Quartomillennium ’19

Google Maps; other topics

May 4th, 2014  |  Published in all news, Collis Center, History, Hop, the, Lamb & Rich, Larson, Jens, preservation, publications, Quartomillennium '19

Google’s latest (July 2013) Street View of the SoWhee complex: interesting sky.

  • The British Pathe Archive has a 1935 newsreel called “Tricks on Skis” that shows some early extreme skiing (or “scheeing,” as the announcer says it) at Dartmouth. A film about the 1939 Carnival shows Dick Durrance winning the slalom.

    The archive also has a fascinating pre-1920 silent film of an unidentified Maori rugby team performing a haka. All of Wikipedia’s examples of U.S. teams with a haka tradition involve gridiron football rather than rugby.

  • Post-VAC, the art studios in the Hop have been renamed the Hop Garage and Loew’s has been renamed the Hood Auditorium.

  • Oudens Ello has photos of the Collis renovation.

  • As part of Brown’s 250th anniversary celebration, Brown’s museum (in the amazing Doric Manning Hall) is presenting an exhibit titled “In Deo Speramus: The Symbols and Ceremonies of Brown University” through October 2015. The exhibit sounds worthy of being made a permanent one. Dartmouth should have a permanent one too — a permanent presentation of a history of the college and place where significant objects are kept. Part of the space can be devoted to the changing exhibits that now appear in the College History Room, which is really more of an Alcove.

  • Back in March the cover story in the DAM was a history of Dartmouth in fifty objects. The text notes that the College Usher, “usually the dean of libraries,” has carried Lord Dartmouth’s Cup at Commencement since 1983. That is an interesting (E.C. Lathem?) innovation, since the cup has been at the college since 1969; its use in the procession definitely removes any need for a mace. And let this post serve as a further encouragement of the revival of any other unfilled charter offices in time for 2019. The charter authorizes the trustees to “from time to time as occasion shall require elect constitute & appoint a TREASURER a CLERK an USHER & a Steward.”

  • By the way, the Alumni Magazine has announced that it’s going to have every issue on line soon, back to No. 1 in 1908.

  • Google Maps now let you see Street Views back in time (C|Net, Google Lat Long). In Hanover, the McLean ESC appears with and without the penthouse addition as you toggle between October 2010 and July 2013. Some places have three or four generations of imagery: at 8 Occom Ridge you can see a real turn-of-the-century Arts and Crafts house get replaced. On Webster Avenue you can see the original Sig Ep house, then the current house under construction, then the finished product. And let’s not forget Alpha Phi, replacing Larson’s faculty apartments.

  • Google Maps also lets you rotate aerial views now. The new perspective makes a place seem foreign: what’s this zig-zaggy campus tucked into a neighborhood of nice houses?

  • Much will change in the Sargent Block (Bing aerial), possibly starting during 2015. Naturally the Beyer Blinder Belle master plan (post) shows the block transformed.

  • Naming: NATO’s practice of assigning a reporting name to each type of Soviet aircraft (Bear, Foxbat) is familiar, but NATO also has named a U.S.-built aircraft, the P-63 Kingcobra. It was called Fred.

  • Archeology for fun: the unsold Atari cartridges for the E.T. video game have been found in a New Mexico landfill where they were dumped in 1983 (Kotaku.com, Wikipedia).

  • The Valley News story on the success of the equestrian team states that although the team once was the province

    of the Dean of the College and the Dartmouth Outing Club, equestrian moved over to the college’s athletic department three years ago.

Dig the buttressing on the brick screening wall behind the Life Sciences Center.


[Update 05.18.2014: I must have read this but forgotten the details. From Edward Connery Lathem’s 2009 memorial:

Mr. Lathem’s having in 1983 pointed out that Dartmouth’s royal charter of 1769 provides for inclusion among the institution’s officers of an usher, as well as a steward, caused the college’s board of trustees to reinstitute both of those long-dormant posts, and he from that point onward served as college usher, functioning as such within the ceremonial pagentry of annual convocation and commencement exercises.

I hope the steward’s present obscurity does not mean that the office goes unfilled.]

