Julia Morgan School for Girls

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Julia Morgan School for Girls is an all-girls middle school in Oakland, California, named for Julia Morgan, the building's architect and the first woman to be licensed in California as an architect. The school is housed in a historical and architecturally significant building that she designed.[1] The building was constructed in 1924 and was originally used for The Ming Quong Home for Chinese girls, an orphanage. It was purchased and donated to Mills College in 1936 and became known as Graduate House. After 1960 it was known as Alderwood Hall.[2] In 2004, the building was renovated for use as the Julia Morgan School for Girls.[3] The building is located at 5000 MacArthur Boulevard.

From 1925 until 1937 the building was used as an orphanage. After being purchased by Mills College in 1936, it was known mainly as the Graduate House' until 1960. Later it was used as a conference area, for classrooms, and as a residence hall until 2004. In 2004 it was leased to Julia Morgan School for Girls.[1]

Morgan designed many of the buildings on the Mills College campus.


As the Ming Quong Home, the building was owned by the Presbyterian Board of Missions (New York City) and functioned as an orphanage for Chinese girls. The building was purchased and donated to Mills College by Captain Robert Dollar.[1]


The 2-story concrete building has a U-shape. Its architecture mixes the Spanish eclectic style with Asian features. The building includes stucco walls and terra cotta roof tiles on the wings.[1] The central part of the building is capped by a cross gable roof. The building includes casement windows "with an Asian-inspired muntin design".[1] The entryway includes a grand staircase leading to a stone portal decorated with urns and statuary.[1]

Chinese graduate students at Mills designed the reflecting pond in the building's entrance courtyard.[1] The open glade where Seminary Creek was once located flow before being forced underground into a culvert, came to be known as the Alderwood Dell.[1]

The 2004 renovation created classrooms, offices, a cafeteria, a library, and a multi-purpose room and the glade became a playing field. Mitchell and Riera Architecture was responsible for the interior re-design.[1]


The private all girls school has been noted in media.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Alderwood Hall Council of Independent Colleges; Historic Campus Architecture Project
  2. ^ Mills College 2007/2008 Undergraduate Student Handbook (PDF). School Datebooks. 2007. Retrieved 2008-02-27.
  3. ^ Ito, Susan (Winter 2004). "Julia Morgan at Mills" (PDF). Mills Quarterly. Mills College. p. 14. Retrieved 2008-02-27.
  4. ^ http://harvardmagazine.com/2004/05/where-the-girls-are.html

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 37°47′00″N 122°11′14″W / 37.783421°N 122.187249°W / 37.783421; -122.187249