A statue of Fred Harris? And other tidbits

  • Sasaki Associates now has a page for its House Centers “pilot” program. This SCUP article has a “housing swarm” image that Sasaki created for Dartmouth. A Valley News article states that the college “estimated it will cost $12.8 million to build professors’ residences and temporary centers for Dartmouth’s Undergraduate House Communities program.” But those have already been built. Presumably that estimate refers to completed construction. Any future, permanent versions of those buildings will cost a lot more than $13 million.

  • BBB has updated its page on the campus master plan to include a large version of that plan, an image of the West End plan (Green to Blue), and — this is new — a schematic perspective rendering of the cemetery bridge, which we can call Fletcher Viaduct.

  • This Valley News article notes Kendal’s interest in building to the south on Rivercrest land and leaving the Chieftain land for recreation (rowing).

  • Sir John Soane’s Museum in London has a computer model of the museum on line.

  • The architects have completed a design for the Irving Institute (Valley News).

  • The Dartmouth has an article on the success of the Town fence in front of Collis in reducing jaywalking.

  • The Hood has a brochure on public art on campus. The Class of 1965 has proposed to erect a statue of DOC founder Fred Harris in front of Robinson Hall. The campus architecture committee is considering the idea, according to the ’65 newsletter.

  • A bit of biography on David Hooke, who’s at the center of the new Moosilauke Ravine Lodge.

  • Dartmouth will play Brown at football in Fenway Park on November 10, Big Green Alert reports. Wild.

  • The Rauner Library Blog has a post about the Charter.

  • Kresge Library in Fairchild has turned 40 years old.

  • This Times editorial contains footnotes. Kinda neat, but also showy: if footnotes are needed here, why not everywhere? Or if the paper is to be relied on generally, why include notes here?

  • Big Green Alert points out the new use of the Lone Pine logo by the Co-Op. First impression? The trad typeface clashes with the fat Modernism of the pine. The use of the athletics nickname BIG GREEN in this seal-like, college-wide institutional device is also weird.

  • A Proliferation of Canes. Photos of the most recent Commencement show students carrying many strange, new-ish canes, most presumably representing senior societies. They feature a snake wrapped around a Native American arrow; a bearded old man; the domed main body of Shattuck Observatory (clever!); a snake clutching an apple in its mouth; a huge phoenix (for Phoenix, obviously — is that cast resin or something?); a tail, perhaps belonging to a whale?; and a three-dimensional stylization of the stylized Lone Pine symbol (also a metal globe).

  • Two interesting new-ish concepts: literary geography and forensic architecture.


Some campus photos and notes

Steam Tunnel access grate on the Green, Google Street View

Steam Tunnel access under Green, Meacham photo

Steam Tunnel access grate on the Green, underside

The first stage of the steam tunnel’s construction, south of this grate, was a test meant to determine whether such a project would be economical in a ledge environment.

image

North bank of HBs at former entrance to Hop, view to west

Until recently, students entered the Hop at the end of the room. The entrance was closed off and a replacement of the same configuration built just to the north.

Hop interior at Minary entrance, Meacham photo

The new Hop entrance, view to northwest onto Zahm/Memorial Garden

(Have the memorial plaques attached to the Inn there been moved to Memorial Field? That would make sense. This is not their first location anyway.)

Triangle House, Meacham photo

Triangle House entrance (west) facade

Even more than the society houses on the south side of Webster Avenue, Triangle House has a well-used student entrance on one side, shown here, and a formal street entrance on the other.

LSC bike pavilion, Meacham photo

LSC bike pavilion

This elaborate bicycle shelter for the Life Sciences Center joins a couple other pavilions in the area.

Gilman plaque, Meacham photo

Plaque moved from Gilman to LSC

LSC name lettering, Meacham photo

The town changed the street address of the building to get it to match.


Investiture and other topics

  • The report of the 210th Alumni Council meeting updates us on plans underway to create a freestanding School of Graduate Studies that will coordinate the 17 Ph.D. programs and 12 Masters’ programs that exist alongside the professional degrees of the three professional schools. Grad Studies is now holding its first investiture ceremony (Dartmouth Now). The coat of arms was just the first step…

  • The Council meeting summary states that “[t]he College has also received sufficient donations to support the initial year of the new residential model of house communities.” That’s an interesting funding method; presumably in the long term the school will seek a naming gift for each Community. The funding element is not mentioned in the full report, although the need for heraldry (again) is foreshadowed:

    House programming budgets will support a wide range of activities including “feeds,” intramurals, concerts, field trips, new annual traditions, alumni events, house swag, experiential learning, and leadership development activities.

    Happy to see the term “feed” surviving.

  • It was a surprise to find last year that the famous Concord Coach that regularly carried the football team to the railroad station more than a century ago still existed (post). Now, courtesy of Time Well Kept: Selections from the Wells Fargo Corporate Archives, we learn that the coach of famous Hanover liveryman Ira Allen survives as well! From the book:

    J.S. and E.A. Abbot and Company built coach #746 in the spring of 1864 for New Hampshire stage operator Ira B. Allen, who ordered his coach made two inches narrower and lighter than other typical nine-passenger coaches. Coach builders painted #746 dark green, a standard but seldom-chosen color requested by Allen, whose staging business in Hanover carried many students and visitors to Dartmouth College.

