3.7.13

JUST WALK ON IN.

I've claimed that the old campus of Northern Illinois University concedes nothing, particularly in winter, to the New England private colleges.  The visitor must, however, cross a river from the east, enter gates and pass a decorative pond from the south, or run a gauntlet of parking lots and Baby Boom vernacular architecture to get there from any other direction.

Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, is across the street from the First Parish Church.


Step onto campus and note the statue of Colonel Chamberlain of the 20th Maine, rather than Professor Chamberlain or President Chamberlain or Governor Chamberlain.


The Chamberlain house is cater-corner from the church.  It's been jacked up, with a more elegant first floor inserted below the original only floor.  The house is a museum.  Because I had a leisurely lunch at Joshua's Tavern and spent some time in independent bookstores that sell real books, I got there after it had closed for the day.



To get to the central campus, just cross the street and walk on in.


The art museum in the Walker Art Building had already closed for the day.

It is fitting that a Presbyterian college have a proper chapel.  The chime unaccountably gave both a Westminster and a German half-hour sequence.


Nearby is Hubbard Hall, home to the Peary Arctic Museum (looking at some of the indigenous crafts, perhaps the use of horns as decoration is true of the polar tribes, not the Vikings) and the Economics Department.  There's roof work in progress.


One windowless office in the Economics Department has potential as a hideaway.


A short walk away are some newer buildings for athletics and exercise.  Bowdoin's bear doesn't seem too perturbed over what has happened to Boston's bruins.


It's a pleasant late afternoon, despite an earlier rain shower and a touch of humidity.  Time for an iced mocha near the station before train-time.

1 comment:

Jeff said...

Interestingly (at least to me), Hubbard Hall was designed by Henry Vaughan, who worked with several of the other big American Gothic Revival architects, had a hand in St. John the Divine, and rests in peace up the street from me in another building he helped design: Washington National Cathedral.

I've seen Gothic campus beautification from the 1870s onward described as a "competitive sport." Some Bowdoin administrator was surely patting himself on the back for what at the time was a very trendy building.