Old Main, Knox College

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Old Main, Knox College
Old Main Knox College.jpg
Old Main in winter
Old Main, Knox College is located in Illinois
Old Main, Knox College
Old Main, Knox College is located in USA
Old Main, Knox College
Location Galesburg, Illinois
Coordinates 40°56′36″N 90°22′16″W / 40.9432°N 90.3712°W / 40.9432; -90.3712Coordinates: 40°56′36″N 90°22′16″W / 40.9432°N 90.3712°W / 40.9432; -90.3712
Built 1857
Architect Charles Ulricson
Architectural style Gothic Revival
NRHP Reference # 66000323
Significant dates
Added to NRHP October 15, 1966[1]
Designated NHL July 4, 1961[2]

Old Main at Knox College, Galesburg, Illinois, is the oldest building on the college campus, and the best preserved site of one of the 1858 senatorial debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas. It has been designated a National Historic Landmark by the U.S. Department of the Interior.

It was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1961, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1966.[2][3]

Designed by Swedish-born-and-educated architect Charles Ulricson, it was inspired by Henry VIII's Hampton Court Palace in London, England.

A campus website describes it proudly: "Old Main is one of the most important pre-Civil War buildings in the Midwest. Built in the most respected style of the day—Gothic Revival—Old Main received high praise upon its completion in 1857 and is still recognized today as a building of architectural distinction. In addition to its status as a National Historic Landmark, Old Main expresses Knox's ongoing commitment to equal rights, democratic ideals, international excellence, an openness to new and old, and a mission to summon up the best in ourselves, as evidenced in Knox's Original Circular and Plan, which hangs on Old Main's first floor."[4]


  1. ^ Staff (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ a b "Old Main, Knox College". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Retrieved 2007-10-13. 
  3. ^ Blanche Higgins Schroer and Charles E. Shedd, Jr. (1961). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination:" (pdf). National Park Service. . Accompanying 4 images, exteriors, from 1975, including photo of oldest known photo of Old Main, in 1864. PDF (951 KB)
  4. ^ "Old Main, Knox College website". Knox College. Retrieved 2007-10-13. 

External links[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • R. Lance Factor (2010), Chapel in the Sky: Knox College's Old Main and Its Masonic Architect. University of Northern Illinois Press. ISBN 978-0-87580-415-6