    The coach, which is no longer painted green, is on display in Miami.

  • The Alumni Magazine in its May-June issue featured a number of historic photos of life at the college, carefully colored by Sanna Dullaway. The photo of the Golden Corner and watering trough, the tenth or so image, looks like it gets the color right.

  • The Big Green Alert continues to cover progress at Memorial Field, with photos on May 14, 20, and 22, and June 4.

  • Really intriguing things are going on with the proposal for a natural gas pipeline from Lebanon to the Heating Plant via DHMC (Valley News).

  • Received the latest campus map through email ahead of the reunion next weekend. It looks nice. It labels all of the sports fields and, possibly for the first time, labels the Softball Park and Burnham Pavilion (I thought that one was also unnamed as the Sports Pavilion?). It depicts the Lewiston buildings. It calls attention to the fact that the parking lot behind Thayer/53 Commons is still called “DDA Lot,” even though DDA became DDS a quarter-century ago. One does wish that the mapmakers would abbreviate the “Saint” in the names of the churches. And is the official name of the cemetery really the “Town of Hanover Cemetery,” when it was built on college-owned land and run by the Dartmouth Cemetery Association? Finally, one hopes that the roadway labeled “Old Tuck Drive” is not called that in practice. There is no “new” Tuck Drive to distinguish it from, and it’s the same as it ever was: Tuck Drive.

  • The Dartmouth reports on Tri-Delt’s decision to go local.

  • The website of Gamma Delta Chi documents the changes that the organization is making to its house, including an extensive set of alterations to the Pit.

  • The Valley News, reporting on the AD derecognition, quotes college spokeswoman Diana Lawrence:

    “Students are free to join any organization that’s not recognized by the college,” she said, so as far as Dartmouth is concerned, “they can become Freemasons.”

    In case you were wondering in 1799, “the Board of Trust declared itself in a decree that any student becoming a mason should thereby cease to be a member of College.”1

  • The Rauner blog has an interesting post on the ownership of the Green.

  • The voters of the Town defeated the West Wheelock Gateway District proposal (Valley News).

—————

  1. John King Lord, A History of Dartmouth College, 1815-1909 (Concord, N.H.: The Rumford Press, 1913 ), 520.

Photography at the 1904 visit of the Earl of Dartmouth

Icon1647-0645-0000020A Icon1647-0645-0000023A

These two photos from the Archives show the arrival of the Earl of Dartmouth in 1904:

Combination of two photos of Earl of Dartmouth 1904

The photos were taken from the steps of Casque & Gauntlet looking east toward the Inn. The righthand photo is the earlier of the two, and the Earl’s carriage appears in both photos. The student with the white collar striding down the walkway in the righthand photo is also visible at the edge of the left photo.

In the left photo a professional photographer is visible, standing on a stepladder behind a large camera. He might have a cigar in his mouth.

What kind of image did he capture? Here is a photo he took a few seconds after the two photos above; the Earl’s carriage has already rounded the corner:

panorama of Earl of Dartmouth at Inn Corner, American Memory

This photo is from the Library of Congress, which lists the copyright holder as E. Chickering & Co. A slightly cropped version of this photo is available in the Dartmouth Archives.


The ol’ Homecoming bonfire myth

Yes, students built a bonfire in 1888. They were celebrating a baseball victory over Manchester that April.1 The Dartmouth wrote that “[t]he convulsive joy of the underclassmen burst forth on the night of the first Manchester game in the form of a huge Campus fire. It disturbed the slumbers of a peaceful town, destroyed some property, made the boys feel like they were men and in fact did no one any good.”2

For some reason, people keep saying that that was the bonfire that started it all.3 Bonfires were spontaneous things in the nineteenth century, and it is not clear why there has to be a “first” one. At any rate, that 1888 bonfire — lit after a springtime baseball victory — wasn’t the first bonfire built by students in Hanover by any means.

For example, as one alumnus recalled, the baseball victory over Williams of June4 of 1887, nearly a year before the Manchester game, involved a bonfire:

After supper the celebration is begun by songs on the campus fence, and as soon as it is really dark a bonfire is built in the campus, and every man’s unprotected woodpile is levied on for the purpose. Then a line is formed again and marches through the principal streets. A stop is made at the house of every member of the faculty, and he must make a speech and be cheered also. At length the bonfire burns low, and the cheering ceases, and it is the dead of night.5

And before that:

  • May of 1874: “Serenade your instructors occasionally, burn somebody’s chicken coop.”6
  • During March of 1874, a student wrote of a grand bonfire on the campus fed with fence rails and dry-goods boxes and kindled with kerosene.7
  • Also ca. 1874: “‘Extra curriculum activities’ included occasional pranks like hanging somebody’s wagon in a tree, or getting a horse into chapel, or having a sort of spontaneous bonfire on the campus, for which loose material was swiped from back yards, — such as barrels, boxes, a stray ladder of, in extreme cases a part of a fence.”8
  • Ca. 1868-1872, students participated in “[t]he lawless collection of materials for a celebrating bonfire and heaping of all the gates in the middle of the Green.”9
  • (Not to mention the bonfires built by townsfolk during February of 1819 when news of the College victory in the Supreme Court reached town.10)

After the non-milestone of the 1888 Manchester baseball bonfire, students would keep on building bonfires independently of Dartmouth Night for a good half-century. Sometimes they did not even need an intercollegiate athletic victory.

