Columbia University Archives
 

Office of University Residence Halls records, 1940s-2020s

Summary Information

At a Glance

Call No.: UA#0271
Bib ID 6947661 View CLIO record
Creator(s) Columbia University. Office of University Residence Halls
Title Office of University Residence Halls records, 1940s-2020s
Physical Description 2 linear feet (2 record cartons)
Language(s) English .
Access You will need to make an appointment in advance to use this collection material in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room. You can schedule an appointment once you've submitted your request through your Special Collections Research Account.

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

All administrative records of the University are restricted for 25 years from the date of creation.

Arrangement

Description

Summary

This collections contains records from the Office of University Residence Halls, which manages Columbia's dormitories. The records contain information about the rooms and rates; space allocation; staff and counselors; and publications including campus guides, student life, dining, safety and security, etc.

  • Series I: University Residence Halls records, 1959-1994

    The series consists housing reports from the 1970s and correspondence regarding space allocation in the dormitories, budget issues, quality of life concerns for dormitory residents as well as overall undergraduate housing issues. Of particular note is the folder "Space Allocation" which contains correspondence regarding the creation of a lounge area for homosexual students and space for minority groups such as the various Asian student associations. Accesssion 2003.028.

  • Series II: Campus Services records, 1946-2021

    This series contains the records transferred from Campus Services in February 2022. Most of the administrative records belonged to former Proctor and Assistant to the Dean of Student Life William E. Kahn (1965-1982). There are also publications, brochures, layouts and room rate information from the 1940s to 2020s.

Using the Collection

Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Restrictions on Access

You will need to make an appointment in advance to use this collection material in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room. You can schedule an appointment once you've submitted your request through your Special Collections Research Account.

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

All administrative records of the University are restricted for 25 years from the date of creation.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Office of University Residence Halls records; Box and Folder; University Archives, Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Columbia University Libraries.

Related Materials

The Residence Hall records (UA#0053) consists of registers and/or ledgers used in the management of the Morningside campus's first residence halls. The majority of the books served as front desk registers. Organized by the resident's last name, the books include such information as the room number, mail box number, move-in date, move-out date, and a forwarding address. The remaining books document the management of the buildings: applications, repairs, packages received, burglary reports, daily blotter, etc. The Historical Subject Files (UA#0002) includes some administrative records such as guest cards, telephone records, receipts, etc. but also includes some volumes with correspondence from the supervisor of student housing, 1930s. The Buildings and Grounds collection (UA#0125) contains information about the buildings.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

2003.028.

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Processing Information

Collection-level record describing unprocessed material made public in summer 2018 as part of the Hidden Collections initiative. Series I was processed by Abby Lester in December 2003. Series II was processed by Joanna Rios in February 2022.

Revision Description

2022-02-25 Content list published (JR)

Subject Headings

The subject headings listed below are found in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a catalog that allows users to search the holdings of multiple research libraries and archives.

All links open new windows.

Subject

Heading "CUL Archives:"
"Portal"
"CUL Collections:"
"CLIO"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
"ArchivedGRID"
Columbia University -- Dormitories Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Dormitories Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Dormitory life Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Historical Note

When the King's College building opened in 1760, students were to "lodge and diet in the College." There was a steward to keep the students' rooms clean and to make their beds. Students would have breakfast, dinner and supper at the College Hall, but they were not allowed to have meat with their suppers. After the use of the Park Place campus as a military hospital and then as barracks for the British soldiers during the Revolutionary War, the College was left with a building in need of repairs and gentle handling. The Statutes of 1785 included strict house rules to protect the building: a student could not deny the President of the College entrance to his room once a week to make sure the room was clean and in decent condition. By the early 1800s, the deteriorating facilities on the Park Place campus could no longer offer students quarters.

When Columbia College moved to its temporary, second campus on 49th Street and Madison Avenue, there were no residence halls. Students, for the most part, were left "to the comfort, the security, and the salutary influences of their home" according to Nathaniel Fish Moore, Columbia College President (1842-1849). However, with more competition for undergraduate attendance and the growth of the College, President Frederick A.P. Barnard argued for residences for the students. The college was a "day school" and the alumni wanted to foster more of the "college life" and "college spirit" they saw in the other residential colleges.

