1907: Wesleyan’s Old Laboratory Torn Down

Wesleyan's Old LaboratoryOn this date in 1907, the Old Laboratory at Wesleyan University was torn down. The simple brick building was originally built in 1825 as a gun house for the American Literary, Scientific and Military Academy, established by Captain Partridge.

Its first use at Wesleyan was in 1836, when it was fitted for Professor John Johnston as a chemical laboratory. It was used by the Chemistry Department until it moved to Judd Hall in 1871, aside from a brief period in 1849 when it was used as a chapel.  At various times it also housed:

  • an ice house;
  • a carpenter’s shop;
  • an infirmary; and
  • a dining hall.

The building reverted to its scientific use in 1891 as an electrical laboratory, and finally as the location for the Connecticut Bacteriological Laboratory from 1905 until 1907.

Story contributed by Pat Tully, based on Historical Society archives.


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