During September of 1888, a ten-boat regatta of the Dartmouth Boating Association traveled three miles upriver and built bonfires on the “second island.”11 In November of 1893, students built “an honest bonfire”12 on the Green after the football team defeated Amherst. During the fall of 1896, the Dartmouth-only freshman-sophomore football game was followed by a bonfire.13 In September of 1901, the Webster Centennial celebration saw a parade end on the Green, where a bonfire was lit.14

During November of 1903, the “stay-at-homes” listened to a reading of the telegraph reports of the football victory over Harvard at the first game in its new Stadium: “When the last message arrived, the students withdrew to collect material for a huge bonfire — and the work was not confined to the Freshman class!”15 After a meeting in Dartmouth Hall’s Old Chapel and a parade, “[t]he fire was lighted at 8:30 o’clock, and it was one of the biggest blazes in recent years. Around the fire the men sang songs and cheered wildly, and then indulged in a nightshirt parade, which ended one of the most memorable athletic celebrations in Dartmouth’s history.”16 During October of 1904, students built a bonfire on the Green and had a “nightshirt parade” around the fire.17

Skipping ahead to 1919, the springtime handover of student government from one Palaeopitus class to the next involved a bonfire in which Freshmen were allowed finally to dispose of their Freshman Beanies.18

Wait a minute, what about Dartmouth Night? Yes, President Tucker established Dartmouth Night during the fall of 1895, but it was an indoor event, in the Old Chapel in Dartmouth Hall. A bonfire simply was not a part of the original event.19 Between 1901 and 1906, the location of Dartmouth Night shifted between outdoor sites (the College Yard below Dartmouth Hall as well as Alumni Oval, the proto-Memorial Field) and indoor sites (Commons, a.k.a. Collis Commonground). Dartmouth Night would move to its long-term indoor site of Webster Hall in 1907.

It was apparently not until the 1920s, perhaps the late 1920s, that Dartmouth Night began to include a pre-game rally and bonfire. In 1930, for example, the ceremony seems to have evolved into a Friday evening torchlight parade to the President’s House for a short talk on spirit, followed by a bonfire on the Green.20 At that 1930 bonfire, students sang (football) songs and gave (football) yells in honor of the last home game,21 which would occur the following day. In 1931, Dartmouth Night was celebrated with what were described as “all of the traditional accompaniments, including the bonfire on the campus.”22

Even attaching a pre-game bonfire to an outdoor Dartmouth Night did not reduce the annual number of fires to one. Students were still building multiple bonfires each year, including big ones for Dartmouth Night and Houseparties Weekend,23 into the mid- or late-1960s. Eventually, possibly after the campus turmoil of the Vietnam era had subsided, students would build only one bonfire each year, in the fall, on Dartmouth Night. Even later, that weekend — today still known officially as “Dartmouth Night Weekend” — would become popularly known as “Homecoming.”

