Explore Washington University’s historic architecture via our digitized resources.
Featured Digitized Resources
- Browse campus images via Flickr | A selection of historic images including aerial views of campus, original construction of the campus, as well as specific buildings: Brookings Hall, Crow Hall, Cupples Hall, Eads Hall, and Ridgley Hall.
- View campus images on History Pin | An interactive site using GoogleMaps.
- Laying of the Cornerstone of Busch Hall | 1900 Dedication program.
- Architecture at the Exposition, April 23, 1904 | Article by Frederick Mann discussing the University Buildings and the 1904 World’s Fair.
- Dedication of McMillian Hall, 1907 | An address given by William K. Bixby, dedicating the first women’s dormitory on campus (WU Alumni Bulletin, April 1907, pages 208 – 212).
- Washington University – Illustrated Circular of Information, 1908 | Includes information regarding architects and competition for new buildings on Skinker Road, which is now the Danforth Campus (Hilltop Campus Architectural Competition, 1899, Information Files: Washington University Campus – Illustrated Circular of Information 1908).
- Fumihiko Maki, Investigations in Collective Form, (School of Architecture, 1964).
- Hilltop Campus Historic District, 1984 | Washington University St. Louis, Public Relations Office, 1984 (Library call no. LD5794 .W373 1984).
Grotesques (“Gargoyle”) Gallery
According to Russell Sturgis, a gargoyle is:
A water spout, especially one projecting from a gutter and intended to throw the water away from the walls and foundations.Russell Sturgis, Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture and Building
With few exceptions, the gargoyles at Washington University do not carry water; they are purely decorative. Thus they are not in fact gargoyles. Rather, they are Bosses or Grotesques. We do not know who created the designs for the grotesques at Washington University. Nor do we know the names of the stonecutter(s) who created the images we now see on our campus buildings.
Images courtesy of Joe Angeles, Photo Services Department, University Marketing & Communications
Grotesques in Graham Chapel
For more information on the history and decoration of Graham Chapel, see our online exhibit, Grotesques, Glass, Graham: Marriage of Masonry.
Other Gargoyle Links
- Walter Arnold, a stone carver from Chicago, has put together a colorful and informative site.
- A Love of Monsters: Gargoyles and Architectural Details in New York City
Selections from the Fred R. Hammond Collection
In the mid-1980s, the University Archives received one of its most unique artifacts – a sketchbook containing designs for many of the bosses which adorn our older campus buildings.
This book, along with several historical photographs, was the gift of Fred R. Hammond, an architect who worked for the firm of Jamieson & Spearl, of St. Louis. Jamieson & Spearl was the successor firm of Cope & Stewardson, the firm which designed the Hilltop Campus, and Jamieson & Spearl was responsible for much of the campus’ building program as late as the 1950s.
Access these Materials
Search the Washington University Photographic Services Collection, 1850-2006, on ArchivesSpace
Search the Fred R. Hammond Collection, 1900-1945, on ArchivesSpace
- Special Collections Management, Special Collections Services
- Sonya Rooney
- Job Title
- University Archivist
- Email Address
- Phone Number
- (314) 935-9730