Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Wistaria Hall

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Institution Name: University of Bridgeport
Original/Historic Place Name: Dudley M. Morris House
Location on Campus: 305 Linden Ave.
Date(s) of Construction and Designer(s):
1915original construction Southey, Guy
Type of Place: Individual building
Style(s): (Glossary)
Foundation: none specified
Walls: brick; limestone (trim)
Roof: slate (original); unspecified (current, after 2001)
ca. 1915private residence (of Dudley Mixer Morris and Edna Grippin Morris)
ca. 1941residence hall (women)
ca. 1941administration
ca. 1941classrooms
ca. 2004-present (2007)other (vacant)

Significance: culture, history
Landmark designation:
Narrative: see below
References: see below

Originally built as the family home of Dudley Mixer Morris and his wife Edna Grippin Morris, the house was situated adjacent to P.T. Barnum's Marina estate. Morris was secretary and treasurer of the Hawthorne Manufacturing Company. His home, an excellent example of neo-Tudor residential architecture, was part of the affluent late-nineteenth century residential enclave that grew up around Barnum's estate.

The Marina Park estate was purchased by the Junior College of Connecticut (now the
University of Bridgeport) in 1941 to serve as its new campus. Wistaria Hall, part of the campus
at least since 1954, was used initially as a residence for female students and later, for
administrative use and classrooms. Wistaria Hall has sentimental value for many of the
1950's and 1960's women alumni.

Wistaria Hall is in fair condition. The lead-lined windows need repair, the exterior needs to be
repaired and repainted, and a new boiler must be installed.

I. Bibliographic sources:

Phase II, the Historical and Architectural Survey of Bridgeport, Connecticut (Inventory #218). Fall 1986. Historical Collections, Bridgeport Public Library, Bridgeport, CT.

II. Location of other data:
University: Library, Special Collections
Other: Bridgeport Library

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