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The University Attorney Endowment Record

 Collection
Identifier: 53/6
History:

In 1865 founding trustee Orrington Lunt endowed Northwestern University with one hundred fifty-seven acres of land and thus created the university's first permanent endowment. Lunt's contribution and a $50,000 donation of land on behalf of founder John Evans in 1889 constituted the bulk of the endowment in the nineteenth century. The endowment grew slowly in the first two decades of the twentieth century but was deemed inadequate by the Board of Trustees.

In 1913 the General Education Board of the Rockefeller Foundation pledged $250,000 for the endowment if the University could raise $750,000. The campaign, however, failed to reach its goal. An ambitious plan to raise $25 million begun in 1919 had to be abandoned in 1921 after having raised only enough money to purchase land upon which to construct a new consolidated Chicago campus.

In 1922 Northwestern's new president, Walter Dill Scott, launched yet another attempt to increase the endowment, as well as finance construction of the new Chicago campus. A campaign to raise $4.5 million was approved by the Board of Trustees. As part of the campaign the General Education Board of the Rockefeller Foundation was again approached and agreed to pledge $600,000 if Northwestern could raise $1.4 million in two years. The remainder of the campaign was directed at obtaining $700,000 for improvements on the Evanston campus and $2.4 million for the construction of the Chicago campus. The campaign, called “Toward a Greater Northwestern,” succeeded in raising just under $8.5 million, including one pledge of $4 million for a medical building by Elizabeth Ward in honor of her husband Montgomery Ward.

Description of the Series:

This series consists of one volume that records the creation of Northwestern's endowment between 1865 and 1925. The record was apparently compiled in the wake of the 1922-24 “Toward a Greater Northwestern” campaign for the use of the university attorney. The record provides extracts of the minutes of the Board of Trustees and its Executive Committee and excerpts from correspondence between donors and university officers. The form and terms of each endowment are set forth and its value is recorded or estimated. The volume provides a useful overview of the creation of the university's endowment but it does not provide information on the management or final disposition of the various endowments. Further reference to endowments and the use of endowed funds may be found in the Trustees minutes, annual financial reports, the business records of the university (Series 7/1/2), and, in the case of the 1922-24 campaign, in the report of the campaign committee.

The volume is arranged in eight sections. The first section includes information of the Lunt land gift, several Swift family gifts for the endowment of Annie May Swift Hall, N.W. Harris' endowment for the maintenance of Harris Hall, and James Patten's endowment for the maintenance of Patten Gymnasium. Thereafter are seven tabbed sections: For Professorships; For Scholarships, Fellowships, etc.; For Miscellaneous Purposes; Chicago Campus and Building Endowments; Protective Endowments; Unrestricted Endowments and Endowments for Annuity. Within each section entries are arranged chronologically by date of donation.

Each record of an endowment includes the name of the donor, the date of the pledge, the date the gift was actually given to the university, the form of the endowment, restrictions or conditions, extracts from letters, minutes, etc. The information is most complete for those gifts made in the “Toward a Greater Northwestern” campaign, with the section on the Chicago campus providing the most insight into the motivations of the donors. The volume includes entries for gifts valued from $385 to $4 million.

Dates

  • 1865-1925

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

Restricted.

Extent

1.00 Volumes

Abstract

This series consists of one volume that records the creation of Northwestern's endowment between 1865 and 1925. The record was apparently compiled in the wake of the 1922-24 “Toward a Greater Northwestern” campaign for the use of the university attorney. The record provides extracts of the minutes of the Board of Trustees and its Executive Committee and excerpts from correspondence between donors and university officers. The form and terms of each endowment are set forth and its value is recorded or estimated. The volume provides a useful overview of the creation of the university's endowment but it does not provide information on the management or final disposition of the various endowments. Further reference to endowments and the use of endowed funds may be found in the Trustees minutes, annual financial reports, the business records of the university (Series 7/1/2), and, in the case of the 1922-24 campaign, in the report of the campaign committee.

Method of Acquisition

This volume was transferred to the University Archives by Mike Weston/University Attorney on April 1, 1981 as accession #81-70.

Processing Information

Thomas Dorst, July, 1981
Title
Guide to the The University Attorney Endowment Record
Author
Thomas Dorst
Date
01/07/1981
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Repository Details

Part of the Northwestern University Archives Repository

Contact:
Deering Library, Room 110
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US
847-491-3354