The history of the Hermon A. MacNeil Park and the history of the College Point neighborhood are closely linked. In 1835 Reverend William Augustus Muhlenberg purchased 134 acres of land in the area as the site of a new Episcopal seminary. Due to the financial Panic of 1837, plans for an expensive stone school building were abandoned. Muhlenberg’s sister, Mrs. Rogers, purchased the remaining stone for her own mansion, and a new frame building rose on the school’s masonry foundation. St. Paul’s College (for which College Point is named) opened in 1839 and closed about ten years later.