THE ARCHITECTURE OF THE UNIVERSITY OF OREGON

Memorial Quadrangle

Architect: Ellis F. Lawrence and associated firms (Knight Library, Museum of Art, Condon Hall, Chapman Hall); Stanton, Boles, Maguire, Church (Prince Lucien Campbell Hall).  Landscape architect: Frederick Cuthbert.

DESCRIPTION

"The University of Oregon Memorial Quadrangle is located at the west end of campus between the Knight Library and 13th Avenue (north and south axis), and between Condon Hall and Prince Lucien Campbell Hall (west), and Chapman Hall and the Museum of Art (east). The arrangement of the Quadrangle was created as an open mall by the buildings that surround it in all directions. On the west side of the Quadrangle, the main entrance of Condon Hall (1925) faces the open mall. Chapman Hall (1939), is a mirror image of Condon Hall directly across the Quadrangle on the east side. The Museum of Art (1930) is located on the east side with its brick Persian carpet design on the main facade facing toward the Quadrangle. Directly across from the Museum of Art on the west side, Prince Lucien Campbell (PLC) Hall (1968) is the tallest and latest addition to the Quadrangle. The Library is placed between the Museum of Art and PLC as the head crown to all the buildings located on the open landscape of the Quadrangle. The Memorial Quadrangle is made up of three memorials established at different dates but in the same general location.

The first memorial was established in 1921 just south of 13th Avenue, and between Kincaid Street and Johnson Hall. The open space was dedicated to the athletes of the University because this was the original site of Kincaid Field, the University's second football and track field. In 1919,Kincaid Field ceased being used for football and track remained there until 1921. The area was originally just an open field of grass and without special landscaping.

The second memorial was established in 1932 to honor the students who fought in the Spanish-American and the First World Wars. This area includes the walks and landscaping between the Museum of Art and PLC (east and west) and the Library and 13th Avenue (north and south). Fred Cuthbert, long time landscape architecture professor at the University of Oregon School of Architecture and Allied Arts, was commissioned by Lawrence to design the landscaping of the Quadrangle. The landscape design is made up of concrete walks shaped in the form of one large circle located directly in front of the Museum of Art with walks in the shape of an X to the north and south and another along 13th avenue. Also, there are walks which radiate from the center and also surround the perimeter of the mall. Two bronze plaques at the north end corners of the Quadrangle along 13th Avenue are set into the ground and read, "The walks of this Quadrangle are the gift of Chaplain William S. Gilbert, as a memorial to the men of the University who served their country in the time of war." In addition, there are seven cast iron lamp posts that flank the mall on both sides (east and west). The lamps were designed with fluted columns (wider at the base), one decorative band with a floral pattern near the bottom, and a frosted glass globe at the top.

The third memorial of the Quadrangle was dedicated in 1939-40 to the senior class president, Robert Bailey, who drowned in the Mill Race that year. This particular memorial consists of the planting of the eight Pyramidal Oak trees in the Quadrangle. A brass plaque is placed on top of the cast stone fountain at the terrace level of the Library reads, "Here where the living mind and step of youth retrace the ancient paths to human wisdom's goal, the symmetry of these oaks shall keep this place for one, for all who like him thought, in soul, in body, voice, and friendship-by Robert D.Horn. In memory of Robert Chase Bailey, Class of 1939."

Source: University of Oregon Library and Memorial Quadrangle, National Register of Historic Places Registration Form, 1990.

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Memorial Quadrangle Ensemble, National Register of Historic Places Registration Form, 1990. PDF .


Page author: Edward H. Teague.