Raymond G. Bressler

Raymond G. Bressler, 1931-1940 

Raymond George Bressler, at the age of 43, became the president of Rhode Island State College in 1931.

Old Ben Butler

Memorials and Statues: Ben Butler

At the southwest corner of the quadrangle stands a cannon named Old Ben Butler. Capt. George N. Kenyon bought the canon for the University shortly before the inauguration of the state’s agricultural school, now the University. The captain loaned the cannon to the students as part of the celebration.  The students stuffed Old Ben full […]

Howard Edwards

Howard Edwards, 1906 – 1930 

Howard Edwards was the University’s longest-serving president. During his 24-year tenure, he fostered URI’s growth from a tiny agricultural school into a full-fledged College.

Memorial Union

The Memorial Union: The University’s ‘Living Room’

Today we know the Memorial Union as the building with the clock tower in the heart of the University of Rhode Island’s Kingston Campus, but the Union has a long and quirky history. It all started in 1943 when the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity building—vacant at the time—was turned into a student gathering place. Although […]

Lippitt Hall

Buildings on the URI Quadrangle: Lippitt Hall

Opened in 1897, Lippitt Hall filled the need for a drill hall and gymnasium facility on campus and a library for the College’s growing number of books. Built with locally quarried granite, it was named in honor of Gov. Charles W. Lippitt. The architecture of Lippitt Hall is unique to the campus, primarily in its use of Tudor-style facings on the north and south side dormers.

Kenyon L. Butterfield

Kenyon L. Butterfield, President—1903-1906

Kenyon Butterfield became the second president of Rhode Island College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts, following the abrupt departure of John Washburn, its first president. Butterfield strove to make the college of greater service to a larger number of Rhode Islanders.

Tour the Watson House

In 1888, local citizens purchased the 140-acre Oliver Watson Farm for $5,000 as a site for an agricultural experiment station and school. Little did they know the educational seed they planted would bloom into a distinguished university with a world-renowned reputation. To acknowledge those forward-looking citizens, URI will host a Founders’ Day Festival, Thursday, April […]

John Hosea Washburn

John Hosea Washburn—President, 1892-1902

John Hosea Washburn was appointed principal of the State Agricultural School, which opened in 1890 with 26 students, 24 men and two women. Washburn successfully wrested the funding appropriation of land-grant status away from Brown University.

Freek Day 1968 Wheelbarrow races

Freek Day, Beanies, and Beyond

From Freek Day to Greek Week, the traditions of philanthropy and fun among the Greek community are still going strong. With Greek Week 2017 fast approaching, students are busy warming up their singing voices for Greek Sing and practicing their Lip Sync choreography. Since 1968, Freek Day has been an opportunity for members of Greek life to introduce […]

Frank Keaney

Frank Keaney and the Old Gazazza

A basketball buzz has returned to Rhody thanks to a second Atlantic 10 Championship won by the men’s team Sunday, March 12, and with it an an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. Rhode Island was the talk of hoop analysts throughout the early part of the week on CBS, ESPN, CBS Sports Network, and the Sports Illustrated website as one of the hot, dangerous teams in the tourney.