Friday, October 17, 2014

Harvard: From Adams to Zuckerberg, With An Eccentric Mother In Between

We should have stayed home Tuesday to   advertize for  an evening  PCA, but we honestly believed we had an interim person lined up. Tuesday night, her husband told us that her circumstances had changed, but by  then we had already indulged in a student-led tour of Harvard Yard. I think I'll take a break from my series on elements of the  Gospel to show you a few photos John took, beginning with Massachusetts Hall.
This freshman dorm housed Founding Fathers John Hancock, James  Otis, Samuel Adams and (my favorite)  John Adams. Now the two lower floors hold administrative offices, including the university president's office...though the top floor continues to serve as a freshman dorm. Too bad the tour opened with its highlight for me.

Widener Library fascinated both me and John.

Harry Elkins Widener graduated from Harvard in 1907. His avid love of books led him to develop an extensive collection, some of which he'd gathered in Europe. Sadly, he perished on the Titanic. In his memory, his mother had the Harry Elkins Widener Memorial Library built to house the remainder of his books.

One of Mrs. Widener's stipulations in donating the money and books for the library prohibits any alteration to the visible structure, posing quite a problem when added books and technologies required expansion. The school solved that dilemma by building six stories down and expanding outward underneath Harvard Yard. So typically Boston!

Our tour guide pointed in the direction of Mark Zuckerberg's dorm, where he developed Facebook, but neither John nor I could tell exactly which building she indicated.
You may need to take your own tour of Harvard to find the building. Since time restraints prevented me from showing you all the pictures John took and telling you all the stories, perhaps you really should consider visiting Harvard for yourself. Although I suppose my PCA search ought to have kept us home Tuesday, I can't regret going. Neither will you.

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