View the Artwork in St. Rita's Chapel
St. Rita's Hall sits on the ground once occupied by the Belle Air Mansion,
former home of the Rudolph family (the original owners of the grounds on which
our campus now sits). The Augustinians renamed the building St.
Rita's Hall, significantly remodeled and expanded it, and began to use it as a
monastery and seminary facility. On January 10, 1912, a passerby noticed smoke
pouring from the fourth floor. Five fire companies were able to control the
blaze but only the outside walls remained standing. Thus the last remaining structure
of the original Belle Air estate had been destroyed. Nothing remains now, save
for the massive old lock and key for the front door (now in the University
Archives). This loss left the seminarians without a home and in the spring of
that year the community began work on the new St. Rita’s Hall.
The current St. Rita's Hall is built in the Colonial Revival style, an
architectural motif that was popular throughout the eastern United States at the
time. It's dome echoes the one atop Alumni Hall, and it's stone walls blend with
the church nearby. The seminarian chapel attached to the building contains
images devoted to the life of St. Rita of Cascia. Today the building houses
undergraduate residents and the Office of Campus Ministry.