The Pasture


The Pasture


The Pasture, also called the College Park, was once an attractive territory stretching from the Terrace Wall westward to Park Place in Schenectady (one block west of the current main campus). Sheep, horses and cows belonging to professors and townspeople grazed among its trees, despite the antics of mischievous students who were know to “kidnap” the animals for College pranks. In the late 1890s, President Raymond and the Perkins’ son-in-law, Professor of Rhetoric and Logic Edward Everett Hale, also established a golf course there.

At the time Mrs. Perkins was writing, the College’s financial problems led it to sell off huge portions of the Pasture. In 1901, for example, Union sold one parcel for the construction of Schenectady’s Public Library and successfully divided up and sold an additional forty-four building lots on its former open space. Mrs. Perkins regretted the shrinking of this lovely green area: “It was absolutely necessary, as Park Place is to be paved, and we would have to pay half, and it would be destroying. I don't talk about it; I know it has to be” (undated letter, 1901).

Eventually, the Pasture only stretched to the newly created Seward Place. The remaining area had varied uses as a tree nursery, a skating rink, a baseball field, and even parking for a tank manufacturing company during the Second World War. The building of a number of new dormitories around the middle of the twentieth century closed off the westward facing campus planned by Ramée and today, West Beach is all that is left of the Pasture.


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