The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Oberlin College

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OBERLIN COLLEGE, at Oberlin, Ohio; coeducational, founded in 1833 under the name of the Oberlin Collegiate Institute. In 1850 the name was changed to Oberlin College, although from the beginning the work offered was of college grade. The preparatory was the first department opened, but within two years the collegiate department and the theological school were organized and in operation. It was the first college in the United States to adopt coeducation, and in 1835 admitted students “without respect to color.” Oberlin College was a noted centre from which emanated strong anti-slavery sentiments, and in the vicinity was the “Underground Railroad” (q.v.), so much used in slavery days by the Abolitionists (q.v.). In addition to the regular courses in the College of Arts and Sciences, there is a department of music and a graduate school of theology (undenominational). Courses are also given in physical education for both men and women. There is a summer school (offering work of college grade only). In 1918-19 there were 173 teachers and officers connected with the college, and the total student enrolment was 1,518. The attendance in the College of Arts and Sciences is limited to 1,000. The college has 5,280 living alumni. The library contains 185,985 bound volumes and 153,193 unbound volumes and pamphlets. The buildings and equipment of the college are valued at $2,266,650. The productive endowment amounts to $2,929,170.91, not including the Hall bequest, which will ultimately come into the possession of the college for endowment purposes, conservatively estimated at $3,000,000. For 1917-18 the total income of the institution was $642,799.89.