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History and Haverford College (HC)

History and Haverford College (Krippner) Summer 2013


Haverford: A Venn Diagram by Thy Anh Vo published in the magazine, The Clerk


This cartoon map, made by Jacob Riegel Junior in 1933 as part of Haverford's celebration of its hundreth anniversary, incorporates many drawings of campus buildings, personalities, and events.  There are also jokes and references to campus customs.
See the Key to the 1933 Map below for explanations of scenes and buildings.  See enlarged view of the map.

Questions and Lists about Haverford


Key to the 1933 Haverford College Map

Key to the Haverford College Map of 1933


J.A. Babbitt “Doc” served the college in many capacities in the years 1893-1941, from medical and athletic advisor to registrar and professor of physiology, hygiene and physical education.

Built in 1875-77 by Quaker architect, Addison Hutton as a separate student dormitory after Founders, Barclay Hall gave students the first sense of being on the honor code.  It provided many modern facilities lacking in Haverford’s first building. In 1947, a tower that was originally part of the building burned.


David Scull Bispham, class of 1876, brought a zither to college and was told he must practice it off campus as music was forbidden at the time.  Bispham went on to become the world’s most prominent Baritone, starring at Covent Garden and Metropolitan Operas.  He was later granted an honorary doctorate from Haverford.


Cane Fight was a physical struggle of the freshman class to hold onto a cane and thus have the privilege of carrying their canes during the first year of college.  A certain amount of clothing was shed during the fray.


Freshmen wore identifying clothing until 1938, such as a Cap (or beanie), a stiff collar, and bow tie.


An unofficial drama group was organized in 1895-6 with a reincarnation in 1910 (under the leadership of Christopher Morley, class of 1910) as the Cap & Bells Club.


President Isaac Sharpless brought Harry Carter to campus to take care of the grounds and be a general handyman.


William Carvill, the English Gardener, is said to have taught the boys of Haverford cricket in 1833. Yet Carvill was not hired until 1835, and possibly not until 1839.


Pliny Earle Chase joined the faculty of Haverford in the 1871-72 academic year as Professor of Natural Science.  Chase was named Acting President of Haverford in 1875.  From 1875-1886 Chase held the chair of Philosophy and Logic.  Haverford awarded him an honorary doctorate in 1876 because of “his attainments and original researches in Mental and Physical Philosophy.”  The numbers vary according to different sources, but Chase was said to be familiar with 133 languages and dialects.  He wrote over 150 papers in philosophy, meteorology, and metaphysics.


Named for President Thomas Chase, Chase Hall was built as a humanities classroom in 1887-88.


In the early days, the Board of Managers invested in a railroad siding next to the college in order that freight cars carrying Coal could more easily be brought to Haverford. Although wood was the earliest heating method, coal clearly was employed.


William Wistar Comfort was president of Haverford from 1917-1940.


Cope Field was named for Henry “Trolley” Cope (class of 1869) for his long connection to Haverford cricket playing. Early prints suggest that cricket was originally played in front of Founders Hall.  By 1884, this field was being used for the game.  The decision to name the field after Henry Cope was made in 1903.


Given the great importance of Cricket on campus, the Alumni Association raised the money to build the Cricket Pavilion in 1904.  The architect, Walter Price (class of 1881) was an important regional figure who had also served the College as assistant librarian from 1881-1883.


Cricket Shed was built in 1893 and there freshmen were taught the art of the game, so popular at Haverford .  Cricket had been a Haverford sport possibly since 1833 and its athletes participated in the first American intercollegiate match in 1864.  


Until the D.C. was built in 1965, students ate (and occasionally had food fights and other events) in the Dining Hall we now call Founders Great Hall.


