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The History of Gothic Architecture

Cambridge and Princeton

Princeton University was the heir-apparent to the Oxford-Cambridge tradition of Gothic design and perhaps the most influential power in the expansion of Collegiate Gothic architecture on America’s college campuses. (3)


St. John's College (Cambridge University). Courtesy of Wikipedia.


Princeton University Chapel.
Courtesy of Ford Farewell Mills and Gatsch.

The University’s popular belief in the inheritance of the English tradition was confirmed in Princeton’s designated “quadrangles”, modeled after Oxford and Cambridge. The reproduction of Oxford in stone and mortar further emphasized Princeton's academic legitimacy and status” with the oldest centers of learning in England. (4)

Another important aspect which strengthened Princeton’s association with England was the composition of its student body. By the early 1900s, Princeton had broken away from its Presbyterian roots and there was a plurality of Episcopalian students at the university due to an increasingly affluent student body.

Ralph Cram was the designer of Princeton's Gothic Chapel, a project that cost the university $2,500,000. The structure is one of the largest college chapels in the world.

For more information on Ralph Cram, Click Here

Atlas Home Page

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The History of Gothic Architecture:
Cambridge and Princeton
About Ralph Cram

A Time of Transition:
Bryn Mawr
Mary E. Woolley
Frederick Olmsted Jr.

The Envisioned Plan:
Program for Campus Development
Designs for the Library and Chapel
Shurtleff and Cram Present Their Ideas

The Implemented Plan:
Meetings and Discussions
Collens' Library Designs(Exterior)
Collens' Library Designs (Interior)
Bertha Blakely's Influence
Abbey Memorial Chapel
Charles Collens Dedication Speech and closing comments

Trivial Pursuit Question



This page was created by Ellie Perrier '07 FP in History 283, Spring 2006