After the move to the Morningside campus, there was finally space available to build. Also, residence halls became more of a necessity as transportation to the area was not as convenient as the old campus: the subway did not reach 116th Street until seven years after the campus opened. In 1898 there was a proposal to build four residence halls on the Green along 120th Street. However, this never happened as there was no funding for this project. Based on the successful model of the Teachers College's private dormitories, there was a short-lived experiment of Knowlton Hall on Broadway and 124th Street. The building was privately owned but there was a Columbia faculty member living in the building to supervise the students, in exchange for free room and board. Unfortunately, there was not enough interest by the students and the building was sold to new owners.

President Nicholas Murray Butler finally found the financial support needed to create a dormitory system in Marcellus Hartley Dodge, CC Class of 1903. Dodge and his aunt, Helen Hartley Jenkins, funded the construction of Columbia's first residence hall. Along with donations from other alums celebrating Columbia's 150th Anniversary and college money, the first two residence halls opened in 1905: Hartley Hall and Livingston Hall (named after the Class of 1765 alum and one time Chancellor of the State of New York Robert Livingston, but renamed Wallach Hall in 1981). Ten-floors high and with rooms for 600 men, the dorms were open to all Columbia students (not just undergraduates) and proved popular. In 1906, students living on campus could take "table board" at the Commons in University Hall and, as residents, they could have assigned seats throughout the year but this option was not popular. Students would have to wait another 20 years before having a dorm with a dining hall on campus.

In 1913, another ten-story dorm, Furnald Hall, opened to meet the growing demand for campus housing. The hall was named after Royal Blackler Furnald, Class of 1901, and allowed another 300 men to live on the perimeter of South Field. During World War I lower enrollment figures impacted the use of residence halls. Furnald Hall, which had been offered over the summer session to women students, was turned into a women's residence hall for five years (1917 to 1922).

One of the last McKim, Meade & White commissions, John Jay Hall, opened in October 1926. Elevator service was not complete at the time and students had to walk up the 15-story "skyscraper" then the highest building on campus. John Jay Hall, named after the Class of 1764 alum and first Chief Justice of the United States, combined student housing with student life. It was the home to the first dining hall and included meeting rooms and offices for student groups and publications such as the Jester and the Columbia Daily Spectator. Undergraduate students were finally able to be housed together in Hartley Hall and the lower floors of John Jay. The four halls combined allowed for over 1350 men to live on South Field. Columbia did not build another men's residence hall until New Hall (renamed as Carman Hall in 1965) in 1959.

External users and Columbia affiliates may view materials on-site at RBML. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, only Columbia affiliates may view materials on-site at Avery, Starr, and Burke. After clicking 'Submit Request', users will login with their UNI and password (Columbia affiliates) or their special collections account (external users). Appointments are required and will be arranged according to each individual repository's policy.


Series I: University Residence Halls records, 1959-1994

The series consists housing reports from the 1970s and correspondence regarding space allocation in the dormitories, budget issues, quality of life concerns for dormitory residents as well as overall undergraduate housing issues. Of particular note is the folder "Space Allocation" which contains correspondence regarding the creation of a lounge area for homosexual students and space for minority groups such as the various Asian student associations. Accesssion 2003.028.



Box 1 Folder 1 Association of College and University Housing Officers - 11th Annual Conference, 1959 August

Assorted materials from URH concerning the residence halls. Includes correspondence, reports, publications and statistics. Bulk dates 1964-1979. Some items (e.g. residence hall pamphlets) will be placed in appropriate files/collections and the rest of the materials will be organized into a small residence halls collection or integrated with previously processed Men's Residence Hall materials. 12/16/03: Materials integrated into appropriate files and remaining materials processed into small University Residence Halls Records collection.


Box 1 Folder 3 Budget and Finance, 1969-1970


Box 1 Folder 4 Centrex Dormitory Service for Columbia University, 1968-1969

Telephone service proposal


Box 1 Folder 5 Committee to Study Residence Facilities in the Columbia College Expansion Program meeting minutes, 1964


Box 1 Folder 6 Discipline Committee for Undergraduate Dormitory Council, undated


Box 1 Folder 2 Draft Reports, 1993-1995


Box 1 Folder 7 Drug Abuse, 1970-1971


Box 1 Folder 8 Harvard House Plan, 1964


Housing Reports


Box 1 Folder 9 1975 Fall


Box 1 Folder 10 1976 Fall


Box 1 Folder 11 1977 Fall


Box 1 Folder 12 1978 Fall


Box 1 Folder 13 1979


Box 1 Folder 14 1980-1981


Box 1 Folder 15 Miscellaneous, 1971-1992


Box 1 Folder 16 Report on Resident Staff Counselors, 1965-1966


Box 1 Folder 17 South Field Towers Proposal, 1969


Box 1 Folder 18 Space Allocation, 1971


Box 1 Folder 19 Subcommittee on Undergraduate Housing Report, circa 1971


Box 1 Folder 20 Undergraduate Housing Scenarios of the 1990s, 1993-1994


Box 1 Folder 21 Undergraduate Residence Hall Planning, 1969-1970

Series II: Campus Services records, 1946-2021

This series contains the records transferred from Campus Services in February 2022. Most of the administrative records belonged to former Proctor and Assistant to the Dean of Student Life William E. Kahn (1965-1982). There are also publications, brochures, layouts and room rate information from the 1940s to 2020s.



