The First Day of School is only three weeks away and the schools in the Southwest Partnership community are getting ready! School staff are cleaning, painting, and decorating to get the buildings back to a tip-top shiny shape–ready for area children who are eager and ready to learn!

While getting the school ready for the new year, staff at Steuart Hill Academic Academy in Union Square made a fascinating discovery–photos of the construction of the school from 1969! The treasure trove includes lots of photos of the men who built the school; a variety of shots of beams, pillars, and concrete; and a few great shots of the Union Square Park and rowhomes of the late 1960’s.

Steuart Hill sits on the site of the former Willowbrook Mansion, originally built and owned by the Donnell Family who also donated the land for Union Square Park. The family donated the mansion to the Roman Catholic Church in 1867, and it was used as a convent and a ‘home for wayward girls’ until the mid-1960’s when it was demolished and Steuart Hill was built in its place. The demolition of the mansion was one of the forces that lead to the organization of the Union Square Association and the designation of the neighborhood as a national and local historic district. The dining room from Willowbrook is now on display at the Baltimore Museum of Art.

Steuart Hill may not be a mansion but it is an important center for the community–educating students from the Union Square and Mount Clare neighborhoods in grades pre-K through 5, providing services such as a food pantry and adult education classes to families, and hosting community events and concerts in its auditorium.

If you’d like to see the modern Steuart Hill, community members, the Union Square Association, and the Southwest Partnership Education and Workforce Development and Public Safety Committees will be holding a Day of Service on Saturday August 13th from 9am-4pm, followed by a family-friendly block party and back to school give-away at 2pm at Union Square Park. Volunteers are welcome to stop by anytime they are able to paint, clean, and decorate!

Click here to view the cool vintage Union Square/Steuart Hill photos!

Donate to the school, and its education efforts here: