The Bryn Mawr School opened on September 21, 1885, in a rented three story schoolhouse next to the Orthodox Friends' Meeting on Eutaw Street. A handful of students and eight faculty members embarked on what was already noted to be a revolutionary new chapter in the education of girls and women in the United States. The five founders were young women of vision and tenacity who were determined to provide Baltimore with a school for girls equal to the best schools available to boys. Founder M. Carey Thomas, in her role as the first Dean of Faculty of any American university or college,was establishing the highest standards of academic rigor for women at the newly opening Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania. The inheritance that Mary Elizabeth Garrett received in 1884 from her father, B & O Railroad President John Work Garrett (remarkably an equal third to her brothers' shares) made her one of the wealthiest single women in the country and ready to finance several efforts in the behalf of women. The Bryn Mawr School, Bryn Mawr College, and the Johns Hopkins Medical School are the most notable recipients of both her philanthropy in general and her drive to improve womens' lives and education. Please go to the History page to read more.
Please take a moment to look through some of the primary source material on the Online Exhibits pages. There are newspaper articles chronicling the construction of the Cathedral Street school building and it's opening in 1890, early graduations, school catalogs, and Alumnae Bulletins which give insight into the dedication and determination to finally move the school to its present 26 acre site, in what was considered the country in 1928.
You will also find the 1950 campus map, drawn by Elsie Kemp, Class of 1950, as well as a 2010 aerial photograph of the school. Students, please consider drawing us a new campus map! There is also a copy for you to see in the Edith Hamilton library.