New surgical wing; other topics

April 23rd, 2014  |  Published in all news, Baker Library, coat of arms, Connecticut River, graphic design, History, Hood, Lamb & Rich, Larson, Jens, Med. School, other projects, preservation, publications, Quartomillennium '19, Rugby Club

  • The college recently unveiled a plaque announcing the Orozco Frescoes’ status as a National Historic Landmark (Dartmouth Now). No images yet.

  • Dartmouth Engineer has a story on the new Center for Surgical Innovation. This addition to DHMC is one of the few parts of the complex not designed by SBRA (post).

  • A Kendal news release on master planning refers to the acquisition of the Chieftain. A future expansion of the retirement center could make a neat feature out of the Chieftain’s rowing dock.

  • The New York Times has a story on the planned demolition of the Folk Art Museum to make way for an expansion of MOMA next door. (The architects of the Folk Art Museum, Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, are designing an expansion of Dartmouth’s Hood Museum that preserves and reuses Wilson Hall next door.)

  • Enjoy the retro poster (via Big Green Alert Daily) for round one of the Varsity Cup rugby tournament, held at the Rugby Clubhouse. Dartmouth won the match.

  • CurbedNY has a bit on the Guastavino family. The one grandly-scaled Guastavino-tiled space at Dartmouth, the surgical theatre at the old hospital, no longer exists, but the firm’s vault in the hospital’s one surviving wing remains on Rope Ferry Road. Also check out the entry vestibule of McNutt Hall, likely a Guastavino structure (post).

  • UPNE is listing a publication of a partner called Voice of the Åland Churches by Åsa Ringbom. How about that. Åland (Wikipedia) is an autonomous island province of Finland located in the Baltic partway to Sweden. It has its own stamps and a striking flag that reflect its largely Swedish ethnicity.

  • Dartmouth needs to name at least one building for the building’s architect. This is not an uncommon practice, although only one example comes to mind, the Norman Shaw Buildings at Parliament in London (Wikipedia; W&M’s main building was not designed by Christopher Wren). The designers who need recognition at Dartmouth are Charles A. Rich and Jens F. Larson. The bulk of the campus was created by these two College Architects in succession between about 1895 and 1939. The one building on which both architects did extensive work is the Heating Plant, which Rich built as a one-story building and Larson raised by one story. Maybe when the Heating Plant is taken over by the college museum, these artists can be credited and the building can be known as the Rich-Larson Wing of the Hood Museum of Art.

  • Brown started up its 250th anniversary celebration last month. Dartmouth’s ex-president Jim Yong Kim, a 1982 Brown graduate, gave a lecture at the Opening Celebration. The “Traditions” section of the 250th website explains that Brown chose the brown bear as its mascot in 1904 and in 1905 brought a live bear to a football game — the Dartmouth game — for the first time. Dartmouth won. (Brown doesn’t call the anniversary a “quartomillenium” or “sestercentenary” but a “semiquincentenary.”)

  • DUSA (Dartmouth Uniformed Service Alumni) has an informative page devoted to its symbols. As is traditional, the shield has the wavy lines representing the Connecticut River in the base. One wonders whether every organization, including the college, would benefit from depicting the River as a set of wavy bars thick enough to have their own colors, perhaps blue or even white (alternating with the green color of the field).

  • Interface: News and Information from Dartmouth Computing Services is back. One might recall the nice paper magazine iteration of Interface from the late 1990s.

  • The football team will wear an alternate helmet design at some point this fall, notes Tris Wykes in the Valley News. Perhaps influenced by trends in cars (Financial Times, Autoweek) or the Pro-Tec helmets worn by skateboarders or special operators, matte black seems to be gaining popularity in football. Examples are found at Cincinnati and Oregon; Missouri seems to have been an early proponent in 2009 with its Nike Pro Combat uniform (see Uniform Critics).


Update 05.22.2014: Banwell architect Ingrid Nichols’s resume (pdf) states:

Banwell has joined forces with a national Kendal design architect, RLPS and together are completing a master plan for a new 20 acre abutting parcel they have recently purchased. We are also completing a master plan for their existing campus including: Additions for independent living, nursing, health center, fitness center (pool, locker rooms, exercise rooms and activity room).

