In the early 20th century, the Sisters of Providence of St. Mary of the Woods, a Catholic order, purchased the property to establish the Immaculata Seminary school for girls, and constructed an imposing building (Capital Hall) facing Tenley Circle in 1904. Located on the site of Dunblane, a rare survivor of Washington’s early-19th-century estates, the Immaculata Seminary campus illustrates the area’s transformation from a rural enclave to a busy suburb. The school was founded following a call by Catholic leadership to establish a “select school for girls” in Washington and grew to become an elite secondary school and junior college.
The seminary originally consisted of the 1905 Baroque Revival style school building designed by architect A. O. Von Herbulis and expanded to include the Dunblane manor house, a ca. 1839 Greek Revival structure. The campus grew further in the 1920s with the construction of a basilican-plan chapel and a dormitory addition to the main school building.
In recent years, the former seminary campus has become the home of the American University Washington College of Law.
DC Inventory: October 27, 2011
National Register: May 19, 2014