Archives Photograph Collection

preview image

The Seminary Building (left) and the first College Building (not completed until 1836)

image number:



This image scanned from the Cornelius Pering letter held in the Indiana University Archives. Search the accession number 0036 to see images of all of the pages of the letter as well as details of the watercolor images. For a description of the entire letter see image P0024522.

Pering describes this image in his letter, in full: "The New College is the center picture, which is not yet finished in the interior; the building on the left is the one at present occupied. It will remind you more of Mr. Rister's factory than the princely halls of Oxford and Cambridge, but I have no doubt as good scholars will be turned out from the humble edifice as from the more celebrated seats of learning in England. The President and professors are men of great talent and would do honor to any university in the world. The President (Dr. Wylie) is one of the most eminent scholars in the United States; he occupies the chair of moral philosophy. There are several young men who will graduate this session. The students are from various states; we have some from Louisville, Tennessee, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, and Illinois, besides those from this state. They board in the town at from $1.25 to $2 per week. The admission fees are only $15 a year, which it is expected will be soon altogether dispensed with, as the College is richly endowed by the state. The President's salary is $1,000 a year and a third of the tuition fees; each of the professors $800 and a third of the fees.

You will observe that the land has been recently cleared, and that the stumps of the trees are not yet entirely rotten. Trees are always cut down with the axe a foot or two from the ground and the stumps left to rot, which they do in eight or ten years. Some persons in clearing merely cut away the low brush-wood, where it exists, and deaden the trees by cutting a circle around them with the axe tow or three inches deep; in a year or two the trees are quite dead and the first high wind blows them down, when they are rolled in a pile and burnt."

date taken:

1833 August 27

photographer studio:

Pering, Cornelius (as artist)

accession number:


building name:

Seminary Building (1824 or 1825)

building name:

College Building (1836)

building name:

First College Building (1836)











other place name:

Seminary Square


Buildings & Grounds