Ideas for the visual identity guidelines

October 9th, 2013  |  Published in all news, graphic design, History, other projects, publications, Quartomillennium '19

If you’re working on the branding effort (see the previous post on the topic), I would recommend a visit to the archives to see some things:

  • The green ribbon and its story. The college is represented by a single color.
  • Typical accent colors are black, lavender, and white. White is used frequently in athletics. No big green-and-gold tradition seems to exist.
  • The seal and its history. More effort could be devoted to reserving the seal for official uses only.
  • The midcentury shield now in use, and the recent proposal for an heraldic coat of arms.
  • The Bicentennial medal designed by Rudolph Ruzicka.
  • Anything designed by John Scotford.
  • Anything produced by the Stinehour Press (photo of exhibit, Valley News story) or Ray Nash, of the Graphic Arts Workshop (Rauner bio); also books published by the Dartmouth College Press.
  • Copies of the ORC from various periods.
  • Copies of The Dartmouth from various periods, especially before WWII.
  • Carnival posters, especially those produced before 1959.
  • Things made of leather and wood: Daniel Webster’s water bucket and old ski boots, senior canes and snowshoes.

version of proposed coat arms

Around campus, you might take note of the white color of Dartmouth Hall and the finely-speckled gray/white of the granite used in the foundations of many buildings. (That granite is not likely to be local; for a local granite, see the pinkish stone of Rollins Chapel, a stone that has not been used very widely on campus.) The brick walls with their varied colors, from black to brown to red, are characteristic of the campus, although the style of brickwork was originally called “Harvard brick.” There are many useful greens, including the patina of the copper roofs, the paint used on building shutters, the color of the shaggy pines along the riverbank, and the sometimes-black color of the river itself. An example of lavender appears in the glass of the Baker Tower clock.

medal reverse   medal obverse

A list of style guides from Logo Design Love has some nice examples. Duke’s guide announces that the word “University” in the Duke wordmark is set in Interstate, the typeface developed for road signs by the Department of Transportation. Yale’s identity site is prepared by the Office of the University Printer rather than the PR office. Princeton’s guide (pdf) on page 21 explains the difference between the seal and the shield, and it goes so far as to deface the seal with the word “SAMPLE” since, as the text explains, the seal is not for the public — not even by way of example! (Unlike B.U.) Oxford’s logo page has great visual appeal and actually is fairly flexible in its rules. University College Oxford has a guide by Franks and Franks (portfolio example) that looks nice and builds a traditionalist logotype around an abbreviation and nickname (“Univ.”).

[Update 05.03.2014: Broken link to Princeton guidelines replaced; point about “SAMPLE” no longer valid.]


February 6th, 2012  |  Published in all news, coat of arms, History, publications, Quartomillennium '19

The website for the current strategic planning process uses the 2019 Quartomillenium as an endpoint, with its motto “Imagine the Next 250.”

The Bicentennial year of 1969-1970 gives an example of what the Quartomillenium could be. There were three big events according to Charles Widmeyer in John Sloan Dickey: A Chronicle of His Presidency of Dartmouth College (1991), 250, 271. Those events were:

  1. The Bicentennial Commencement in the summer of 1969.
  2. Dartmouth Day (i.e. Charter Day), December 13, 1969. This was the focal point of the year, and it involved a fireworks display, a parade around the Green, and a proclamation by the Governor in front of the Hop (the Bicentennial plaque is in the Zahm Garden).
  3. The Third Century Convocation in the Fall of 1970.

