Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History

Sauer, Anne

Branco, Jessica

Bennett, John

Crowley, Zachary


Edward E. Cohen Arts Center, 1955


The Edward E. Cohen Arts Center was constructed in 1955 to serve as a permanent home to arts and music at Tufts University. It was named for Edward E. Cohen, a Boston industrialist and philanthropist, who was also a major donor to the School of Medicine.

The Cohen Arts Center was built over the summer of 1955 at a cost of over one million dollars. Edward Cohen donated over $300,000 of the money used to build the center, the rest coming from a Jackson alumni drive. Arland A. Dirlam, E1926, was the architect who designed the building. The center was constructed to house music, art, and drama facilities, all three of which had long been neglected at the university. Music had previously been housed on Boston Avenue, in the same building as a number of engineering laboratories, and Fine Arts had occupied one small room in Ballou Hall. The new facility provided office space, classrooms, an art gallery, and a 628 seat auditorium. Alumnae Hall, completed soon after Cohen, connects the Arts Center to Jackson Gym, the former location of the Department of Dance.

In 1991, the Cohen Arts Center was completely remodeled. In a nine-million dollar project, classrooms were added to the downstairs level, a sculpture gallery was built, and the Balch Arena Theater was installed in the facility. With the renovations came a new name for the building. In a formal rededication ceremony in 1991, the name was changed to the Shirley and Alex Aidekman Arts Center, recognizing the support of the Aidekman family in paying for renovations to the building. Cohen, however, remains the namesake for the auditorium located inside. The entire building still serves as home to the Department of Drama and Dance, and also houses most of the classrooms used by the Department of Music.

Source: BG#005

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  • The encyclopedia seeks to capture more than 150 years of Tufts' achievements, societal contributions and outstanding alumni and faculty in concise entries. As a source of accurate factual information, the Encyclopedia can be used by anyone interested in the history of Tufts and of the people who have made it the unique institution it is.
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Numeric Entries
Dame, Lorin Low, 1838-1903
Dana, Charles A., 1881-1975
Dana Laboratory, 1963
Daniel Ounjian Prize in Economics,
Davies, Caroline Stodder, 1864-1939
Davies House, 1894
De Florez Prize in Human Engineering, 1964
de Pacheco, Kaye MacKinnon, ca. 1910-ca. 1985
Dean Hall, 1887-1963
Dean, Oliver, 1783-1871
Dearborn, Heman Allen, 1831-1897
Department of Anatomy and Cellular Biology, 1893
Department of Anesthesia, 1970
Department of Art and Art History, 1930
Department of Biochemistry, 1893
Department of Chemistry, 1882
Department of Community Health, 1930
Department of Dermatology, 1897
The Department of Economics, 1946
Department of Medicine, 1893
Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology
Department of Neurology, 1893
Department of Neuroscience, 1983
Department of Neurosurgery, 1951
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 1893
Department of Ophthamology, 1893
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, 1906
Department of Otolaryngology, 1895
Department of Pathology, 1893
Department of Pediatrics, 1930
Department of Pharmacology, 1915
Department of Physics and Astronomy, 1854
Department of Physiology, 1893
Department of Psychiatry, 1928
Department of Radiation Oncology, 1968
Department of Radiology, 1915
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, 1955
Department of Surgery, 1893
Department of Urban and Environmental Policy, 1973
Department of Urology, 1910
Dental Health Sciences Building, 1969
Dewick, Cora Alma (Polk), 1875-1977
Dewick/MacPhie Dining Hall, 1959
Dickson Professorship of English and American History, 1913
Dirlam, Arland A., 1905-1979
Dog Cart, 1900
Dolbear, Amos Emerson, 1837-1910
Donald A. Cowdery Memorial Scholarship, 1946
Dr. Benjamin Andrews Professorship of Surgery, 1987
Dr. Philip E. A. Sheridan Prize, 1977
The Drug Bust, 1970
Dudley, Henry Watson, 1831-1906
Dugger, Edward Jr., 1919-75
Durkee, Frank W., 1861-1939
Durkee, Henrietta Noble Brown, 1871-1946
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