St. Scholastica Convent (called the Monastery since 1986) was officially founded January 23, 1879, in Shoal Creek. These pioneer Sisters cleared the sandy, rocky soil and could say honestly that they "lived by the sweat of their brow."
As young women began to join the Sisters in their log cabin, additions to the structure were made. By 1898 a quadrangular building surrounding a courtyard was completed, as well as several other buildings. The Sisters moved the motherhouse to Fort Smith in 1925 because of a number of difficulties: lack of water, isolation, poor roads, and inaccessibility to health care. The other option the Sisters had considered for a new motherhouse was Little Rock, the capital city. (The original quadrangular building at Shoal Creek, including the laundry, parish church, school, and rectory were all destroyed by fire November 20, 1940; the buildings spared were the Infirmary, Guest House, and one wing of the former St. Joseph's Academy then used as a chicken house. A few sisters were living at Shoal Creek at that time, but none were injured in the fire.)
1301 S. Albert PikePO Box 3489Fort Smith, AR 72913-3489479-783-4147www.stscho.org