The MacDuffie School
One Ames Hill Drive
Springfield, Massachusetts, USA
John and Abby MacDuffie founded The MacDuffie School in 1890 as a school for girls. Harvard and Radcliffe graduates respectively, they hoped the school would provide young women the same access to excellence in education they had experienced. Committed to furthering recent reforms in the education of women, the MacDuffies established their school as a model for other schools. Their commitment to education for girls, however, did not prevent the school from running a co-educational country day school for several decades early in the century. By the mid-1920s, The MacDuffie School enjoyed a strong academic reputation, particularly in the Springfield area. In 1936, the MacDuffies turned the leadership of the school over to their son Malcolm. At the beginning of World War II, Ralph and Cleminette Downing Rutenber became Head and Associate Head, respectively, of the School. Dr. Rutenber's tenure as Headmaster (1941-1972) was long and fruitful. MacDuffie's reputation grew in the Springfield area and extended across the nation and abroad. Much of MacDuffie's current campus was developed between 1956 and 1978. Several large homes and an athletic field were acquired. Rutenber Hall, the main classroom facility, and Downing Gymnasium were built in 1963. By 1978, the MacDuffie School owned all the buildings on Ames Hill Drive, constituting the secluded, unified 15-acre campus. Following the Rutenbers' retirement in 1972, the School's ensuing heads, faculty and Board built on the excellent academic and co-curricular program offerings and increased the diversity of the student body. In 1983, the School purchased the Springfield Red Cross building on Maple Street which has since become the Fine Arts building. In 2005, the School acquired 334 Maple Street, the Rutenbers' private residence, through the generosity of Anne Rutenber Clifton '56 and George and Peggy Beaver Bissell '56. This gift expanded MacDuffie's campus to nearly 20 acres...