——

  1. Dartmouth Baseball, “All-Time Game-by-Game Results,” available at http://goo.gl/NUsk7k (viewed 26 October 2014).
  2. Editor, The Dartmouth (4 May 1888), quoted in “Who designs and builds the homecoming bonfire? What’s the history behind it?,” Ask Dartmouth (updated 20 October 2011), at http://ask.dartmouth.edu/categories/stulife/24.html (viewed 26 October 2014).
  3. See Rauner Library Blog (16 October 2011), at http://raunerlibrary.blogspot.com/2011_10_16_archive.html (viewed 26 October 2014); “Who designs and builds the homecoming bonfire? What’s the history behind it?,” Ask Dartmouth (updated 20 October 2011), at http://ask.dartmouth.edu/categories/stulife/24.html (viewed 26 October 2014).
  4. Dartmouth Baseball, “All-Time Game-by-Game Results.”
  5. William Byron Forbush, quoted in Harold Seymour, Baseball: The People’s Game (New York: Oxford University Press, 1960), 145-146.
  6. “Editorial Department,” The Dartmouth 8:5 (May 1874), 187.
  7. “The Spirit of ’76,” The Dartmouth 8:3 (March 1874), 98.
  8. Robert Fletcher, “Hanover Scenes in Word Pictures Sixty Years Ago” part 3, “Town Meetings and Travel,” The Hanover Gazette (March 22, 1934), 1.
  9. Edwin J. Bartlett, A Dartmouth Book of Remembrance: Pen and Camera Sketches of Hanover and the College before the Centennial and after (Hanover, N.H.: The Webster Press, 1922), 66-68. Bartlett also wrote of student-built fires blazing in “Mere Football,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine 19, no. 1 (November 1926), 20.
  10. Samuel Brown, “Historical Address,” Dartmouth Centennial Celebration (1870), 33. Rufus Choate also heard of the lighting of bonfires and “other unseemly demonstrations of joy” at the time. Rufus Choate to brother (25 March 1819), quoted in Clyde Edward Dankert, “Dartmouth College and Dartmouth University” typewritten MS (1979), 145, citing Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (February 1969), 24.
  11. Robert Fletcher, “Hanover Scenes in Word Pictures Sixty Years Ago” part 5, The Hanover Gazette (April 5, 1934), 1.
  12. The Dartmouth (ca. November 1893) (“It was an honest victory and appropriately celebrated with an honest bonfire.”), quoted in Will Meland, “Bonfire burns bright for more than century of change,” The Dartmouth (27 October 2000), available at http://goo.gl/Wd7nYi (viewed 1 November 2014).
  13. Leonard Wason Tuttle, “Chronicles,” Book of the Class of 1900 (ca. 1900), 40. The Aegis wrote of this event: “The Freshmen have a small fire on the Campus, and cut up $200 worth of hose with the jack-knives their papas gave them when they left home.” Dartmouth Class of 1899, Aegis 1899 (1897), 173.
  14. “After a Century,” Boston Herald (25 September 1901), 3. There were fireworks afterward.
  15. The Dartmouth (25 November 1903), in Edward Connery Lathem and David M. Shribman, eds., Miraculously Builded in Our Hearts: A Dartmouth Reader (Hanover, N.H.: Dartmouth College, distributed by University Press of New England, 1999), 28.
  16. The Dartmouth (25 November 1903), in Lathem and Shribman, 29.
  17. Royal Parkinson to father (30 October 1904), in Lathem and Shribman, 43.
  18. Clifford B. Orr to family (9 June 1919), in Lathem and Shribman, 99.
  19. Cf. Rauner Library Blog (16 October 2011), at http://raunerlibrary.blogspot.com/2011_10_16_archive.html (viewed 26 October 2014).
  20. Richard N. Campen letter (11 November 1930), in Lathem and Shribman, 136.
  21. Campen in Lathem and Shribman, 136.
  22. “News of the College,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (December 1931), 175.
  23. See, for example, Forrester Maphis and John S. Hatfield, eds., Aegis 1950 (1950), 56.

Bus stop construction begins; other items

  • The Innovation Center in 4 Currier has opened (Dartmouth Now). The design appears to be by Truex Cullins, who did the original building.

  • A little film introduces Perdido, the new sculpture on East Wheelock.

  • The Alumni Magazine has put up its electronic archive of every issue since the October 1905 Dartmouth Bi-Monthly, edited by E.M. Hopkins.

  • The post here on the topic of the new bus stop at the Hop complained about the sidewalk in front of the Inn. It turns out that that area is going to be reworked as well (Dartmouth Now). The sidewalk is growing, according to DCREO associate director of real estate Tim McNamara:

    The planned changes to the sidewalk and surrounding areas will effectively create two lanes as well as smoothing out the frost-heaved sections of sidewalk.

    “At present, pedestrians walking down East Wheelock have to pass under the porte-cochère,” says McNamara. “We will relocate the sidewalk to the outside of the porte-cochère so that pedestrians will not conflict with cars and guests coming and going from the Inn.”

    Moving the curb line out beyond the street’s current shoulder will also allow expansion of the Inn’s outdoor dining.

  • The Hopkins Center’s iconic Moore Theatre facade is also getting new double-pane windows (Dartmouth Now) ahead of the planned expansion and renovation. The D has a photo. (The Planner’s Blog has a post on the project)

  • Lebanon Junior High (J.F. Larson) is being renovated and reused, in part as the Spark Community Center. Studio Nexus is working on the building.

  • Project VetCare has purchased the 1907 house at 80 Lebanon Street and plans to rent rooms to three or more student veterans (Valley News). It’s the brown bungalow at the center of this Bing bird’s-eye view.

  • More great aerials: the Shower Towers and Kiewit, showing the committed but incongruous Bradley Plaza, and a 1919 photo of the Green showing the big tent set up for the 150th anniversary celebration. Most intriguing are this aerial and this aerial of Dartmouth Hall on fire in 1935. That was the fire that led Larson to gut the 1906 building and insert new floors and interiors, and to put up the current belfry and the three front gables showing the notable years.

  • One is relieved to see the College Usher (Dean of Libraries Jeffrey Horrell) identified as such in a Commencement photo showing him carrying Lord Dartmouth’s Cup.

