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Founders Hall | Spellman Hall | Dammann & Tenney Hall | Faculty Housing | The Cottages

Founders Hall (1952)

Founders Interior

Founders ExteriorFrom 1952 to 1957 Founder’s was the only residence hall. Founder’s was another name carried over from the previous residence hall to maintain a sense of familiarity. The name Founder’s was selected to honor Mother Mary Moran, RSCJ, the first President of the college from 1917-1919, remembered as the “founder” of the college.

Spellman Hall (1957)

Spellman Dorm

Spellman Construction

On November 11, 1956 eight months into the construction of the Kennedy Gymasium, ground was broken on a second residence hall. The dormitory was made possible through contributions from alumnae, parents, and friends of the college.  

Architects Eggers and Higgins returned to design both buildings in the established Manhattanville style of Norman rusticated brick. Spellman was built to house an additional 331 students, a typing room, and television room. Spellman Hall was named for Francis Cardinal Spellman, a longtime friend of the college, who served as the sixth Archbishop of New York from 1939 to 1967.

Dammann Hall and Tenney Hall (1966)

Dammann and Tenney Hall Sketch

Two additional residence halls were added to the campus in 1966. Unlike the Norman rusticated brick of previous buildings these broke from the former style and used buffed limestone.

Dammann Hall is named for Mother Grace C. Dammann, RSCJ, the fourth president of Manhattanville from 1931 to 1945. President Dammann is central to Manhattanville history as an early champion for civil rights and social action.

Tenney Hall is named for Mother Mary B. Tenney, RSCJ, Registrar from 1921 to 1945 and much admired Professor of History from 1921 to 1961.

Faculty Housing (1991)

Faculty Housing 1991

In 1991 the campus underwent a series of upgrades. This included the creation of the current bookstore, pub, and post office in Benziger. In late 1991 faculty housing was completed. Forty eight units, divided among three buildings, added a new dimension to the Manhattanville campus community.

The Cottages (2010)


Long before Manhattanville arrived at this location, the estate of Whitelaw Reid was a working farm with livestock, orchards, and hundreds of acres of crops. Several structures remain from this farm. Among them, cottages, once home to farm employees and their families. In 2010 these cottages were converted to student housing. Their names also honor important Manhattanville individuals and locations.

The Burnett House was named in honor of Mother Ruth Burnett, RSCJ, president of Manhattanville from 1919-1924. It was President Burnett who secured the permanent charter for Manhattanville in 1919. She also pushed the young college to advance its academic programs and embrace modern curriculum and classes.  

Olmstead HouseThe Olmstead House was named for Frederick Law Olmstead, one of the most famous landscape architects in history. Having already designed New York’s Central Park and Brooklyn’s Prospect Park, Olmstead was hired by Whitelaw Reid to design the gardens and grounds of his estate in 1888. Olmstead imported plants and trees from all over the world to complete his vision. Much of the outdoor ambiance on the campus we can thank Olmstead for! 

27 412 Houston thmbThe Houston House was named for the very first location of the school that is now Manhattanville College. In 1841 the Sacred Heart Academy was founded at Mulberry and E. Houston Street. In 1847 the school moved to the northern Manhattan town of Manhattanville. Today, the Puck Building stands where the Academy was once located.

Barat HouseBarat House was named for Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat who, at the age of twenty-one founded the Order of the Sacred Heart in 1800. This religious order was specifically founded in France to educate young women in an era when girls were not offered the same academic opportunities as their male counterparts. Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat passed away in 1865 and was canonized in 1925.

Duchesne HouseThe Duchesne House was named for the Duchesne Center for Religion & Social Justice. The Center itself was named in honor of Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne, a contemporary of Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat, who in 1818 started the first Sacred Heart Academy in the United States. The school, located in St. Charles, Missouri, became the first free school for girls west of the Mississippi. Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne was canonized by Pope John Paul II in 1988.

Marissa Pagli HouseThe Marissa A. Pagli House was named in honor of a Manhattanville student who passed away in 2010. Marissa grew up on the Manhattanville campus, graduated from Harrison High School in 2009, and was a beloved member of the Manhattanville volleyball team. As a student athlete and scholar Marissa focused on maintaining health and wellness. In her memory Manhattanville College established the Marissa A. Pagli House as a special interest housing option with the goal of providing interested students a supportive environment focused on all aspects of health and wellness: physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.

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