College Hall (University of Pennsylvania)

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College Hall
North facade of College Hall, Penn Campus.jpg
General information
TypeAcademic, research
LocationUniversity City
Address3450 Woodland Walk
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Opened1872 (1872)[1]
OwnerUniversity of Pennsylvania
ArchitecturalVictorian gothic
Technical details
Size110,266 square feet (10,244.0 m2)
Floor count6
Grounds0.5 acres (0.20 ha)
Design and construction
ArchitectThomas W. Richards
College Hall, University of Pennsylvania
University of Pennsylvania College Hall.jpg
College Hall in 1892
College Hall (University of Pennsylvania) is located in Philadelphia
College Hall (University of Pennsylvania)
College Hall (University of Pennsylvania) is located in Pennsylvania
College Hall (University of Pennsylvania)
College Hall (University of Pennsylvania) is located in the United States
College Hall (University of Pennsylvania)
LocationBounded by Walnut, Spruce, 34th, and 36th Sts., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Coordinates39°57′4.6″N 75°11′37.5″W / 39.951278°N 75.193750°W / 39.951278; -75.193750Coordinates: 39°57′4.6″N 75°11′37.5″W / 39.951278°N 75.193750°W / 39.951278; -75.193750
Area0.5 acres (0.20 ha)
ArchitectThomas W. Richards
Architectural styleVictorian Gothic
NRHP reference No.78002444[2]
Added to NRHPFebruary 14, 1978

College Hall is the oldest building on the West Philadelphia campus of the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to its construction, the university was located on Ninth Street in Center City, Philadelphia. The building was designed by Thomas Webb Richards and completed in 1873. The characteristic green color of the building is due to its composition of green serpentine stone.

College Hall was placed on the National Register of Historic Places February 14, 1978.[3] It is also a contributing property of the University of Pennsylvania Campus Historic District.

The building currently houses the undergraduate admissions office, the university president's offices, the Department of History, and classrooms.[4] The top floor of College Hall is also home to the Philomathean Society, a literary society founded in 1813.

Although College Hall and the now-demolished Blanchard Hall were rumored to be the model for the Victorian Gothic mansion in The Addams Family cartoons, the cartoonist Charles Addams repeatedly denied the claims.[5]



  1. ^ "David Rittenhouse Laboratory". Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania. Retrieved February 13, 2018.
  2. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. January 23, 2007.
  3. ^ Application for Historical Registry
  4. ^ Virtual Tour of Penn's Campus: College Hall
  5. ^ Thomas, George; Brownlee, David Bruce (2000). Building America's First University: An Historical and Architectural Guide to the University of Pennsylvania. University of Pennsylvania Press. p. 142. ISBN 978-0812235159.