  • A tidbit from the biography of the late David McLaughlin, Dartmouth President from 1981 to 1987. On the elimination of fraternities and sororities:

    In hindsight, I am convinced that the wrong approach was taken. Having been in a unique position to restructure the fraternity system, I should1 have been more decisive early in my presidency, during my “Honeymoon” period. Perhaps I could and should have eliminated the fraternities in their current form and redefined them — brought about some positive fundamental restructuring of the campus social system. Neither my predecessor nor my successors had such a golden opportunity, both being non-Dartmouth alumni and academics and, therefore, suspect from the outset, by alumni and students, as men having little, if any, use for the Greek system. But football-playing, fraternity-member David McLaughlin was a different story. Oh, the howling would have been long and loud, and many on the board would undoubtedly have opposed me, but I believe that I could have brought a majority of my fellow trustees along with me. What I should have said, quite emphatically, in that inaugural speech of mine was, “Dartmouth needs to dismantle fraternities as they exist today.”2

  • The Hood now has put up a page on the expansion, with no new info since June 11.

  • Memorial Field construction is set to begin November 17 and finish by September 1 (Planning Board minutes pdf).

—–

[Update 07.29.2014: Link to Planner’s Blog post added.]

[Update 07.22.2014: Link to photo of Hop windows added.]

—–

  1. David T. McLaughlin with Howard J. Coffin, Choices Made (Hanover, N.H.: Privately printed 2007), 135.
  2. David T. McLaughlin with Howard J. Coffin, Choices Made (Hanover, N.H.: Privately printed 2007), 136.

The Hanover Mobility Hub is what it’s called

The conceptual design by ORW, which won a design award from Vital Communities, shows a redesign and replacement of a group of features in front of the Hop: the pedestrian crossing, bus loading area, bus shelter, empty grass rectangle, etc. It will be a partly-federally funded Town project built on College land by an architect chosen by the College. Even though the original timeline aimed to finish the work in 2013 (Request for Qualifications pdf), it was not built then, but it looks like it was in design last fall (UVLSRPC minutes) and is out for bids now (Construction Data Company).

detail from ORW concept plan

Everything in the proposal is sensitive and unobtrusive, but one should note that this project will affect the appearance of the Hopkins Center. (In fact this will be one piece in the great parade of architectural interventions in the south side of the Green of 2012 through 2020.) During the warmer months, a dense block of trees here would hide several parts of the Hop, setting up the Moore Theatre as an independent pavilion — not necessarily a bad thing, and perhaps a good stopgap until we receive a full and true Hop addition, one that brings the building right up to the street.1

Paving

The Site Plan Concept by ORW (pdf page 4) is impressive. The most noticeable change might be the grove of trees. With a pea-gravel floor, this outdoor room screened by two ranks of trees arranged formally on axis with Wilson’s entrance (and a realigned set of Hop plaza steps) will be novel and interesting and civilized. This allee could be exquisitely beautiful in the winter with snow on the bare limbs and the tables.

The street improvements (bulbs, insular pedestrian refuge near the site of the former grassy median) are all important. The crosswalk has a note indicating that it is aligned with an axial view of Baker Library. One proposal is pretty subtle: the use of plaza paving materials (concrete pavers, say) in place of asphalt in the bus/dropoff zone. This is crucially important in reducing the perceived width of the street: Hanover is not that big, and it doesn’t need a five-lane street below the Green. Here’s hoping the paving proposal is realized. (Even if not, the plan will still remove the diagonal parking in front of the hop — good riddance.)

Maybe after this is built and enjoyed for a few years the Town will go further by raising the street level and bollarding off the plaza and the Green. The same thing should be done with the Inn’s porte-cochere and its garage ramp.2

Pavilion

One neat detail is a bit hidden: a little visitor’s information pavilion. In the site plan on page 4 it’s obscured by trees but is described as measuring 12 x 15 feet. On page 5 its side is shown as if seen from Wilson Hall.3

I imagine this pavilion helpfully blocking the wind in the winter but spending most of its time enclosing a few desultory racks of brochures for Quechee Gorge and Simon Pearce. It could replace the staffed, temporary kiosk that the Chamber of Commerce puts on the Green each summer [check]. But it could be much more: you can see its potential in the photo in the lower right part of page 3, the one showing the café tables and the menu board.

This pavilion could be a little coffee kiosk, a snack bar, or even a real bar, serving drinks out of a window.4 Not quite the Tavern on the Green or even the Out of Town News in Cambridge, but certainly at least as good as a sandwich kiosk in Bryant Park.

——–

  1. If the Hopkins Center were less of a suburban arts island and more of a conventional urban building (see 7 Lebanon Street), there would be no need for a warming shelter here. The business end of the Hop — everything on this facade except for the theater entrance — would come right up to the street alongside the Inn, and it would provide plenty of commercial rental space for a newsstand or a coffee shop that catered to bus travelers.
  2. At the moment these two asphalt drives are intrusions of the street into the sidewalk, not small portions of the sidewalk opened up to cars. The paving is opposite what it should be (Street View). In both cases, the sidewalk paving should extend all the way down to the street’s edge, and the boundary line should be located there. The existing bollards and floor level/lack of curbing are appropriate, however.
  3. In the perspective view on page 6 the pavilion is a bit hard to read. It is the dark glass box whose roof is the same height as that of the seating area in the foreground. The tall glass box near the center appears to be a possible Hop addition. The document is from July of 2011.
  4. For that matter, couldn’t the Inn breach the eastern wall of its patio and start serving people who sit under the trees here?

