Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History
Goddard Hall, 1883
|Goddard Hall, originally known as Goddard Gymnasium, was built in 1883 to serve as a gymnasium for the students of Tufts College. It was built with funds donated by Mary T. Goddard, and was designed by George A. Clough.|
Previous to the completion of Goddard Gym, students took their exercise by running around the Reservoir or using the open-air gym located behind .Announcement of the building of the gym, made at the same time as that of the Barnum Museum, was greeted with joy by students. Following the announcement, a huge bonfire was built on the hill while students cheered and rang the bell continuously.
The original Goddard Gymnasium provided basic facilities, with an open main floor and locker and shower facilities located in the basement. Beginning in 1897 two hours per week of gymnasium work was required of freshmen and sophomores from Thanksgiving until spring recess. At that time Goddard Gymnasium provided the only large space suitable for holding dances or large gatherings, and was used for the commencement dinner each year.
By 1898, demands on the building were such that additions were made to the front and south sides of the building, providing space for a baseball cage with a dance floor above. An indoor track was also constructed at this time at the level of the dance floor, as a gallery around the main gym area. The Department of Music was given use of rooms on the third floor of the front addition.
By 1930 Goddard Gymnasium was hopelessly outgrown and as soon as the new was ready, Goddard Gym was handed over to the newly formed Fletcher School, and became known as Goddard Hall.
As of 1999, Goddard Hall is still used by the Fletcher School. The main part of the building houses the Edwin Ginn Library, as well as limited office space, seminar rooms, and the Edward R. Murrow Center. The structure is connected to the Cabot Intercultural Center on its north side and Mugar Hall on the west. Where possible the original brick and woodwork has been preserved and can still be seen in the reading room and stack areas of the library.
Source: BG6; RNTB1; VFI