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This spring there will be constructed the first of a group of six buildings which when completed will be devoted to research and instruction in chemistry. This group is designed to be more perfect in equipment than any in this country and to approach the excellency of many of those in Germany, the country which leads the world in the study of the science of chemistry. The site of these buildings will have a front of 300 feet on the west side of Divinity avenue, and will extend westward towards Oxford street for about 400 feet.
The cost of the buildings will be about $1,200,000, of which $100,000 has already been raised. The money now available was obtained by a committee appointed by the Overseers, consisting of Dr. J. C. Warren '63, chairman, Professor J. M. Crafts '58, former president of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Mr. E. Thomson, of the General Electric Company, Mr. J. D. Pennock '83, of the Solvay Process Company, Mr. C. Richardson '77, Mr. C. H. W. Foster '81, Dr. M. Loeb '83, and Dr. A. F. Forbes '04, and will be employed in building the first laboratory, the Wolcott Gibbs Laboratory for research in physical and inorganic chemistry. This structure will occupy the northeast corner of the future group, standing just south of the Peabody Museum.
Provision for the construction of the remaining five buildings is in the hands of another committee appointed by the Corporation and approved by the Overseers and now consists of J. D. Pennock '83, chairman, C. Richardson '77, Dr. M. Loeb '83, and E. Mallinckrodt, Jr., '00. Its membership will be subsequently enlarged to include representatives of all the important communities in the country, and there will be a meeting of Harvard chemists and others interested in the plan in Boston this spring.
The plans for the proposed group prepared by A. W. Longfellow, of Boston, who is the architect, contain five buildings which will form three sides of a rectangle, with an administration building in the centre which will contain the offices of the department, a spacious lecture hall, museum and library. The several buildings will be connected with each other and with the administration building by pillared cloisters which will not only unify the group but add to its architectural impression. Beginning with the northeasterly corner is the Wolcott Gibbs Laboratory to be devoted to research in physical and inorganic chemistry, next to the west will be a building divided between instruction in physical chemistry and quantitative analysis. At the west end is a building devoted to instruction in qualitative analysis and organic chemistry, next, on the south side of the rectangle a building for the pursuit of industrial and organic chemistry, and the last structure, on the southeast corner, will be adapted to research work in organic chemistry. When completed, the chemistry department in the future will be adequately able to accommodate 950 students, which is only a slight increase over the number actually needing desks at one time in the past.
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