On Thursday, March 28th, a group of staff and faculty attended a walking tour of the campus's historic buildings. The walking tour event was held as part of the Charter Week celebration. The walking tour event is organized and facilitated by members of the Charter Day Planning Committee. This is the second consecutive year the event has been held.
The walking tour traces the historical development of the South Orange campus according to three stages: (a) 1860-1920 early establishment; (b) 1940-1970 post-war growth and expansion; and (c) 1980-2010s re-orientation of campus. The tour guidebook was edited by Dr. Bryan Meadows (Educational Studies) with the guidance and support of Dr. Alan Delozier (University Archives and Special Collections) and Mr. Jack Kelly, a campus historian. Preparations for this year's round of walking tours were supported by Mr. Michael Carhart, an ELMP doctoral student.
The tour group on Thursday explored the history behind each of the buildings on campus. The small group of staff and faculty were co-led by Dr. Bryan Meadows and Ms. Carolina Holguin, an EDST undergraduate. The group observed the 1866 stained-glass window depiction of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton inside Presidents Hall. They examined the contents of the 1950s time capsule on display inside the Science and Technology Center (formerly McNulty Hall). They also learned about The Bubble, the vinyl-domed gymnasium facility that sat during the 1970s where the parking deck is today.
Following the tour, Professor Gerry Shea (University Libraries) shared the following reflection: "I am a librarian and I knew that Jubilee Hall was built were McLaughlin Library stood, but I had not realized that the university seal inside the first floor entrance of Jubilee is the last remaining evidence of McLaughlin Library. Also, I did not know the place where Walsh Library now stands was a parking lot before the library was built." Another tour attendee, Josh Reda (Housing and Residence Life) reflected afterwards: "Seton Hall really does have a fascinating history from where it started to now. I learned a lot more and even now realize some small details of campus that I never noticed before. It's so important to learn about where you work – take an interest in more than daily duties." Barbara Weiss (Office of the Registrar) commented, "I had spent years on this campus, but the tour provided an eye-opener on many architectural details I had missed."
The weeklong celebration of Charter Day this year took place March 25 – 29, 2019. From the Charter Day website, "Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Charter Day offers our community an opportunity to reflect on the University's great history, and to renew our commitment to that purpose and mission. Charter Day commemorates the granting of a charter to Seton Hall College by the State of New Jersey in 1861, and at Charter Day we salute the year of our founding."
A digital copy of the walking tour guidebook is held at the Seton Hall University Libraries Archives and Special Collections. If interested in arranging a walking tour for you and your colleagues, please contact Bryan Meadows directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or (973) 275-2539.
Categories: Campus Life