Built between 1832 & 1834, Founders Hall was the original building of the college, and was simply referred to as the “school building.” It was the only classroom building until the construction of the annex (now the Gest Center) and only dormitory until Barclay was built in 1875-1877.  The original building was largely planned by the Board of Managers, although Philadelphia carpenter and sometime architect George Seneff provided drawings from which the builders, Esrey and Attmore, worked.  When the school first opened in October of 1833 the building was not yet finished.


A.W. (Pop) Haddleton was a track & field coach for 35 years and 585 meets, beginning in 1929.


Lyman Beecher Hall “Chem Lab” was named after Lyman Beecher Hall, who taught chemistry and physics at Haverford from 1880-1917.  It opened in 1911.


Coach Harvey Harmon had one of the best-known American football coaching careers, a career that spanned the 1930s to the 1950s at Haverford.


Music was allowed on the Haverford campus only gradually and the first Haverford College Song Book was published in 1903. However, its numerous alma maters, football songs, and excerpts from campus entertainments composed by Haverford students indicate that this type of musical activity had been going on surreptitiously for years. Additional songbooks came out in 1912, 1916, 1934, and 1954.


Built as the first Haverford student union, Haverford Union represents the evangelical Christianity that even penetrated Quaker Haverford.  The building opened in 1910.  It was paid for by Alfred P. Smith, subject to the requirements that it be available for use by the YMCA and that he be allowed to reside in its northern wing. Over the years it has housed the “coop,” the campus bookstore, and a billiard room. Today, Union is the home of the music department, with practice rooms, library and music professors’ offices.


“Heiferford”: In the 1880s, students “borrowed” a calf from farmer Robert Love and imported it into Barclay Hall.  While trying to quell the disturbance, a faculty member was almost tied in the room where the calf was domiciled.


Samuel Hilles, who was Haverford’s first Principal (a term employed before there was a president) from 1833-1834, was a mathematics teacher and a good fit for the managers’ 1831 requirement that “the Principal shall have charge of the government, order and domestic economy of the family.”


Hilles Laboratory of Applied Science, built in 1928-1929 merges the local fieldstone/schist with French detail on the facade, and factory-like wing at the rear. Hilles Laboratory served the engineering program that was inaugurated in the 1880s and by the 1920s was one of the largest departments in the college. The college’s first mainframe computer was housed in the building, installed in 1961.


John the Peanut Man Nelli could be found on Haverford’s campus in the early 20th century.  In a photo dated 1917, he exhibits certain wares, which were perhaps for sale.


Rufus Matthew Jones (1863-1948) was educated at Haverford College and Harvard University and studied languages and philosophy at the University of Heidelberg.  In 1893 Jones became philosophy professor at Haverford College and editor of several Quaker periodicals.  Jones was active in the international efforts of Friends through such organizations as World Conference of Friends and American Friends Service Committee.  During his career Jones published over 50 works related to mysticism, Quakerism and history.


Ragland (Doc) Leake was Haverford’s athletic trainer during much of the 1930s & 1940s.


John A. Lester ’96 Student & Cricketer, was one of the greatest student athletes in Haverford’s history.  Lester was captain of the team during the first English cricket tour in the summer of 1896.  In 1901, he was chosen to be the captain of the All-United States team that played against Canadian clubs. While at Haverford, Lester also played football, track, hockey, and tennis.


The Library was built in 1864 under the name Alumni Hall in order to provide meeting space for the Alumni Association.  It was also to provide expanded space for the library after it moved from Founders Hall in the space where the president’s office is now situated.


At one time a marker on Railroad Avenue indicated where president-elect Abraham Lincoln’s Inaugural train passed in 1861, allowing him to bow to the collected students.  Student Charles Roberts is said to have used the opportunity to get Lincoln’s signature, which was the beginning of his famous autograph collection, but the letter in question actually dates to 1860 and was secured after Roberts wrote to the president-elect shortly after the election. In 1864, the assassinated President’s body would pass through the Haverford railroad station, this time retracing his inaugural route in reverse.



