Tag Archives: Mount Holyoke

Blanchard Campus Center, Mount Holyoke College (1899)

By the late 1890s there was clamoring for a gymnasium to be constructed at Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley. The College Gymnasium, noted at the time for its state-of-the-art ventilation system, was built in 1899-1900 and was designed by William C. Brocklesby. In 1950, the building was converted into offices and housed the campus post office. In 1988, it became the Blanchard Campus Center, named for Elizabeth Blanchard, an 1858 graduate who served as principal (1883-1888) and acting president (1888-189) of the College. The building was much expanded with additional facilities in 2003.

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Clapp Laboratory, Mount Holyoke College (1924)

Williston Hall at Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley burned down in 1917 and was replaced by the Cornelia Clapp Laboratory in 1924. The Gothic Revival building was named for Cornelia Clapp, a member of the Mount Holyoke class of 1871 and a professor of zoology at the college from 1872 to 1916.

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Merrill House (1840)

Merrill House in South Hadley has been owned since 1956 by Mount Holyoke College and was purchased, in part, with funds provided by Charles E. Merrill. The house was built in 1840 for Rev. Joseph D. Condit (1804-1847), who was Secretary of the Trustees of the College from 1836 to 1847. According to In Old South Hadley (1912), by Sophie E. Eastman:

Rev. Joseph Condit, who was settled here in 1835, was the first one of our ministers who refused the glass of cider, brandy, or the spiced elderberry wine, which his parishioners delighted to offer him, and when he made his pastoral calls, cake and cheese soon took the place of the former hospitable toddy. [...] The faithful sermons of Mr. Condit against the use of ardent spirits had prepared the way for a Temperance Crusade.

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Abbey Chapel, Mount Holyoke College (1897)

The Seminary Building at Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley was destroyed by fire in 1896. The following year, a chapel was built on the site, called Mary Lyon Chapel and connected to Mary Lyon Hall. The Chapel was renovated and much enlarged in 1938 with a donation from Emily Abbey Gill and was renamed Abbey Memorial Chapel. It was converted in 1999 into the Abbey Interfaith Sanctuary. Since 2009, the Chapel has been open to the public for weddings.

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Posted in Churches, Collegiate, Gothic, South Hadley | Tagged | 2 Comments

Porter Hall, Mount Holyoke College (1897)

A fire destroyed the original seminary building of Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley in 1896. One of the first new structures to be built after the fire was Porter Hall, a residence hall completed in 1897. Porter Hall was designed by C. Putnam Karr and was named for Deacon Porter, who was in charge of buildings on the College’s Board of Trustees and was a friend and adviser to the College’s founder Mary Lyon. (more…)

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Sycamores (1788)

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Colonel Benjamin Ruggles Woodbridge, of South Hadley, was a physician, merchant, entrepreneur and politician, who led a regiment at Bunker Hill and was a representative to the General Court. In 1788, Col. Woodbridge built his house on Woodbridge Street in South Hadley. After his death, in 1819, the house became the Woodbridge Scientific School for boys. It was later owned by the Montague family and was purchased, in 1900, by Rose Hollingsworth, who had the (recently restored) Water Tower on the property constructed. For much of the twentieth century, the house served as a dormitory for students at Mount Holyoke College. Having fallen into disrepair, in 1996 it was purchased by the Sycamores Committee of the South Hadley Historical Society, who are restoring the house to become a museum. In 2004, the 1733 Rawson House, home of South Hadley‘s first minister, Grindall Rawson, which originally stood on the Sycamores property, was donated to the Sycamore Committee. It was then moved to its current location, attached to Sycamore‘s rear ell.

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