The Old Campus is a complex of buildings at Yale University on the block at the northwest end of the green in New Haven, Connecticut, consisting of dormitories, classrooms, chapels, and offices. Old Campus includes Yale's oldest building, Connecticut Hall, and a grand entrance from the green at Phelps Gate.
The first building of Yale College (Old College) in New Haven was built here in 1718 where Bingham Hall now stands. Falling into disrepair, this building was ultimately destroyed by students in 1782. Beginning with Connecticut Hall in 1750, the buildings of Old Brick Row were built here. The campus plan for Old Brick Row was developed by John Trumbull and James Hillhouse. It was the first planned college campus in the United States and served as a model for other campuses. Old Brick Row included four dormitories: Union Hall (South College), Connecticut Hall (South Middle), Berkeley Hall (North Middle), and North College. In between, there was Atheneum (First Chapel), Connecticut Lyceum, and Second Chapel.
The Yale Fence, which ran along on College in front of Old Brick Row, was a favorite of many generations of students. Plans for new buildings led to its demise in 1888. The Yale Fence Club was named in its memory. The fence currently lining Old Campus also evokes the old fence.
Many other buildings stood on the Old Campus which were removed to make way for the current configuration of structures, including The Old Laboratory (1782–1888), The Cabinet (1819–1890), Trumbull Gallery (1832–1901), Alumni Hall (1853–1911, Alexander Jackson Davis; the towers from this building were rescued and rebuilt behind the tomb of Skull and Bones), Old Dwight Hall (1885–1926, J. Cleaveland Cady), and Osborn Hall (1888–1926, Bruce Price).
Connecticut Hall (1752), the only survivor of the Old Brick Row, still stands after plans for its destruction, along with the rest of the row, were dropped. Lanman-Wright Hall (1912, William Adams Delano), Durfee Hall (1871, Russell Sturgis), Farnam Hall (1870, Russell Sturgis), Lawrance Hall (1886, Russell Sturgis), Welch Hall (1891, Bruce Price), Bingham Hall (1928, Walter B. Chambers), and Vanderbilt Hall (1894, Charles C. Haight) are used as dormitories for Freshmen. McClellan Hall (1925, Walter B. Chambers) was built as a partner for Connecticut Hall; it was derided by students in a "Pageant of Symmetry" with the slogan "For God, for Country, and for Symmetry". Upperclassmen live in McClellan. Chittenden Hall (1889–90, J. Cleaveland Cady) was connected to Dwight by Linsly (1906-06, Charles C. Haight) to form Linsly-Chittenden Hall. The stained glass window "Education" by Louis Tiffany is in Chittenden. Phelps Hall (1924, Charles Haight), Dwight Chapel (The Old Library, 1846, Henry Austin), Battell Chapel (1876, Russell Sturgis), and Street Hall (1866, Peter Bonnett Wight) are also located on the Old Campus.
There are bronze statues on Old Campus of Nathan Hale (1913, Bela Pratt), Theodore Dwight Woolsey (1896, John Ferguson Weir), and Abraham Pierson (1874, Launt Thompson). There are also statues of lions at the entrance to (Lanman-Wright Hall).
Old Campus houses freshmen from 10 of Yale College's 12 residential colleges. These students are assigned a residential college before starting their studies at Yale, live in Old Campus dormitories during their freshman year, and move into their colleges at the beginning of sophomore year. Students assigned to Silliman College and Timothy Dwight College live in their colleges for all four years.
Old Campus hosts several annual activities, including Freshman Olympics, Spring Fling, and Commencement in May. It also houses the Exploration Senior Program for six weeks during the summer.
In popular culture
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Old Campus (Yale University).|
- Landmarks in Yale's History
- Kelly, Brooks Mather, Yale: A History, Yale University Press, New Haven, Connecticut, 1974.
- Yale's Lost Landmarks
- Yale's Architecture: A Walking Tour, Paul Goldberger, New York Times, June 13, 1982