Lloyd Hall was built in stages.  While it now sports nine entrances, each one named after an important Quaker, the first two entrances were named for James Logan, William Penn’s secretary, and Isaac Norris, an important member of the Pennsylvania legislature and often referred to as the King of the Quakers.


The Haverford Friends Meeting House directly across Railroad Avenue Bridge was established in 1904 by Philadelphia Quarterly Meeting out of Philadelphia Monthly Meeting for the Western District. Haverford students were obliged to attend Meeting until 1965.


Christopher “Kit” Morley (1890-1957), a dedicated graduate of Haverford (1910) and a prolific well-known author, donated copies of his books to the library. The collection was augmented by other gifts, and once resided in the Morley Alcove of the library.


C. Christopher Morris ’04 Gentleman & Cricketer was a renowned athlete both during and after his time at Haverford.  He was a member of the second English cricket team and was captain of the cricket team in 1903 and 1904.  Morris was a member of the All-Philadelphia team while an undergraduate and captain of the team after John Lester’s retirement.  As a soccer player in 1905, he scored both goals against Harvard in Haverford’s first modern intercollegiate match.  The Cricket Library on campus is named for him.


Named for James T. Morris, class of 1863, and Isaac W.  Morris, class of 1865, Morris Infirmary of 1912 was meant to supersede antiquated facilities in the upper level of Founders Hall.


The Old Arch located between the library and infirmary is all that remains of the greenhouse which stood in that place from 1834-1855.


The Observatory was built in 1852-1853 and named later in honor of William J. Strawbridge, class of 1894. It replaced the original frame building built in 1838.


Well-known artist Maxfield Parrish (class of 1892) wrote up his chemistry experiments and illustrated them for a class with chemistry professor Lyman Beecher Hall. He donated the Chemistry Notebook to Haverford ca. 1910.


“Rhinie,” taken from the mythical Greek term for “little green worm,” was the description for the status of first-year students who were subject to various rules as published in the “Rhinie Bible” (student handbook), many of them imposed by upper-classmen for the sake of discrimination.


Built in 1902 in memory of Charles Roberts, class of 1864, to contain a room for his famous Autograph Collection (now housed in Special Collections), Roberts Hall’s modern addition on the rear now forms the main facade of the building from the Lancaster Avenue approach.


Isaac Sharpless, President 1887-1917, came to Haverford in 1875 to teach math and astronomy and become its first dean in 1884.  As president, he is credited with bringing in some extraordinary faculty, as well as increasing the number of students and buildings.


Isaac Sharpless Hall Biology & Physics was part of Haverford’s leap into the scientific training of the early twentieth century.  It was named for Isaac Sharpless, president from 1887-1917, who came to Haverford as a professor of mathematics as a graduate of the Lawrence Scientific School at Harvard.


Before disease took it down, there was an elm tree that stood in the middle of Founders Green, which was a scion or Slip of Penn Treaty Elm located at Shakamaxon on the Delaware River where William Penn purportedly signed a peace treaty with Native Americans.  Joshua Bailey later took a slip from that tree and had it planted at Haverford. Further descendants may be found on campus today.


Mary Newlin Smith Memorial Garden, the lovely secluded garden behind the library, was designed by John S. Cope in 1904 in honor of Smith, an accomplished gardener who had been a college matron for many years.


Snowball Fights were popular at Haverford, along with sledding and skating, as historic photographs attest.


“Tune detective” Sig Spaeth ’05, composed the college’s Alma Mater and went on to become a famous musicologist, film composer, and television personality, starring in the NBC program, Tune Detective.


Used for a number of sports, Walton Field was the arena for the major rivalry of Haverford vs. Swarthmore in football


Walton Fountain was named in honor of Ernest F. Walton, class of 1890, a track star who was influential in building the track on Walton Field.


Razed in the early 1970s, Whitall Hall was named after its benefactor, John M. Whitall, in 1898 under the condition that “the art of drawing, especially mechanical drawing shall be taught at the college.”