Rethinking traffic around the Green

The firm of RSG writes that, in connection with the BBB master plan, it:

conducted a comprehensive evaluation of traffic circulation around the campus green, which included the development of a detailed microsimulation model to evaluate the merits of various alternatives.

It is a good bet that one of the alternatives for the Green is the return of two-way traffic. Here is the current traffic pattern:

Map of Dartmouth Green traffic pattern

Current traffic pattern. Basemap excerpted from Dartmouth Campus Map.

It is not clear when the streets around three sides of the Green were made one-way streets. Much of the one-waying done in the Sixties and Seventies in the interest of moving traffic through American cities is now seen as undesirable for a number of reasons. The Yale Master Plan (pdf) has several observations on pages 45 and 119:

Bicyclists tend to go the wrong way on one-way streets if they view it as the shortest path to their destination. This fact suggests the benefit of reconfiguring those streets to make cycling and walking easier.

One-way streets can be particularly hostile to those visiting Downtown, and motorists often see destinations but must recirculate through the system to reach them…. Motorists must travel further and turn more in one-way street systems than along two-way streets, and crossings are also particularly difficult for pedestrians. We recommend encouraging the City to expand its recent conversion of one-way streets to two-way traffic…. New Haven would certainly not be alone if it followed this initiative. Because of the direct impact of transportation on the accessibility and viability of urban centers, many cities are examining traffic patterns and the balance among transportation modes. To return downtown streets to a human scale and promote a more pedestrian and retail-friendly environment, recent initiatives in many places have concentrated on slowing traffic, and more and more cities have converted (or are considering converting) the one-way streets to two-way.

Here is a look at the Green with two-way traffic:

Map of Dartmouth Green traffic pattern

Restoring the Green’s historic two-way traffic pattern.

The Yale plan states on page 119:

Those traffic engineers and planners who support converting the one-way streets to two-way use readily admit that the change might selectively increase traffic congestion. However, rather than concentrating on their lost capacity to move vehicles, these professionals focus on the slower, calmer traffic and how that improves the livability and potential for growth of urban environments, business districts and neighborhoods.

Another alternative at Dartmouth might adopt another extreme, a pattern that attempts to eliminate traffic from as much of the Green as possible:

Map of Dartmouth Green traffic pattern

Pedestrianizing the streets around the Green.

Expanding the Green in this way could make for some very pleasant spaces, particularly if the grass were carried up to SAE. Care would have to be taken to preserve some of the proportions of the streets in the paths that replaced them, an effect not shown here. Although closing College and Wentworth Streets would increase traffic on North Main and Maynard, the increase probably would not be great. Outside of term time, the Green would seem more like a dead zone (or a park, depending on your perspective) than it does now.

The list of alternatives would not be complete without a traffic circle:

Map of Dartmouth Green traffic pattern

Traffic around the Green as controlled by a traffic circle.

The college planners probably are not thinking of this alternative, since the redesign of the town’s main intersection seems to be more of a task for the municipal authorities. This option also removes the space-hogging diagonal parking and the turn lane from the south end of the Green.

—–
[Update 02.08.2014: RSG concludes (pdf) that “we do not feel that any of the two-way Green circulation options warrant additional investigation.” Very interesting. The report does, however, propose to narrow East Wheelock in front of the Hop in much the same way the image above does.]


The new Fullington Barn; what did Eleazar brew?

TimberHomes LLC writes:

On a warm late-October day students and staff from Dartmouth College joined the TimberHomes LLC crew to raise the Fullington Barn, a 26’x36′ timber frame structure that will be used for farm related tasks and storage. Over the course of the next two weeks students and staff will continue to work with us to “finish” the frame by installing the roof & siding material, windows & doors, and also creating an insulated room.

The Dartmouth reports on the project, and Dartmouth’s Flickr photostream has a photo. (Dartmouth is also building a 9×12 privy for two composting toilets out there, according to the Hanover Planning Board minutes of August 21, 2012, pdf.)

This barn-raising is not the first for the college. Eleazar Wheelock wrote of the period ending September 10, 1772:

I have now finished (so far as to render comfortable and decent) the building to accommodate my students, of eighty by thirty-two feet, and have done it in the plainest and cheapest manner, which furnishes sixteen comfortable rooms, besides a kitchen, hall, and store-room. I have also built a saw-mill and grist-mill, which appear to be well done, and are the property of the school, and will likely afford a pretty annual income to it. I have also built two barns, one of twenty-eight by thirty-two feet, the other of fifty-five by forty, and fifteen feet post.1

Those are very interesting details, but it gets even better:

