Main Building (Vassar College)

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Main Building, Vassar College
Old Main, Vassar College edit1.jpg
Building in 2007, seen from near the entrance to campus
Main Building (Vassar College) is located in New York
Main Building (Vassar College)
Main Building (Vassar College) is located in the US
Main Building (Vassar College)
Location Poughkeepsie, New York
Coordinates 41°41′12.03″N 73°53′44.99″W / 41.6866750°N 73.8958306°W / 41.6866750; -73.8958306Coordinates: 41°41′12.03″N 73°53′44.99″W / 41.6866750°N 73.8958306°W / 41.6866750; -73.8958306
Built 1861
Architect James Renwick, Jr.
Architectural style Second Empire
NRHP reference # 73001183
Significant dates
Added to NRHP September 19, 1973[1]
Designated NHL June 24, 1986[2]

Main Building is on the Vassar College campus in Poughkeepsie, New York. It was built by James Renwick, Jr. in the Second Empire style in 1861, the second building in the history of what was one of America's first women's colleges. It is one of the earliest, largest, and most important examples of Second Empire architecture in the United States and is a National Historic Landmark. At the time of its completion, the structure contained the most interior space of any building in the United States, and housed the entire college, including dormitories, libraries, classrooms, and dining halls. Currently, the first and second floors house campus administration while the remaining three (including the second floor wings) house student rooms.

It was taken over by protesters in 1969[3] and again in 1990.[4]

It was named a National Historic Landmark in 1986.[2][5] The Vassar Observatory, the first building built on the Vassar campus, is also a National Historic Landmark.

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