“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Lancaster in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

Franklin & Marshall College

Lancaster City

Franklin & Marshall College Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), November 28, 2020
1. Franklin & Marshall College Marker
Franklin College, established in Lancaster in 1787, is the thirteenth oldest institution of higher education in the United States. The college's founders included four signers of the Declaration of Independence, four members of the Constitutional Convention, and three future governors of Pennsylvania. They named the college after Benjamin Franklin, its first benefactor. Marshall College, established by the German Reformed Church in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania in 1836, was in honor of the eminent jurist John Marshall. Marshall College attracted a distinguished faculty headed by Frederick A. Rauch, who was the first interpreter of Hegelian philosophy in the United States. Other important faculty included John Williamson, Nevin and Philip Schaff, who developed what historians of religion term the Mercersburg Theology.

❖ Under the leadership of James Buchanan, president of Franklin College's board of trustees and later fifteenth president of the United States, the two colleges merged in 1853. Buchanan selected the site of the campus, and the following year the trustees began construction of the Gothic Revival College Building,
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known today as Old Main.

❖ Student literary societies erected the flanking buildings, Goethean and Diagnothian halls, which were completed in 1857. Presidents Emanuel V. Gerhart and J.W. Nevin gave the college a unique identity rooted in German idealism and the Mercersburg Theology.

❖ Since 1853 Franklin & Marshall College has evolved from sectarian origins to become a national liberal arts college. The first step in that evolution was the introduction of a curriculum in the natural sciences. Under the presidency of John S. Stahr, the college erected the first science building (the modern Stager Hall, 1900-02). During the 1920s President H.H. Apple hired Charles Z. Klauder to prepare the college's first master plan and to design dormitories, a lecture hall (the modern Barshinger Center for Musical Arts in Hensel Hall), a new science building, a swimming pool, and a boiler house. Apple's presidency was a time of dramatic growth in the size of the faculty and student body, but also an era of change: the college moved away from its roots in the Mercersburg Theology and replaced the classical curriculum with majors.

❖ After World War II the college experienced another institutional growth. New buildings provided additional rooms for student housing, new laboratory and classroom space in the natural sciences, modern athletic facilities,
Franklin & Marshall College Marker [Reverse] image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), November 28, 2020
2. Franklin & Marshall College Marker [Reverse]
and a meeting place for all members of the college community, the Steinman College Center. Breaking with longstanding tradition, the college became coeducational in 1969.

❖ Over the past twenty years Franklin & Marshall's curriculum has become more interdisciplinary, while renovation and construction have resulted in wonderful and excellent performance spaces for the arts, including the Roschel Performing Arts Center and the Philadelphia Alumni Writers House. Today the college attracts a diverse student body from approximately forty states and more than forty countries. Franklin & Marshall entered the new millennium a healthy, vibrant college committed "to foster in its students qualities of intellect, creativity, and character, that they may live fulfilling lives and contribute meaningfully to their occupations, their communities, and their world."
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: ArchitectureChurches & ReligionEducation. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #15 James Buchanan series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1787.
Location. 40° 3.069′ N, 76° 19.198′ W. Marker is in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, in Lancaster County. Marker is on Harrisburg Avenue, 0.4 miles west of West Liberty Street, on the right when traveling
Franklin & Marshall College Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Devry Becker Jones (CC0), November 28, 2020
3. Franklin & Marshall College Marker
west. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 962 Harrisburg Ave, Lancaster PA 17603, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Ross H. Sachs (approx. 0.2 miles away); S. Woodrow Sponaugle '37 (approx. 0.2 miles away); William J. Iannicelli '48 (approx. 0.2 miles away); Wheatland (approx. ¼ mile away); The Richard Kneedler Sculpture Garden (approx. ¼ mile away); a different marker also named Franklin & Marshall College (approx. 0.3 miles away); Franklin & Marshall College September 11 Memorial (approx. 0.3 miles away); Klauder-Apple Walk (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Lancaster.
Credits. This page was last revised on November 29, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 29, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 143 times since then and 24 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on November 29, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.

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May. 27, 2023