About Us

Hackley History

History

Hackley was founded in 1899 as a college preparatory school for boys through the generosity of Mrs. Frances Hackley, who, in partnership with leading Unitarians of the era, sought to create a non-sectarian school that embraced Unitarian values of intellectual questioning and inclusiveness. A philanthropist with a deep commitment to education, Mrs. Hackley was among the founders of Barnard College, and helped in the development of the Manassas Industrial School for Colored Youth, as well as a number of vocational programs and kindergartens.

From its founding, Hackley would welcome students of diverse religious, economic, ethnic, and national origin within an ethos shaped by the school's Latin motto, Iuncti Iuvamus, which we translate as, "United, We Help One Another."

The school quickly outgrew its original home in Mrs. Hackley’s Tarrytown mansion, and Mrs. Hackley funded the purchase and construction nearby of the campus we know today. The first new buildings were in use by 1902, with the phrase that has represented the Hackley spirit for over a century -- “Enter Here To Be And Find A Friend”--engraved above the door.

Hackley has evolved since its founding into a co-educational K-12 day school with five-day Upper School boarding, increasing the number and variety of perspectives in its community while faithfully and vibrantly carrying our founder’s vision forward.

Some News About Our Past

List of 4 news stories.

  • Wondering about Hackley’s Magic Square.

    Magic (Square) Math

    When members of Hackley’s second grade became curious about Hackley’s Magic Square, it launched a multi-disciplinary conversation that delved into Hackley history, architecture, and math! Read about it in our latest Hackley Perspectives post.
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  • Digging for Connection

    Dr. Adrianne Pierce, Hackley Classics Department Chair, shares this story in Hackley Perspectives about deepening connection with ancient history through archeology in our own back yard.
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  • Happy Birthday, Mrs. Hackley!

    From The Archives: Founder's Day

    Hello from the archives! Last week was a great week on the hilltop. We celebrated Founder’s Day in a new and improved way, using archival materials and information from our history book Where The Seasons Tells Their Story.
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  • LS Students Celebrate Founder's Day

    Members of Hackley's Third Grade and Kindergarten paraded across campus on Friday morning to learn about Mrs. Hackley on Founder's Day -- Mrs. Hackley's birthday.  They visited (and hugged!) the old oak tree on the Quad, read about the early Hackley Headmaster who got stuck in it, saw Mrs. Hackley's portrait and learned about the history of Hackley School.
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