“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Historical District in Alexandria, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

Swann-Daingerfield House


Swann-Daingerfield House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, May 10, 2020
1. Swann-Daingerfield House Marker
A private residence listed in the National Register of Historic Places by the United States Department of the Interior. Registered as a Virginia Historic Landmark by the Virginia Board of Historic Resources.

Thomas Swann House, 1802-1833. United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, 1821-1823. Thomas Swann, Jr. (born in this house, 1809), lawyer, president of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, 19th mayor of Baltimore 1856, 33rd governor of Maryland, 1866, U.S. Representative for Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District.

Henry Daingerfield House, 1833-1899. Successful entrepreneur, landowner and property holder. Director of Marine Insurance Company, board member Bank of the Potomac, councilman for the 3rd Ward of Alexandria, founder of Springfield, Virginia. Owner of Daingerfield Island, close friend of Robert E. Lee.

St. Mary’s Academy, 1899-1943. Private Catholic perparatory school for young ladies and girls. Run by Sisters of the Holy Cross. Associated with St. Mary’s Church, the oldest Catholic
Swann-Daingerfield House image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, June 7, 2019
2. Swann-Daingerfield House
This photograph shows the old marker below the porch balustrade between the two vehicles. This new marker has been placed at the same location.
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parish in Virginia, founded in 1795.

Carter Hall, 1943-1976, (Alexandria Hospital School of Nursing). Renamed school “Carter Hall” in honor of Fanny Carter, Director of Nursing (1916-1930). Trained nurses for World War II in U.S. Nurse Cadet Program. First nursing school in Virginia to accept male nursing students, 1958.

712 Prince Street. 1802 house restored in 1976 by Mr. & Mrs. Hugh E. Witt to original single family residence.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: EducationIndustry & CommerceRailroads & StreetcarsScience & MedicineSettlements & SettlersWar, World IIWomen. In addition, it is included in the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad (B&O) 🚂 series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1802.
Location. 38° 48.237′ N, 77° 2.886′ W. Marker is in the Historical District in Alexandria, Virginia. Marker is on Prince Street east of South Columbus Street, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 712 Prince Street, Alexandria VA 22314, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Patton-Fowle House (within shouting distance of this marker); The Lyceum (within shouting distance of this marker);
Swann-Daingerfield House, Built 1802 image. Click for full size.
By James Haybyrne
3. Swann-Daingerfield House, Built 1802
Bayne-Fowle House (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Methodist Episcopal Congregation of Alexandria (about 400 feet away); Dr. Bernard Stier, O.D. (1930-2005) (about 400 feet away); The Alexandria Lyceum (about 500 feet away); Christ Church (about 500 feet away); Friendship Fire Company (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Historical District.
Regarding Swann-Daingerfield House. This house is a private residence.
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker. This link is to the old plaque that stood where this plaque is now placed.
Also see . . .
1. Swann-Dangerfield House Website. Excerpt:
In 1832, Henry Daingerfield, the founder of Springfield, Virginia, a thriving community south of Alexandria, purchased the house and it was where he resided until his death in 1866. Henry Daingerfield, a successful entrepreneur, was a close friend of Robert E. Lee whom he often
NRHP and VHL Plaques image. Click for full size.
4. NRHP and VHL Plaques
entertained in the House. An Alexandria City list for 1855 reveals that “Henry Daingerfield was the highest assessed property holder in the community and the owner of stores, warehouses, wharves, a flourishing farm, and a large private residence.”
(Submitted on March 1, 2020, by James Haybyrne of Alexandria, Virginia.) 

2. National Register of Historic Places Nomination Form (PDF). Excerpt:
The Swann-Daingerfield House is a rare example of high-style Second Empire architecture in Alexandria, a city known primarily for its Colonial, Georgian, and Federal architecture, and is therefore locally significant under Criterion C in the area of Architecture. Originally built in 1800 for Thomas Swann, a U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia (1821-1833), the Swann- Daingerfield House next was occupied by three generations of the Daingerfield family, notable Alexandrians who renovated the Federal-style house to include some Greek Revival interior finishes, before commissioning the ca. 1880 remodeling of the exterior to reflect the Second Empire style.

From 1899 until 1941, the property served as the locus of St. Mary’s Academy, a private Catholic secondary school for girls founded in Alexandria by the Sisters of the Holy Cross in 1869. The Sisters were responsible for expanding the house with two large Second
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Empire-style annexes in 1899 and 1906. Its role as an educational facility continued for three decades from 1943, when the Alexandria Hospital School of Nursing purchased the property and converted it into a dormitory for nurses-in-training.

Given its decades-long history and evolution in service of two notable educational institutions, the Swann-Daingerfield House is also locally significant under Criterion A in the area of Education. The house’s preserved and restored Federal and Greek Revival-style interiors and its Second Empire exterior tell a complex narrative of Alexandria’s built evolution over the span of two centuries. The period of significance, beginning in 1800, the original date of construction, and ending in 1973, when the property ceased operation as a nursing school, encompasses the evolving role of the house within Old Town Alexandria throughout the 19th century and the first three-quarters of the 20th century.
(Submitted on March 1, 2020.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 10, 2020. It was originally submitted on March 1, 2020, by James Haybyrne of Alexandria, Virginia. This page has been viewed 90 times since then and 16 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on May 10, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.   2. submitted on June 7, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.   3. submitted on March 2, 2020, by James Haybyrne of Alexandria, Virginia.   4. submitted on March 2, 2020, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. • J. J. Prats was the editor who published this page.

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Apr. 20, 2021