History

Since our schools’ founding more than 125 years ago, our mission hasn’t changed: We exist to assist parents in fully forming children’s hearts, minds and souls to bring glory to God. By remaining true to this purpose, we honor our founders who sacrificed greatly to bring the gift of Catholic education to what was then the frontier town of Traverse City.


1877
Father George Ziegler makes an appeal to a priest friend in New Jersey asking for Sisters to help in educating Traverse City’s youth

In October, six young Dominican nuns board a steamship for Traverse City, opening Holy Angels Convent School (located on Union Street) for six pupils on October 29, 1877


1883
The new, 4-floor Holy Angels Academy (convent and boarding school) was dedicated. The building was constructed on land donated by Perry Hannah, and cost $10,000


1902
Immaculate Conception parish was formed to lessen the distance to daily Mass; the new facility was dedicated on February 22, 1906 and it housed the church (upper level) and school (lower level). When it opened in September, the school had 80 students in three classrooms


1955
St. Francis Elementary (today’s Holy Angels Elementary School) opened to students in January with 14 classrooms and a study hall


1969
The Immaculate Conception and St. Francis school systems were consolidated


1998
The newly constructed St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Middle School opened on donated land near Hammond and 3-Mile Road

RECOMMENDED READING

Faith and Knowledge: The History of the Grand Traverse Area Catholic Schools, 2003