Looking around the neighborhood today, it is hard to believe that State Street was once lined with a
magnificent row of Federal-style houses that matched this surviving pair. Originally the James
Watson House, the shrine is dedicated to the first American-born saint, Mother Seton, the founder of
the Sisters of Charity and America’s parochial school system. The adjoining Church of Our Lady of
the Rosary was once Mother Seton’s home, overlooking her native Staten Island.