Saint Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton (August 28, 1774 – January 4, 1821) was the first native-born citizen of the United States to be canonized by the Roman Catholic Church (September 14, 1975). She established Catholic communities in Emmitsburg, Maryland.
Elizabeth Ann was born on August 28, 1774 to Richard Bayley and Catherine Charlton of New York City. She was raised in the Episcopal Church. Her mother, daughter of an Episcopal priest, died when Elizabeth was 3. At age 19 she married to William Magee Seton, a wealthy businessman in the import trade. Five children were born to the marriage: Anna Maria, William, Richard, Catherine and Rebecca.
Although busy with raising a large family and the management of their home, Seton continued to show the concern for the poor of the city which her father and stepmother had taught her. She helped to organize a group of prominent ladies who would visit the sick poor in their homes to render what aid they could. This circle was informally called the "Ladies of Charity" due to their conscious inspiration by the work of St. Vincent de Paul in 17th century France.