I have also raised, and expect to finish, within a few days, a malt-house of thirty feet square, and several other lesser buildings which were found necessary. I have cleared, and in a good measure fitted for improvement, about seventy or eighty acres of land, and seeded with English grain about twenty acres, from which I have taken at the late harvest, what was esteemed a good crop, considering the land was so lately laid open to the sun. I have cut what is judged to be equal to fourteen or fifteen tons of good hay, which I stacked, by which the expense of supporting a team and cows the ensuing winter may be considerably lessened. I have also about eighteen acres of Indian corn now on the ground, which promises a good crop. My laborers are preparing more lands for improvement; some to sow with English grain this fall, and others for pasturing[.]2

The Malthouse, which stood near where Wheeler Hall now stands, would have been used to prepare English grain (and corn?) for brewing in the Brewhouse:

A little more than three Years ago, there was nothing to be seen here but a horrid Wilderness, now there are eleven comfortable Dwelling-Houses (besides the large one I built for my Students, and other necessary Buildings, as Barns, Malt House, Brew-House, Shops, &c.) and some of them reputable ones, built by Tradesmen, and such as have settled in some Connection with, and have been admitted for the Benefit of this School, and the most of them near finished, and all expect to be habitable and comfortable before Winter, and all within Sixty Rods of the College[.]3

It is not known where the Brewhouse stood, but it would have been on or near the Green. Wheelock also described that building, or a pair of buildings, as the “brew and bake house.”4

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  1. Eleazar Wheelock, A Continuation of the Narrative, &c. from May 6, 1771, to September 10, 1772 (Eleazar Wheelock, 1773), 3-4.
  2. Id., 4.
  3. Eleazar Wheelock, A Continuation of the Narrative of the Indian Charity School, &c. from Sept. 26, 1772, to Sept. 26, 1773 (Hartford, Conn.: Eleazar Wheelock, 1773), 22-23.
  4. Eleazar Wheelock, Hanover, N.H., to the Honorable Trust, London, England (10 November 1773), in appendix to David McClure and Elijah Parish, eds., Memoirs of the Rev. Eleazar Wheelock (Newburyport, Mass.: Edward Little & Co.), 305-306 (“It so happens, that the store house, brew and bake house, and also the mills which I have built, stand upon my own land.”).

The graphical Green; arts events

As seen at Dartmouth Now, the Year of the Arts logo initially reads as a cluster of cinema searchlight beams:

But of course it is a map of the paths on the Green, with north to the left. A larger version of the logo at the festival’s website takes on the appearance of a print, or perhaps a painting.

Coverage of the opening of the Visual Arts Center may be found in The Dartmouth and Dartmouth Now. Hood Director Taylor speaks about the Kelly sculpture and its aircraft-grade aluminum in video. The Valley News has a story on the Hop at 50, and the Year of the Arts site has a timeline of the arts on campus beginning with 1962.


Reactions to the first view of the future Inn addition

The Alumni Magazine published two letters critical of a rendering of the proposed Inn addition. (It is not clear that the rendering represents a final design.)

One writer laments the lack of a railing for putting one’s feet upon, although the rendering shows clearly that the existing railing, located within the arcade that screens the recessed porch where the rocking chairs are, will be retained.

The same letter called the design “nontraditional,” and that might be accurate. The most prominent part of the addition will be a new porte-cochere, and the rendering seems to show it as a Modernist structure. But look at the Inn itself: it features an uncharacteristic mansard roof; a lack of shutters; the omission of traditional building details such as quoining, lintels, or sills; and the absence of columns or much reference to the Classical orders. The main block of the Inn was designed by Hilton architect William B. Tabler and completed in 1967.

Hanover Inn pre-1967

The nineteenth-century Hanover Inn before its 1960s demolition


The gates of Dartmouth

Although Dartmouth seems to take some pride in having a campus without any gates, it could still benefit from the exercise of defining a campus boundary and identifying the major entrances to the academic precinct. A sketch from several years ago:

map of Dartmouth boundaries and possible gates

This is all fairly obvious, but it does not seem to receive much attention in writing. The greatest coherence (and the greatest support for the idea of walkability) seems to be achieved by reducing the number of gates and pulling them inward.

The only site where two gates would stand close to each other is at the southwest corner of the Green. Pulling the gates toward the center would allow them to share a single gatepost on the Green itself, but that would detract significantly from the Green and would interfere with the tree on the corner. Here, the gates should spring from the Inn and C&G (south gate) and from Collis and C&G (west gate):

map of possible gates

Again, this is not a proposal, and Dartmouth does not need any more* gates.

However, if this sort of project were built, and if it were differentiated from its direct ancestor, Charles McKim’s wonderful gates at Harvard, the builders couldn’t go wrong with a set massive rusticated granite piers supporting a timber truss. This would refer to the Connecticut river bridges, especially Rufus Graves’s arched truss of the late eighteenth century.

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* Tuck Drive was built with a brick gateway at each end. The lower example survives. More recently, Scully-Fahey Field was erected with a large freestanding gateway.

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Dartmouth Traditions by William Carroll Hill (1901)

Download

Download a pdf version of William Carroll Hill’s 1901 book, Dartmouth Traditions.

