Policies and Procedures
Present and Past Staff
Faculty Materials
History of NYU
Student Life
John Brademas
Congressional Papers
History of Greenwich Village
Chancellors and Presidents

Dates of Origin for
NYU Schools

Online Finding Aids
Select Guide to Women's History Collections
Significant Dates in
NYU History
NYU and the Village
1968 Revisited
A Window Into the Past: NYU in Retrospect
Timeline of NYU History: 1831-2006
Washington Square Image Collection
Greenwich Village
Student Life
University Publications Covers
Washington Square Arch


Significant Dates in NYU History

31 January 1831
Albert Gallatin, former Secretary of the Treasury under Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, elected as first President of the Council of New York University.

The Reverend James M. Mathews elected as first chancellor of New York University.

18 April 1831
The University of the City of New York, as NYU was known until 1896, founded and incorporated.

3 September 1833
The first private commencement held, with NYU awarding three diplomas.

17 July 1834
The first public commencement held for students.

Bobcat, the NYU mascot, is ever ready to cheer on the victories of the school on and off the field.

October 1835
Construction begun on the University Building, NYU's first permanent structure.

Samuel F.B. Morse, professor of sculpture and painting at NYU, perfects his invention of the telegraph.

March 1840
John William Draper, professor of chemistry and natural history and president of the Medical faculty, produces one of the earliest daguerreotype portraits of the human face. Draper also produces one of the first photographs of the moon.

October 1853
New York University offers evening instruction.

NYU Medical faculty fight to obtain passage of the "Bone Bill," legalizing dissection in New York State.

June 1866
The School of Practical and Analytical Chemistry awards NYU's first PhD degrees.

October 1873
The first women students enroll in the School of Arts.

June 1892
Mary Dennis becomes the first woman awarded a PhD degree from NYU.

September 1894
Undergraduate Arts and Science instruction moved from Washington Square to NYU's new campus at University Heights in the Bronx.

The original New York University building on Washington Square East is demolished and replaced by a 10-story commercial building designed by Alfred Zucker.

December 1905
Chancellor Henry Mitchell MacCracken calls for regulation of college football, eventually leading to the establishment of the NCAA.

January 1914
The increased enrollment in the Collegiate Division leads to the establishment of a four year, coeducational liberal arts college at New York University, known as Washington Square College.

15 September 1951
Arthur T. Vanderbilt Hall of the New York University School of Law dedicated.

16 December 1972
The Elmer Holmes Bobst Library and Study Center dedicated.

1 September 1973
Washington Square and University College created through the merger of NYU's two liberal arts colleges as result of the sale of the University's Bronx campus at University Heights.



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