In the 19th century Margaret Holman owned and managed a fashionable spa with 3 hotels. She brought in world class entertainers such as Jenny Lind, "the Swedish nightingale." In the post Civil War period, the former hotel became the Chester Springs Orphan School (1868-1912) for orphans of Pennsylvania soldiers. Eleanor Bechtel Moore (1839-1926) was appointed principal in 1876, becoming the only women to serve in that capacity in a state orphan asylum. The Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts purchased the property in 1916, providing a freer environment for self-expression. It closed in 1952.