In search of a building….

What I love most in my job is coming across intriguing “finds” which excite my curiosity and usually send me searching through books, magazines, journals and web sites.

Today I came across a picture of a building, with no date and no explanation of what it was and where it could be found. I couldn’t place it, and yet it looked familiar. It was the sweep of the road that called to me, evoked a memory.

I went back to Richard Flood’s “The Story of Noble and Greenough School”, and indeed I came across the picture of the original barn of the Riverdale Estate, which was “used from 1922-1930 as Nobles Gymnasium.”

the Barn, as it appeared when the School purchased the Riverdale Estate from the Nickerson Family.

When I compared the two pictures, I could see that the building was the same, with a few alterations. Now I could recognize also the structure on the left: the Boat House, which was originally built in 1924. This is the picture of Nobles original “Athletic Center”!

In 1930, one end of the old barn was torn down and a new brick gymnasium began to be built. Construction took over six years to be completed and for years the edifice was a mixture of bricks and wood, but in 1937 the last wooden section disappeared and the brick building, later on known as the “Old Gym” after completion of the Richardson Gymnasium in 1964, stood there for many years.

Both the Old Gym and the Richardson Gymnasium are incorporated in the Morrison Athletic Center (most often referred to as the MAC) which extends over the area where, once, Model A Ford cars parked.

The Archives Office is located temporarily in what still exists of the Old Gym. Now I know why the road looked familiar: I drive over it in the morning to reach my office.

This entry was posted in Athletic Facilities, Campus Buildings, Nickerson Family, Riverdale Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

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