About the Book

William Carroll Hill (1875-1943?), of Nashua, N.H., received his Bachelor of Letters degree, a degree offered only between 1884 and 1904, in 1902. He was the historian of his class and wrote the Chronicles section of the the 1902 Class Day volume, a book that the printer gave the appearance as Dartmouth Traditions. Hill became an antiquarian, genealogist, and historian and apparently wrote a history of the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

Dartmouth Traditions was published when Hill was a junior. The book is not really about traditions and probably would be better titled Dartmouth Worthies. It is a collection of essays written by students and alumni. While the essays on Daniel Webster and other known personages are not very useful, some essays appear the contain information that is only available in this book. Examples are the report on the investigation into the history of the Lone Pine and the first-person account of the drowning death of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s son.

About this Project

The transcription of this somewhat hard-to-find book began in 2003. The book has since become available in Google Books, which somewhat defeats the purpose of the project. The Google Books version has the great advantage of reproducing the attractive typography of the original, but its computer transcription is not as accurate as that of the version presented here.

[Update 05.13.2011: The Rauner Library Blog has a post on Hill, highlighting the Stowe episode.]

[Update 12.21.2010: Link to pdf posted.]

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The unidirectional kickoff

One of the distinctive features of Dartmouth-Rules Football, a local soccer of the mid-nineteenth century, was the fact that the kickoff was unidirectional. Although scoring was permitted on either the east or west side of the Green, the kickoff (called “the warn”) always went eastward from the spot where second base would be located during baseball season.

schematic diagram of Old Division Football pitch, Dartmouth College

The rule might have been motivated by politics, courtesy, or efficiency. While there was nothing breakable in the college yard east of the Green, a row of professors’ houses stood on the west side.

The unidirectional kickoff was brought to mind recently with the news that the rules for the Illinois vs. Northwestern game at Wrigley Field had been changed to require all offensive plays to drive toward the west end zone. Although scoring was permitted in both end zones, when possession changed, the teams switched sides. Planners made this modification to reduce the number of plays taking in the east end zone, which is cramped by the baseball stadium’s right-field wall.

(Old Division Football basically evolved into the Football Rush, which can be seen at the 8:26 mark in this 1947 film. The arbitrary violence and utter lack of anything resembling game play suggest why the annual freshman-sophomore event later was turned into a tug-of-war and eventually was eliminated.)


Recent Dartmouth-related notes not involving construction

Various tidbits not related to construction:

  • Google has supplemented its car-based Street View coverage of Hanover and Lebanon by sending in a tricycle-mounted camera (The Dartmouth). New images will be up next year. Meanwhile some places, such as the University of Texas, are getting 45-degree aerial views, presumably taken from an airplane.
  • Professor Schweitzer’s Occom Circle Project involves digitizing and posting Samson Occom’s writings (The Dartmouth, Dartmouth Now). The project doesn’t seem to have a page yet.
  • Rauner’s blog has a copy of an early-1900s broadside advertising a ban on nude swimming near Ledyard Bridge, and a bit on the legendary Doc Benton.
  • As everybody knows, BlitzMail is going away. An oblitzuary.
  • Ask Dartmouth writes about the Old Pine Lectern.
  • Ken Burns wrote in American Heritage that his favorite baseball photograph is an 1882 image showing a Dartmouth-Harvard game on the northwest corner of the Green. Photographer Joseph Mehling has paired that photo with shots from a recent softball game on the northeast corner, with President Kim pitching.
  • This excellent fantastical map of the campus by Matthieu and Zachary Pierce is called “Dartmouth Dreaming.”
  • Administrative reports and presidential announcements, such as the Reaccreditation Self-Study, now regularly mention the planning for the 2019 Quartomillennium.
  • The Dartmouth Sports site has been redesigned and is now a little less busy.

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[Update 12.02.2012: Broken link to Google post at the blog of The Dartmouth removed; broken link to 1992 American Heritage article removed.]


Publications, including a 1954 Carnival film

This has probably been mentioned here before: “Dartmouth by Air,” a video by the Media Production Group, is worth watching.

The red jeep visible alongside the Green in this postcard appears in a 1954 film. Bill Miles '56 notes in the comments that he played Freddy and that Bob Black '56 played Eddy in the film. The Alpha Delta house stands in for a dormitory in the serenade scene.

Rauner’s blog has several photos of skijoring at Carnival.

Transcripts of President Hopkins’s oral-history interviews from 1958 to 1964 are now available (see also Rauner blog).

Steve Waterhouse '65 has written A Passion for Skiing about Dartmouth’s contribution to the skiing industry (Vail Today).

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[Update 05.12.2013: Broken link to Vail Today fixed.]
[Update 11.17.2012: Broken postcard link fixed.]


“Whittemore Green” as a name

As the irregular grassy plot in front of the River Cluster becomes better defined and and is transformed into a front door to the Tuck School (through the school’s Whittemore Hall), the space needs a name.

Landscape architects Saucier & Flynn have mentioned “Whittemore Green” in town planning meetings (pdf).

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[Update 11.17.2012: Broken link to 11 July 2006 minutes removed.]