Old Chapel, UMASS (1885)

One of the most historic buildings on the campus of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst is the Old Chapel. This campus icon is a Richardsonian Romanesque structure, constructed of gray Pelham granite with Longmeadow brownstone trim. Designed by Stephen C. Earle, it was built in 1884-1886, when UMASS was the Massachusetts Agricultural College. It originally had a library on the first floor, a chapel above and a museum for the College’s natural history collection In 1935, the building was renovated by the WPA to house the History and English Departments. Later, it was home for the Department of Music and Performing Arts, and for the UMass Marching Band, which left the building in 1996. Since then, the interior has remained vacant, although the exterior of the Chapel was restored in 1997-1999. This included a complete re-building of the bell tower, with damaged stones being replaced by granite from the original Pelham quarry, which is still owned by Umass, and brownstone from a quarry in Utah.

2 Responses to Old Chapel, UMASS (1885)

  1. Patrick says:

    This website is a great resource. Nice work. Let’s hope they do something with the Chapel soon!

  2. The University of Massachusetts, and the University of Massachusetts Building Authority along with Finegold Alexander Architects and a team of engineers and specialty consultants has recently completed a major restoration and renovation of this building!

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