by Marlene Anglin Apel and Rosean Bushman Wilson

At the request of Dubuque’s Bishop John Hennessy, six Sisters of the Visitation left St. Louis and came to Dubuque to establish an academy for girls. In 1871, The Academy of the Visitation opened on Third St. near St. Raphael’s Cathedral. The first year the enrollment was 50 girls. In 1879, because they had outgrown their building, Archbishop Hennessy purchased the General Jones’ mansion at the corner of what is now University and Alta Vista for the new academy and convent. During the next 86 years, a new convent and various additions were built to accommodate the growing enrollment and academic offerings. The girls were offered regular academic courses including fine arts and spiritual development. The last graduating class was in 1970 when the school closed.

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