Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Grace Scripps Clark Hall

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Institution Name: Scripps College
Original/Historic Place Name: Grace Scripps Clark Hall
Location on Campus: 325 E. 12th St.
Date(s) of Construction and Designer(s):
1928original construction Kaufmann, Gordon
1936addition of Loggia Unknown
2001replacement of delivery area with court Unknown
Type of Place: Individual building
Style(s): (Glossary)
Foundation: none specified
Walls: none specified
Roof: none specified
ca. 1928-present (2007)residence hall
ca. 1928-present (2007)dining hall

Significance: architecture, culture, education, history
Landmark designation:
National RegisterScripps College for Women (1984)
Narrative: see below
References: see below

Located adjacent to Toll Hall, Clark Hall was constructed in 1928. Like Toll, with which it shared a kitchen, the structure features irregular massing. The design configuration accommodates a large, double-height dining hall and an exterior staircase that descends to brick-paved courtyards, and small gardens, which form a series of linked enclosures.

Olive Court is the principal of these charming spaces. It was named for the fine olive tree that had originally shaded one corner. In the pavement of the court, in mosaic, is the College motto, Dante's Incipit Vita Nova, selected by Dr. Hartley Burr Alexander.

A loggia constructed in 1936 now forms part of an enclosed court that features grass and cypress trees. In addition, Oasis Court was created in 2001 to replace the delivery area for the shared kitchen. Oasis Court was planted with drought resistant vegetation.

As noted by Coats and Harvey Sahak, "The south façade of Grace Scripps Clark Hall has five terra cotta medallions: the one closest to Denison Library depicts Pallas Athena, the Greek Goddess of Wisdom, with her owl and a sigure who is holding a compass and sphere (probably Euclid, who studied at the Academy in Athens). Above the entrance are, from left: Artemis (Diana), Goddess of the Hunt; Pythia, priestess of Apollo at Delphi and deliverer of truth; Flora, the Roman Goddess of Flowers, and Pan, God of the Forest, playing his pipes" (Bruce Coats and Judy Harvey Sahak, Guide to the Scripps College Campus [Claremont, CA: Scripps College, 2002]).

Clark was the joint gift of Mrs. Rex B. Clark (Grace Scripps Clark), for whom it was named, and Miss Ellen Browning Scripps, in memory of Mr. James E. Scripps, father and brother of the donors.

I. Bibliographic sources:

A Tour of the Campus Including an Account of Special Collections, Certain Architectural Features, and Other Items. Claremont, CA: Scripps College, 1960.

Belloli, Jay et al. Johnson, Kaufmann, and Coate: Partners in the California Style. Claremont, CA: Trustees of Scripps College, 1997.

Bernard, Robert J., An Unfinished Dream: A Chronicle of the Group Plan of the Claremont Colleges. Claremont, CA: Claremont University Center, 1982.

Birnbaum, Charles R., and Robin Karson, eds. Pioneers of American Landscape Design. New York: McGraw Hill, 2000.

Campus Master Plan. Archives, Scripps College, Claremont, CA.

Clark, Alson. "The 'California' Architecture of Gordon B. Kaufmann." Society of Architectural Historians Southern California Chapter Review 1, no. 3 (1982): 1-8.

Coats, Bruce and Judy Harvey Sahak. Guide to the Scripps College Campus. Claremont, CA: Scripps College, 2002.

Deferred Maintenance and Capital Renewal Report. [Claremont, CA: Scripps College, n.d.].

Eckbo, Garrett. Urban Landscape Design. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1964.

Horowitz, Helen Lefkowitz. Alma Mater: Design and Experience in the Women's Colleges from their Nineteenth-Century Beginnings to the 1930s. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1985.

Landscape and Architectural Blueprint. Forthcoming. Scripps College, Claremont, CA.

Larson, Jens Frederick and Archie MacInnes Palmer. Architectural Planning of the American College. New York and London: McGraw-Hill, 1933.

Lyon, E. Wilson. The History of Pomona College, 1887-1969. Claremont, CA: Pomona College [in consortium with Scripps College], 1977.

Polyzoides, Stephanos. "Gordon B. Kaufmann, Edward Huntsman-Trout, and the Design of the Scripps College Campus." In Johnson, Kaufmann, and Coate: Partners in the California Style. Claremont, CA: Trustees of Scripps College, 1997, 83-113.

Scripps College. Cultural Landscape Report. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Interior/National Park Service, [forthcoming].

Solomon, Barbara Miller. In the Company of Educated Women. New Haven, CT: Yale Univ. Press, 1985.

Turner, Paul Venable. Campus: An American Planning Tradition. New York: Architectural History Foundation; Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1984.

II. Location of other data:
University: Library, Special Collections
Government Offices
Other: UCLA Special Collections, Edward Huntsman-Trout Papers, Los Angeles, California

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