later, in 1989, the College was reorganized and the liberal arts program was established under the direction of Father Angles. The Kansas Board of Regents has approved this program, and has given St. Mary’s College the authority to grant the Associate of Arts degree.

Further Information on St. Mary's College:

Welcome Mission Statement Calendar General Information
Admission Requirements Student Life Academic Administration
Liberal Arts Program Course Descriptions Faculty




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200 E. Mission Street, St. Marys, KS 66536 | 785-437-2471 (Fax) 785-437-6798

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