The Art of Architecture at Bard (Part 1)
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1. Main campus, ca. 1942. At this time, cars were allowed on main campus because relatively few students owned cars. The president’s house, known as Gerry House, is in the background, tall and awkward prior to the 1960s additions that President and Mrs. Kline oversaw. Behind the house is the campus water tower (no longer existing), on which members of the class of 1941 rather brazenly advertised their graduation year.

2. Ward Manor Gatehouse, 1963. In 1963 Bard purchased the Ward Manor property, significantly expanding its campus and dormitory capacity. Originally known as Gate Lodge, it was designed by Francis Hoppin and built in 1918 as the gatehouse to the Louis Hamersley mansion, later called Ward Manor. The gatehouse now houses the vocal arts program.

3. Ward Manor, ca. 1967. The main house was built in 1918, while the Annex was added in 1929. William Ward donated the property (which extended to Tivoli) to a New York charitable organization that utilized the mansion as housing for seniors, while other buildings on the estate were used to accommodate summer camps for girls and boys, and vacation bungalows for city families of limited means. The senior home and camps closed in the late 1950s. A few years later, in 1963, Bard purchased a portion of the land, along with the Gatehouse, Manor, and Robbins House, effectively adding dormitory space for 150 students and several faculty families. Photograph by Peter Aaron ’68.

4. An aerial view of the campus, ca. 1942. A lower floor window of Albee is circled, perhaps identifying the dorm room of the unidentified photographer. The smokestack of the central heating plant in the basement of Orient Hall is billowing smoke, and the squash courts on the side of the Memorial Gymnasium are under construction.
5. Blithewood in winter, ca. 1950. The 825-acre Blithewood estate was given as a gift to the College in 1951 by Christian Zabriskie, within weeks of the death of his mother. This unexpected gift not only provided the College with room for expansion, but also land related to its own history; the tract included the original estate of John Bard. After years of being a women’s dormitory, Blithewood now houses the Levy Economics Institute.

6. The Bard Theater, ca. 1968. The Zabriskie Coach House (or Carriage House) was converted into a theater in 1955 mostly through the efforts of a group of students. The Coach House Theater, which replaced the Orient Theater, was in continuous use until it was destroyed by fire in February 1973. It was located near the Ravines.

7. Hopson Cottage, ca. 1975. Originally commissioned by the Bard Family as a residence for St. Stephen’s first warden, George Seymour, early students of the College took their meals here with the rector and his family. With the resignation of Rev. Seymour in 1861, Rev. George Hopson occupied the house until his death in 1913. In recent decades, several long time faculty families have made their homes here. Today, the building houses the Office of Admissions. Photograph by Guy Frank ’68.

8. Gahagan House, ca. 1971. In 1972, Kline Commons was constructed, necessitating the removal of Gahagan House from what is now the terrace. In this picture, Gahagan is being jacked up in preparation for its move to its present location south of the Ottoway Gate House.
9. Blithewood gatehouse, ca. 1950s. Known today as the Jim and Mary Ottaway Gatehouse, this hexagonal cottage was the gatehouse to the original Blithewood estate owned by Robert Donaldson. Before selling Blithewood to John and Margaret Bard in 1854, he made many improvements with input from Andrew Jackson Downing and Alexander Jackson Davis. This Gothic Revival style gatehouse was built in 1841 from a design by A.J. Davis, making this the oldest and most historically significant building on the campus.

10. Robbins House, ca. 1950s. Robbins was constructed in 1930 by the New York Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor (AICP) as additional accommodations for the retirees who, having demonstrated need and adaptability, were accepted into the housing program at Ward Manor. Along with Ward Manor and the Gatehouse, Robbins was purchased by the College in 1963.

11. A mural painted in Albee Social, ca. 1942. Albee has since been renovated for office space, and it is unknown when and how this mural was covered.

12. Dwelling Units, ca. 1950s. Built in 1946 with Federal Housing Project funds, the Dwelling Units, or “DUs” served as dormitories, faculty and student apartments, and painting studios.
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