Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


White Chapel

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Institution Name: Albright College
Original/Historic Place Name: Howe Hall
Location on Campus:
Date(s) of Construction and Designer(s):
1882original construction Unknown
1888addition (second floor) Unknown
1905remodelling (basement, addition of physics laboratory) Unknown
1914-1933installation of clock and bell (tower) Unknown
post- 1923installation of stained glass windows Unknown
1924expansion Unknown
Type of Place: Individual building
Style(s): (Glossary)
Foundation: masonry
Walls: wood
Roof: unspecified (original); asphalt shingle (current)
1882-1888chapel (Episcopal Diocesan School for Boys)
1882-1888other (armory)
1882-1888gymnasium (Episcopal Diocesan School for Boys)
1888-1902other (headmaster's office, Episcopal Diocesan School for Boys)
1888-1902classrooms (Episopal Diocesan School for Boys)
1888-1902other (boys' dormitory, Episcopal School for Boys)
ca. 1902-1941other (boys' dormitory, Schuylkill Seminary)
1905-?other (physic's laboratory, Schuylkill Seminary)
ca. 1923-n.d.chapel (Schuylkill College)
1941-1945residence hall (women's)
ca. 1950-1989academic department building (art department)
1990-present (2007)other (storage)

Landmark designation:
Narrative: see below
References: see below

Originallly built in 1882 and named Howe Hall in honor of Bishop M. A. DeWolfe Howe, this red brick building (later painted white) was a focal point on the campus of the Episcopal Diocesan School for Boys. It was used as a chapel, gymnasium, and armory, and incorporated technologies characteristic of the period: steam heat and gas lighting. The Shingle style building was purchased in 1902 for use as a chapel by the Schuylkill Seminary which, in 1923, became known as Schuylkill College. Since Albright College was formed in 1929 by merging with Schuylkill College, this structure is a potent reminder of the early history of the college, its religious heritage, and the changing functions and needs of the school (and its predecessor institutions) over time.

I. Bibliographic sources:

Barth, Eugene H. Discovery and Promise: A History of Albright College, 1856-1981. Reading, PA: Albright College, 1989.

Gingrich, R. Wilbur, and Barth, Eugene H. A History of Albright College. Reading, PA: Albright College, 1956.

II. Location of other data:
University: Special Collections, Facilities Management Office

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Last update: November 2006