Vanished Buildings of St. Paul's School
Left to right: The Chapel of St. Peter and St. Paul, the Annex and the Big Study, the Gymnasium, Number 3, and the Lower School. Photo from St. Paul's School Archives
St. Paul's School has been continuously building, expanding, renovating, relocating, and tearing down its buildings for over a hundred and fifty years. As the School has grown and evolved, many buildings have vanished from sight almost overnight, and have then passed slowly from living memory. This exhibit, created with images from the School's photographic archives in Ohrstrom Library, selectively documents the vanished buildings of St. Paul's School.
Sometimes SPS place names reflect the history of these vanished buildings (for example, Lower School Pond). Sometimes new buildings have replaced the old and assumed their names (e.g., Middle House). In other cases buildings have disappeared and left behind wide stretches of lawn or field that new members of the SPS community may mistakenly believe have always been that way. The grassy field between Warren House and Manville, where the Old Upper stood for over sixty years; the fields beyond Drury Orchard, where the Orphan's Home once stood; the lawn behind Alumni House, where only the foundations of Hall Farm and the Community House can still be seen; and the expansive lawn between the New Chapel and Ohrstrom Library, once filled by a dense complex of School buildings stretching from the New Chapel to Nash House; are all cases in point.
The School's architectural history has been well documented in several sources. Interested viewers of this exhibit may also want to explore Robert A. M. Stern's "The Architecture of St. Paul's School and the Design of Ohrstrom Library." This two part article first appeared in the Spring and Autumn, 1992 issues of the Alumni Horae and was later adapted for republication on the Library's web site.
Several School histories also contain excellent information about the buildings of St. Paul's School:
- Arthur Stanwood Pier's St. Paul's School: 1855 - 1934 (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1934)
- José A. G. Ordoñez's St. Paul's School: A Pictorial History (Concord, New Hampshire: St. Paul's School, 1991)
- August Heckscher's St. Paul's: The Life of a New England School (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1980)
- An updated and abridged edition of Heckscher's book appeared in 1996: A Brief History of St. Paul's School, 1856-1996 (Concord, New Hampshire : The Board of Trustees of St. Paul's School)