The notable commemorative objects produced for the Bicentennial included:

  1. A USPS stamp designed by John Scotford, technically in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Dartmouth College Case, since USPS does not recognize individual schools or their anniversaries.
  2. A new college flag with its stylized pine symbol designed by Scotford.
  3. A medal designed by Rudolph Ruzicka and struck by the U.S. Mint at Philadelphia, requiring an act of Congress:

dartmouth medal

dartmouth medal

The Quartomillenium could include these events:

  1. A commemoration of the Bicentennial of the Dartmouth College Case.
  2. A visit by the 10th Earl of Dartmouth.
  3. The receipt from the College of Arms of letters patent granting to Dartmouth an honorary coat of arms along these lines:

proposed arms

Brand identity topics

November 15th, 2011  |  Published in all news, coat of arms, graphic design, History, Med. School, photos June 2011, publications, Quartomillennium '19, Thayer School, Tuck School

I. The Dartmouth Company

Curiously, there is a Boston-based real estate company called The Dartmouth Company. It makes good use of serifs and a dark green color on its website and seems to operate in New Hampshire. See also the more obvious reference to the college at the Dartmouth Education Foundation.

II. The Arms of Dartmouth’s Schools

The Dartmouth College website seems to be doing something new when it describes the institution as a collection of five apparently equal schools:

shields from webpage

Excerpt from college website.

The harmonization and use of the schools’ shields is commendable.

But this arrangement seems to contradict the rule that Dartmouth is the college. The “Associated Schools” — Tuck, Thayer, Medical, and lately the graduate programs — are associated with the college but are not coequals beneath a central university administration. Because “Dartmouth” is the undergraduate college, there is no need to put the letters “CA&S” before one’s class year, for example.

Tom Owen writes in The Dartmouth today:

In the discussion following Kim’s address, Provost Carol Folt said there is a “complicated set of reasons” for the gap between Dartmouth’s national and international rankings. Two of the major contributing factors are Dartmouth’s lack of a “university” title and Dartmouth’s focus on undergraduates, both of which have hurt Dartmouth’s international reputation.


Although large-scale changes may be necessary in the next decade, alumni must see new developments as part of an institutional history of adaptation rather than as a threat to tradition, Kim said.

The school’s Quartomillennium celebration in 2019 would be a good time to launch something new.


  1. 25.2012 update: Education Foundation link added.

Hanover’s 250th anniversary

May 15th, 2011  |  Published in all news, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., History, publications, Quartomillennium '19

The Valley News has set up a site dedicated to Hanover’s 250th anniversary this July 4th. The site announces that Jay Barrett is giving several talks, gives a schedule of town events, and links to the town’s Flickr account where historical photos are kept.

The Dartmouth Arms

November 30th, 2010  |  Published in all news, coat of arms, graphic design, History, publications, Quartomillennium '19, site updates

Jonathan Good wrote a proposal for a heraldic coat of arms for Dartmouth College in 1995. This website has linked to Good’s pamphlet at several locations over the years and is happy to host it once again.

As the proposal explains, the new symbol would be an adjunct to the existing coat of arms rather than a replacement for it.

The celebration of Dartmouth’s 250th anniversary in 2019 would be a fine time to adopt the coat of arms. At the last big college celebration of this kind, the 1969 bicentennial, the school adopted the lone pine device that has since become widespread.

The school might even petition the College of Arms for a grant of honorary arms, as has been done by George Washington University and Hampden-Sydney College.

A few of Scott Meacham’s own cut-and-paste efforts to render the proposed arms:

Proposed arms for Dartmouth as designed by Good and depicted by Meacham

Proposed arms for Dartmouth as designed by Good and depicted by Meacham

Proposed arms for Dartmouth as designed by Good and depicted by Meacham

[Update 11.17.2012: Broken link to HSC page fixed.]
[Update 11.30.2010: GWU link corrected.]

Recent Dartmouth-related notes not involving construction

October 24th, 2010  |  Published in all news, graphic design, Green, the, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., History, publications, Quartomillennium '19

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.

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

Planning Dartmouth’s 250th

January 17th, 2010  |  Published in all news, Charter, History, Quartomillennium '19

Governor Wentworth signed Dartmouth’s charter — really more like its letters patent — on December 13, 1769. President Kim has made the 250th anniversary of this event in 2019 a sort of goal or endpoint for a ten-year budget process, such as in his October 26 faculty address (Vox), his presentation to the board at its fall meeting (The Dartmouth), and his December 1 financial presentation (pdf).

Although it is early to plan for the actual event, Professor Fischel’s letter to the editor of The Dartmouth suggests a new term: “quartomillennial” instead of “semiquincentennial.”