Box 2 Folder 1 Assistant Dean, 1968-1981


Bulletins of Information


Box 2 Folder 2 Men's Residence Halls, 1946-1972


Box 2 Folder 3 Women's Residence Hall - Johnson Hall, 1954-1970

Includes John Jay Hall for Women during the Summer Session 1955


Box 2 Folder 4 Graduate Residence Halls for Men, circa 1960


Box 2 Folder 5 Residence Hall for Medical Students - Bard Hall, 1950-1965

50 Haven Aveue


Box 2 Folder 6 Residence for Married Students - Woodbridge Hall, 1950s-1970s

431 Riverside Drive


Campus Guides


Box 2 Folder 7 Morningside, 2002-2005


Box 2 Folder 8 Health Sciences/Medical Center, 2004-2021


Counselors


Box 2 Folder 9 Correspondence, 1967-1976


Box 2 Folder 10 Manual, 1971-1972


Box 2 Folder 11 Manual, 1977-1978



Box 1 Folder 27 Equal Pay Suit, 1973-1977


Financing


Box 1 Folder 22 Indenture of Mortgage and Trust - Columbia University Dormitory Bonds Series of 1957, 1957 October 1


Box 1 Folder 23 Indenture - Columbia University Married Student Apartment Bonds of 1959, 1959 October 1


Box 1 Folder 24 Agreement and Revenue Bond Resolution - Dormitory Authority of the State of New York, 1963 October 14


Box 1 Folder 25-26 Educational Loan Paperwork, 1976-1987, 2 folders



Box 2 Folder 12 Fire Safety and Security brochures, 1990s


Floor Plans and Room Rates


Box 2 Folder 13 Furnald Hall, 1950-1952


Box 2 Folder 14 Hartley Hall, 1949-1950

Includes Women's Hall for Summer Session 1951


Box 2 Folder 15 John Jay Hall, 1949-1952


Box 2 Folder 16 Livingston Hall (later Wallach Hall), 1940s-1952



Box 1 Folder 28 Harmony Hotel as a Residence Hal, 1967-1969

628 West 114th Street



Box 2 Folder 17 Report - Housing at Columbia by Barbara E. Harrison, Consultant, 1970

Summarizes student opinions about housing problems and needs for Mr. August T. Nakagawa, I.M. Pei and Partners


Box 2 Folder 18 Reserve Programs, 1963-1975


Residence Halls


Box 2 Folder 19-20 General, 1970-1972, 2 folders

Memos, newspaper clippings, event flyers, etc.


Box 2 Folder 21 Incident Reports, 1968-1973

Includes occupancy report (1973) and clippings


Box 2 Folder 22 Security, 1970-1980


Box 2 Folder 23 Services, Policies and Procedures for the Morningside Heights Campus, 1984-1985


Box 2 Folder 24 Carman Hall, 1971-1981


Box 2 Folder 25 East Campus, 1981-1982


Box 2 Folder 26 Furnald Hall, 1972-1980


Box 2 Folder 27 Hartley Hall, 1971-1982


Box 2 Folder 28 Hartley Lounge, 1974


Box 2 Folder 29 John Jay Hall, 1972-1981


Box 2 Folder 30 Livingston Hall (later Wallach Hall), 1973


Box 2 Folder 31 Off Campus, 1970-1977


Schedule of Room Rates


Box 2 Folder 32 Men's Residence Halls, 1946-1960


Box 2 Folder 33 All Residences, 1963-1965


Box 2 Folder 34 1969-1973


Box 2 Folder 35 1973-1976


Box 2 Folder 36 1976-1978


Services


Box 2 Folder 37 Columbia Catering and Events Management, 2000s


Box 2 Folder 38 Dining Services brochures, 1990-2000s


Box 2 Folder 39 Undergraduate Dormitory Council (UDC), 1968-1971


Box 2 Folder 40 UDC Dormitory Cooking Survey, 1978